Sunday, September 23, 2007

Well Prepared?

Since the middle of the week we’ve been hearing about this big summer storm that was about to hit So Cal, with the worst of it planned for Saturday. We did wake up to wet streets on Thursday and Friday but the remainder of Friday was the sunniest and warmest day we’d had all week. We had received one email planning a Peter’s Canyon run, followed a day later by a reschedule to the Santa Ana River Trail to avoid the possible mudfest on the trail. I liked this option better since I had up to 20 miles scheduled; Peter’s Canyon in a 7.5 mile loop.

I awoke Saturday morning to cloudy skies and damp streets but no falling rain. Since the storm hadn’t live up to its potential yet, I wasn’t sure what would happen as the day progressed. I planned for the worst and brought my hat and even brought some Band-Aids for those areas prone to damage from a wet shirt. I drove through a couple of spots of light sprinkles on the way to Yorba Linda but arrived to an overcast but dry trail.

Julie was there this morning and glad to see that I was back. She was glad to have a running partner. She is capable of running much faster than me, but has been taking a more laid back approach after several years of training hard and racing to AG honors. She and her husband Gary part of the Cruisers group heading of to DC for the Marine Corps Marathon. Julie was planning a 20 miler. I explained my dilemma so we decided to run together as far as we felt comfortable and go from there.

We settled into an easy pace, somewhere in the middle nines, following James and Michelle. The rest of the group faded further and further behind as the miles progressed. The conditions were ideal with overcast skies and temperatures in the low 60’s. Just as we finished up the south leg, at 10 miles, the skies opened up. Within minutes we were soaked to the skin. It continued to rain pretty heavily for the next mile or two and then it began to let up. My hat had been fastened onto my Fuelbelt and I was very glad I had brought it along.

Around mile 13 Julie admitted that if she had been running alone she would have bagged the run. We had discussed at a couple of points just how far we were going to run that day. We had settled at one point to at least run to the wooden bridge where the trail moves to the opposite side of the river. That would have given us 16 miles. My max (based on the majority of votes from last post) was 18. When we got to the point of turn around Julie was determined to get the full 20 done so I hung in there with her.

The last 5 miles got increasingly harder for me. Julie still seemed to be running strong although she said she was tired. While we had run side by side for 17 miles I now starting lagging behind a little. At mile 18 everything below the waist was hurting, especially the weak points of right foot and left hip. My left knee was expressing a degree of unhappiness as well. All my normal signs of fatigue were present: head dropped to the left and my left foot dragging along Lurch-like.

Even with the wet shirt I suffered to tissue damage. The Band-Aids and a little Body Glide did the job. Gary on the other hand wasn't as fortunate.

In keeping with my current training method of not stressing over pace I barely glanced at my watch and only hit the split four times during the run. It wasn’t until I got home that I determined the pace. We hadn’t started right at a mile marker as usual so the first split was 32:26 for something more than 3 but less than 4. The next 2 miles were at 17:44. This was the turn around point for the south leg. The next time I hit the split button was at mile 15. 10 miles in 1:30; right at 9:00 pace. Running with Julie had me going a little faster than I might have gone alone. The next 3 miles were at 29:47 and had incorporated a couple of walk breaks. The next full mile was 9:28 and the whole run was completed in 3:05:54 for 9:18 pace.

To stay under 4:00 at MCM I will need to maintain a 9:09 pace throughout. After struggling today I’m more than worried. I do admit that I haven’t tackled this round of training with my normal zeal. The nagging injuries have really put a damper on me mentally. I want to run, but feel like I can’t perform to my expectations.

Thanks to all who voted on the long mile schedule. I guess by running 20 on Saturday, I’ve made some kind of choice. Even now though I think I will attempt another 20 miler next Saturday and then enjoy a long taper into MCM.

This is getting long winded but I wanted to tell you about my run today. Tyler is home for a one week break before the fall semester begins. It is hard to believe that he’s already completed his first year at culinary school. Tyler has kept up his running since this spring when we ran the 5k’s together. He has worked his way up and had 8 miles on his schedule. Right after church we headed over to the San Gabriel River Bikeway. Bryan came along too and road the bike. Tyler knocked out the 8 miles, without a walk break, in 1:27. Pretty cool, huh? 8 miles was more than I really needed but I had a blast running along side my son for 8 miles. I’m hoping to get him over to Bonelli some time this week before he goes back to school.

16 comments:

Wes said...

Yup. Running 8 miles with the son IS cool. It's nice to see him coming along so splendidly. That's an excellent 20 miler. Funny how you mentioned your left leg drags when you get tired. Mine kind of hyper extends. Gotta watch that.

Have a great week :-)

Bob Gentile said...

Great Job Darrell on ur long run... I have been running in some rain the past few days...well some short showers, but also some lightning, yikes! luckily they moved away quick...

congrats again

Sarah said...

Nice job sticking it out in the rain! I don't think I've ever run a 20 miler as fast as I have my fastest marathon. Maybe once. That is very cool about how much your son has improved. You're a great role model. : )

matt said...

man, i can't wait to be able to run 8 miles with my boy. you are such an incredible dad, darrell. thanks for the inspiration.

i can't wait to see how MCM works out for you. good luck with the final bit of training!

Backofpack said...

Darrell,
Good job toughing it out. Now you know what it's like to run in WA - except the rain lasts for all 20 miles and it's 10-20 degrees cooler. Band-aids are a staple for the men.

scott keeps running said...

i had a wet shirt experience not too long ago and it was. not. fun.

it hasn't rained since...

angie's pink fuzzy said...

how awesome to run with your son!

i say take it easy on the rest of your training...good job on the 20 miler!

Joe said...

Great post, Darrell. I suspect you will take some comfort in knocking out the 20. Rain??? Yeah...check my blog later tonight...it is contagious :-)

So very happy for Tyler to stay with the running. 8 miles is something virtually no one can do. Good for him!! Had to be fun for you to join him!!!

David said...

Those ladies do tend to quicken the pace sometimes.
Great to run with the kids ... if they'll slow down enough to run with you.

Your race day pace will probably exceed your training pace. Isn't that what usually happens?

Annette said...

Impressive run! Way to stick it out even though you were tired. I hope your body isn't paying for it! :) You are sounding ready for your race! Good luck!

Jessica Deline said...

8 miles. Way to go Tyler!

Good job on your run. Yeah I got wet that day too but wasn't out there nearly as long as you were!

Bex said...

I think sub-4:00 is totally doable for you. I did MCM last year and I had a blast (even in the last desperate miles). Btw, you live nearby - which running club are you a member of? I'm looking to join one, and I'm sampling several.

robtherunner said...

Well done on the 20 miler, Darrell. The 8 miles with Tyler must have been a joy as well.

Neese said...

my left side is weaker also. weird. i guess we'll be alright ;) haha.

thanks for the comment, good to see you. hope all is well

Robb said...

My arms drag when I get tired. I guess that's lurch-like too. Honest, I do know what you mean.

Darrell, I think you're ready for sub-4 at MCM...the buzz of the race will pump you up. Those injuries will eventually fade.

Randy said...

Awesome report Darrell. It is great that you get the opportunity to run with your son, take advantage of it every time.

Hey, the OKC Memorial Marathon is coming up April 27...do you have that on your radar for your Oklahoma marathon?