Taper Time Analysis

Now that the hard work is done, it’s time for tapering. That means tending to phantom injuries, freaking out every time I hear one of the kids cough that they are getting the flu and I will catch it too, and checking the weather forecast every 8 minutes.

But it also means filling up the liver and muscles with glycogen and running every mile knowing that I’m only doing it to stay sane, not for fitness.

I haven’t fretted over data/times/pace for this training session like I usually do. Part of that is because I have so much other stuff going on, and part of it is that when training using the FIRST program, it doesn’t really take over your life the way a 6-day-a-week program does. It’s kind of nice.

I did a 23 miler for my last long run yesterday, and I averages 8:59–much faster than I’d planned on running, and a little surprising. I’ve figured out that I need to eat a LOT more than I had been eating (no complaints here), and as a result I have yet to feel the wall this time around.

Anyway, I was going back and comparing this peek week training to the peek week of my best marathon. I’m liking these results:

2003 Peek Week

42 total miles (4 sessions), 6 hours  and 35 minutes (9:24/mile average)

2012 Peek Week

40 total miles (3 sessions), 5 hours and 59 minutes (8:59/mile average)

The two big things I notice are that I ran roughly the same miles in both years, but this year I’ve done it in one less session, and at a faster pace. Also, my longest run in 2003 was 20 miles instead of the 23 I did this year.

I’m hoping this means a faster race. 3:49:59 was the original goal. Starting to think 3:44:59 may be a real possibility. It’s all going to be in the execution.

I’ve been running negative splits every day. Do I start with the 3:55 group for the first half and chase down the 3:45 group, or do I just start with 3:45 and try to hang on? That pace sounds tough for me right out of the gate.

  • Twitter
  • Facebook
  • Digg
  • StumbleUpon
  • del.icio.us
  • Tumblr
  • LinkedIn
  • Google Bookmarks
  • Print
  • email
  • Kelly

    For me, I looked back at my long runs to see what my pattern was, how I finished, my nutrition plan, etc and decided on my race plan: wanting a 3:35 but needing a 3:40. I stayed with the 3:35 pace group and decided to keep them in sight if I couldn’t be right there with them. I would move ahead just a little (if I felt strong) between the half and the 20 mile point. I would push the pace when I felt like I could. I fueled way before I felt I needed it (mile 4, 8,15,20) and took water at every water station. I had a decisive plan prior to the race. I think it depends what type of runner you are. If you are fried at the end of your long run, then I would definitely hold back more at the start. But since you have been posting negative splits I would probably start with that 3:45 group and adjust your plan according to how you feel, and not your watch. Hope this can help.

    • Scott Adcox

      Thanks!

      The negative splits was what had me thinking I should start with the 3:55 group and run down the 3:45 in the 2nd half. I’m slow out of the car. Well…I’m slow everywhere, but especially in the first 2 miles.