This training cycle has been mine and mine alone. To start there’s has been no fixed schedule. My personal life is in turmoil and committing to a schedule wasn’t an option. If I was tired from getting up at 4am and going in to work – I didn’t run. Too hot – Ok I probably ran but then again I hate winter so I asked for it. Speed work – sorry nope. Hills? A few here and there when they couldn't be avoided.
So did I do any training?
I ran slow most of the time. I think that counts as training..
I ran back to back long workouts Saturday and Sunday as often as possible. I wanted my Sunday run to be on tired legs.
I’d run 10 miles (90 minutes) without refueling and depending on the day a bit of water.
The hope was to condition myself to cope with being depleted.
I had my game plan in place. A strategy for running Road to Hope and for the most part, I maintained silent about my goals.
I wanted my first sub four hour marathon.
- With no cramping.
- Using a predetermined positive split.
There were a few omissions in the plan.
There was supposed to be a 3:40 pace bunny, turned out there wasn’t.
I found my happy pace separating from the 3:50 pace bunny after about 10km. My goal was a 3:45 finish, I locked in a 5:20min/km pace.
Running downhill on a highway for 5km sounds fun but really, really kills your quads and IT band. The half marathoner’s get the downhill at 3km, the marathoners get it at 14km.
Around the 24 km mark there was a trail-like section through Globe Park to get over the QEW. The footing was tricky in spots. After getting off the trail, I couldn’t get my running rhythm back.
I trained all summer through heat and humidity. Neither is a factor in November. I wore the best Canadian designed clothing for warmth, the longer I ran the colder I became. Before the race, I was concerned about tenderness in my left hamstring being aggravated by the cold. It turns our I should have been more concerned with my lower back and my chronically tight hips. The air temperature never seemed to get above freezing and the wind though light seemed to almost always be in my face and when it was at my back, well my backside was cold. My sub-4 ended around at about 30km. I walked the water station and could get going. Once I started walking, the cold really set in and while I felt close to cramping, I never locked up as in previous races.
After completing the annoying loop along Beachside Drive where you see the 34 km marker before the 29 km marker. I had a lovely walk along the lakeshore for the final 7km, but missed both runngrl and ultramyron who must have streaked past me on the way to the finish line.