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Closer to the Edge

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Re: Closer to the Edge

Post  Diego on Tue Aug 30, 2011 1:52 pm

C'mon Dave-O, you're training for a marathon, not the 10k. If you had come close to setting a PR, Lydiard and Canova would say that you messed up your training, that you had prepped for a 10k instead of the marathon. Keep the Eyes on the Prize buddy. Taper will answer all questions.

Speaking of taper, perhaps a 4 week long run taper(e.g. 22, 16,14,12) while maintaining the rest of the quality miles would make your final 10k of the marathon very happy.


There's a lot of science to back up what the Hansen's and others do for fast runners. High-high quality the last month and shorter but faster long runs so you don't continue to get beat up. You already have the endurance from those tempos and other long runs. $.02
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Re: Closer to the Edge

Post  Dave-O on Tue Aug 30, 2011 5:51 pm

jimd wrote:
C'mon Dave-O, you're training for a marathon, not the 10k. If you had come close to setting a PR, Lydiard and Canova would say that you messed up your training, that you had prepped for a 10k instead of the marathon. Keep the Eyes on the Prize buddy. Taper will answer all questions.

I agree...to a certain extent. I don't expect myself to be in peak 10k shape. But there's something very unnerving about running a 10k only 8 seconds faster than marathon pace. That race result wasn't just the result of lacking specificity; it was a complete disaster.

And it's sparked an immense discussion on the RWOL "Competitive Jerks" thread. Dammit.

jimd wrote:
Speaking of taper, perhaps a 4 week long run taper(e.g. 22, 16,14,12) while maintaining the rest of the quality miles would make your final 10k of the marathon very happy.

There's a lot of science to back up what the Hansen's and others do for fast runners. High-high quality the last month and shorter but faster long runs so you don't continue to get beat up. You already have the endurance from those tempos and other long runs. $.02

Interesting thought. Right now, my last 5 weeks of long runs are:

5: 24 miles
4: 20 miles
3: Philly Half Marathon
2: 20 miles
1: 16 miles
0: Race day

So you would recommend backing off the last 20 (14 days out) and 16 (7 days out)? I'll have to give that some thought. I'm not sure about my last 20 being 28 days out from race day.
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Re: Closer to the Edge

Post  Diego on Tue Aug 30, 2011 6:19 pm

[quote="Dave-O"]
jimd wrote:


jimd wrote:
Speaking of taper, perhaps a 4 week long run taper(e.g. 22, 16,14,12) while maintaining the rest of the quality miles would make your final 10k of the marathon very happy.

There's a lot of science to back up what the Hansen's and others do for fast runners. High-high quality the last month and shorter but faster long runs so you don't continue to get beat up. You already have the endurance from those tempos and other long runs. $.02

Interesting thought. Right now, my last 5 weeks of long runs are:

5: 24 miles
4: 20 miles
3: Philly Half Marathon
2: 20 miles
1: 16 miles
0: Race day

So you would recommend backing off the last 20 (14 days out) and 16 (7 days out)? I'll have to give that some thought. I'm not sure about my last 20 being 28 days out from race day.



I have been reading about a guy named Owen Anderson who had a PhD in exercise phys and finished 3rd in the first Chicago marathon. He thinks that fast runners and many of us run too many long runs in the 4 weeks leading to the marathon. Think about your mileage. You are not going to fade. Instead of running that 20 miler one week after running all out at Philly, why not 14-16? Other than strides, you're also not going to benefit from any speedwork that week because you're still recovering from Philly. I think it's a big risk to run 16 miles one week before the race(you don't need any more time on your feet). You'd be better off running 8 in the morning and 40 minutes @ MP later that day if you needed it.



How many fades have you had in the last few marathons? Any way, food for thought. I guess you could have the Moose Mug folks weigh in on the last 3 weeks.BTW, I'm just in it for the sub 2:30.
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Re: Closer to the Edge

Post  Dave-O on Tue Aug 30, 2011 6:59 pm

jimd wrote:

I have been reading about a guy named Owen Anderson who had a PhD in exercise phys and finished 3rd in the first Chicago marathon. He thinks that fast runners and many of us run too many long runs in the 4 weeks leading to the marathon. Think about your mileage. You are not going to fade. Instead of running that 20 miler one week after running all out at Philly, why not 14-16? Other than strides, you're also not going to benefit from any speedwork that week because you're still recovering from Philly. I think it's a big risk to run 16 miles one week before the race(you don't need any more time on your feet). You'd be better off running 8 in the morning and 40 minutes @ MP later that day if you needed it.

But not all runners are created equally. Some can knock out long runs in their sleep. Schuey comes to mind. I don't think I have the same level of natural endurance, and feel that my late race endurance would slip if I backed off on long runs for the last month. To me there's a major endurance/fat utilization difference between 14 and 20.

Also, I have to disagree with you on speedwork in the last month. The science I've read suggest the V02Max improvements needed for a marathon can be had in about 4-6 weeks. Isn't that the time to knock out some 800, 1200 and 1600's to grab a quick oxygen uptake boost? I agree I need to ensure recover from Philly, but I need a few fast paced workouts in the last 21 days.

I will consider backing the 20 and 16 down to 18 and 14. I think that's what I did last cycle.

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Re: Closer to the Edge

Post  Dave-O on Tue Aug 30, 2011 7:02 pm

jimd wrote:If you had come close to setting a PR, Lydiard and Canova would say that you messed up your training, that you had prepped for a 10k instead of the marathon.

Oh, I should add that my new running buddy Flaherty is a bit of a Canova mastermind. He's spent probably way too much time deciphering Canova's marathon manifesto. Depending on what happens this fall - and where I want to take my training next spring - I may give Canova a ride with his guidance.
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Re: Closer to the Edge

Post  Diego on Wed Aug 31, 2011 10:23 am

Dave-O wrote:
jimd wrote:If you had come close to setting a PR, Lydiard and Canova would say that you messed up your training, that you had prepped for a 10k instead of the marathon.

Oh, I should add that my new running buddy Flaherty is a bit of a Canova mastermind. He's spent probably way too much time deciphering Canova's marathon manifesto. Depending on what happens this fall - and where I want to take my training next spring - I may give Canova a ride with his guidance.



The science behind the speedwork in the last month isn't for VO2max, which has already been maxed. It's to move your marathon pace closer to your lactate threshold/ higher percentage of your VO2max. You'll see lots of MP minus 10 and MP minus 20 seconds workouts in the last month, not 400 and 800 repeats. You'll also see lots of plyometrics and 30-80 meter fast twitch workouts to improve stride length. Just a 1-3 cm longer stride length can make a huge time difference.



Good luck on whatever you decide.bounce





Now I just need to figure out how to re-energize my Halo pitchers. They finally get run support but have tired arms from too much effort in close games earlier in the year.
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Re: Closer to the Edge

Post  Mike MacLellan on Wed Aug 31, 2011 1:28 pm

Wish there was an emoticon for "learning." This discussion is nice for us who haven't yet read everything there is on marathons Smile
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Re: Closer to the Edge

Post  GregC on Wed Aug 31, 2011 3:57 pm

Dave-O wrote:
Interesting thought. Right now, my last 5 weeks of long runs are:

5: 24 miles
4: 20 miles
3: Philly Half Marathon
2: 20 miles
1: 16 miles
0: Race day

So you would recommend backing off the last 20 (14 days out) and 16 (7 days out)? I'll have to give that some thought. I'm not sure about my last 20 being 28 days out from race day.

I' d recommend swapping out your midweek longrun and longrun for week 2. So midweek after Philly, Wednesday or Thursday depending on how you recover, do your last long run. You don't need to be fully recovered from Philly to knock out a long run. That puts your last long run about 18 days out from the marathon and then you can spend the last 2+ weeks really focusing on fine tuning.
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Re: Closer to the Edge

Post  GregC on Wed Aug 31, 2011 4:03 pm

and I just read your recap of the week. If it's any consolation, I had
almost the exact same week as you. Every run sucked and as I decreased the mileage in an attempt to recover, I just felt worse. I was going to do a half marathon on Sunday, but didn't even bother because it would have been ugly. Ironically, I finished with 81 miles just like you.

You really do just need to trust the training at this point. You know that.
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Re: Closer to the Edge

Post  Schuey on Wed Aug 31, 2011 6:46 pm

Yeah I won't worry to much about your week in training, shit happens. To be honest I wonder if there was something in the air last week because I also had a bad week of running. Hope this week is going better.

As for your comment on the long runs, yeah I have been luck to be able to knock them out without a problem. I want to comment more on what you and Jim were talking about but need to get my thought together on the subject. Very interesting topic, I will say that I do like the take of doing more LT/little faster then MP towards the end of the training cycle.

I have always felt that by doing those type of workouts they would be more specific and preparing for a marathon vs doing 400's,800's or even mile repeats.

I do like your idea of the long runs but then again I have always been a fan of doing the long runs and would have to think more about how it would effect you towards the end of the cycle. Then again I have always thought of you to be one that recovers pretty fast from those types of runs, especially when the temps are cooler.

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Re: Closer to the Edge

Post  Dave-O on Fri Sep 09, 2011 7:06 pm

Chicago Training, Week 12: August 29 – September 4

In law school, I was told something like 98% of all cases settle before trial. I wish this case fell into anything but that other 2%. Alas, I’m days away from opening statements, which is why I’m a week behind on my blog. So while I have a few free minutes, you’re getting the Cliff Notes version of the week. Many may see this as a good thing.

Monday: 5 miles – 37:25, 7:29 pace. 10 miles – 1:09:17, 6:56 pace. Honestly, I don’t even remember back this far. So yeah, 15 easy paced miles.

Tuesday: 5 miles – 38:02, 7:36 pace. 14 miles – 1:29:52, with 8 miles – 46:24, 5:48 pace. This was the first time I did a longer tempo run outside this cycle. Within two miles, I thought to myself, “Why did I think these were easier on the treadmill? How stupid am I?” The longer tempo was way better outside.

Wednesday: 5 miles – 37:39, 7:32 pace. 7 miles – 52:12, 7:27 pace. Tonight was our softball playoffs. We dominated the semifinals. We lost the championship 10-5. We have an uncanny ability to hit like pansies when it matters most.

Thursday: 5 miles – 37:14, 7:27 pace. 10 miles – 1:11:50, 7:11 pace. Nope, don’t remember these runs either. But at this point, I can recite about 10 different deposition transcripts to you, if you want to be put to sleep.

Friday: 12 miles – 1:16:39, with 2 x 3 miles. Apparently I was too lazy to even record my splits in my log. Each set went something like 5:28, 5:24, and 5:20. Solid, not spectacular run. I think it’s that point of training for everyone.

Saturday: 4 miles – untimed. 6 miles – untimed. Easy run; work all day; easy run. Just how I want to spend Labor Day Weekend!

Sunday: 22 miles – 2:28:33, 6:45 pace. Okay, I did set aside work for the day, to both allow myself some time to focus on running and for mental health. With 35 days until race morning, I wanted today to be my last 20+ miler. I left my house with the idea of 22-24 miles in mind. Since the goal was to be out there for about 2:30, I didn’t set any land speed records in the first 14 miles. After that I dropped into the 6:30’s for the next 8, but still didn’t push it. Truth be told I was kind of fatigued all week, and didn’t want to go over the edge. That’s also why I was satisfied to call it a day at 22 miles.

After this run, I’m content that my endurance is there; I need to focus solely on fine-tuning my specific fitness. And winning this fucking trial.

Week: 105
YTD: 3,007
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Re: Closer to the Edge

Post  Diego on Sat Sep 10, 2011 2:17 pm

Hey Dave-O, when you get a chance download the new soundtrack for the MuppetShow Movie.

Atreyu and Alkaline trio have performances along with many other cool groups. Can't knock O-K-Go's version of the Muppet Show Theme song. I do miss the old Kermit voice however on "Not Easy Being Green".

Also check out this, especially if you contemplate wearing a beard this winter. The HS kids and our bearded trainer were laughing about it a few days ago. Last night, the school I help out beat another good team by 3 TD's even though their running back ran for 353 yds and 4 TD's.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RmFnarFSj_U

Good luck on the trial.
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Re: Closer to the Edge

Post  Penelope on Thu Sep 15, 2011 5:06 pm

Nice week of running, again. Good luck on the trial, I'm sure it'll be a great feeling to be done with that sucker.
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Re: Closer to the Edge

Post  John Kilpatrick on Thu Sep 15, 2011 7:57 pm

Damn Dave - sounds like you have a lot on your mind right now. Always glean something from your log, so appreciate the postings. Best of luck with the case! Congrats on all the incredible work to date and on running your last 20 before Chicago.

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Re: Closer to the Edge

Post  Chris M on Fri Sep 16, 2011 8:51 am

Gonna miss you this weekend in Philly, buddy. Good luck wrapping up the trial today and I'll talk to you on the way up to the race to go over strategy.



Diego (yeah, I know...Jim....I just like being Old School) is right about the Muppet soundtrack. "Moving Right Along" by A3 is what got me to check it out but there are a ton of good versions of classic muppet tunes on there. You are Mr. Album guy (talk about OLD SCHOOL!) so pick it up.



I missed the conversation from a few days ago about how to structure your last few weeks but I think with you not doing Philly, it actually will work better schedule wise for you. With the trial, this week finishing up will be a huge stepback week. Assuming you free up tonight, you put the pedal to the metal for 9 days Saturday until Sunday the following weekend. 160 miles in 9 days? Then you've got 2 weeks to fully recover and taper. Just throwing stuff out there but you should get a little running bounceback from not being able to run much this week and this upcoming week is a good time to pile it on before going into a 2 week taper.
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Re: Closer to the Edge

Post  JohnP on Fri Sep 16, 2011 10:24 am

It's too bad about missing Philly - Chris, I still think you should talk Dave into doing the full in Philly some year, the weather is always so good and the course is great.

For taper, I thought Dave was a big believer in three week taper?
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Re: Closer to the Edge

Post  Dave-O on Fri Sep 16, 2011 10:14 pm

I officially got my life back tonight and will update this puppy tomorrow. My head is still spinning.
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Re: Closer to the Edge

Post  Chris M on Fri Sep 16, 2011 10:41 pm

JohnP wrote:It's too bad about missing Philly - Chris, I still think you should talk Dave into doing the full in Philly some year, the weather is always so good and the course is great.

For taper, I thought Dave was a big believer in three week taper?

I'll attempt to answer and Dave will correct me if I get it wrong. Here's what I think Dave believes in for taper.....3 weeks out, you do the average mileage week from that cycle. It will likely be a step down from the week you just completed 4 weeks out from race day but that's still a very big mileage week. Then you cut by....hmm, guessing now....33% of average for 2 weeks out......50% of average 1 week out? The last week might even be a steeper cut down than that but I think I've got the 3 week out principle right of doing the average mileage week from the cycle. Personally, I do NOT like a 3 week taper. 2 weeks seems to suit me much better although I've struggled in marathons with both 2 and 3 week tapers.
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Re: Closer to the Edge

Post  fostever on Fri Sep 16, 2011 11:04 pm

I just found your blog and hadn't read your progress since your first marathon. That's quite impressive to go from 3:28 to 2:34. I thought you were a 4:30 miler in HS or something and now running 'thons. Maybe you were, but based on your comments I'm thinking you found your talent later in life. Anyway, now that the day is quickly aproaching for all of us, thought I'd jump in and comment. Good luck the rest of the way to the start.
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Re: Closer to the Edge

Post  Dave-O on Tue Sep 27, 2011 9:45 am

fostever wrote:I just found your blog and hadn't read your progress since your first marathon. That's quite impressive to go from 3:28 to 2:34. I thought you were a 4:30 miler in HS or something and now running 'thons. Maybe you were, but based on your comments I'm thinking you found your talent later in life. Anyway, now that the day is quickly aproaching for all of us, thought I'd jump in and comment. Good luck the rest of the way to the start.

Nope, definitely was not a 4:30 miler in HS. I played football and basketball, and continued with football in college. I didn't take up running until my spring semester senior year of college, when my football days were over.

While its tempting to think "what if" I had start running earlier in life, I'm just glad I found a sport to continue on with competitively. If not, I'd probably be sporting quit the beer gut right now.
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Re: Closer to the Edge

Post  Dave-O on Tue Sep 27, 2011 9:49 am

So I really haven’t updated this for 3 weeks, huh? Talk about a slacker. Let’s wrap up the last 3 pre-taper weeks.

Chicago Training, Week 13: September 5 – 11

Monday: 8 miles – 58:08, 7:16 pace.
Tuesday: 5 miles – 37:25, 7:29 pace. 10 miles – 1:10:21, 7:02 pace.
Wednesday: 4 miles – 31:04, 7:46 pace. 14 miles – 1:28:07, 8 x 1 mile
Thursday: 5 miles – untimed. 5 miles – untimed.
Friday: 5 miles – 37:41, 7:32 pace. 8 miles – 56:03, 7:00 pace.
Saturday: 16 miles – 1:36:23, with 2 x 6 miles
Sunday: 20 miles – 2:17:20, 6:52 pace

Week: 100
YTD: 3,107

Despite hitting a new high in hours billed this week, I still managed to stick to my running schedule. Monday and Tuesday I ensured I was recovered from the previous Sunday’s 22 miler, and on Wednesday, I tried a new workout – 8 x 1 mile. Obviously I would need to temper my pace goals to manage 8 repeats. The purpose of this workout was to run as many miles possible at my goal half-marathon pace. Originally I wanted to just run this on the lakefront, but with a screaming wind, I opted for the track to prevent against uneven splits. I ran 5:26, 5:24, 5:23, 5:25, 5:26, 5:24, 5:22 and 5:21. Though never stressed aerobically, the workout was a beast on my legs. It’s just a lot of time spent at LT pace and my muscles paid the price. In fact, I bailed 1 mile into my 3 mile cool down and instead hailed a cab.

The other quality day was a really strong 2 x 6 mile workout on Saturday. It was one of those workouts where I never felt “fast,” but where goal MP didn’t feel particularly difficult. I averaged 5:43 on set 1 and 5:41 on set 2. I followed that up with a 20 miler on Sunday evening….after spending the day at the office. That’s not exactly how I envisioned spending week 1 of the NFL season, but alas, I accomplished everything I needed to on that day.

Chicago Training, Week 14: September 12 – 18

Monday: off
Tuesday: 10 miles – 1:09:35, 6:58 pace
Wednesday: 10 miles – 1:02:44, with 8 x 800 in 2:27 average.
Thursday: 5 miles – untimed
Friday: off
Saturday: 5 miles – 35:05, 7:05 pace
Sunday: 18 miles – with Fox Cities Half in 1:15:13.

Week: 48
YTD: 3,155

Also known as – trial week. Unfortunately the jury didn’t see things our way, but it wasn’t for lack of trying. I received compliments from the jury forewoman and opposing counsel, so I can sleep sound knowing I did everything I could. And trust me, after the whirlwind of this week, I did plenty of resting. I was asleep by about 6:00 pm on Friday night and only woke up briefly for dinner.

Running took a back seat this week, though I’m hoping that’s a good thing. Wednesday’s 800’s were done on a treadmill at 10:30 pm, and I’ve already written about Sunday’s poor race. So let’s just move on and call this one a “recovery” week.

Chicago Training, Week 15: September 19 – 25

Monday: 5 miles – 38:12, 7:38 pace. 7 miles – untimed.
Tuesday: 5 miles – 39:07, 7:25 pace. 9 miles – 1:03:45, 7:05 pace
Wednesday: 5 miles – untimed. 11 miles – 1:11:25, with 16 x 400
Thursday: 5 miles – 36:30, 7:18 pace. 7 miles – 50:05, 7:09 pace
Friday: 6 miles – 43:49, 7:18 pace. 4 miles – 27:46, 6:56 pace
Saturday: 18 miles – 1:51:03, 6:10 pace.
Sunday: 4 miles – 31:07, 7:47 pace. 8 miles – 55:24, 6:55 pace

Week: 94
YTD: 3,249

I was way sorer than I expected to be from my 1:15 half-marathon. That sucks because (a) I shouldn’t be sore from goal MP and (b) it affected my last pre-taper week. Monday and Tuesday were definitely nothing but recovery runs.

On Wednesday I headed to the track for 400’s. I worry that I neglected my fast twitch muscles a little too much during this cycle as I’ve focused on MP, so I tried to “jump start” my legs with quarters. They actually went better than expected, as I averaged 1:12. After the first, every split was between 1:11 and 1:13. As has been the case lately, my leg speed felt to be the limiting factor. That’s okay for marathon fitness, and I left the track slightly encouraged.

Still, I knew Saturday’s run was an “I need to nail this one” if there is such a thing. All along I planned on my last long run being of the slightly harder variety, hopefully within 15-20 seconds of goal MP and a negative split. But it needed to feel smooth, not like a hard effort. I almost panicked on Saturday morning when I stepped into the Jacksonville air – I was in Florida for a cousin’s wedding – and was hit in the face with pure heat and humidity. I knew I wouldn’t last out there, not at any pace, let alone low-6:00 pace.

Instead I took a chance on the fitness center treadmill. It wasn’t great, but it was a Precor. I ran the first mile in 7:15 and then started working my pace down. As I hoped, I gained confidence as the run progressed. By mile 5 I was in the 6:05-6:15 pace range and humming along. I felt better by mile 10 than I did at mile 2. Like I said, I needed this one. I continued my progression downward and my last 8 miles averaged out to a 5:50 pace. The pace never felt overbearing. Disaster averted.

All week I was telling myself not to put too much stock into the tune-up race. I promised myself I was in marathon shape, and that being in shape for 26.2 comes at the expense of all other distances. This run confirmed that to be true. I may not be “fast” right now, but I am trained to run at marathon pace. Now I can taper up without doubting my last 15 weeks of training, which coincidentally, came out to exactly 1,500 miles. Not ideal, but I think it’s enough for a PR in two weeks.
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Re: Closer to the Edge

Post  fostever on Tue Sep 27, 2011 9:50 am

Dave-O wrote:
fostever wrote:I just found your blog and hadn't read your progress since your first marathon. That's quite impressive to go from 3:28 to 2:34. I thought you were a 4:30 miler in HS or something and now running 'thons. Maybe you were, but based on your comments I'm thinking you found your talent later in life. Anyway, now that the day is quickly aproaching for all of us, thought I'd jump in and comment. Good luck the rest of the way to the start.

Nope, definitely was not a 4:30 miler in HS. I played football and basketball, and continued with football in college. I didn't take up running until my spring semester senior year of college, when my football days were over.

While its tempting to think "what if" I had start running earlier in life, I'm just glad I found a sport to continue on with competitively. If not, I'd probably be sporting quit the beer gut right now.
Funny! Ahhh, so you and Schuey have kind of parallel universes so to speak both playing football collegiately.
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Re: Closer to the Edge

Post  healdgator on Tue Sep 27, 2011 10:21 am

You can't control judges or juries, all you can do is your job. It is a miserable aspect of the job though.
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Re: Closer to the Edge

Post  Matt W on Thu Sep 29, 2011 12:04 am



I'd put way more stock in your last long run (Last 8 averaged 5:50???!!!!!!) than I would in that race after a high stress week. You are as ready as you've ever been and I fully expect you to have the race of your life. You are ready for a great marathon. I hope the last few days bring you to the starting line ready for the best 2.5 hours of your life (as far as running is concerned). Go rock it on race day.
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Re: Closer to the Edge

Post  Jim Lentz on Thu Sep 29, 2011 1:09 pm

That is impressive to be able to run that kind of run on the treadmill. I can do pretty well on the treadmill, but knocking out the run like you did shows great focus. I always find it easier to focus outside than I do on the treadmill. There is also typically the factor of very poor airflow/cooling on the treadmill.
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Re: Closer to the Edge

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