Marathon Taper

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dkggpeters
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Marathon Taper

Post by dkggpeters » Thu Sep 19, 2013 10:55 am

I am scheduled to run Akron next Saturday (9/28) and did my last quality session yesterday.  I am looking for advice and suggestion for the taper on the remaining days.  I was running fairly high mileage and averaged 89.4 miles over the last 21 weeks with 2 big workouts a week over the last 12 weeks (I had a couple of cutback weeks which only included 1 true big workout in those weeks).  My last 3 weeks training is summarized as per the below:

My marathon goal time is 2:43 and my previous best is 2:47:32.  I will be 50 on race day.

3 Weeks Ago
1.) 15.24 miles w/7 x 1K at CV 3:28 avg with 200m jog recoveries (1:08) + 4 x 200m @ 35 avg with 200m jog rec
2.) 25.2 mile cutdown run.  Ran the last 13 at 6:30 avg pace while with miles 19 to 23 at MP down to 5:59.  Cruised in the last two.  It was really warm and humid out as well 72 deg with 71 dp.  Avg pace for entire run was 6:49 pace.  Overall felt good and didn't feel like I over extended even though I was running with a 2:32 to 2:35 marathoner and 2:40 marathoner.
Total weekly miles = 95.49 miles

2 Weeks Ago
1.) 15.43 w/8 x 1K @ 3:28 avg with 200m jog recoveries (1:06) + 4 x 200m @ 35 with 200m jog rec.
2.)  HM @ 1:19:22 on warm and humid day at 70 deg with 68 dp.  I didn't race this but it was a really solid hard effort.  25 miles total for the day including warmup, cooldown, and evening shake out run of 5 miles which actually felt good.
Total weekly miles = 103.71 miles

Last week
1.)  15.27 w/6 x 1K @ 3:28 avg with 200m jog recoveries (1:05) + 4 x 200m @ 35 with 200m jog recoveries.  I pushed this out a couple an extra day due to the HM and was planning on 8 reps.  Mentally I just wasn't into it and decided to call it at 6 reps rather then force a couple of extra one.
2.)  20.03 w/12 @ MP 6:10 avg (goal 6:13).  Actually felt better in the later miles.  Original goal was 14 miles but with all the volume that I have been doing I figured it was best to stop at 12.
Total weekly miles = 94.91 miles

Current Week
1.) 12.16 w 6 x 1 mile @ 5:44 avg (target 5:45 to 5:50) with 1:30 jog recoveries.
2.) 13-14 miles easy
Total weekly miles = not sure (plan is 70 but may be to much)

What I have done this week is 8 really easy miles on Monday and Tuesday and I did the quality workout #1 yesterday which felt really good and kept the paces in check.  I will do the quality #2 on Saturday and not sure if I should throw in a couple of MP miles near the end or just do strides.

Next week on Monday I am planning on either 2 x 1 mile at 10k with 3 min recoveries or 3 to 4 miles at MP.

I would appreciate any suggestions/advice for the next 9 days on how you would handle them.  I wish I had a couple more weeks to train so I wasn't looking forward to the taper so I am still chomping at the bit which is good and bad (bad in I have to be smart).  I have a predominately slow twitch muscle fiber makeup with no speed at all.

Dave

qrkid
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Re: Marathon Taper

Post by qrkid » Thu Sep 19, 2013 4:19 pm

No real suggestions as I am only starting to consider doing my 1st marathon in a years time.

Just wanted to say that the training looks awesome and I see a new PR in someones future.

Good luck.

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Re: Marathon Taper

Post by bflying » Sat Sep 21, 2013 2:23 pm

I notice you cut back a lot this past week. I think another 12 with a pace like you did today on Monday or Tuesday would be fine and some medium intervals with a little less intensity midweek. It's been a while since I ran a marathon competitively so maybe others will have more detailed suggestions. I've enjoyed following your training and it's been motivational for me as well! I think you'll have a great race and I look forward to seeing the results. Hang in there!

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Re: Marathon Taper

Post by Tinman » Sat Sep 21, 2013 6:27 pm

For the seven days prior to the marathon run between 60 and 70 miles. I think you're going to feel weak if you run below 60.
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kevinm
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Re: Marathon Taper

Post by kevinm » Sun Sep 22, 2013 10:15 am

Wow Dave, you are getting in shape! I'm surprised your not entering the USA T&F Marathon Nationals in a couple of weeks. You would have a great shot at placing in the top three.

Kevin

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Re: Marathon Taper

Post by ap4305 » Sun Sep 22, 2013 12:30 pm

[quote="dkggpeters"]

Next week on Monday I am planning on either 2 x 1 mile at 10k with 3 min recoveries or 3 to 4 miles at MP.

[/quote]

Personally, I always prefer CV/10k at the final tune up during race week, both for mental and physical reasons (before my PR we actually did 5k continuous at 10k pace race week; before my best non-downhill half, we did 2 miles continuous at 10k pace).  Nice to get some pep in the legs and have that confidence that marathon pace feels slow.  No worse feeling than feeling like you need to get "up" for marathon pace...For us slowtwitchers, its key to feel like MP is a jog!
Allan Phillips
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Tinman athlete since 2003
www.ventanapt.physio
IG: @thekettlebelldoc

Aric Keith
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Re: Marathon Taper

Post by Aric Keith » Sat Sep 28, 2013 9:29 am

Good luck today, David! As far as I can tell you're well over half way done as I type this. Kill it!
Aric

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Re: Marathon Taper

Post by ap4305 » Sat Sep 28, 2013 11:11 am

http://results.active.com/events/akron- ... vid-peters

2:49.  Short of his goal, but still a phenomenal time for age 50!  Not sure what the weather was like there today. 
Allan Phillips
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Tinman athlete since 2003
www.ventanapt.physio
IG: @thekettlebelldoc

Tchuck
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Re: Marathon Taper

Post by Tchuck » Sat Sep 28, 2013 12:05 pm

Early start so probably weather was not a significant factor - I think temps in low 60s at start. Maybe wind was a factor. Very windy in my race this morning in upper Midwest (Green Bay). Awesome time though - wow!!
Those who try, fail! Those who do what it takes to succeed, will SUCCEED!

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Re: Marathon Taper

Post by Clell » Sat Sep 28, 2013 2:24 pm

8)  Cool. Great Run, Great Race.

kevinm
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Re: Marathon Taper

Post by kevinm » Sat Sep 28, 2013 9:46 pm

Thanks for posting the results Allan.

Nice race Dave! Anxious to hear your perspective on the race.

Kevin

dkggpeters
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Re: Marathon Taper

Post by dkggpeters » Mon Sep 30, 2013 9:00 pm

Thanks guys.

I ran 2:49:25 vs a goal of 2:43:00.

I was on pace for 10 miles and then my legs just wouldn't turn over due to problems with my hip flexor, hamstring, and calf on the right side.  I was battling hamstring issues for the last couple of months and about 6 weeks ago I didn't think that I was going to make it to the start line.  I was able to get really positive results through ART and Graston which allowed me to continue to train and do quality workouts.  One of the problems that I have been having is my stride has been tight and not relaxed thereby making even my easy runs feel harder then they should have.  My HR was staying low, but I could tell that subconsciously my body was trying to protect itself and things just wouldn't loosen up.  As a result, I was having problems getting my glutes and hamstrings to fire correctly thereby placing additional stress on my hip flexors and also started to cause problems with my right ankle being really stiff.  The taper was rough and I could just tell that things were off and hoping that on race day things would be ok.

Everything felt pretty good at the start with the exception of my ankle which was still stiff but a lot better then it was all week.  Race morning was the only morning that I was able to walk normally right out of bed so I was optimistic.  Things felt ok and then all of a sudden at 10 miles in my right calf was got extremely tight and my right hip flexor was starting to bark.  I went from having no problem holding 6:00 to 6:10 pace in those miles to struggling to hold 6:30 to 6:35 pace through miles 11 to 16 and these were primarily downhill.  I wasn't tired and I noticed my HR drop but the legs just wouldn't turn over any faster.  Fortunately I was able to salvage pace on the  miles 17 through 20 which was all uphill and hold the same pace with no issues.  At that point I decided to just shoot for a sub 2:50.

I was actually surprised that I was able to finish as at mile 10 I figured that things would just get progressively worse with my right side but I was able to keep things in check.

Overall I am happy with the result as one year ago I was just looking at going sub 3 and this year I was able to get in two sub 2:50's.  I was also able to train with no interruptions (I did take a week off after Boston) and have built up a really good base.  Sure I would have liked to get the 2:43 but the marathon can humble you.  I actually take it as a victory to finish in sub 2:50.

Going forward my steps are to resolve the hamstring and tight hip flexors (My PT when working on the right side stated that they were super tight) so I can get my posterior chain to start firing again correctly.  I have always have had ankle issues and can resolve that by doing more strengthening exercises again.  In the interim I will take a short break of a week or two of running and then do easy running  until all issues are resolved before I start doing quality sessions again.  My next marathon is not until Boston and I built a huge base of miles this year that I know will continue to carry over.  I know that it is important that I don't let these issues get worse as having the ability to continue training is key.

Dave

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