Welcome to my blog for long-distance running!

If you have visited this blog, chances are, you are a passionate runner, just like me!

In this blog you will find my every-day training regime, including running sessions, biking, callisthenics, preparation for particular races.

Any thoughts, ideas or well-intended and constructive criticism are welcome.

Mittwoch, 29. September 2010

post-marathon recovery

Yesterday evening I biked for an hour, about 22km. Soreness on muscles is gradually fading away. Today's evening schedule:sleeeeeep!

Dienstag, 28. September 2010

excellent experience!

Rain did not stop 40,000 runners last Sunday! We ran the Berlin marathon and we are very proud!
I did a personal best (inspite of the rain!) and clocked in at 3:18:20. Very happy to spot my parents among the crowd cheering for me, at 21km and 38km. Fans always give us runners an extra confidence boost!
Post-race plan: rest-sleep-walk-bike. But mainly, sleep!
In the coming cold months, intensity in my training will drop, as speed sessions and intervals are almost impossible to run in the cold. That is fine with me - my training for the past 4 months was very intense. I am happy to switch to slow and easy running for a while!
I have no idea what my next goal will be. Will give it some thought in October.

Donnerstag, 23. September 2010

last post before Berlin

Today I ran 15km easy. I feel rested, so I am hoping for the best!
Unfortunately the weather forecast for the race is rain, so I will have to keep my targets flexible. I would love to reach the finish line in good health and in cheery mood!
Tomorrow 10km easy and then on Sat 5km easy... Oh my god! The race is so close! Fun/anxiety/excitement!
I was thinking of following the 3:30 pace maker and see how it goes. But I will know my pace once I cross the start line! Totally unpredictable!
My father will be at the 20th km cheering with a banner. My mom will be waving flags at the 35th km. Her cheers will fight away the wall!
Magic words for the marathon: patience- persistence- positive energy.
My next post will be after the race!

Mittwoch, 22. September 2010

today and 3 days to go!

Last days before the race - resting thoughts:
Yesterday evening I went for a 1hr walk, and felt my right knee strained. Probably it is nothing (or just nerves!) but it makes me think: during the marathon, every strain counts, and after the first kilometers, any discomfort can become larger than life. Caution is needed, but also remember: no pain no gain!
As for my pace: the last 8 days before the race I run with no chronometer. I have no idea how fast my pace is, but I do know how it feels: sustainable! I will know my pace after the first 5km of the race!
At the start line, my main goal is to finish the race. After the first 5-10km, I will know how my body is responding. After 20-23km, I will be more confident that I can make it!

Dienstag, 21. September 2010

another experience

So the story of a colleague, is as follows: Back in his twenties he was semi-pro runner in West Germany. His distance was track and field 10km, road racing 10km or more. When preparing for the marathon, he trained in hilly Aachen, about 80-90km per week with high quality sessions. His marathon race in flat track of Hamburg: he ran 4:15 per km until the 25th km. When hitting the wall, he followed his friends' advice and went even faster, at 4:10 per km until the 32nd-35th km. Then... he slowed down, and finished almost walking. Total time 3:06, he was initially aiming at under 3:00.
The marathon is always full of surprises, no?
My training these days: yesterday 5km easy, today 15km in the fog, incl 3km at race pace. Tomorrow is a day off, then all easy runs, low mileage and sleep! until Sunday.
I will do my best to enjoy the experience!

Sonntag, 19. September 2010

tapering: sleep-chill-run a bit

On Sat I did a long-ish run of 25km, and then yesterday 15km. It sounds too much, I know! Yesterday evening I went to the spa and chilled.
This week: I will sleep and rest more in the evenings. No evening exercise activities! Training-wise: Today I would like to do 5km easy in the evening. Tomorrow 15-18km. Wed off. Thu 15km, the last 5km at race pace. Fri 10km, Sat 5km. Sunday is D-day!
I can't believe my race is in 6 days! Excited!!!

Freitag, 17. September 2010

tapering thoughts

I am currently worrying about my tapering. There is a fine line between doing too much in the last 14 days before the marathon, and tapering. If one goes too tired to the start line, he could end up going too slowly and reaching the finish line in 4.5 hours. But truth be told, finishing the marathon is an achievement, no matter how long it takes. The only problem with a run of 4.5 hours, is that the body gets very tired.
My tapering is progressing as follows: yesterday I ran 12km easy, today 13km incl about 3km fartlek. During the easy sessions of fartlek I tried not to let the pace get too slow, just slower than the fast sessions.
I can't believe the race is so close!
Have a great weekend!

Mittwoch, 15. September 2010

intervals and a first one

Today I did 15km, incl the following intervals: 3x (5min fast run, 2min jog) and then 8min fast run. Again, the weather is v. windy, but I amanged to pull off the intervals!
Tomorrow I should do an easy 10km workout.
Another first for me in Berlin: I have never run 2 marathons in the same year! This will soon change!

Dienstag, 14. September 2010

recreational and serious

Today I did 19km with the last 2km faster. Very windy! Tomorrow will do either a short or nothing. Then Thu and Fri 15km with intervals. By the end of the week I should start to feel really well rested.
What I find interesting is the psychological aspect: I don't want to time any training sessions until the race. I actually do not want to think about the race at all!
Maybe it is better this way, to put the marathon in the right context. Sure I have invested time and effort the past few months in preparation for the race, but I genuinely enjoyed my training, and still do, no matter if I go to any race.
I care about the race, but I care even more about enjoying my trip to Berlin!
Hmmm... the last statement sounds like coming from a "recreational" runner, not a "serious" runner...

Sonntag, 12. September 2010

getting there

Defying tapering rules, I ran 32km on Sat, incl last 8km faster. I don't know whether it helped my tapering, but it definitely boosted my confidence. I mean, if I can do 32km all by myself, then surely I can run 42km in a race, with thousands of people adding to the excitement of the race? (we pretend that the "wall" of the last 10km does not exist!)
On Sun I ran 14km easy. So last week's mileage sums to 113km. This week I will drop to 90-95km. I will also try to sleep more. and... I will stop timing my running sessions. It leads my psychology to the wrong direction. From now on until the race, running will be with a plain watch, no chronometer. Focus on how hard the training and the pace feels, not how fast the chronometer says. I can almost see the finish line in front of me!

Freitag, 10. September 2010

refining the pace

My race is.. in 16 days from today! Excited!!
Today I ran 14 easy, but upped the pace for the last 3km. Tempo at marathon pace is very good practice. I was actually experimenting with my race pace in these last 3km. Basically I will define/refine my race pace by just listening to my body, no chronometer: a pace that feels fresh but not v. hard. Sustainable pace is the magic word!!
Tomorrow I will do 32km, start off relaxed and pick up the pace for the last 10-12km.
Yesterday evening I biked 20km.. I know I should stop cross-training now, but the weather was finally superb after a rainy week!

Donnerstag, 9. September 2010

the weather is excited, too!

On Tuesday I did 20km and then on Wednesday15km. The weather here is terrible. I ran in non-stop heavy rain, 11 C. In spite of goretex garments, I was soaking wet. The worst was the soaking socks and shoes. Of course, the pace was slow!
This unstable autumn weather has gotten me thinking: all planning re. pacing is fine, but if on the race day the weather is crappy, these plans go down the (d)rain.
Marathon runners should be flexible re. their race plans.
So... if on race day I am caught by heavy rain or any other external discomfort, the goal pace will be adjusted to... super slow! And the goal will be: reach the finish line in the race limit!

Today's run was a smooth 18km with the last 1km faster on a hill. Finally no rain!
Tomorrow I would like to run 12-13km easy with fast finish, then on Sat a 32km long run... to boost my confidence! And to make sure my confidence is boosted, I put no pressure re. clock for the 32km long run. If I feel strong after 22km, maybe go faster until the end.

Sonntag, 5. September 2010

20 days to go

My update: on Fri evening I biked 27km. On Sat morning I ran 12km and returned home for some much-needed sleep! In the afternoon I did 15km, last 2km faster. On Sun morning I did 15km including: 9x(1min fast run, 30sec jog) and then 10min fast run, no rest between the interval session and the 10min run. Proud of myself! In the afternoon I ran 12km, last 3km faster. Total mileage for last week: 128km.
This week's schedule: 105-110km, incl a 30km long run and a 20km run. Two days off, and three days of recovery runs of around 15km. Next week drop to 90km, again two days off.
I will also switch from biking to walking, because it is less strenuous. Valuable rest before the race!
I can't believe my marathon in Berlin is in just 20 days. Time flies!

Freitag, 3. September 2010

it is getting closer!

Yesterday I did 23km incl last 3km fast. Today I did 15km easy. This weekend I would like to do another long-ish run and a shorter one. I agree with you, this is my last week of serious mileage. Even though I am planning to do 1 or 2 more long runs before my race in Berlin, the rest of the training sessions should not be more than 17km. I will also replace some sessions with recovery runs of around 11-12km. Next week around 105-110km, then 90km.
As the race approaches, anxiousness and excitement prevail!

Mittwoch, 1. September 2010

quick update

A quick update: yesterday evening 27km bike, this morning 19km run with the last 1km faster. In the beginning of this training I wanted to do about 15km, but in the end I was enjoying my run too much to call it a day. This evening I would like to do some power walking. And tomorrow morning maybe a 22km session - whatever my legs dictate!