Monday, November 19, 2007

How I Ran an 8K XC Race a Minute Faster

Three weeks after my inaugural Franklin Park of 29:27 it dropped to 28:21. There were marathon base training weeks of 76.4m, 70.0m and race week of 62.8m and one 5K XC race (18:04-5:48\mile) the week after Mayor’s Cup.

The training shifted from a daily diet of long singles that were taking longer recover to twice daily easy running. In addition there were 2x\week of yoga, core work, stretching and introduction to speed-strength.

The race tactics itself may have played a major role in allowing the race to develop at a slower effort. The first mile this time was 5:31 vice a 5:18. Second mile was 5:51 then 11:32 for 3&4 while finishing the last in 5:25.

There was no side-stitching this time, determination and focus were the positives. For some reason “pick up the carnage” was quite prevalent as working through the runners spurred the pace along. Oddly enough I heard Brian Sell say something similar on a Runner’s World Video today. Good feedback from Coaching staff and supporters on course also helped.

I passed the salt n’ pepper beard guy around mile two pleasantly striding by him. Thoughts of is this a mistake as in “digging my own grave” and will he come back to haunt me later on the final stretch like Topsfield?

After the second time up Bear Cage Hill I had enough and was thankful for the fast downhill. Across the rooted section under the oak trees with a slight bump three runners in sight, one a teammate.

Around the baseball diamond backstop and floor it to the finish. Over the frozen solid core aeration plugs caught me looking down to keep from twisting an ankle.

The finish line arrived with me closing in on two harriers but not catching them, salt n’ pepper beard guy nowhere in sight! This was a new course PR for me by 66 seconds, nice.

Later in the week the USATF-NE XC Grand Prix results should come out. My wife and I ran our own calculations that put us at 2nd Masters. Awards will be medals. BTW, even after running a tough trail marathon last weekend Barb ran her fastest paced XC race of the series. If only I was half the runner she is!

Finished off the week with 62.8 miles for 8 runs.
Training: am-4m treadmill in 32:59, pm-4m treadmill in 32:29 with light core work and stretching.

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