Wednesday, October 24, 2012

Setting Realistic Goals

It's 46 days until Club Nats and I feel like some realistic goal setting is in order.  Training is going great this week, but the last 20 days were kind of a confidence downer as I've been fighting a nasty viral (maybe even bacterial) infection that has lingered as congestion in my chest.  But I'm pulling through despite one race effort that was a good bit slower than I had hoped based on my workouts and left me thoroughly dehydrated by all the not-fun means.

So now I want to look at some data from this fall compared to a year ago.  Best analysis is at the vdot calculator which can successfully predict race outcomes based on performances at other distances.  Here's my simple algebra equation.  Last year I ran 4:52 at the Magnificent Mile and then 34:30 at Club Nats.  Vdot predicts 34:45, but that just about accounts for improved fitness from September (Mag Mile) to December (Club Nats).  This year I ran 4:40 at the Magnificent Mile and that would put me at 33:23 based on Vdot.  Little improved fitness and we are looking at somewhere right around 33:00.  I would take that.

Over the next 46 days I will race another 5K (hope to get in under 16:00).
I will race an 8K on Thanksgiving (hope to get near 26 minutes).

My mileage will creep up to 100 miles in a week over the next three weeks and then I will probably plateau at about 75 miles right through December 8 with a lot of workouts and a lot of miles on the faster side.

I've noticed this fall that a lot more of my regular runs are between 6:00 and 6:45.  I think my tempo pace over the last two years has moved from 6:00 to about 5:40.

I feel good and very healthy.  A lot of runs that I expect to be pretty painful and slow are starting to come easy and I want to run longer and faster.  This is when training is really fun.  The aches and pains in my legs are getting better with more volume and more quality work as opposed to the summer when I felt tight and dehydrated much of the time even though I wasn't running nearly as much.  I'm having fun.

It might be time to read OAR again.  Just because I can.  Then top it off with Again to Carthage.
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