February 6, 2014

Spring Racing Schedule

I'm doing some things differently in training this year... I have a much smarter, more systematic plan. Instead of being completely self-coached, I now have an executive panel of high-level advisors. I'm working on balance, general strength / coordination, and self-massage pretty much every night. I'm finally using the foam roller and have learned to love (not-hate) it... after neglecting it for three years. Eventually I'll start eating healthier too (never said that before!). I'll do some more detailed posts about the tweaks to my training soon. I think its going to be a hell of a year for me. I'm ready for some major breakthroughs.

To start off, here is my spring racing schedule:

March 1 - Phoenix Half Marathon. My first "real" race of the season*. Every year we make a winter trip (or several) to Phoenix to visit my parents. Last year I won the marathon here. I'm excited to go back because the race directors are awesome and working hard to make this a great event. I'll run the half this time around and hopefully be in shape by then to run sub-66. After the race we're bee-lining to Sedona for a couple days of fun in red rock country. [*technically I opened up the season in Houston, but I wasn't really in shape to be racing yet... and I'll also have the entire SLC Winter Series (5K-10K-15K) under my belt by the end of February, but those are more or less glorified workouts]

2013 Phoenix Marathon

April 6 - USA 10 Mile Championship (Cherry Blossom). I haven't been back to DC since I lived there in the summer of 2008! When Cherry Blossom announced they were hosting the US Champs, Andrea and I had plane tickets booked within a few days. I'm looking forward to seeing a lot of friends before/after the race... and from a racing standpoint, when your goal race for the spring is the half-marathon, I can't think of a better fitness indicator than a 10-miler.

Racing track in DC, circa 2008

May 3 - Indianapolis 500 Festival Half Marathon. I ran the Indy Monumental Half last November and came away impressed. The organization for the "mini" is putting together a competitive field, and the course is flat and fast. My training is going to be geared towards running a big PR at Indy, and ideally running under the Olympic Trials qualifying time (1:05:00).

June 21 - Grandma's Marathon. Is it even a race schedule if it doesn't include a marathon? Grandma's is the best late spring/summer marathon with a field of guys running in the 2:15-2:20 range. There isn't a TON of time between Indy and Grandma's (7 weeks), but if I'm fit and healthy, that would be enough time to put in a short cycle of marathon-specific work.

Another idea I've considered, in the interest of chasing track PRS - The Music City Distance Carnival and Portland Track Festival are June 7th and 14th, respectively. I could potentially run the 5000m at MCDC, the 10,000m at PTF, and then run the Gerry Bjorklund Half Marathon in Duluth. That would be a lot of travel (and racing!) in a short period of time... and sort of expensive, too. We'll cross that bridge in May, after the Indy race. I'm leaning (99.9%) towards the marathon route for June.

The second half of the year is going to be devoted to a long, proper marathon build up. Canova style.


  1. Races all over the place! Sounds fun! I'm with you on self-massage and stretching. It's ridiculous how much time it takes! I've spent a lot of time on it over the last 2 years and it's been great for my overall fitness. I also think it helps me recover faster. Just posted on a book I read about running nutrition. Check it out. Good luck this year! Kristen

  2. Thanks Kristen. It will be a lot of travel - good thing they (sometimes) let you leave your iPad on during takeoff and landing now.

    I've heard Fitzgerald's book is very good... although I can probably sum up the changes I need to make w/out a book - "keep doing what I'm doing, except eat less candy" :-)

  3. Man, run the distance carnival. You'd have a free place to stay!

    1. If I was very confident I could run under 14:30/29:30, I'd consider going that route. Definitely would expect a night out on the town in Music City... or Hendersonville, though.

  4. Do you know for sure that you can get in the US 10 Mile Champs? The website says you need a sub 48:00 or equivalent.

    1. Jim - I don't know for sure. That's a good point. I was thinking they might loosen that standard a little, b/c that's also for hotel/travel which I wouldn't be expecting. I guess if I didn't make the cut, I'd just run the regular Cherry Blossom run, which is essentially the same thing.