Friday, June 01, 2007


Well, it's 226 days to the Houston Marathon. I know. I know. It's a bit early to start getting too excited but I can't help it. I'm really looking forward to the coming season. I asked Amalia yesterday excitedly, "So, you ready to start marathon training?!?" She looked at me like I had 4 eyes and I didn't even have my glasses on. :) So, I know it's not at the front of everyone's mind but I'm starting to think about it a lot and really getting excited about the coming training season.

Along those lines, I had some good advice from Coach Bill via e-mail the other day and it makes a lot of sense. Of couse I'm hearing the same stuff from Coach Steeve so that just seals the deal. What Coach Bill said is a propos too because his advice addresses not only marathon training but also post-race recovery and even gearing back up for 2009. Hopefully he won't mind my posting what he said here.

What happened after Houston happens to everyone. You just did 6 months of training building and building and toughing it out week after week. You needed a break and you’re body just forced it on you in terms of your motivation.

You are getting back in the cycle to begin again and this year will be better than last…you have experience now.

What we do with our runners is build the break into the training. I cut some of the runners buy as much as 50% in their training and some are Boston Qualifiers.

This year…2007/2008 do your training for Houston the same as you did last year. You have a very good support system in place. Plan to take an active break after the race….two week recovery to the end of January then spend the winter and spring months concentrating on the shorter distance races. Keep your longest run to an hour max. In June start thinking about new fall goals and begin the build up again. This is a healthy cycle that will help keep you motivated and fresh year after year. Fall – long races….Spring short and a possible 5K PR. Stay in this cycle a couple years and watch what happens.

So, here's the plan. I'm going to be joining Houston Fit. I'm not going to go into all the reasons I'm not going to repeat my experience with Katy Fit but suffice it to say, I was not impressed with their program last year. I love the venues on the west side but...well, that's all I'm going to say about that. Of course I'm hanging pre and post race with the Striders for all the warmup races and don't be surprised to find me toughing out one of Miriam's core workouts every now and then. I'll definintely work the SMARTie Hop workouts into my schedule and wouldn't miss the Tour de Memorial and the Longest Long run for anything. So, basically, the plan is the same as last year. Sticking with the Fit'ers, ramping up through the week of the Half at the end of October, running on my own during the week and then playing it by ear through the warmup series and through January, running with the Striders/SMARTies as time and my body allow.

This morning's run was another thriller. The plan was to meet the co-workers at Memorial Park again. We had one no-show so Wendy and I did one loop. She runs 11 minute pace or so and eased out ahead of me after about a quarter mile. I kept her in site through a mile and a half, just because she had to stop 3 or 4 times to tie her shoe. I ran well again today. 3 easy miles at average 12:54 pace. I pushed some bit harder than long run effort but kept conversational nonetheless. Not the kind of conversational where you can recite the pledge of allegiance without pausing for a breath but the kind of conversational where you can speak in short phrases in between breaths. I guess what I'm saying is I was somewhere between long run, easy effort and tempo effort, probably closer to easy effort. Ok, none of that makes sense.

Regardless, I was happy to get in 3 sub-13 miles with moderate effort. Feels like I'm getting a lot of the cobwebs worked out. I'm definitely ahead of where I started last year. I looked at my logs for June 1, 2006. My weight was 334 lbs. I did 3x5R/1W intervals for a total distance of 1.5 miles. My pace was 15:46 average. OK, I feel a lot better now.


txrunnergirl said...

That's great advice Vic! I did the same thing after my 1st marathon...I took a big break and then pretty much had to start all over in July when HF started. I vowed to never do that again! The good thing - it seemed a little bit easier to work up the mileage the 2nd time around. Hope that's the case for you too! I'll look forward to seeing you out there on Saturdays! (Well, when I don't have school that is)

Crosstrain said...

Registration for the Houston marathon opened today Vic. Sounds like you are ready to sign up to me. You are smoking fast compared to this time last year.

barbara said...

I will definitely vouch that it's easier just to stay on top of things than to have to start "all over".

Did you sign up today for the marathon?