Today was the third of the three races I signed up for to help me get ready for the Ottawa Marathon. Since I still I still had two 32 km runs (20 mile) to do before the marathon my plan for today was to get up early and get in some extra mileage before the race and then run the race at my intended marathon pace.
My morning started out around 6:30 when I headed out the door for a planned 20-21 km run. I did this run at a fairly easy pace. Fortunately I live close to the start line so before heading to the start line to pickup my chip I stopped at home to change my shirt, change my shoes for my race flats and grab my bib.
This morning’s race was the Ottawa Physio Race 10 km, a race I have done three times now. As planned I line-up for the start of the race having already completed 21 km at an easy pace. As mentioned, the plan for the race was to stick to my intended marathon pace (4:30). I felt good running at this pace despite the fact I had already run 21 km.
I crossed the finish line in 44:11 (4:26 pace) which is exactly what I was looking for today. Next up is the Ottawa Marathon in 33 days. I think the three tune-up races have been a useful test of my fitness ahead of the marathon and they have certainly provided me with an extra boost of confidence. Now I just have to wait for race day and hope that everything comes together.
Here are the details on this morning’s run…
Week 11 of training for the Ottawa Marathon is nearly complete. It was another solid week of training that began with a personal best when I ran a sub 1:30 half-marathon Sunday morning.
With one run remaining tomorrow my mileage for the week sits at 66.5 km. Tomorrow the plan is for an easy 13.5 km to get my mileage up to 80 km for week 11. The next two weeks will likely see similar to increased mileage before I taper for the marathon. That should not be too difficult to achieve since I have my two last 32 km (20 mile) runs scheduled for the next two Sundays.
While Sunday was certainly the highlight of the week, Thursday saw the start of a new habit they will help be get in my extra miles over the next couple of weeks. This Thursday saw me get in two runs because I went for a shorter run at work over the my lunch hour. If I can keep it up this will certainly be a convenient way to get in some of the extra mileage needed to get around 90 km total over the next two weeks.
Week 12 kicks off with another race. This time it is the Ottawa Physio Race 10 km race. So far I have achieved my goals in the first two of three shorter races I entered before the marathon. Since I am scheduled to get in a 32 km (20 mile) run this weekend my current plan for Sunday is to get up early and get in 20 km before the race and then run the 10 km race at my intended marathon pace. It is hard to believe that there are now only 5 weeks remaining before the marathon.
How did your training go this week?
Now that we are into 2012 my race schedule for the first half of the year is getting clearer as registration information is starting to pop up online for races that had not already done so.
The first half of this year looks like it will be identical to the first half of last year in terms of races. Unless I end up registering for a race in January or February I will be doing the same four races I did between January and May of last year.
The reason I am planning to do the same four races is simple, they are all close to home. Two of them start and finish at a high school that is three blocks from my house while the start lines for the other two are not much farther down the street. I like traveling out of town for races but it is hard to beat the convenience of having races that start so close to my front door.
The first race of the year will be the Ottawa St. Patrick’s Day run. You can read my review of last year’s race here. Since this one falls early in my marathon training schedule my approach will be the same, go out and race as hard as I can and see if I can beat my current 10 km PB of 43:14.
Race number two will be the Minto Run for Reach half-marathon. Since this one falls on the day of one of my scheduled 32 km, or 20 mile, training runs my approach will once again be to get up early and get in and easy 10 km before the half-marathon. I’ll then see how hard I can run the half-marathon on tired legs. You can read my review of last year’s race here.
Race number four will be the Ottawa Physio Run 10 km the following week. Since this one also falls on the day of a scheduled 32 km training run I’ll either get in some easy mileage before or after the race or I’ll do my long run on Saturday like I did last year. You can read my review of last year’s race here.
Of course, all of this is meant to get me ready for the Ottawa Marathon at the end of May. I had some success with this race schedule last year and am hoping it will payoff again this year.
What are your race plans for the first half of 2012?
With 2012 upon us I have already started planning out my race schedule for the year. Like last year my main focus will be on improving my marathon time and getting closer to my goal of a Boston qualifying time.
The first half of my year is looking like it will be identical to last year when I ran two 10 km races and a half-marathon before the Ottawa Marathon in May. I have already registered for one of the 10 km races again this year and am waiting for registration to open so I can officially register for the other 10 km race and for the half-marathon.
That will keep me busy until May when I will run the Ottawa Marathon. I made the commitment last night and officially registered for the marathon for the fourth straight year. For the third straight year I will be raising funds for the Ottawa Hospital as part of Race Weekend. In addition to improving my marathon time I will also be trying to beat my fundraising total from last year.
So far the only plan I have for this year is to run the Army Run in September. The past two years I have run the race as a pace bunny, in the 5 km two years ago and in the half-marathon last year. I will looking to pace the half-marathon once again this year.
Beyond that the only big question mark remaining is whether I will run a fall marathon again this year and if so where. At this point I have not really considered that as there is a to consider before I make that commitment again and a lot could change before I have to make the decision.
Have you started putting together your race schedule for 2012?
I have not officially registered for it yet but my plan is to run the Ottawa Marathon again in May. I will likely register for it before the end of January when I will have to start my 16 week training program for it.
In preparation for the Ottawa Marathon, I have already started looking at some shorter races earlier in the year to help get me ready. You may recall that last year I ran a couple of 10 km races and a half-marathon in the lead-up to the Ottawa Marathon.
This year I am looking at a similar schedule to help get me ready for the marathon. In fact, tonight I took advantage of an early-bird price and registered for one of those 10 km races I did last year – the Ottawa Physio Race.
If I follow the same schedule of races as last year that would give me one race in March and two in april before the marathon in May. There is not scheduled around here in January and February but if I can find one that fits into my schedule I may add an earlier to my schedule as well.
Have you registered for any 2012 races yet?
As I mentioned yesterday, today was the last of the three shorter races I registered for as part of my preparation for the Ottawa Marathon.Today it was the Ottawa Physio Race.
Today’s course was the exact same course as the 10 km race I ran on St Patrick’s Day.
Much like yesterday, it was cool, windy and rainy at the start of the race. I started off at my usual 10 km pace of just under 4:30/km but had a hard time maintaining that pace as we were running into a strong headwind. I also did not want to push too hard early on since I did my long run yesterday.
The sun started to come out as I reached the turnaround point and with the wind at my back I had no trouble picking up the pace. My last three km were my fastest today as I maintained a pace of 4:00-4:20/km over the final three km.
My final time today was 4:42, about 40 seconds slower than my result on St Patrick’s Day. Not bad considering I did a long run yesterday and the conditions at the start of the race.
Last weekend I was able to get in my first two runs in shorts and I was running without a jacket a few times this week enjoying the sunny weather and double digit temperatures we were enjoying.
However, this morning as I prepared for my long run I faced sub zero temperatures and the possibility of rain. I planned to do my long run today since I am registered for the Ottawa Physio Race 10 km tomorrow and likely would not have time to get in the full distance, more on that later.
Although I managed to get in 29 km before it started raining hard, running into a strong headwind as I ran along the Ottawa River was almost enough to tempt me into cutting my run short on a couple of occasions.Hopefully the sun and warmer temperatures come back our way soon!
As I already mentioned, I am registered for a 10 km race tomorrow. It is the last of the three races I committed to doing before the Ottawa Marathon next month. It will be interesting to see how my legs hold up for the race as I havce just completed my longest week in terms of mileage so far in this training cycle, 100 km since I decided to do my long run today instead of tomorrow.
Fortunately tomorrow’s course is relatively flat, following the same course of the St Patrick’s Day 10 km race I did last month meaning the start line is just a few blocks from my house which is an added bonus. Watch for my race report tomorrow!
With a 13.4 km run last night I ended the month of March with a total of 295 km. March ended up being a good month for my training. I would have passed 300 km had I not had to skip a couple of runs. In April I will be looking to pass that mileage total.
Today I started off April with a 9.5 km run including 8 km at marathon pace. With only two months left before the Ottawa Marathon, April is sure to be my busiest month in terms of mileage. If all goes according to plan this month I will be completing 360-400 km this month.
Included in the mileage for this month are my first runs over 30 km, three of them to be exact.
Also included in my mileage totals for April are my next two races. The Minto Run for Reach half-marathon on the 10th of April and the Ottawa Physio Race 10 km on the 17th. Of course I will be looking to beat my current personal bests at both of these distances but the primary goal, especially with the half-marathon, will be to get my legs used to holding a more intense pace consistently over a longer distance.
What are your training plans for April?