Wednesday, May 03, 2006

State of the Running Address

Friends, family, co-workers, current teammates, former teammates, coaches both past and present, wayward runners, fellow bloggers and whoever else may frequent this space on a quasi-regular basis:

Other than a weekly summation of my daily toils, I've refrained from going into detail about my own running in these entries, mainly because I wasn't doing too much activity resembling forward locomotion and secondly, I wasn't writing about much else other than my pathetic attempts at cross training and the occasional hobble on a bum Achilles. In hindsight, I think it improved the quality of some of my general entries, but took away from chronicling my personal running journey, which is what this blog was originally intended for in the first place. Funny how things change sometimes.

Speaking of change, a lot has occurred in regards to my running over the last five and a half weeks, much of it positive. After battling a nasty achilles injury that shelved me for just about the entire month of March, I've managed to gradually work my way back into a consistent pain-free running routine during the month of April and believe that May will mark my return to the serious training necessary to ready me for a handful of track races in mid-June and early July. From there, it's full steam ahead to Chicago on October 22nd where I'll take a shot at sub-2:22 and a Trials qualifier in the marathon. Of course, this is all just pencilled in at this point, but if all goes well, hopefully I won't have to use the eraser too much.

My approach at this point is somewhat Alan Culpepperish, which is to get in as good of 5K-10K shape as possible within a limited time frame and then begin my marathon-specific preparation. I've talked things over with both Kevin and Hodgie and they seem to agree that it's not a bad route to take. With that being said, the target races this summer will be the New England Championships 5K at MIT on June 18th and Club Nationals in San Francisco roughly a month later. The idea is to get into some sort of decent shape by those dates without rushing it, if that makes any sense. More than anything, those races will give me a starting point from which to base my fall training off of. My optimistic - yet admittedly conservative - wild guess is that I can get down to 14:45/30:30 track shape by mid-July. If that's the case, then I'll be on track for where I want to be in October.

As for what it will take to get there, I think I've finally put myself on the right track over the last five weeks. My mileage totals have evolved from 29 miles of slow shuffling during the last week of March to 66 miles of relatively steady running and the introduction of some snappy strides and fly-by-the-seat-of-my-pants tempo runs this past week. The plan is to gradually increase my workload over the next two months and begin incorporating a Tuesday hill workout and Saturday tempo run into my routine starting this weekend. I'll likely follow this pattern until early June and then ease myself into a few track workouts to get my rhythm back before toeing the line. Then it's time to race, ready or not.

So that's where I'm at: happy, healthy and heading in the right direction. Watch out.

Quote of the day:

We have got to have a plan. We must have a plan even if it is wrong.
- Once A Runner (thanks to Ryan for reminding me of this one)

5 comments:

Chad Austin said...

Mario, thanks for stopping by. I responded to your comment on my blog too.

Yeah, crappy running can equal crappy blogging. That's one of the reasons I starting quoting RWTB on my blog.

Glad to hear you're on the mend, hopefully I'll get there soon.

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