taper time

The Knoxville Marathon is exactly two weeks out, so my taper is in full effect. The last longish run was today. A 22 mile slog in the cold for slightly less than 3hrs 30min. Not a very enjoyable jog, but necessary. I felt the need to get a road run in at my goal race time. I have enough stamina to get through hours of trails, but running on the road is different. This marathon will put a different kind of stress on my body, and the mental preparation is also different. Pounding miles of asphalt can get pretty tedious compared to the trails.The McMillan Running race calculator puts me at a 3:31-3:33 based on my two winter road races. Hopefully I’ve had enough time since then to build some more fitness. Running a smart race wouldn’t hurt either. My stretch goal will be 3:40.

I ran this run in my newly purchased New Balance Minimus 10v2 shoes. They performed pretty nicely. Running that far in a new shoe is usually frowned upon, but the Minimus line has been my favorite type of shoe, it’s almost like they are custom made for me. They haven’t done much to mess up the line yet, still crossing fingers they will leave well enough alone.

The image shows my weekly mileage so far this year. I forgot how sporadic 2012 was. The large buildup at the end of the year is me trying to scramble to get ready for the Lookout Mountain 50 miler. Notice the very inadequate one week taper. I didn’t do too badly in the race, but proper preparation and taper would have helped. 2013 is off to a promising start with a 30+ mile average a week and more consistency. Not being injured helps. After the marathon I’ll be taking a week off, then building up to 45-50 mile weeks on average. There will be more base building in the MAF zone for the next 3-4 months and then we’ll see how successful that strategy turns out for the fall race season.
But for now its time for a couple of weeks of going “taper crazy” before the big race.