Semper Currens IV: Dialing it Up

Week Three Training Wrap-Up

It’s been a pretty good week overall. Like last week, I went gentle and long, completing my mileage in three longish runs. Fortunately, this has been a gorgeous week in New York, with temperatures in the warm, but not hot, range and humidities down. And, like last week, my final run of the week took me back to the Durand-Eastman Park in Irondequoit, which always feels good to me.

Lake Ontario looking across Irondequoit Bay from Durand-Eastman Park

Lake Ontario looking across Irondequoit Bay from Durand-Eastman Park

The Week Ahead

This is the week that things get real. The base is built, so now it’s time to get faster, build endurance and increase distances. This week, I begin interval runs–runs with repeated sprints followed recovery periods–and tempo runs–short runs at race pace–and the weekly distance goal takes a hefty jump in mileage. And as if that wasn’t enough, the forecast calls for a week of hot and humid weather.

The first gut check of the program is here.

Feature o’ the Week: Goals, or in my case, to BQ or not to BQ

With the program stepping up, now seems like a good time to discuss and define goals for our upcoming challenge. Whether your real or virtual goal is to win or to finish just ahead of the road sweeper, we need to have some sense of what we want to accomplish, and our training should prepare us properly to achieve that goal.

In his book Meb for MortalsOlympic marathon silver medalist and Boston and New York marathon winner Meb Keflezighi talks about how to set effective goals: in short, they should be personal, specific, challenging, realistic and motivational.

I have been going back and forth about my goal for the Marine Corp. Part of me wants to savor every minute of the race–to take in the sights and the crowds and not run for time. (The Marine Corps Marathon does have one built-in goal, though: to Beat the Bridge, or cross the 14th St. Bridge at mile marker 20 no later than 5:20 after the starting gun fires. But as this requires a running a minimum 14 min/mile pace, it’s not really a goal that concerns me at this point of my running life.)

On the other, I really fancy my chances of qualifying for Boston in 2017. My time in Burlington, 3:46:04 on a tough course, left me feeling that I could possibly beat 3:40, the BQ time for my age group. Six minutes may not seem like much over 26.2 miles, but it represents a jump in pace from 8:37 to 8:23 min/miles. And that’s just to meet the BQ. These days, to get into Boston you have to shatter that time! But it would great to know that I was able to run a BQ, a goal which would satisfy Meb’s criteria on almost every level for me.

Team Fox Update

After our quick initial flurry of activity, things have gone quiet over at Team Fox. So this would be a great time to go to my fundraising page and make your gift!

What are your real or virtual goals? What are you doing to accomplish them? And do you think I should go for a 3:40 finish at the Marine Corps or just run it for fun? Leave a comment here, and I’ll feature it in the next Semper Currens.

About Bruce Pegg

I write about running, music and spirituality.
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