Monday, October 11, 2010

This is a Running blog too, right?

Hello everyone! I realize I have not written about my running in quite awhile so I'm back and ready to talk all things running.  My two running partners are in taper mode.  They are running the Bay State Marathon on Sunday so I decided to join them for their last long run.  They were doing 10 and I had 12 on my schedule.  After talking to my Physical Therapist, he said I should do 10 instead but do it fast.  Since Nancy is trying to break 4 hours in her marathon, I knew the run would be fast.  We decided to meet in Newton, otherwise known as the land of the hills.
My two running partners during last years NY.  I was supposed to run with them : (

NEWTON (According to The Boston Marathon-Virtual Tour):
"One word: ugh. Try running a half mile on a hill with an incline of close to 90 feet. Not fun. Now do it after running up three similar hills just prior to that. Now try running up those four hills, one after the other, after running 20 miles. That is what Newton has to offer. The last of these hills, "Heartbreak Hill," is easily the most famous. It is not significantly steeper or longer than the previous three, but it is the last. In 1936, John Kelley, who completed Boston 58 times, passed the aforementioned Tarzan Brown at the top of the hill and gave Brown a friendly pat as he went by. Brown responded by bolting down the backside of the hill and flying by Kelley to go on to win the race. Boston Globe writer Jerry Nason then dubbed the hill "Heartbreak Hill." Though reaching the top of Heartbreak is quite an accomplishment, runners who think the race is over at that point are sadly mistaken. The 230-foot drop from there to the finish line is every bit as important and is often more taxing on the body than the uphill climb."

So, we ran down the big hills and up small ones for five miles then turned around to run back up them.  We did not run Heartbreak, but we did the first couple.  And for you Boston marathon newbies, the other ones are harder than Heartbreak.  As you can read above, Heartbreak Hill is named after the heartbreak felt around Massachusetts after John Kelley was passed.  It is not in reference to the steep incline.  Trust me when I tell you this, the first hill you hit is the worst! And we ran it.

10.06 Miles in the Newton Hills
1:31:42, 9:07 pace
Mile 1: 9:09
Mile 2: 8:58
Mile 3: 8:54
Mile 4: 8:55
Mile 5: 9:03
Mile 6: 9:18
Mile 7: 9:14
Mile 8: 9:21
Mile 9: 9:01
Mile 10: 9:18

Can you tell where the hills were? I bet you can! Anyway, this was a great run for me.  It was hard and challenging but just what I needed.  On Saturday I run my last LONG LONG run before taper time. My plan is to run from my brothers house to my house.  Let's just say we both live on opposite sides of the marathon route.  It's going to be a long one and I can't wait!

Today I contemplated running the Tufts 10K. It's a historic race and I should have signed up for it earlier.  But I don't really like running races during marathon training because I know I probably won't come close to my PR's.  But anyway, today I wanted to do it.  Then I realized same-day registration cost $48 bucks.  Yes I know it goes to a good cause, but $48 bucks!  That's more than some half marathons.  So I opted to do the mileage on my own.  (Plus I ended up not being able to escape from work until 2pm anyway).

Around 3:30, I met at my brothers and we did a lovely 5.5 miles.  We wanted to do 6 but it worked out shorter and it was HOT out so I didn't mind.  I wanted to run this all under 9 minutes but my legs weren't cooperating.
5.45 Miles 49:37
9:08 pace
Mile 1: 8:44
Mile 2: 9:18
Mile 3: 9:12
Mil 4: 9:20
Mile 5: 9:03
Mile .43: 9:16

My achilles is still feeling better but it isn't 100% pain-free like it was on my 20 miler.  I am planning on doing a lot of cross-training this week and Physical Therapy.  I may not run until my 20+ run on Saturday. Which is fine with me.  At this point in my training, I feel it's my long runs that will get me across that finish line- not my 4-5-6 mile runs during the week.

A BIG congratulations to all the girlies who ran Chicago. ESPECIALLY Theo.  As I've mentioned before, Theo and I went to college together and she's lost 50pounds over the course of a year and has run multiple races.  Yesterday she finished her first marathon in 4:59, running COMPLETELY even splits... she actually might have negative split! You don't hear that everyday.  Congratulations girlie!


  1. Um, yes, I can kind of tell where the hills are, but only cause you said there were hills! That pace looks pretty consistent within the range of normal changes during a run for me. Hope you get back to 100% soon.

  2. It sounds like you're training smart and doing what feels right. Good luck!

    Congrats to Theo!

  3. Wow, you are really doing well, i am just about able to run 10k, but that is a real struggle! Your blog is really helping me focus though!

  4. Great job on the speedy long run! I'm sorry your achilles isn't 100% healed yet though :( I hope your plan works and you're completely better soon!

  5. Congrats on your speedy long run! As someone who has run those Newton Hills, I can whole-heartedly agree - the other hills are definitely worse than Heartbreak!! To be honest, when I ran Boston I didn't even realize I was going up Heartbreak Hill until I got to the top and people were cheering about it. Oops. Instead, it was that first hill and all the others leading up to it that really got me.

    I'm glad your achilles is feeling better, but I think you're smart to take it easy on the shorter runs. Good luck with your last 20!!

  6. My very first race was in Newton - a 5K - I thought I wanted to die even though I've run up to 8 miles (on a treadmill...yeah, I know!) by then. I don't know if it was those hills but I'm definitely scared of Newton now. Congrats on a great fast 10 miler and another good shorter run. You're going to kick ass in NYC! :D