Tuesday, January 27, 2009

Update Til Now

Well as we last wrote. I ran the Boston Marathon last year. I didn't do such a great job (3:20) since I was hampered greatly by hamstring and calf issues. Plus I got sick the week before (taper madness). Just wasn't my day, but if you look back at my running log. I only had maybe a good 6 weeks of good training....

So what happened next...

I decided that I wanted to run the Chicago Marathon, since it was cheap to get to a big race and was first-come-first-serve, unlike NY. It was also flat. I applied to NY also, but got denied for the 2nd year in a row. So training for Chicago started the 2nd week of June and I did an 18-week Daniels plan. Running in May was done at low HRs (<134, max 187/188) and it was really frustrating and slow. I had some really bad days of running, and progress was little.

Progress during Chicago training was also slow.I ran the summer series at the LI NYS Parks, but never really had a great race. The best race was probably a 15:43 4k at Hempstead Lake State Park. All the others were OK. I was training hard through these races though running 70-80mpw (I ran an 81 mile week, my all time high). I ran the NYC Half on 7/27 and again got into a funk before the race. Ran a 1:30:05, which was OK but not a PR and not what I wanted. It was soupy though. There was a two week period at the end of July and the beginning of August where I was in a funk. Previous to that I had a 43-day consecutive running streak.

Somewhere around mid-August my training paces improved a lot. Don't know what it is but there was a 3-to-4 week segment that my paces were flying. I had a real good 20 mile run with 15@MP. And things were looking up for Chicago. However, once September came I took a couple of steps back and the doldrums came. I ran a pretty good race at the Cow Harbor 10k (40:34) for a 1 minute PR, but tweaked my hamstring again in that race. So I needed to get some ART for healing, but in the end everything held up for Chicago..

Once again for Chicago I got sick the weekend before the race, and threw off the HRM when running. I think I become obsessive about the HRM and it negatively impacts me. Unfortunately, Chicago was hot. It was about 68F at the start and about 81-82F at the finish. I hit the wall for the first time ever at around 19-20 miles. It was not fun those last 6 miles. I went out in 1:31:26 and came back in 1:43:32. For an ugly 3:14:58. At least it was a BQ, which I did not have and did not get in Boston. So at least I could run Boston in 2009, right???

So after that race, I felt like I didn't want to waste the shape I was in for Chicago, plus I wanted to move up a couple of corrals for Boston (not be back in 6 or 7). So I was looking for another winter marathon to run. I was looking at CIM, but it was too close. I put my name on the waiting list for Houston, but I was in 7500th place and that wasn't happening.

So I decided I would try HADD training from October to April. No fast stuff to avoid hamstring problem. Just varying HRs from 140-155 at different distances. Training was going well, but I was still slower than before Chicago. It took a while to get back to paces that I was running during that period in August. Almost till mid-end of December....

However, I lucked into getting a waitlist entry for Houston and signed up. Training was going well, but starting Christmas week it really got good and I had two good weeks of training where I was running faster than I had ever run before... Sub-3 was a possibility even after a 3:14:58 in Chicago. I had done some better fueling pre-runs and found some awesome lightweight shoe ( that unfortunately cause be heel rub and blisters but I'll manager). So everything was going well for Houston and a sub-3 attempt, until....

Taper madness set in. I would alternate feeling good and feeling like crap for the 10 days before the race. My HR was all over the place and I became over obsessive about it. So I once again threw away the HRM and race without it. Even the Thursday before Houston, I felt like crap. On the Friday I felt a little better when I left (I went by myself).. I relaxed in Houston and felt OK by race time. I had no idea what to expect, but since I already had my BQ, I said go for it and run 6:4x's as long as you can... And what happened...

Well I chickened out at mile 20 and gave away my sub-3. I ran 3:01:42 and blew my 2008 PR's out of the water or any PR out of the water. Way better than anything I've done and probably was my best running day ever.... However, looking back. I let up around mile 20 for fear of the wall. I went from running 6:45-6:55 to 7:01, 7:06, 7:12, 7:25, 7:20. However I had enough left to finish at 6:22/mile pace.... Argh.. I didn't hit the wall and felt rather fresh at the end minus the two blisters that popped on each foot. So where does that leave me now....

In utter depression. Why you may ask?? Well everything was going well after Houston. Took 4 days off to rest and let the soreness go away. Then I started up the Friday after Houston and ran 13.2 miles in those days, all easy no problems. Then....

I noticed a lump in my groin, between my scrotum and leg. The lump is on my leg. I showed my wife and she said I should have it checked out. I panicked as I always do so I immediately went to the doctor. I though my BP would be through the roof,but it was the lowest I have ever seen while at this clinic (108/80). So at least that was good. The doctor looked at the lump, said it was a swollen lymph node and said it was nothing to worry about. However, if it was still around in a week or so, come back and they'd ultrasound it.

Well OK, that doesn't sound like the end of the world does it??? Well for me it does. Now I'm over-obsessing about it. Definitely thinking I'm dying, my Boston Marathon traiining is down the tubes. I keep wanting to check to see if it is still there, however looking back when I had shingles it seems it took a couple of weeks to fully go away. Who the hell knows whats wrong with me. I want to go back to Sunday... I want to go back to how I felt at the finish of the Houston Marathon. What a high.... How can things change so suddenly 9 days... I just feel like sulking away... Why do I do this to myself... Why do I over-analyze the way my body feels... I don't want to go through what I went through in the winter of 2007... I want to run the Boston Marathon... I want to break 3 hours in the marathon... I want to train hard and be tired because of the training...

I don't want this to effect my every day life, but it does... I'm a horrible husband and father and this just makes it worse... God, please help me out...