March 29, 2011

LA Marathon - The Splits

No running last week, so might as well post my LA splits - a story that did not have a happy ending.
Target pace was 7:01 per mile (3:04).

1 6:43 Up > down
2 6:47? Down. Rain started. Mile marker blew away.
3 6:47? Down. Rain stopped.
4 7:07 Up. Rain started, steadily.
5 7:12 Large up, short down.
6 7:00 Large up, short down. Had been running with other people, now alone.
7 6:54 Slight up/down.
8 7:02 Running behind a very tall guy. Still steady rain, but not hard.
9 7:08 Slight up. Cheered by family.
10 6:55 Hollywood. Still behind guy. Rain now hard.
11 6:56 Pain in upper left thigh. Manageable.
12 7:04 Running alone again. Rain varies from hard to very hard. Windy gusty at times. This continues to the finish.
13 7:18 Halfway about 1:31:36. Basically running alone - until the finish.
14 7:01 Pain in right groin also.
15 6:48 Down.
16 6:45 Down.
17 7:50? No mile marker. Slight up. Calves started to hurt.
18 7:50? Slight up. Rodeo Drive. Realized I slowed way down.
19 7:25 Hard rain, wind against us.
20 7:31 Slight up. Calves now very sore.
21 7:46 Slight up. Cold, drenched, calves painful.
22 7:56 Slight up.
23 7:55 Happy to stay under 8:00. Just trying to finish without calves giving out.
24 7:51 Down
25 7:49 Down
26.2 9:32 Slight "kick" last 100m. Freezing after the finish. Needed the space blanket.Family found me and wrapped me up and got me to the car as quickly as possible. What fun!

Thru 16 miles: 1:51:29 = 6:58/mile = 3:02:30
Thru 20 miles: 2:22:05 = 3:06:17
Last 10.219 : 1:19:37 = 7:47.5/mile

March 22, 2011

LA Marathon in Brief

The Tokyo Marathon is usually very cold and wet. The LA Marathon is sunny and warm.
But not this year! This year, things were reversed. LA yesterday was cold, windy, and very, very wet. The weather gods played a joke on me.
100s of people got hypothermia. I really felt sorry for those who were out there for 5 or 6 hours. Even for 3+ hours it was not pleasant (although still fun to run though Hollywood, Beverly Hills, etc.).

My result was not satisfactory — 3:10:55 and 2nd place in my age group (out of 318 men). Last year was 3:08:17 and 1st.

Actually the problem was not so much the cold and rain as pain in my calves the last 10 miles and especially the last 6. That slowed me down a lot. I was on 3:02:30 pace thru 16 miles (26k). The guy who won the 60s (who was second last year), ran 3:02:28.
I think my new light shoes were too light (didn’t do enough hard runs in them).

I also think maybe I will concentrate on half marathons for a while….

March 13, 2011

Whole Lotta Shakin Going On

Week of Mar 7 ~ 13

Plan: 0/15/10/15/15/15/15 - 85km
Ran: 0/15/13.5/15/10/10/15 - 78.5km / 49 mi. 7:07

This week's running paled into insignificance beside the earthquake on Friday, but nevertheless, the LA Marathon is next Sunday, so I have to keep at it. It seems like flights out of Narita are back to normal, so if there are no more large earth movements (although "experts" are saying there could be), I will be out of here next Thursday. This week was a moderate taper week, with MP runs on three days, and next week will be very light.


11:30 - Machines and core at the gym.
1:00 - 15k in 1:21:57 @5:28.
Legs a bit tired, but felt ok.
Weight; 60.3kg
Weather: 10C/50F, 40%, sunny

13.5k. 3000/2000/1000 in the park. Aiming for race pace 4:21/k, which I hit pretty close.
13:07/8:40/4:18 (6:00 and 4:30 jog/walk in between)
Weight: 60.1kg

12:30 - 15k in 1:17:33. First 10k easy, last 5k at 4:19/31/20/16/21. Felt ok.
Weight: 59.9kg
Weather: 8C/46F, 10%, cloudy

11:00 - 10k in 54:34 @5:27
Easy, felt ok.
THEN, at 2:46, the big one hit. I was in Shinjuku station, changing trains, 15km from home. No one panicked, it was more like everyone froze, waiting for it to stop, which was a long time. Then everyone made for the street. Along with everyone else in Tokyo. During the last decent-sized jolt about 5 years ago, which was itty-bitty compared to this one, the trains stopped for hours. So I knew the only way to get home would be to walk/jog. I had on shoes, but casual shoes, so it was not too bad. I had to walk for a long while though, because I was on a major road and many, many people were doing the same thing. Which was ok, because I didn't want to run too much anyway. After about two hours I started jogging because I wanted to get home sooner (I had been calling my wife from pay phones - thank god they still exist! - so knew she was ok. Cell phones of course stopped working 20 seconds after the quake, although you could send email from them.). So I had an extra 3.5 hours of walk/jog for the day.

Planned not to run due to the extra 15k yesterday, but my legs felt ok, so did a very easy 10k at 4:00.

2:00 - 15k in 1:19:06. First and last 5ks very easy. Middle one in 4:26/18/21/17/13. Felt fine.
Weight: 60.1kg
Weather: 15C/59F, 20%, sunny.

Next week I will rest Monday, do 10k easy Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday, rest Friday in LA, do an easy 5k on Saturday, and be ready for a good, no, a really good, effort on Sunday. So...bring it on!

March 6, 2011

Last Hard Week

Week of Feb 28 ~ Mar 6

This was my last hard week before the LA Marathon on March 20. I will taper a bit next week and not do much the following week.

Plan: 0/20/10/24/15/20/35 - 124km
Ran: 0/20/13.6/24/15/20/35 - 127.6km / 79 mi. 11:05


11:30 - Machines and core at the gym.
1:00 - 20k in 1:40:56 @5:03
26:26/25:48/24:22/24:18 @5:17/09/4:52/52
Legs felt real good, due I suppose to only 22k on Sunday. Seems like a one week taper for the marathon will be enough.
Weather: 9C/48F, 60%, sunny

7:30pm - 1000 x 6 in the park.
3:58/54/51/52/53/52 (200m jog, abt 2:30)
Legs felt ok, but cold (4C/39F ?) and windy. Seems hard to run fast in the cold.

12:30 - 24k in 1:56:32
4k easy, 4k fast x 3
Easy: 22:06/21:42/21:32 @5:32/26/23
Fast: 17:05/16:40/17:25 @4:16/10/21
Actually wanted to do the fast ones at about 4:00, but my legs were too tired for that. Still, MP is 4:21, so the first two 4ks were faster than that. Thighs were sore at the start of the last 4k. This is a hard workout - and I worked hard!
Weather: 7C/45F, 10%, cloudy, windy (annoying)
Wore marathon shoes (185g Asics SkySensor Neo)

11:00 - machines and core at the gym.
12:30 - 15k in 1:21:25 @5:26
Thighs a bit sore.
Weight: 60.1kg
Weather: 7C/45F, 15%, windy

1:30 - 20k in 1:51:21 @5:34
Took it easy. Legs a bit tired.
Weight: 60.3kg
Weather: 10C/50F, 20%, cloudy

2:45 - 35k in 2:55:52 @5:00
@ 5:26/24/00/01/4:56/46/36 last k in 4:23
Legs tired last 10k, but not sore, and ran the pace I wanted to.
Last hard workout before LA in two weeks.
Ate 4 omochi (rice cakes) 4 hours before the run, which seems like a good pre-race meal.
Weight: 60.4kg
Weather: 14C/57F, 20%, sunny