Saturday, December 17, 2011

MRN Puts in Work

Time: 120:11
Distance: 28.85k

W/u: 21:07 for 4.11k
W/o: 20k at 3:45-3:52/k (I wrote this workout for Meagan as 12 miles at 6:05-6:10)
C/d: 23:12 for 4.73k

Look at the terrain. Look at the distance. Look a the splits. Enough said.

Avg Pace

I'm not impressed with a lot of workouts, but I was with this one. I did give Meagan a hard time on Facebook about having to run 22k more and faster in Houston, however she flexed her fitness in this one.

We had a leisurely morning sipping coffee with her parents around the house allowing the body to wake up and temps to get into the upper 30s. So warm! Meagan, her dad John and I left the house on a warm up through town to the causeway of the neck. It was fun showing John our new stomps and telling him what to look for around the loop we do frequently. Meagan and I made our way to the start line to get geared up for some hard running. I wrote all of her training several weeks ago and this week and next are the two highest mileage on the schedule. It wasn't critical that she nailed this workout, but it would be nice if she were to have a strong showing.

I brought out the pace with her in tow out to the neck. We had the wind at our backs to start for the first two kilometers. She was right on my heels and the splits were exactly where they needed to be. Meagan sounded strong, relatively relaxed and ran smart on the uphills.

Around the 5 or 6 kilometer mark I started giving her words of encouragement and told her to envision racing in Houston. She was still running strong as we started the second loop of the neck. There are some tough stretches that include hills, wind in the face and false flats. However, every time when you think you're just about to crack the course gets easier with a downhill section. It's part of the reason why I like the neck. You can push yourself knowing right when it's really hard, you'll be given mercy by the terrain.

I kept the pace honest reading off splits every so often and Meagan stayed right on my heels. After the second loop around the neck we had covered around 12k and battled the wind along the causeway. We turned left on Atlantic and ran out in the direction of Swampscott. I figured we would run 3k out into the wind, turn and have 3k with the wind at our back. We would then close out the workout with a final 2k heading back out the neck causeway.

It was going according to plan for the most part with Meagan following close behind to the 15k mark. I was ready for the pace to really pick up when we made the turn, but the wind was still in our faces. The stretch from 13k to 20k didn't see a split over 3:50/k. I wasn't looking for her to pick up the pace any, but just keep the tempo until the end. The final 3k splits of 3:42, 3:43 and 3:39 were an encouraging sign especially when I threw the extra kilometer at her.

No one workout will guarantee a good race down in Houston, but this will certainly give the fitness a bit of a boost. Had we run another kilometer, even if it were at 4:05 pace, Meagan would have run under 1:20:00 for the half marathon. Throw in a taper, a flat course, the excitement of the Trials and I think we should see a good run in about a month's time.

No comments: