Thursday, May 8, 2014

Race Recap: Cincinnati Flying Pig Marathon 2014

Stars can and do align for races!  

I have been trying to do everything right for this race.  I followed a solid training plan, stayed injury free, ate right, hydrated properly and even got a good night of sleep before race day. 

So here's a quick breakdown of the day
Pre-race prep: all done the day before, number on my favorite Oiselle tank, gels in my spibelt, etc.

Alarm set for 3 pm: Wake up at 3:11 am good thing since I had the alarm on pm. That would have just sucked to oversleep your race.

On the road at 4:15am:  to met up with my chicas as we were carpooling down to Cincinnati from Dayton

Traveling:  oops forgot directions for parking, call hubby and have him send a picture of the directions since the website was being difficult.

Parking: right next to Paul Brown stadium

Bag check:  first school bus we walk by is the right bus for my bib number. 

Waiting time:  Inside the stadium, woman's bathroom without a line?  What?! 

Walk to the start line:  hardly 100 m away, no problems

The race:

1: trying to find my happy place and pace of 8:30
2: Yikes 7:57 pace, slow down chica.
3-5: keeping close to my pace, Best days of My life comes on as I run down mile 5 with tons of people, it was surreal.
6-8: Hills, knew about those, slowed my pace, looked for my friend from HS who is about half way up the "big one".  Found her, jolt of energy. 
8-9:  Always forget about this section of the course after the beautiful vista of the Ohio River. 
10-13: zoned out, the half had split and I found myself on my own a bit. My mile splits were off enough that I always missed them by the time I saw the mile clock on the course.  Running by feel I guess.
13.1: 1:50 feeling good.
13-15: hung out with the 3:40 pace group (mostly men). This was my BQ time so tried to stay there. Until we turned a corner and found a little but steep hill.  My quads were not having it.  Slowed down, then said F it and walked the last 15 feet or so.
16: was a turnaround, so I could see runners ahead of me.  This was the longest run I did in training so every after this was untested.
17-20: zoned out, there was a portion on the bike path which had HOPE written out, honestly don't know what I was thinking here. 
21-25:  These hurt, I was hot, the sun was out, no one really around me too much, I was timing my gel intake because I knew I was needing the energy.  I could see the Great American building further down the river but it looked so far away yet, that's were the finish line was.  Mile 21 the 3:45 pace group passed me.  There goes my training pace...
26:  who put that hill there, it's not much but I wanted to cry when i saw the rise in the road, then my music shuffled and I got the Olympic theme song going, the streets are lined with people and I just gave it what I could.  Anyone else use the Olympic theme in their race mix?  It never fails to give me a lift when I need it.

Finish: 3:48:19.  PR by 28 minutes.  I'm super happy with my time and my place top 8% of all woman in the race. 

Post race:  No Gatorade what was up with that?  I didn't drink it on the course because my gels have electrolytes in them so I only drank water but I was so sick of water! I ended drinking the syrup out of the free fruit cups they gave out.  There was plenty of junk food after but I didn't have the stomach for it and I was amazed to see how many people were just piling up the food to take with them.  Finally got out of the finisher's area and found my boys and hubby. 
my cheering crew, a bit tired after being in the sun and getting up early!


Overall:  it was a great race for me.  I'm proud of
my time considering the hills on this course.  The volunteers (Grunts) were amazing and all the crowd support was fabulous.  I will do this race again but I'm not sure when...

P.S. Love, love, love the finishing medals this year!




Stats: 



Thursday, May 1, 2014

Hanson's Marathon Training Program

I got this book over winter break and devoured it.  I've been thinking about doing a marathon again, since the last 2 were not complete fails but I haven't been 100% either.
  • The 2012 Air Force Marathon was after being sick the week before and really not recovered. 
  •  The Indianapolis Monumental Marathon 7ish weeks later was better, but my IT band started screaming at mile 17. 
  • 2013 was a disaster which I was just able to finish races but not train for anything.  
  • So, I'm healthy and eager to knock at least one race out of the water.  Will this be the year? I'm hoping so since I signed up for the flying pig marathon in Cincinnati on May 4th.

Enter the Hanson's Marathon Method training plan. The idea behind their training plan is cumulative fatigue.  If your legs are tired, you won't push them and train at a pace that is too fast (and get injured in the process).

The first 5 weeks are the building stage.  All the runs are done at an Easy Pace.  In the beginning, this seemed WAY too slow, but I wanted to be true to the training plan so slowed down my pace from 8:30s to 9:40-10:30 pace.

At week 6, they add the 3 SOS workouts per week.  SOS means Something of Substance.


  •  My Mondays were SPEED workouts (12x400m w/400 recoveries up to 4 x1200m). I did all except one on the treadmill.  Snow covered the track and I wanted a flat surface.  I did these at 7:33 pace.  These were done weeks 6-10. STRENGTH workouts replace speed workouts in weeks 11-17.  These are longer workouts example  6x 1 mile or 3x 2miles. These were on the track or in the neighborhoods with hills. In all the workouts ended up being around 10 miles.
  • My Wednesday are TEMPO runs starting at 5 miles for 3 weeks, then 8 miles for 3 weeks, then 9 miles for 3 weeks, with 10 mile tempo runs for 3 weeks.  These all had 1 mile warm up and cool down for an additional 2 miles.  My tempo pace is 8:25-8:35.  I did these around the neighborhoods, on hilly places, in pouring rain and strong winds. 
  • Saturdays are my LONG runs. I planned on doing these at Up and Running (my local running store) but cold/nasty weather made me try to wait out the weather and run later in the day.  Long runs started at 10 miles and go up to 16 miles. I've finished my 2nd 16 miler and only have one more to go.  My pace for these have been 9:18 pace.
  • The other days are EASY runs which add mileage and help recovery and add to the general tiredness.
  • Tuesday is my REST day.
The taper is only the last week and you are still 24 miles before the race.

I've just finished the plan, my race is in 2 days.  I can tell you that I was vigilant about using the plan and only missed 3 runs (on easy days) the entire 18 weeks.  I have run 3 marathons before and every time I've had a nagging injury or I've been sick.  I'm so impressed that I managed to do this whole plan without any injuries. 

Final stats:  682 miles in 18 weeks
Hours spent running: 106

Now, time to go spend sometime with the kiddos!