Weekly Long Run

The weather on Sunday was cooler, as was much of the week, so I ran in the early afternoon. My long run last week was a little disappointing, so I was not sure what to expect as I set out on my 24 km (15 mi) run.

This time I still felt good at the 16 km (10 mi) point, not like last weekend. My pace did slowly decrease after this point, but only gradually. The last 2-3 kilometers were difficult, I really notice the lack of a good base training. I finished with an average pace of 6:34/km (10:35/mi), slightly better than the week before.

I still haven’t signed up for the marathon on September 22, there are still plenty of slots available and typically the race doesn’t sell out. I want to wait until I finish the next couple long runs before I make a decision. In any case if I run the marathon it will be only to finish, and will probably be my slowest marathon to date. I started training much to late and with only a minimum of base training.

In other news, I turned 60 this week, a new age group, and new challenges, as I try to redefine runinng at an age when many have long stopped. At this point I really don’t know how this journey will continue. I guess the coming weeks will have an impact on this, stay-tuned.

The Training Continues

On Sunday morning I woke up around 6:00 a.m. to run my long run, the forecast was another hot summer day, so I wanted to run before the heat set in.

I put a few bottles of sport drink in my running backpack and headed out over a 22 km (13.7 mi) loop. The fields and forest were still reasonably cool (15°C), I was still sleepy, but the legs were in pretty good shape.

This changed by the 16 km (10 mi) point, my legs grew heavier by the minute, the motivation wavered. Running turned to plodding, but I managed to keep going. I finished the loop with an average pace of 6:46/km (10:53/mi), about 23 seconds slower per km then the week before.

Another long run

The weekend remained cool, with lots of rain, but after several weeks of hot weather, refreshing. My legs were still tired when I woke up Saturday, my first long run in 6 months really took a toll on them. But once I got moving my legs gradually felt better, and by mid-afternoon I laced up and went for a run.

My legs were stiff as I set out over the fields, the first kilometer was a bit slower than I wanted, 6:31 /km (10:29/mi). I gradually increased the pace, ending my 10K loop with an average pace of 6:15/km (10:04/mi).

On Sunday afternoon I set out in drizzling rain for a longer loop, hoping to complete at least 16 km (10 mi). My legs felt better than the day before, so I quickly settled into roughly the same pace as during my long run last Thursday. My legs felt surprisingly good after 15 km , so I decided to add an extra loop. I ended up running 20K (12.5 mi), the same distance as Thursday.

What really surprised me though, was that I was only 1 SECOND slower than with Thursday’s run, finishing in 2:07:12. My legs were also in much better shape. On Thursday after the run I was hobbling around, but last night I didn’t really notice any discomfort.

All in all it was a very satisfying first week of training, but I will have to wait and see how the legs hold up as the distance increases.

Marathon Training Pretest

Yesterday was cool and rainy, I decided to use this break in the summer heat to test my legs. After talking with my wife last night, I decided to try to get ready to run the Baden Marathon in Karlsruhe on September 22. This leaves me with only 10 weeks to train, and my base mileage is questionable, so I decided to see how far I can run comfortably, so I can set a starting point for my long runs.

As I set out over the fields into the forest beyond, I decided to try to maintain an average of around 6:15/km (10:00/mi) and run at least 18 km (11 mi). I quickly dropped into my running zone and wound my way over the familiar trails.

By kilometer 16 I was beginning to feel the strain, my longest run since March was only 15 kilometers and that was in May. The rest of the runs were 10-12 kilometers. I pushed on, trying to ignore the increasing discomfort in my legs. By kilometer 18 I was ready to quit, but I was still 3 kilometers from home, so despite a steady decreasing tempo, kept moving. I struggled through kilometer 19, trying my best to keep the feet moving, my body was reminding me of marathons past. Finally I made it to the 20 kilometer point and decided to walk the last kilometer out, my legs were trashed.

I ended up running the 20 km (12.4 mi) in 2:07:11, an average pace of 6:22/km (10:14/mi), a bit slower than I hoped, but 2 kilometers farther than I figured on. I decided that if I can repeat this distance on the weekend and still walk on Monday, then I will start training for the marathon.

This morning my legs are in pretty good shape, but the muscles are a bit sore. In any case let the journey begin.

A new beginning or should I close the door

Blogging has fallen out the window again. Work has gotten the best of me the first half of the year and I never got going again. Now with over half the year behind me, I need to make a decision whether to start training for a marathon again or close the door.

There are two possible marathons in our area in September and one in October. Unfortunately I am missing a good base, and time is running short.

If I want to finish a marathon I have to seriously commit to it right away, or wait until next year. It is only 57 days until the first choice in Pirmasens, and 72 days until the marathon in Karlsruhe. The third choice, the Bottwartal Marathon on October 20th would give me more time, thus would be the logical choice.

I guess 4-5 years ago I would have run all of them 🙂

This weekend I want to try a long run, then I guess my perspective will be clearer.

Stutensee Town Run 2019

After missing my 50K race at the end of January, I slacked off with my training and having been running without a plan. In attempt to try to get back on track I decided to run a 10K race. A few of my Gymnastics Club were running the Stutensee Town Run on April 7th, so I decided to join them.

I really didn’t have a plan as I lined up with the 235 other runners, just run. I was familiar with the course, much of it I covered in my training runs over the years. The course is pretty flat, most of it over bike paths and fieldways, easy to run, good to race.

I gave my best efforts, but with no speed training, crossed the finish line in exactly 54 minutes, but 30 seconds slower the may 10K in October of 2018.

After the race I chatted with my gymnastics coach for awhile, her husband finished 3 minutes before me.

A better 10 miler

The last few weeks I have been trying to push my tempo on some of the runs in an effort to improve my overall speed. Today I decided to do a repeat of my 10 miler that I ran at the beginning of the month to test my training.

The temperature was 16 °C, 6 °C warmer than my first 10 miler, so I factored this in with my results.

I repeated the same course, and ended up being 6 minutes faster than at the beginning of the month. At this point I welcome any improvement, so call it a success.

Average pace on March 3: 6:44/km (10:50/mi)
Average pace today: 6:16/km (10:06/mi)

A restart?

I have been thinking about a running a marathon in the summer, the Fidelitas Night Marathon in June is cancelled for this year, so maybe one in July.

I have been running mostly 10-12 km runs lately, so decided to add a few more to my run today to test my legs. I headed out over my normal route, then added an extra loop until I had 16km/10mi. The last few kilometers were very sluggish, my average pace was a disappointing 6:44/km (10:50/mi).

What’s Next

My wife’s older sister passed away in January, after losing her fight with cancer. This, along with new responsibilities at work, have left me without a plan.

I think for the time being I will contine to run 2-3 times a week, and train with my gymnastics group (circuit trainging) a couple times a week, until I figure out where I want to go with my running.