When sayin' you're gonna go for it just isn't enough.

Monday, April 12, 2010

All Systems Go!

We're now a week away from the big day and I have to say, I am feeling pretty good with where I'm at. I could continue to talk about how the training cycle didn't go exactly as planned, but I have decided to take my own advice and accept it. I can't change it, so I may as well embrace it for what it was/is and get ready to race.

I have had a pretty solid last couple of weeks training. I was able to get most of my planned miles in and was pretty close to where I needed to be for my key workouts. I had been doing a lot of comparing of this cycle versus the last fall's Chicago over the last 12 weeks or so. Somewhere in the middle of those 12 weeks, I stopped doing it because I was just getting frustrated. Well, just for shits and giggles I looked at a few of my last runs and wouldn't you know it, it looks like I have actually made some gains. My HR the last three weeks has been slightly lower on comparable runs from last fall. And sometimes faster, too.

Here are a couple comparisons:
  • 10/4/2009 - 46 degrees, 13.44 miles, 8:24 pace, 137AHR
  • 4/11/2010 - 48 degrees, 13.07 miles, 8:24 pace, 132AHR
Basically the same run a week before the marathon in nearly identical conditions and I wasn't working as hard to do it.

  • 10/1/2009 - 45 degrees, 7+ miles with 3x1600 @ 6:00, 6:04, 6:07 with AHRs of 179,181,181
  • 4/10/2010 - 56 degrees, 7+ miles with 3x1600 @ 5:54, 6:01, 6:02 with AHRs of 168,173,175
Same run, with the more recent run being in warmer conditions, faster and a lower AHR.

These are great signs. The biggest downfall in the last 12 or so weeks has been my inability to run as much as I wanted. My average miles/week is right around 56 versus 62 for Chicago. Not a huge difference, but I did have the luxury of an 18 week cycle last fall as compared to a 12 weeker this time. Anyway, as I said in the opening, it's done and let's get this sucker on.

I have pretty much decided to give myself a shot at a sub 3 marathon in Boston, assuming the weather is agreeable. That means running the first 16 or miles in the 6:45-6:48 pace range, toughing it out out through the hills (miles 16-21) and going for broke/hanging on after the hills are gone. I'm interested to find out what I have left after the hills...assuming they don't kill me. I kid, I kid. It's pretty interesting to hear people's take on the Boston hills. Some make them out to be mountains, while others say they aren't a big deal at all. There's really only one way to find out.

If my attempt at a sub 3 comes up short, I'll set my sights on beating my best time of 3:05:18 from Chicago last fall. And if for some reason it's really not my day and the shit really hits the fan for some unforeseen reason, Boston becomes a celebration of making it there. I am really excited to get out to Boston with Tiffany and Isla. Plus, I'll have a cheering section of my mom, Nick and Jaime (my bro and his wife), who are making the trip out to Beantown to enjoy the festivities.

I can remember just a couple years ago people asking me if my ultimate goal was to run Boston. I always told them that I thought that there was a chance that I could make it when I was old enough to be in the 35-39 age bracket and slowly chip away at my time and run a 3:15. It's hard to believe that the fast forward button worked (along with lots of hard work) and I'll be toeing the line to run the Boston Marathon in one week from today.

I'll try to get some pics of the race day gear on here before we leave for Beantown. I also weighed in yesterday at 159. That's 2 pounds lighter than I weighed four days before Chicago last year. I'll step on one more time on Thursday before we leave to see what the final number is. Good stuff!

Tracking info:
TEXT - Simply text the word RUNNER to 31901 using your US mobile phone. You will then receive an sms text response with instructions on how to submit a runner’s bib number. My bib is 3733.


  1. Yay Zab!!! Funny how this cycle you went from "uh, oh" to "oh, balls!" Everything looks amazingly good for you to get that sub 3, your HR is a thing of envy in particular.

    I know what you mean about the hills, from reading tales of death marches to "...and I turned to someone and asked when is Heartbreak Hill and he said we just passed it". OK, the latter has to be the most annoying thing I've heard because I can't imagine not knowing you went on the biggest hill, but I digress.

    You will rock this mutha' and bring home some Balls On The Table, mounted in solid gold. Almost time for a real life hug, woohoo!!

  2. congrats in boston!! you still did awesome!!!

  3. hey i was browsing thru runner bloggers who ran Boston and i stumbled at ur blog. great posts :p