Week 2

Week 1
I was supposed to run my first run of the program on Monday. It was to be an easy 3 mile run at a 10:32 pace. I ran it in 9:42 pace on Sunday. A little fast, but I don’t think that will hurt me.

The reason I did not do the run on Monday was that I wanted to go to one more swimming class. I knew it would be the last chance I had before we started traveling and would not be in town enough to pay for another month.

A tempo run of 3 miles with a 1 mile warm up and 1 mile cool down. The tempo part was to be run at 8:57 pace. I struggled to keep the pace up.

From my running log:

I tried something different this morning that may have affected my pace. I ran before eating breakfast and hitting the bathroom. I did this in an attempt to get out on the road earlier. I felt awful the whole run. I need to get me some kind of snack bar that will put a little something in my stomach before hitting the road.

Pretty disappointed in the slowness of this run.

I did a 1 mile warm up and then the 3 miles at an average pace of 9:20 per mile and then an almost 1 mile cool down. I have regularly run at 8:45 pace. I was disappointed that 8:57 was such a struggle that day. But, there are just some days that are hard.

It was not a running day, but I wanted to get out and do a nice easy run. Did 2.89 miles at a 9:52 pace.

Long run of 8 miles at 10:32 a mile was the plan. I did the 8 miles (plus a little) at 10:20 pace. I did a run/walk, which is the way I plan to do the marathon. I ran 1 mile and walked 1 minute. It is amazing how much fresher I am at the end of an 8 mile run that way. I am curious as to how well I will finish the half marathon distance doing the run/walk. Based on my run today, I could finish a half marathon 4 minutes faster than my current half marathon PR. And that is without racing today.

Total mileage for the week: 20

Week 2
Monday: 3 miles easy 10:32 pace

Wednesday: 5 miles speed at 8:27 (2X1600 meters with 800 meter recovery jog in between. Plus warm-up/cool-down runs.)

Saturday: 9 miles long 10:32 pace

Happy 4th of July

We will be celebrating the 4th by going to the beach and cooking hamburgers or hot dogs on the grill.

It is a bit difficult to get into the spirit of the 4th of July when you are living in a foreign country. We do have a party that the consulate is putting on tomorrow, but we don’t feel comfortable with all the drinking that is planned.

We have not found any fireworks yet, but we may be able to make that part of our day as well.

The fun thing is to just be together as a family knowing we are from the greatest nation in the world. While we won’t be celebrating with all the hoopla people back home will be, we will still have our own fun.

Here’s to wishing everyone a happy 4th of July.

Week 1

Week 1I started my first week of marathon training on Sunday. It is a 16 week program which should lead me to a 4:30 to 4:45 marathon finish. The Indianapolis Marathon on October 18 is my goal race. This will be my first marathon, and as such I plan to take it easy and have a good time enjoying the run. So even though I am training for a 4:30 finish, I am not going to beat myself up if I don’t make it. That leaves the door wide open in my second marathon to be able to beat my previous best.

This week my training plan says that I need to run 3 miles on Monday at an easy pace. Wednesday is a tempo run of 3 miles at 8:57 per mile with a mile warm up and cool down. Saturday will be a long run of 8 miles.

I am very excited to be back on a training schedule. It has been a year since my last schedule when I was training for a half marathon. To me a schedule is somewhat freeing in that I don’t really have to think about what I am going to run on a particular day. I just look to the paper to give me my guidance. It also lets me know when I can take a break and engage in other activities without jeopardizing my plan.

Get ready for weekly updates as I work through the plan. The end of July and all of August the schedule will be hard to follow exactly as we will be traveling quite a bit, but I have managed to follow a plan the last two years during this time.

June Goals Report

I ran only 50.1 miles during the month of June. I knew this would be a low month because of going to the swimming class for the whole month. I also started riding my bike to go to class instead of running there. I finished the month 21 miles behind my goal pace for the year. I am not at all discouraged about that. It has been good to step back just a little as I get ready for marathon training.

I ran 17 days and did not run 13 days. There were only two times that I took two days off in a row and once I did not run for three days in a row. Even though the mileage was down a bit, I was still consistently on the road, just with lower mileage. My longest run this month was just under six miles.

This week I finished with my swim class. It has been a great six weeks of swimming, but my schedule over the next two months before we leave to move back to the US will prohibit me from being able to regularly continue going to the pool. I will still swim when I get a chance. The most important thing is that I have learned how to swim properly now.

I started marathon training this week. Over the next few months I will be running between 20 and 35 miles a week. By the time I run the marathon I will have made up my lost miles and gotten a few miles ahead of the yearly goal once again.

I read 1097 pages in six books this month. Among the really interesting books were Flags of Our Fathers, Healing ADD and Freakonomics.

Flags of Our Fathers was great! It was well written and gives a history of the six men who are in the Iwo Jima flag raising photo. The author is the son of one of the three survivors of the six. The book helped me understand why my grandfather never talked about the war. My grandfather, like the central character in the book, was a Navy Corpsman stationed with the Marines at Gudalcanal, Bougainville and Guam. Like the men in the book, I suspect my grandfather believed that the heroes were the men who did not come home after the war. He went over there to do a job. He accomplished it and came home, but probably believed the real heroes were the men who sacrificed their lives so that he could come home.

My personal opinion is that anyone who serves in the military to protect my country is a hero.

With a better understanding of what he went through, I only wished my grandfather were alive today so that I could possibly get more information from him.

Freakonomics is a book that was wildly popular a couple of years ago. Steven Levitt applies an economist’s eye to societal trends that don’t necessarily fit in the realm of economics. He explains why school teachers sometimes cheat and how they do it, as well as how they get caught. Also he tells why drug dealers live with their mothers. Many other interesting topics too.

The book Healing ADD breaks down ADD into six categories instead of the traditional two. Besides medication, which the author believes is very helpful, he recommends other interventions that can help each of the different classifications of ADD. While there is a lot of controversy as to whether diet helps or hurts ADD behavior, Dr. Amen recommends dietary changes that can help certain types, but clearly stresses that diet alone is not a cure-all. He also recommends coaching and exercise as two other methods in a multi-faceted approach to controlling ADD. [I have a more complete list of ADD books I have read or recommend.]

Amazingly, I finished five of the six books I was reading. I will be picking up all new books this month to chew on. Or, I will be pulling books from the shelf that were previously partly read and need to be finished. There are 13 books on my “To Be Read” shelf. I have plenty to choose from.