Sunday, August 15, 2010

Falmouth Road Race

Unfortunately, I don't have good news this week. I dropped a real stinker in the race this morning- I knew things were going to be ugly about a mile and a half in, made it through 4mi ok, then really blew up and ran about 17min for the last 3 miles. My final time was something like 37:35, about a minute slower than the last year. Had I squeaked under 5:20s for the last 3 miles, I would have easily beaten my time from last year, which shows up how bad I blew up.

So, what does All This Mean for my training, my season, my approach? Absolutely nothing! Of course I wanted to run well today. I rested up a little for the race, went into it with a good, tough goal, and gave it shot. I bombed. Obviously, on the ride home, I went through the little mental checklist of What Went Wrong (and mapped out what not-quite-random phrases to capitalize in this entry). Here's what I came up with:

-training has been going well in terms of balancing volume, intensity, and rest.

-my weight is down, but not too down, and is down because I've been eating healthier as opposed to doing something dumb like cutting out water and weighting myself after hot runs.

-my diet consists of a lot more fruits, vegetables, and lean meats and less candy bars. I won't give up ice cream. You can't make me! If I'm honest, I probably haven't been eating enough red meat (someone show this to some New York vegan!) because it hasn't been on sale lately, but I've making amends with a giant piece of barely cooked cow on my plate right now.

This was all a long-winded way of saying I think everything is going fine, and I was probably a little tired from my big ol' mileage week last week. I dropped a huge stinker of a race, and hopefully it won't happen while I'm wearing a BU singlet this year. Life's tough, get a helmet, right?

Anyway, the non-race part of Falmouth was just as fun as last year. Peter, Trethewey, Pat MacAllister, and I stayed with a high school friend of Peter's. I'm not sure how they are on anonymity, but this friend of mine's mother is a SAINT. Every year, she hosts at least one elite runner for the race and a crowd of local scrubs her son befriends. She cooks massive amounts of astoundingly delicious food and makes everyone feel like her kids, then runs the race herself, comes home, and does it all again with a massive barbecue. I can't say enough good things about them. If it weren't for the whole hoopla (does anyone still say "hoopla?") around the race, I'd probably be in a worse mood than right now.

I started a two-week gig tutoring at an on-campus summer enrichment program for middle- and high-schoolers. I have two classrooms of rising 8th graders (who volunteered to go to school for two weeks in the summer!) and we're reading William Golding's "Lord of the Flies." The reason this is relevant is because I've been getting up at 7am and not doubling (boo, sissy, I know, I know). This worked out perfectly, since I wanted to take this past week a little easier to recover from my big week and rest up for Falmouth (some plan, eh?). Tomorrow, though, I'll be setting the alarm and stumbling out the door. At least it won't be hot it!

Here's what I got up to last week:

Monday 8/9- PM- 12mi easy to Spy Pond and back with James, Peter, Joey, and Joe, good clip today- 79min.

Tuesday 8/10- PM- 10 miles easy with Joe and James, touch over 70min.

Wednesday 8/11- PM- 30min up to the Brookline High track to meet Eric for a light workout. We did 3x(800, 600, 400) with (400, 200, 400) sustained jog rest at 74/73/72 per lap, respectively, and hit the times despite being bothered by a bunch of punks throwing rocks and cutting in front of us on their bikes. The cops showed up because a nearby football coach called them, so hah! We ran the sustained jogs between 6-6:30/mile, and ran 8k over the course of the workout in 26:55 (including rest, not including the last 400j). 25min down.

Thursday 8/12- OFF, as per my schedule from Bruce.

Friday 8/13- PM- 11mi easy, first 8.5 or so with Joe and Eric.

Saturday 8/14- 9AM- 4mi very slow shakeout, solo. Felt really great on this run, which proved to be a red herring. 4PM- 50min easy plus strides with Pat and Peter on the trails by Falmouth High School. We watched New Hampshire native Russ Brown beat Nick Willis in the Falmouth mile!

Sunday 8/15- AM- 2mi up, Falmouth Road Race, ~37:35. 4:57 at the mile, 10:07 at 2, 20:36? at 4, explosion, shame. 20min cooldown to the car with the guys. 8PM- 4mi easy with Pat from my place in Allston to shake out the long traffic-y ride from the Cape.

Total- 72

Have a great week, internet!


  1. Hey kind of eery, but I think I had a identical (but slower) race experience (5K) this weekend. Ambitious, but decent feeling first mile, but I got to about 1.5 in and I knew it would be trouble when I hit the hills of the course at the bottom of the upcoming downhill. I chalked it up to going out a little too ambitiously and having some rust (first race in two months) and fatigue from some good training. I feel like these things are common during the summer for all people racing.

  2. I heard about your blog sometime ago and have been looking at it now and then. I'm also a runner who hails from the northeast so I have some idea who you are (not to sound creepy or anything).

    I ve seen you giving advice to people who post in the comments, and now it's my turn to ask you for your opinion.

    You may have seen my thread on letsrun about how I had to drop a lot of time in the 5k to walk onto my D1 team. A week ago I ran a 2 mile time trial at 10 sec/mile slower than race pace. I've known all along it is going to be close, and now I'm worried because I just got sick recently. The 2 workouts I was planning to do before my race were: 1. 3 miles of striding the straights, running the turns at a steady pace to prepare me for the 12.5 laps of the race and 2. 1 mile at race pace followed by 2-4x400 and 2-4x200 at faster than race pace

    The last 2 days I've only jogged 2-3 miles and felt bad and so didn't push the workout. It's starting to scare me now because it's so close to racing and I still don't feel good even "striding" out. It is super frustrating and I don't know what to do. I'm the type who loses fitness quickly, and while I think I will be recovered by tomorrow, the fact that I've barely run any miles this week gets to me a little. It is here that I ask what you think: should I attempt to try the workout again in the evening after resting for a few hours, just do another easy run (I've only done 2-3 miles today), or not run at all? In this case, do you have any suggestion on 1 last workout (I think I will have recovered enough to do 1 last one before my "test")?