Posts Tagged ‘pride’

Now that 2012 is a little over a week in the bag it’s time to get serious about planning for 2013.  About three months ago I started mentally preparing for 2013, especially since my first half marathon is right around the corner. But before we get any farther into the New Year why not go ahead and throw down a preliminary look on paper, if you will, of what the entire year might look like.


  1. January 27, 2013 – ING Miami Half Marathon – This race basically represents the culmination of my 2012 training, as haphazard as it was. Originally I had hoped to pursue roughly a 2:10 finish time based on McMillan’s calculator analyzing my 54 minute finish in a 6 mile race. Unfortunately my training, as well as my injury downtime, held me back from properly preparing for the distance in a manner that would allow me to attack and sustain that goal pace for the duration.  Being flexible and realistic, I look forward to now using the ING Miami as a training race, an experience that will give me valuable practice at properly pacing and understanding my body’s feedback during a 13.1 mile effort. I will consider any sub 2:30:00 finish a victory.basilica de los angeles
  2. February 10, 2013 – La Candelaria 10k – A classic race in Costa Rica that everyone here should run at least once. 2013 will be the 32nd running of the fast course with a major downhill bias, dropping approximately 300 feet from beginning to end, after a mild 65 feet of elevation gain during the first 2 miles. La Candelaria passes through downtown Cartago, which was the original capital of Costa Rica until 1823. Cartago sits at an elevation of roughly 4700 feet above sea level. How I approach this race will completely depend on my recuperation from the ING Miami Half Marathon. If I feel energetic and full of bounce then I will attack the course early and hold on for dear life.  If still feeling a bit tight, brittle or fatigued from Miami then I will enjoy the 10k simply as a fun training run through an area of Costa Rica that I have not explored on foot before.
  3. March 2, 2013 – Chattahoochee Road Runners Club 10k – The CRR 10k will prove to be a challenge; I’m sure of it. Although the course is primarily flat, with a modest elevation gain during miles 4 and 5, and finishing with an aggressive downhill surge, this trip back to the United States will also be somewhat of an emotional event as well as a physical test.  Two of my older brothers and my sister in law will also be racing. I haven’t seen one brother in over 5 years, and the other in close to 10 years. All three of my competitors have raced this course on multiple occasions, and as runners have years of experience more than I. This event is potentially a trap for any specific goal, other perhaps than the challenge of reigning in my pride and running my race.rock clev
  4. October 5, 2013 – Rock ‘n’ Roll Cleveland Half MarathonThis is my 2013 A race!  The October race date provides plenty of time for me to focus on expanding my aerobic base as well as fine tuning my strength program before diving into one of Jason Fitzgerald’s custom, half marathon training plans. There is no course map yet, however Rock ‘n’ Roll describes the course as flat and fast. Cleveland has an average temperature of 52.8 ° F, with an average maximum temperature of 62.1 ° F, and an average minimum temperature of 43.5 ° F. In Cleveland I will aim to apply all the lessons learned from the ING Miami Half Marathon, as well as taking advantage of the course, climate and a much better chassis and engine combo to blow through a 2:15:00 finish and target the original McMillan goal of approximately 2:07:00 or thereabouts.

So there you have it. A quick, preliminary view of what’s facing me in 2013. Keeping these dates and races in mind will give me a broader context within which I can plan my training and analyze my progress and or challenges, as they might arise.

Let’s see how much better 2013 can be!

Don’t Let One Dictate the Other

This week my training took an unexpected turn as I was forced to start my transition to road running much sooner than anticipated.  As it turns out, the death of our gym’s treadmill was prematurely reported and I now have the option of mixing both surfaces into my training plans.

My first run on the road a few days ago was both a positive and a concerning experience.  I didn’t come away with any swelling or acute pain, but my legs were completely lost in regards to rhythm, pace, cadence and stride length.  I finished the 5k in my fastest time yet, which wasn’t the day’s objective, but I also finished with nothing left in the tank and gasping for air.

As a middle-aged, novice runner I am in no position to offer up training advice to anyone.  But I’ll break that rule today to share this point: do not let your pride dictate your training pace.

Slow and steady today. No HR redline.

My current goal is to train for and complete the ING Miami Half Marathon in January of 2013.  The biggest obstacle I face in completing that task is aerobic capacity and endurance.  Not pace.  Not speed.  Not the desire to finish under some magic number that has embedded itself into my brain as respectable.

Today I headed out for my second run on the road and I made a promise to myself not to look at my watch’s pace indicator.  In fact, I reprogrammed what data it would display before the run so I could only see the distance covered and the total elapsed time.

I pretended I was performing drills, and leaned from the ankles ever so slightly, just enough to get me moving, and I tried to maintain that body position for the remainder of the run.  Guess what.  I never felt tired muscularly until the final mile.  I never gasped for air.  I never questioned if I could keep running.

I run four days a week, and am slowly increasing my weekly volume.  I perform hill sprints at the end of at least 1 run per week.  And I will always try to negative split my easy runs, regardless of how slow the overall pace is.  But something clicked today that although I was already aware of, had not experienced fully until now.  Slow and steady is the race I’m in.  Train for it.


Family First

Posted: August 26, 2012 in events, lifestyle, running
Tags: , , , , ,

Sometimes it just isn’t about you

A detailed training log for the week is here.

I started this blog several months ago when I made the decision to commit to running.  I felt that keeping a public journal of sorts would not only be a great tool to hold me accountable to my training but also serve as a source of motivation towards my goals.

During this time I’ve purchased a few pairs of running shoes, hi tech shorts and shirts, and even booked my flight and hotel reservations for my first half marathon.  I’ve lamented, moaned and even bitched about my Achilles tendon and bone spurs.

In fact, it’s all been about me.  That isn’t a bad thing necessarily.  After all, I am the one writing a blog about the running experience from my perspective: training, diet, injury, etc.  But you run the risk of blinding yourself to other events when you become too self-absorbed.

Last week my daughter came home from school and told me she had won a race in her physical education class.  Two days later she came home and told me she placed second in another event, and then handed me a piece of folded paper.  Inside was an official invitation from her school to participate in the annual track and field event: the 75 meter sprint.

My daughter has never expressed an interest in sports, other than the usual awe and admiration shown while witnessing the Olympic gymnastics events.  She has never asked me about my running.  She has never tagged along for a jog or laced up her shoes and walked out the door with me.  But apparently she has been paying close attention.

My wife, son, and I drove Sara to her school yesterday morning for the races.  The events were divided by grade and sex, and after about 1.5 hours we were ready.  I was photographing the race, documenting something that I was surprised to see in the first place, and having no idea if it will be repeated in the future: my daughter toeing the line in a competitive sporting event.

From the first step it was clear she had only one serious challenger.  The two streaked down the track literally neck and neck, and even with the photos taken on a high fps digital camera I’m not sure how the judges decided on a winner.  Eventually my daughter was awarded 2nd place.  She glowed from the adrenalin, and later pouted because her medal wasn’t as large as the winner’s.

Yesterday, before my eyes, my daughter became a competitor in running, the sport I’ve made so much to do about over these past months without ever having toed the line myself in all of my fancy new gear and technology..  My daughter laced up her well worn and used sneakers, donned her school’s phys ed uniform and gave it all she had.

I love you baby, and I couldn’t be more proud!

Congratulations on your success, determination and spirit.