Saturday, June 13, 2009

Week 20: A new world order (a.k.a Bummer!)

This week, we were supposed to do the much anticipated 20 miles run. On Thursday, we had the opportunity to meet and greet the San Diego RnR marathoners. The good thing about Seattle RnR is that you get a chance to learn from others best practices and mistakes. But then, what is it they say?, "Human beings have a great potential to learn from past mistakes but they also possess the propensity to ignore and repeat the same mistakes".

Any hooo.. While I was talking to the RnRers, the general idea I got was that inspite of the immense feat they accomplished on last Saturday, most of them said that they finished feeling a lot more tired than they expected. Ofcourse most of them were first time marathoners and of course one would feel a lot tired running 26.2 miles. But our coaches thought that they felt this group finished feeling a lot more tired than needed. They also felt strongly that it has got something to do with the 20 miles run in Monterey. The SD Rnrers put all their hearts into the 20 miles run in Monterey (3 weeks back) and that, in the end, was their best run.

Now, I don't know if that was the only thing that made the difference. May be it's the weather. San Diego is much warmer than the Bay area. May be it has got something to do with it. Since the coaches strongly felt about that, they called off the 20 miles run. Instead they placed a time based goal. 2:30 hours to 3 hours max is all we must do. They reasoned it pretty well and of course they know better than any of us. So, we obliged and I ran just 2.5 hours this week (13 miles).

Was I disappointed that I couldnt complete the 20 miles before the Marathon. Damn right, I was! But was I happy to follow the coaches' guidance and not do something stupid? Again, damn right.

So, before the marathon, I've done one 18 miles run and three 16 miles run. The coaches assured that this is as good a prep I needed to do the Marathon. I trust their judgement and will save my energy for the D-day.



  1. Cool Sai, now I feel better. Many people have told me 18 is just good enough. People have run the marathon after 16 miles. I think its more a mental tick mark than anything else. I think time based goal might be just right, but somehow, it feels right that you should be building your endurance up. If you are running 5 hours on the day of the race, 3 hours feels too far from that. 4 hours is right in the middle. Mentally, it feels that you can run 1 hour more or 6 miles more, running 8 miles / 2 hours more than your longest run might be stretching it. But oh well.

    Recovery is what I am going to focus on and somehow pray that my lungs and muscles won't forget all the training.

  2. Hey Sai! All the very best with the race! 18 mile long run is good enough physically. It looks like you guys have had very good preparation so you will be fine. I think the RnR San Diego runners must have felt very tired because of the sapping heat (that course is very very flat). Also if their last 20 mile run in Monterey had a bunch of hills, that may be the real problem as a 20 mile hill run is probably 10-15% more effort than a similar run on a flat track. Anyways am sure the experienced coaches made the right call. Enjoy the race and stick to all pre-race routines.