November 23, 2017

Half Marathon: Not Bad but Not Great

I ran my annual fall half marathon on Sunday the 19th, finishing in 1:36:08. That's 4:33/km.
I was 8th in the 60s age group, they didn't have a 70s, so I was running against guys 10 years younger than me. Last year I was 6th. They gave out prizes to the top six.
I was also slower by two minutes than last year, the difference being the last 6k. Last year I sped up by one minute, this year I slowed down by one minute.
Still, it was not too bad, since as I said last time, I was not really in good shape for a half marathon.
Fortunately, my glue/hamstring benefitted from an easy week and three days rest prior to the race - it didn't bother me - it was just that my legs wouldn't move as well the last 4k.

Splits were: 4:15,37,32,27,38,35,29,26,26,27 (10K) 28,31,38,29,35,33,44,37,39,54,5:06.
The 20k split is wrong, they always have the mark in the wrong place. The last two were probably 5:44, 5:16.

The course is good, two slight hills on each of the two loops, so not really an issue. The weather was a good 14°C, mostly sunny, but it was fairly windy - it was in our faces about half the time,which I could have done without.

I had a good 10k from 3k to 13k, as I was running next to the No. 2 woman, and we were right behind another guy. Unfortunately, they picked up the pace from about 13k and I slowed down, so they pulled away from me.

All in all, a pretty good effort, but next year I'll probably run the 10K, where I would have been in the top six.

I'm resting all of this week.
Dec. 3rd is the Okutama ekiden, for which I organize our teams. I have 18 guys (3 teams of 6), so won't be running unless someone drops out.
I signed up for a 10K on Dec. 16th, the East Japan Masters Road Race, where I'll be in my own age group, so that should be fun.

Happy Thanksgiving! I stuffed myself with turkey - I guess maybe that's just an American thing.

November 13, 2017

Gearing Up for a Half

Actually, that should be "slightly gearing up" or "not gearing up enough".

Anyway, after the 10K race on Oct. 8th, I took 8 days off and then went out and did 400 x 4 and 800 x 2 with the X-country girls at a pretty good pace, and then intervals the next night - 1600, 1000 x 2, 800 x 2, which proved to be too much, too soon. Developed a slight pain in my upper hamstring or lower glute, somewhere in there, which gets better and worse and is rather annoying.

Took it easy for a week (better) than ran a 5k time trial in 20:19, which was a good run, but sent the glute back to "worse" territory.
Took it easy for another week and then did the interval workout, but not all out, then 3 more rest.easy days, followed by a half marathon done at a tempo pace at the club's annual run and barbecue on Nov. 5th. Ran it in 1:46:48, or 5:03/k pace, which was just what I wanted to do. The glute was getting sore the last 5k, but wasn't too bad. Anyway, I needed to see if I could run 21k at a decent pace.

Test was a success, so last week and this week has been just long, slow runs. Plan to jog wednesday night, not do the workout, then rest for three days before the race on Sunday.
Sooo, I'll be able to run but almost certainly not as fast as I would like to. Hopefully I'll be able to get under 1:35. The age group is 60 and above, so I won't win it and probably won't be in the top 6, which is where the prizes are. I was 6th last year with a 1:33. (1st 10 years ago with a 1:23.)
In any case, it's my favorite race so I'll try to enjoy it.