Final preparations for my ‘away mission’

The leaves are falling, the temperature is dropping, and race day is nigh! It’s marathon season, which is obviously my favourite season. As a fan of the sport I am excited to follow the results of fall marathons, and as a competitive runner I can’t wait to get out and run my own goal race. Matt Suda (teacher, teammate, and aerobic monster…but a different Matt Suda than this guy) and I are heading down to Columbus, Ohio next week, where he will be running the marathon and I will be running the half. Yup, I’m only running half a race. Don’t worry, I will do a real grown-up distance soon, just not this year.

Training has generally gone well this fall, but it took me until last weekend to really feel confident about my fitness heading into this race. On Sunday Matt and I ran our race simulation workout, which turned out to be exactly the confidence boost I needed as I head into my taper. The workout was a Brooks-Hansons style marathon simulation, with Matt running 26k at marathon pace, while I ran 13k at half marathon pace. We started our warm up at the crack of dawn (Matt wanted to go early, thanks Matt!) and then Team Columbus, plus Steve on his bike, gathered at the west end of the bike path at Springbank Park to start the workout. This run was yet another example of what a great city London is to train in. We ran the workout as an out and back on a 6.5k stretch of bike path that had every 0.5 km marked (the bike path goes much longer than 6.5k, but that was all we needed on Sunday).

Overall, the workout went well. Except for the part where Matt dropped me. See, we are somewhat training together through this block because we all figured that my half marathon pace would be pretty close to Matt’s marathon pace. But reality rarely works out as neatly as you think it’s going to. Fortunately for Matt and unfortunately for me, Matt has managed to get himself into great shape and now he’s too fast for me. At 3k or so into the workout he starts pulling away from me. I think, “oh no, I must be falling off pace.” Then I check my split at a kilometer marker, see that I have actually picked up the pace, and realize that Matt still put four seconds on me. So yeah, you read that right. Suda makes us start earlier in the morning, then he goes and drops me. What a jerk. Seriously though, I’m really excited that Matt is in great shape and I can’t wait to see him clock a solid marathon. If it means I’ll be running alone, I’m sure I can handle it.

Anyway, I managed to hit my goal pace for 13k, so I was pretty happy with my workout. I went into this workout feeling a bit tired from a high-mileage week, so to hit my pace and come through 13k feeling strong means my fitness is right where I want it to be. Now it’s time to drop the volume a bit and rest up for a big race effort. Onward with marathon season!

Oh, and I had to draw attention to this, ie. the greatest comment ever:


That was awesome. Comments like that make this blogging thing seem worthwhile. Thanks, Delmonte’s flow! I’m committed to the blog reboot this time around. Well, time to do more running so I have something to write about next time.

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