micke-midlife on February 14th, 2009

14022009_hows-it-goingThis is the question we hear most - “how’s it going with your running project?” “Fine, I guess”, the short and general reply back, when there’s no time to further explain. In essence it’s just that. But with a bit more time on this Saturday evening, let me elaborate briefly.

The Rotterdam test marathon is the focus right now. Not really thinking about the real thing in Berlin in September, yet. Couldn’t get my head around such a long time, 7 months, anyway. Looking at the initial target progress curve, the outcome of the race should be at least 2:41:20, i.e. a 3:50min/km speed. But since we’re with the progress so far below the blue curve, we should aim to do better than that. In the longer interval runs, the 5-10km runs, the goal is to stay below 3:45min/km. The original Runner’s World training program says that those are to be done in the intended marathon pace. And the training has been encouraging, those long interval runs always were somewhere between 3:43 and 3:37min/km. Hence, there’s a good chance that we stay below 2:40h in Rotterdam.

But all interval runs are currently done indoors on a 400m track, best grip, no wind. How does that translate to the streets? On the other hand, training shoes are used and we’re still wearing more fabric than in the race. This could equal out. A real point of worry is the weight. We brought it down to about 75kg, but now we seem to be stuck. No change in it for weeks. A week of soup and salad seems to push it down one kilogram temporarily. It has to go down to 71, preferably 70kg. And there’re only 6 weeks left (the last week isn’t for big adjustments in that department anymore). The other area that is neglected is sleep. With just below 6 hours on average, there most probably are adverse effects on running performance, just can’t point out how those are playing out.

The environment is good, if this project would fail, there’d be nothing to blame at that end. A strict routine has been established so that it works out with the family. Running has to fit in right after work and the goal is to be home at 7 - 7:15pm, showered or not (preferably showered). Although, there’s always a hot sauna waiting in the changing rooms at work, the time budget never allows it to have a relaxing moment after these basic or long runs in the freezing darkness (currently minus 5 - 8 degrees Celsius). That’s life, you can’t have it all. But we’re doing fine, I guess.

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