Saturday, October 22, 2005

Post FC Thoughts

As I write this, the pain of the run is fading and I've thought about what went wrong and right. First, for having such a tough run I only missed my goal by 17 minutes, which means it is quite reachable under better conditions. Second, my bike split was very good for me. A few things come to mind why I had such a hard run:

  • Low run volume.
    Quite simply, I am not running enough miles per week to expect good half marathon results.
  • More bricks.
    I haven't done any at all since the very few I did for IMCdA. I need to do some, just to better find out if my nutrition and fluid intake on the bike is correct.
  • Under hydrated/messed up nutrition on the bike?
    I felt just fine on the bike. I had three bottles of sports drink, and two gels. This fueled me for the bike but may have not been enough to carry into the run. I am still trying to find the right level of hydration.
  • Weather?
    It was overcast, but still warm and humid. I also had plenty of company grinding out the run - I walked and chatted with three of four fellow athletes in the same situation. We all remarked on the conditions, which thankfully weren't worse.

As for what to work on for next year, that is simple:

  • Bike volume.
    This will sound crazy, but for now I am as fast as I need to be on the bike, to reach my modest goals. Certainly faster is better, but for now, just working on bike volume and building more bike endurance is key. Bike endurance translates to covering the same distance/speed but leaving more in the tank for the run.
  • Run volume.
    I've been dogging the run lately, by focusing more on speed for short runs, rather than endurance for long runs. A 2:15 half marathon works out to about 10:30 min/mile pace; this has nothing to do with speed and everything to do with endurance.
  • Swim.
    I'll just maintain it, which currently is twice a week at 45 mins to 1 hour each time for approximately 4000 yards. Yes, that is low but the fact is spending another day swimming doesn't make sense right now. I'm time limited and I would be way better off spending that time doing a run of some sort: a brick or a regular run. What would I hope to get out of a 3rd day swimming? 5 mins off my half iron swim time? Where an extra run could realistically net me those 17 minutes I missed plus even more.
  • Half iron and olympic triathlons.
    I see the half as a more enjoyable distance for me, so I'm going to stick with that until I can do a 6:30 half and not suffer through any of the legs. ;)

In the meantime, after taking it easy for a few days, I have a half marathon in early December to focus on. My goal there is to run 1:45.

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