Striding Through

Because a life well lived always finds the right pace

The road to NYC, Week 7: Mid-Term Exam Time

This week I’m getting a taste of what the three weeks before November 7 will be like; I’m in taper mode. It’s just a short taper of 10 days but I’m following all the same rules, of cutting back the mileage, focusing on sharpening, getting my rest, staying hydrated, and yes, resisting the urge to run more.  All this is for the weekend’s upcoming race, the Wilson Bridge Half Marathon.

I look at this one as an opportunity to get the most accurate sense possible of where my marathon fitness currently sits. Did I need to taper for Wilson Bridge? Perhaps not. I could have just trained through it, as I often have in the past when looking towards a bigger target down the road. But as the first 6 weeks have gone by in up-and-down fashion, I find myself wanting to really put up a nice number on Sunday, and considering that half marathons are in my sweet spot distance range, I’ve decided to save a little powder this week so I can really get after it on Sunday.

As for the past couple of weeks, I’ve had, as I said, some up-and-down results:

  • a 51-mile week,
  • followed by a vacation week that only saw me do 11 miles total (though I did do lots of hiking, biking and even kayaking that week),
  • a return to high mileage with another 51-mile week, capped off by a brutal 21-miler
  • a 30 mile running, 43 mile cycling week as the 10-day taper started to kick in

Until last week I really was not feeling confident about my readiness, particularly after the 21-miler went so badly. However, last week I did nail a great track session in my final “hard” workout before taper (4 x 5:00 @ 6:02/mile average pace) and that has me feeling better.  Either way, the hay is in the barn, at least for Sunday. Whether it’s enough or not, we’ll just have to see. But it’s all stacked.

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