Preparing For Chicago Marathon

FasterSkierOctober 5, 2004

Looking forward to the Chicago Marathon on October 10. Huge test. One chance
to either prove or disprove the training that I have done this summer. One
race day. All the eggs in one basket.

Though I have done some time trials this summer, I have not raced May. It is
all I can do to log the mileage & training volume during the summer season.
There are other things I enjoy doing in the summer, along with a solid
training load, with a side order of summer heat & humidity, I just don't get
up for road races in the summer time.

This year I had a tough time after my 25k road race in May. I kept waiting
for the motivation to return. I waited till June rolled around, doing
maintenance training – some running & occasional rollerskiing. Finally, with
the start of my 18 week marathon training program around the corner, I had
to get my mileage up. However, the motivation continued to elude me. I would
look at my training plan, and dread the thought of a two hour run on
still-dead legs. Strangely, I had some very good training runs, reflecting
an underlying state of fitness. It was frustrating being unable to build on
it. One week I'd get 45 or 50 miles, the next only 25 ! No momentum. I kept
plugging away at it, and I maintained a long run of 15 miles throughout the
summer. Finally on July 20, I logged this entry after an 8 miler:

“Increasingly hot sunrise run. I can feel the tide turning. I feel like a
runner again.”

That week as well as the week before were 39 miles. However, the following
week was 50 miles, and that was the lowest week until my 3 week taper, which
is right now. In August I logged my most miles ever (257), and September I
went 265 miles. I was finally able to latch onto a 12 week training plan,
with an unbroken string of solid training weeks.

Comparing last year to this year, in 2003 I was better able to follow the
longer 18 week program, with 11 weeks “in the zone” of 47 miles per week &
up. August 2003 was tough in the dog days of summer heat which cost me some
miles. However, with this year's shorter 12 week program, if I include other
weeks prior, I have been able to get 12 weeks of good mileage. So based on
that, and some other key bits hidden in the training log, I am going to line
up with the 3 hour pace crew & see what happens. Now that I have proclaimed
it before the world community, I hope race day goes well ! What I am really
looking forward to is getting back to ski specific training right after
Chicago, with more core, bounding & rollerskiing.


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