NYC Marathon Training Plan – Why I don’t follow training plans

Yup! I’ve caught ironman fever! Sure I don’t own a bike and I just learned how to swim but I’m already daydreaming about crossing the finish line. I want to be amazing just like this lovely and this lovely! I got ambitions and that can be good, however, I am taking a step back.

In a little over 3 months, I have my priority fall race. NYC marathon. My desires to run ultras and Ironmans and whatever other crazy dreams I have for my future will need to take a step back.

While I tend to run many races, this might be my one and only time I run New York marathon. Mostly the lottery ($11) and registration fee of a small fortune ($260+), will probably keep me from coming back to the familiar streets of NYC. Besides, about 11 miles of the course is in Brooklyn, and I can run that for free when I visit my parents.

Instead, I will attempt to commit myself to a new PR. I want to make the most of my NYC marathon opportunity. My current PR has been undefeated for over a year at 3:24. I will have obstacles. Many of which involve long work nights and weekends since Sept/Oct is my busy season for my job. The other obstacle while I’m less busy is summer heat and how running a 20 miler in the summer is miserable. I don’t enjoy it at all, no matter how hard I try to pretend I can run through the heat. However, my 10Ks, and half marathon times have gotten much better since 2012. Therefore, logically, there is no reason why I shouldn’t be able to PR in a marathon with enough training.

No Real reason for this photo, I just wanted to break up all the letters

Therefore, I need a plan. Whenever, I’m asked what my marathon training plan is, I always kind of mumble that I don’t have one. I have two general ideas.

1. Weekly mileage I want to hit

2. Weekly long run I want to achieve

and everything else is filler. True, I try to get in a medium long run, and a tempo run (or in my case pseudo tempo run attempts) and that’s about all.

Due to a certain personalty disorder I have never been able to follow a detailed plan, itinerary, schedule or anything. Marathon training, hasn’t changed that about me. For the most part, if I have a 10 miler on a day my legs feel like crap and a 5 miler on a day my legs feel great and I force myself to stick to said schedule, I will end up miserable and most likely injured. Instead, I follow a mostly intuitive mileage schedule with only one real schedule run: the long run.

I know there are many theories out there, and I am no expert, but for me, the one thing I cannot skimp on when training for a marathon or longer distance is the long run. Hitting those targets will either make or break my race. If my longest long run before a race is 16 miles, than 26.2 miles for me will be purely miserable. Would I finish? Yes, but I’ve come to run, not walk a race. Therefore, long runs, I need to be able to do them quick and easy like they are just another longer runch!

There are about 15 weeks before race day and the long runs will be done on either Saturday or Sunday but for simplicity I have it the Sunday date listed.

Week 1 – July 28 – 15 Miles – This ended up being a complete disaster but I am moving on

Week 2 August 4 – 16 Miles

Week 3 August 11 – 18 Miles

Week 4 August 18 – 20 Miles

Week 5 August 25 – 18 Miles

Week 6 September 1 – 22 Miles

Week 7 September 8 – 24 Miles

Week 8 September 15 – 20 Miles

Week 9 September 22 – 26.2 Marathon – Adirondack Marathon – Road

Week 10 September 29 – 20 Miles

Week 11 October 6 – 24 Miles

Week 12 October 13 – 31 Miles – TARC Fall Classic 50K – Trail

Week 13 October 20 – 24 Miles

Week 14 October 27 – 18 Miles

Week 15 November 3 – 26.2 Miles – NYC Marathon

Seems easy enough? Right?

 

Do you follow training plans or just wing it for races?

Alternatives After Losing the NYC Marathon Lottery & Getting Your Marathon Mojo Back

So as 90% of all lottery applicants in the NYC Marathon lottery, I was not accepted.

For some odd reason these words of “not accepted” felt worse than a job rejection. B Upon reading my face turned red with embarrassment as if my character had any say in this. B I know melodramatic, but there are alternatives. B I’ll start with the ones that are absolutely useless to me but maybe they’ll work for you.

1. Become a member of theB New York Road Runners for a full year, complete at least nine NYRR-scored, qualifying races, and volunteered for one. B If you really hate volunteering NYRR gives you an option to donates $1,000 insteadB – I barely like making the drive to visit my family, no way am I trekking to NY for a 5K.

2. B Run with a charity -B Yea I pretty much maxed out my friends and family by running for a Boston Marathon charity this year. B I think I’m good on fundraising for the next 10 years.

3. Keep trying the lottery – The three strikes and you’re in policy is being slowly phased out. However, some of you may still be lucky. B In the past, applicants to the marathon have been eligible for guaranteed entry if they have been denied entry three years in a row.B Applicants denied entry for the three years 2009-2011 will be eligible for guaranteed entry in 2012. Applicants denied entry for the three years 2010-2012 will be eligible for guaranteed entry in 2013. Applicants denied entry for the three years 2011-2013 will be eligible for guaranteed entry in 2014. Applicants denied entry for the three years 2012-14 will not be eligible for guaranteed entry in 2015. B 2012 was my first lottery and this ship has sailed for me.

4. Qualify!

Sadly I have not yet reached the current or New Marathon or Half Marathon qualifying time. B And they say Boston is hard…

5. Find an alternative marathon -B There’s plenty of long distance fish in the sea, run somewhere else.

Whats my plan? B I’m going with 4 & 5. B For November 2012 I will take my legs, lungs, heart and the rest me on the road to somewhere else (nominees are listed below). B For 2013 I plan on trying to qualify through a half. B I know they say to never say never but I think cutting 25 minutes of my marathon time (from 3:24 to 2:59) will most likely not be happening in the next year. B Instead I will try to shed a 30-60 seconds per mile of my half marathon time. B If my knee holds up, I’ll be running two half marathons in May. B This will give me a better idea of where I stand and how much training I need. B My guess is that at the moment I am in the 1:37 range. B I’ll probably come up with a plan andB initiateB it at the Rock n Roll Providence in August.

What are my 2012 November alternatives?B

1. Philadelphia MarathonB – November 18th, 2012 – Pros – It’s on my birthday! B What better way to celebrate than with 50,000 of your “friends.” B I can run a mile for each year literally as I turn 26. B Cons – It’s in Philly; nuff sad. B Southwest stopped flying there from Boston for a reason so I would probably drive with a stopover in NYC. B Registration is $95, goes up to $110 after 4/30.

2. Anthem Richmond MarathonB – November 10th, 2012B – Pros – Dubbed “America’s Friendliest Marathon” byB Runner’s WorldB magazine. B Cons – Does Southwest fly there? B I doubt it. B What’s in Richmond? B B Registration is $75 goes up to $85 after 4/30. B Tempting but who will sponsor my flight and hotel.

3. Rock n Roll San Antonio B Marathon – November 11th, 2012 – Pros – I’m not sure, I always wanted to visit Texas? Cons – Travel, Flights, Hotel, Sunday Race etc. The course looks kind of blend and repetitive but I like the idea of a runcation. B Registration is $95, goes up to $115 after 4/30.

4. Rock n Roll Las Vegas Marathon – December 2nd 2012 – Pros – Its Vegas? Cons – Its expensive! B Aside from travel and hotel, the registration cost is $150. B I thinkB that’sB a bit overpriced for a franchised race. B Also, this race has a total of 44K people and I heard that didn’t go too well for the competitor group last year.

5. Honolulu MarathonB – December 9th 2012 – Pros – I want to go to Hawaii. B Please take me!!!! It sounds amazing. Cons – Usual travel expenses. B But I want to go to Hawaii!!! B Registration is $125 goes up to $155 May 26th.

I’m torn between Honolulu and Philly. B I’ll probably do Philly due to cost andB convenience. B Putting a down payment on a house tends to hurt your vacation budget for the year so unless Southwest goes there (I got miles!) I probably won’t be seeing it until 2013 and beyond. B B There’s also a lot of awesome races in October. B Amica in Newport Rhode Island is one I would love to one day do. B However due to the October 15th US Tax deadline, I will probably work weekends and late nights September 15-October 15h (it’s my busy season) so end of November – December is my ideal race time allowing me to get the long run training in the final weeks of October.

Did you enter the NYC Marathon lottery? B Did you win? B

What are your fall race plans? B