Wednesday, April 22, 2009


These past few weeks have really been up and down for me. Sometimes I get my runs with good motivation and other times I just seem to wimp out. Today I was slacking.

No excuse for this missed day of opportunity. It was nice outside today, but I was really tired from last night. Although I love April for buying me a starbucks, since I had it later on when I got back from my run it ended up keeping me awake well into the morning hours. Not her fault, I should have tried to go to sleep but I chose to watch all the DVR'd tv I missed while I was running instead. So that wore me out and I got a late start in the morning, spent the day working on my painting which is so close to being done I can taste it. Then of course we ate dinner and I just couldn't get myself in the mood to run on a full stomach again. So anyway there's the justification, legs feel good and fresh today though :)

So what to talk about that is still motivating. Oh yeah - the rumor that Kara Goucher would run London (which is this weekend) right after her great performance on Monday. Well that seems a little silly to me when I saw the rumor floating around twitterland leading to article that said she was "petitioning" her coach to let her run. Well I'm not the biggest guy on taking 1 rest day for each mile raced, but still this is a little too close for comfort. I'm sure she isn't worried about the negative publicity she would receive (for the very reason I just stated, recovery period) but she should be worried about how it would look if for some reason she had a bad race. All the media would be on her and it would bring a lot of negativity to her as well as our sport. Not a risk worth taking in my honest opinion, although I admit she is in such great shape that I wouldn't put a great performance past her.

I've ran beside a guy who Won a marathon Saturday, then the following day came down here to Knoxville and placed 3rd. So I'm not surprised when I see Kara wanting to get back out there. She is elite and I believe elite bodies are so well trained to run, that recovery time is exponentially less than typical runners, they are simply adapted to running hard.

Now also consider she wants to take time off right now. I understand she's getting "older" and wants to start a family, but if it were me I would choose to run at least few more races. I mean she's SO close to winning a major marathon, just seconds away. Why not train for another marathon and see if she can take it while she is in excellent shape? The whole theory of "why wait?" really seems appropriate. But I suppose the same goes for the whole family making goal as well.
Let's face it, being pregnant isn't exactly the ideal training conditions, at least not near the third trimester. I'm not saying definitely she should wait. I mean Paula Radcliffe won New York months after having a baby and that's amazing, but Paula had won marathons before that and had already established herself as a world record breaking marathoner. She also suffered an stress fracture due to the pregnancy most likely the result of depleted calcium. I'm not saying it's a terrible thing, but just knowing how close she came, I think Kara should give it at least one more shot.

Image by Mark Shearman

Turning things to my side I've been thinking about my own goals and wondering what will be next for me. I was considering some ultra's as I think I could do really well in one, but that sort of goes against my whole focus on speed and requires a ton of mileage, so I pretty much threw that idea on the backburner real quick. Right now my goals are more abstract, get faster, more flexible, and improve at shorter distances. Those aren't very objective goals, but they are measurable so I think it's a good thing. Longer term I'm thinking half-marathon in the fall. I need a race to look forward to, races motivate me. Although the half would be my goal race, I would use 3 or 4 5ks as time trials and indicators of fitness leading up to it.

Even longer term I'll probably follow that race with the Knoxville Marathon again in the spring with a 10miler or 10k inbetween. It's a good race to train for because I know the course personally now, I know the people, the training schedule through a tough winter, and I learned a lot from just trying to race that distance. So coming back next year at the very least I'll know what's coming and definitely be able to focus my training better, i.e. hills like everyday and more runs at/below marathon pace. That's really as far as I want to think ahead. It's good to have goals, but you also have to be flexible as things change, so for now that's the plan.

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