Sunday, January 8, 2012

Tackling the Ocean Drive 10

Hello from winter hibernation! I know I've been posting less, but I've been a busy bee in other areas of my work and professional life. Oh and the holidays completely zapped me.

But I'm back. Hooray!

So some news. I pledged before that I'd be running the Ocean Drive Marathon. I started the training in late December and realized that my heart wasn't in it. My body wasn't in it, either. I only had two weeks off between the Philadelphia Marathon and starting training for the next one. My body was tired. I needed a running break.

So I took it and, instead, signed up for the Ocean Drive 10 miler. So this will be my fifth year in a row running that race.

I'm not taking it easy, though. I'm setting a lofty goal: I'd like to run the race in one hour and 18 minutes.

This isn't going to be easy. My fastest time in this race was a 1:19:55 in 2009. My fastest time in a 10 miler is a 1:19:21 in the 2009 Broad Street Run. I ran both of those races before I hurt my hip. In my best middle distance race of 2011, I ran an 8:23 min/mile average pace (the Ocean City Half Marathon). To hit 1:18 in a 10 miler, I'll need to run 7:48 min/miles.

Am I crazy? Maybe. But a few reasons I'm doing this:

1. I'm comfortable with this distance. Since I hurt my hip, I've run half a dozen races in the 10 miler/half marathon distances. I know how to pace myself, and I know how to carry myself through that length of distance in a race situation, which I don't know how to do at the marathon.

2. I'm comfortable with this course. I've got it DOWN. I know its quirks, and I can plan and train for them.

3. I need a challenge. I trained for the Philadelphia Marathon with a goal of finishing. I did that, but the training was boring. I miss speed workouts and tempo runs. Training for a 1:18 will bring that back into my running schedule.

4. I'm OK if I miss the goal. Really, I will be. The race is just the icing on the cake. The training, at least for me, is what's important, and I miss training hard. I'd be thrilled if I finished anywhere under 1:19. Setting the goal as 1:18 just makes it easier to visualize.

I've found a bunch of people on twitter who are running the marathon or 10 miler for the first time, so I'll put together a post soon about where to stay/eat/etc. For you non-runners, I think it'll still be interesting because the information could apply to anyone doing a spring trip to the Cape May area. At least I hope!

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