Sunday, April 13, 2014

On the Run: Martian Invasion of Races 10K 2014

The martians invaded Dearborn again!  Every year around this time they come flying into the city and descend upon Ford Field park and the surrounding area.  Never fear - these martians are friendly and come to encourage people of all ages and ability levels to run. The Martian Invasion of Races lineup includes a 5K, 10K, 1/2 marathon, and marathon.  It also has a Kids' Marathon (kids log 25 miles prior to race day and run the last 1.2 at the event).

I've run the 1/2 marathon the last 6 years - it was my first 1/2 ever so I always go back for it - but with Boston just over a week away, I opted for the 10K instead. I was excited to run a 10K again and was shooting for a new PR.  My goal was sub-41:00 and with the interval and speed work training I've been doing, I was pretty confident I would hit my goal.  The course is one I'm familiar with, so that gave me an advantage.  It starts at Ford Field and winds its way through Dearborn to Ford Road where it picks up Hines Drive.  Up to this point there were a few slight hills.  I could see my Boston training paying off because I was able to pass some people and gain ground with each hill and elevation change.  

To get onto Hines we ran down a ramp from Ford Road and then things leveled out on Hines for a nice flat out and back.  Then we hit the paved Rouge River Gateway Greenway Trail, one of my regular training routes.  It has a few decent hills that I've been running hill repeats on the past couple of weeks.  I felt right at home on the trail and was happy to pass the 4-mile marker just after the first hill.  I was right on the heels of a guy who was using me to pace him but was determined not to let me pass him.  As we ran through UM-Dearborn I started closing in on a woman who had been far ahead of me for the whole race.  On a downhill I flew past her.  To exit the trail there is another hill.  Not only did I pass the guy I'd been pacing but also passed 2 others as I powered up that old familiar hill and kept right on going without slowing down.

Now I knew all the hard parts were over.  Everything left was easy and flat.  I checked my watch and saw that it read just over 37:00.  I knew there was no way I could finish in 40:00 but I tried to push as hard as I could.  On the last straightaway before I turned for the finish line I saw Brian taking pictures and my friend Megan cheering me on.  Then I turned for the finish and I gave it my all.  I ran it in hard, feeling strong and proud, finishing under 41:00.  

I set a new PR by 2:59, finished 4th in my age group (beat out of 3rd by 1 second!), 10th woman, and 34th overall.  And I got this sweet little glass martian from the Glass Academy in Dearborn!




Don't Save Me / Haim
Rattlesnake / St. Vincent
The Walker / Fitz & the Tantrums
Anklebiters / Paramore
After the Disco / Broken Bells
I'm Shakin' / Jack White
I Love It / Icona Pop
The Innocent / Mayer Hawthorne
Dance Apocalyptic / Janelle Monae
Mallie Chan / Otto Vector
50 Ways to Say Goodbye / Train
E.T. / Katy Perry

I also ran the Kids' Marathon with my 5th grade Girls' Running Club from school.  For most of the girls it was their first race.  They did such a fabulous job and I'm so proud of them! I love being able to help train and inspire young runners who wouldn't otherwise have the opportunity get out and run on their own.  

And here's Megan who ran the 5K and placed 2nd in her age group.  She's amazing! We met at RUNdetroit so we're both representing with our shirts.  We found this nice family of martians who let us pose with them.  Nanu nanu!

Did you run one of the Martian races?  Tell me about it!

Saturday, April 12, 2014

Jack Daniels Running Calculator

I wrote about the advantages of using a pace calculator in a previous post.  This is the Jack Daniels Running Calculator and I've been using it to help with my training and goal setting for Boston as well as my recent shorter distance races.  

With permission from The Run S.M.A.R.T. Project, I've included this calculator at the bottom of my blog.  (This is a screen shot - scroll down to the bottom of my blog to use the actual calculator.)  

I encourage you to use this to help set your own goal pace and plan your training accordingly.  Reevaluate your goals as your fitness level increases and your race times decrease.  

Happy Running!

Monday, April 7, 2014

Boston Marathon Countdown: 2 Weeks

2 weeks from this moment, I will be done running the 26.2 miles from Hopkinton to Copley Square.  I will have made my way up and down the Newton Hills; conquered Heartbreak Hill.  I will have taken in all the sights and sounds along the way.  2 weeks from this moment, I will be relaxing and celebrating with Brian.  It's hard to believe it will be here so soon!

But I can't think about all this quite yet.  I still have the race to run.  And I still have 2 weeks of training.  Yes, it's taper time but I need to stay focused.  I'll be running daily, just fewer miles.  As my mileage decreases I'll work on increasing my amount of sleep - something that has been severely lacking in these months of intense training.  That's going to be huge for me - making sure I'm well-rested. I've done so well staying healthy and I need to keep that up in these final days.  (2nd graders - keep your germs away!)

All in all, the past 2 weeks of training haven't been too intense, which has helped me rest up a bit.  I finished out week 13 with a 4-minute PR at the Rock CF 1/2 marathon.  That was a big boost for me near the end of my training!  Nice to see my hard work paying off.

I just have one more race - the Martian Invasion of Races 10K this Saturday - before the big day.  I won't go too hard at it.  I usually do the half so it will be strange to just be running the 10K.  I'll also be there running the Kids Marathon with my Girl's Running Club from school.  It will be a nice last weekend before heading to Boston the next Saturday. 

Here's my training from the past two weeks:

I'll check back in before I hop on the plane.  Happy Running!

Previous Boston Marathon Countdown Posts: 14 Weeks12 Weeks10 Weeks8 Weeks6 Weeks, 4 Weeks