A Race and a Plan

On Sunday morning the Caveboy once again dislodged ourselves from a warm bed at 5:15 and headed to Central Park.  As part of the New York Israel Day festivities, NYRR was hosting a four-miler, which at that time of the morning hardly seemed worth putting on shoes for.  The race actually turned out to be a really lovely run though, and I thoroughly enjoyed myself.  The field was relatively small (5,000ish), which meant it was much less crowded than the other Central Park races I’ve done this year.  As an added bonus, after days of rain and wind, Sunday morning was sunny and breezy.  We actually arrived at the start with plenty of time to spare, which was a distinct improvement over our previous warm-up sprints to the start.

Since neither of us was gunning for time, we decided to run together as much as possible.  Even with the smaller field the paths were still crowded, and we did a lot of bobbing and weaving in the first few miles.  We were holding about an 8:40 pace, and I was encouraged that even after two weeks of lazy recovery runs the pace still felt easy and I was barely noticing the rolling hills.  We got separated at the water station at the 3-mile mark and the Caveboy waved me on from the midst of the Gatorade scrum.  I was warmed up and feeling good and decided not to look at the Garmin and just crank it up to what felt like a good tempo pace for the last mile.  (When I checked my splits later, it turned out to be about a 7:30.)  After a fun final sprint I ducked out of the chute to watch the Caveboy finish, and we grabbed our baggage and headed back to Brooklyn.  The weather was too pretty to miss, though, so when we got home I filled up a water bottle and headed down to Brooklyn Bridge Park for another 5 miles before calling it a day.

My other activity this weekend was really dialing the marathon training plan for Baltimore.  My biggest dilemma has been adding some extra time (and flexibility) to the schedule without dragging it out so long that I get overtrained or injured.  RLRF is a 16-week plan, which would put the start of training on June 30th.  The plan as written does have periodic recovery weeks with lower mileage, but does not include any tune-up races or really allow any slack in the system.

I’m not planning any A races this summer, but we do have two more 5-Boroughs races on the calendar, along with a tune-up half in Charleston in August.  While I probably won’t taper for any of those, I definitely will not be getting scheduled long runs in on those weeks, and will probably want a few recovery days after the halves.  So after laying all of that out and re-jiggering a few things around a bit, I ended up with a schedule that starts tomorrow.  That’s a full month early, but I am happy with the flexibility it will allow.  After looking at the RLRF plan, I realized that my running mileage even on the longest weeks is still short of what I’ve been  averaging this season, so I think I should be able to tolerate the longer schedule.  I am planning to do the cross training per the plan right now, with the idea that if I truly hate it, I can swap out one of the sessions for an easy run now and then.

This week, here’s what’s on the menu:

Monday – Rest

Tuesday – Intervals — 3×1600 @ 7:21 pace

Wednesday – Cross-train

Thursday – Tempo — 2 mi easy, 2 mi @ 8:20, 2 mi easy

Friday – Cross-train

Saturday – Rest

Sunday –  Long Run — 13 @ 9:47 pace


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