Saturday, January 24

The Road

Blowing snow. Stiff overdressed figures. Dirt. Rideau Canal. Confidence, dignity and style. Gray. The Response. Inspiration (Terry Fox). The Peace Tower. Frigid.

Without going into too much detail, I’ve attempted to capture my recent experience in Ottawa with a few words and phrases. I do believe though the highlight of the trip was benefiting from a few hours of uninterrupted silence where I was able to read Cormac McCarthy’s ‘The Road’ from cover to cover.

The last few days haven’t gone according to schedule what with last minute travel changes but with this a planned easy week, me racing in Cobble Hill on Sunday, it isn’t all that bad. I managed to run on the dread-mill on Tuesday and have complete respect for those who have to train on them out of necessity. For you others, those cracked individuals who use them from choice, I’m speechless. What I learnt most from the experience was my apparent lack of fitness (running a 7:3X/mile has never felt so difficult).

On Thursday, I ran a pre-race w/o and felt horrible. I’m not sure whether I was trying too hard or recovering from the travel but I was awful. My stiff legs were over-striding as I laboured along Donwood, my heart rate far in excess of my perceived effort. Sunday is going to be dreadful.

Mike posted the following comment on my last post regarding the w/o I did last Saturday.

If I punch up say a 2:45 marathon on McMillan, the delta in pace between marathon and 10k is about 24-seconds/km. In your workout you had an average difference of about 8-seconds/km. Had you slowed your ME recoveries down say 8-10 seconds, do you think you'd have been able to hit your target pace on the 10kE portion?”

Why does it always take others to point out the obvious? What I attempted to do last w/e was run my 10k segments at 3:30/pace and my marathon effort at 3:45/pace. First, and unfortunately, when I look back at my results from the Mill Bay/Cobble Hill 10k over the last few years I’ve run 35:46, 36:08, 36:39 and 36:11. Never have I been in 3:30/pace shape at this time of year. Second, trying to run 3:45 ME (2:38:14) is faster than I’ve ever run a marathon to date. In short, I wasn’t thinking straight.

If anything positive is to come from this it has been to remind myself of proper pacing, and, that my perceived effort is pretty much bang on where I would expect it to be at this time of year. My averaged ME times were 3:58 (2:47:22) and my 10k splits, 3:49 for a 38:10… ouch!

I hope everyone has a solid weekend and I’ll update you on my performance at the 2009 Cobble Hill 10k late on Sunday.

Monday: day off (scheduled)
Tuesday: easy 1:00:56
Wednesday: day off (unscheduled)
Thursday: 46:56 with 3x2’ (1’) + 3x1’ (1’)
Friday: easy/steady 39:35


Grellan said...

Best of luck Michael and don't beat yourself up so much. I'll take that 38:10 10k any day.

Michael said...

Thanks Grellan. I'm not trying to be hard on myself, I think the cold reality of the race will do that. I hope, really hope I can run a 36:XX.

Thomas said...

A bit late now, but good luck on the 10k. At the very least you'll get a better picture of your present 10k pace.

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