Wednesday, 6 April 2011
Race a marathon?.....now there's a thought!
I am looking at the options for a 5K, 5 miler or another 10K in between now and then.
Once I've run the Manchester event it'll be a case of looking for another target to keep me motivated. No half marathons this year yet so that is a real consideration. But what about an autumn marathon? Now there's a thought!
Every morning I receive by email from R.W. (U.S.) a "quote of the day". No doubt many of you too. Invariably the quote , from a whole variety of "celebrities", is concerned with the marathon.
I'm not generally inspired by what the quote says but just there is a great "buzz" at this time of year with so many spring marathons taking place and the thought keeps coming back for me to race another marathon.
I particularly use the word "race" as opposed to "complete" or just "run". I believe there is a distinct difference. Racing to achieve a predetermined time or simply participating.
To "race" a marathon I would have run a build up race of a half marathon. I would take that half marathon time, say 1:37.30, double it and add ten minutes. That would determine my target time for the 26.2 miles or 42 kilometres is I was running abroad. Hence 3:25.
That target time of 3:25 would then dictate my race strategy and pace per mile or kilometre. Anything faster than 3.:25 would be down to excess adrenalin! a time between 3:25 and 3:30 would be down to bad weather (probably!) , anything over 3:30 would be considered as failing.
Just completing is not the aim. It would be about racing to that target time.
Now having run 26 marathons, with times listed on this blog and a slowest of 2:50, I have to ask am I prepared to put myself through the training I would demand of myself to achieve 3:25?
Am I prepared to lift my longest training run from 12/15 miles at present enabling to race a half marathon to 16, 18, 20, 22, 24 at the very least in the past?
Am I prepared to start running twice a day most days again, as I used to?
Am I prepared to do lift my weekly mileage from 40/45 to 70/ 80 miles per week?
Am I prepared to tackle sessions like 3 x 2 miles , 6/7 x 1 mile at 10K pace?
Am I prepared to risk my 62 year body breaking down and ruining the reasonably comfortable daily running regime I have?
All this to achieve a personal worse, an hour slower than my P.B?
Answer being NO!
I have to be sensible and realistic. I have to keep my targets sensible and realistic, mindful of the training I am doing and generally coping pretty well with.
We continually hear and read about runners who have set themselves totally unrealistic targets and challenges whether it be to do a marathon or perhaps an off road event of equal distance. With numerous work and family responsibilities the preparation required to achieve their chosed goals very often just becomes impossible. They invariably fail and it's often a painful experience. Physically and emotionally. Sadly we see many turn their back on running altogether. We see it happen so often.
No, I shall not be swayed by all the current buzz. ( Even this morning when I walked back to the car having run around the reservoirs I was asked, "Are you doing the marathon?" ) and besides...
...............................................my wife won't let me!