Thursday, December 01, 2022


I was listening to a podcast with Neil Young today and was struck a couple of times by how his relationship with music is similar to my relationship with running. At one point he was talking about the next generation of musicians and how they were different. Not good or bad, just different. That had me thinking about the local racing scene and how it’s different than when I was racing a lot. Many of the “classic” races are no longer around – squeezed out by charity races with deeper pockets willing to pay the high police fees to put on a race. Or maybe the race directors are getting older and moving on too. Anyway, I guess I could say the “new” race scene is not good or bad, it’s just different. Another point Neil made about needing a break after making a record reminded me of needing a break after a big goal race. He talked about the importance of stepping away and enjoying some downtime. I think that’s important in running too. While maybe taking 3 years off from serious goals is a little over the top, I’ve always said you can’t force motivation.

Since I do have some motivation working in my favor right now, I started looking at local races coming up in the first half of 2023, with the main goal of running Grandma’s Marathon in mid-June. Part of this journey is going to be trying to find out what works at this age. I’d have to say my last decent marathon was in 2014 – just before my 45th birthday. In the past I’d follow either Pfitzinger or Daniels training plan, but I’m confident that 2 workouts per week, plus a long run, aren’t in the cards for me this time around. With the marathon over 6 months away here are some simple rules I’ve come up with;

1 hard workout per week

1 long run per week

1 day off per week

Run, bike, or ski however I want the other days

1-2 lifts per week

That’s it, the K.I.S.S. method – at least for now. The seeds for this came from Jay Johnson’s book Simple Marathon Training: The Right Training for Busy Adults with Hectic Lives. Jay ran at the University of Colorado, under Mark Wetmore, and he offers a lot of great advice for High School coaches. It was through his info for coaches that I found this book. His training programs are 20-weeks long, so the actual start date would be January 29th.

I talked about age-grading yesterday and I’m still a little befuddled by my recent 8K result of 68.5% given my recent (lack of) training. My best post-college race results are around 71.5%. Punching those 2 percentages in the marathon at my current age and the range is 3:17 – 3:26. That’s really not that big of a difference. I guess the real difference is that I didn’t just run 3:26. My 3:48 from last year is a long way from 3:26. Anyway, this is all just mental math, but it does have me thinking about why I topped out at 71.5%. My best college results would be closer to 76-77%. That would put me in the 3:05 range next year. Anyway, it’s all just fun with numbers. Something to help get me through the next 8 weeks until the program starts.

1 comment:

Double said...

The last marathon I ran for time was the 2015 Lakefront Marathon. I used the Beck Program. Obviously, plugging in workouts more in tune with my age then. I was happy with results. The hardest part was getting up early sometimes during the work week and the long marathon pace runs of 20k, 25k, and 30k which are done 3 weeks apart.

It is good to see you blogging again. There are many endurance challenges left. Pounding out a solid 8k does a lot to generate a spark. Nice run.