Running the Numbers

So the highlight of the bagel shop talk this morning was to predict my marathon time in two weeks. Sounds like I'm one of the only ones aiming high for myself so I thought I'd do some quick math to see if my goal was in line with the training I have done or if I am delusional. I looked at the numbers and I still believe my goal is achievable.

A quick comparison (this is why training logs are useful tools for OCD runners). This year at Boston I averaged 43 miles per week the 10 weeks leading up to Boston Taper (2 weeks). This year for Richmond I have averaged 59 miles per week leading up to taper. In the spring I ran a 41:16 10k 2 weeks before the marathon. And this fall I ran a 39:45 4 weeks before the marathon (No 10k races in town this morning). I used the equations listed by this site to predict my marathon time for Richmond: http://mysite.verizon.net/jim2wr/id70.html. Based on the formula for 60 mpw if you multiply my recent 10k time by 4.75-4.85 my time should be between 3:08:49 and 3:12:47. According to the site when I was averaging 43 miles per week my multiplier should have been 5.0 to 5.3 (3:26:24 to 3:38:47) but it actually was 4.91 (3:22:50). I am not sure if that is because of my base or because I just run better than the average on less training. Either way the numbers are looking pretty good to me. (I'll be checking out the numbers versus my other marathons to see if I can find a trend!)

What is hilarious to me is that for some people I will never run enough miles and for others they can't believe how many I am running. I honestly feel that I did not run to my potential in Boston this year, I didn't feel strong and my quads were shot very early in the race. I truly believe that I am capable of much better. I aimed high with the training mileage for this race and I fell a little short of my goal, but the past two weeks I have felt the speed and the strength that I have built up and I know I am ready for a huge PR. A 16 mpw swing in training is huge, even if it is less than I intended. And the quality of my key workouts this training period have been great. I have been so pleased at how well my body has adapted to the hard tempo days and the faster long runs.

My goal is to be strong and smiling as I finish Richmond with a huge marathon PR. I don't need the negativity from inside or out. I've put in the time and it will play out how it plays out. But if I were placing a bet on me for this marathon I'd recommend you bet high on me doing exceptionally well and save the doubting for another day.

12 comments:

The Salty One said...

It's all about you, babe. Those guys are always trying to psych you out. Don't listen to them and run you're own race. Oh, and for the record those are the same people who never thought you'd break 20 minutes in a 5k. I know somebody who new unequivocally that you could and I also know that same person thinks you are fully capable of a 3:10. Yeah, that's me. So get out there and run your own race and have fun and no stressing or micromanaging and you should do great. I predict even on a bad day you're well under 3:20 so you have NOTHING to worry about out there!

Keen Bean Company said...

Go get it girl! YOU can do it - you are so strong and so focused - I am excited for you and your upcoming success!!

Cliff said...

E-Speed,

As you have run many marathons and a few ultras, I love to see how your training will be put to the test on race day.

I look forward on the race day and the results of all the hard work you put into it...

yes..don't let the negative voice (internal and external) get to you. You have done everything you need for this race...there is nothing more you can do other than rest, sit back and enjoy the ride :)

Lloyd said...

First of all, congrats on a rock solid training season. You are at a new height of fitness, for sure.
Second, know you must have the conditions cooperate with you come marathon day.
I think you have the right attitude -- run the best you can and let the chips fall where they may. Numbers on paper are one thing, but you still have to execute the race. Racing savvy and know-how matters. You have that.

FWIW, I averaged 49 mpw prior to fall '07 marathon. This year 54 mpw. I improved 6 minutes. But you have yet to get your breakthrough. When you do, it will be huge.

Here's to hoping that Richmond is your day to show it.

Steph said...

I'm rootin' for ya Elizabeth!
Good luck and I'm sure you'll do well. You got it!

solarsquirrel said...

DUH! No doubts on my end - I KNOW you will make your goal time.

Sensationally Red said...

I have never doubted what you are a capable of. You're amazing. You keep me from getting lazy because you consistently aim for your best.

iliketoast said...

You are stronger and faster. 3:10 is there for you. Back off early and fly the flag home on the back half. Big smiles at the start and work it really really hard when the time comes. I know you will do it!

DaisyDuc said...

As someone who has been running a lot with you, it is very obvious how much ridiculously stronger and faster you have gotten over the last year! Not only has your training volume leap been huge but you seem to have gotten increasingly mentally strong too. I wish you the best conditions come race day and I am certain you will crush that course!

Joann said...

With a sub-40 10k in the bank, I'm betting high! Go for it!

Curly Su said...

awesome attitude - you're going to kick some major butt, and you know it... don't let anyone tell you otherwise.

Kevin said...

I use jim2s site to try to figure out what my dallas marathon will be as well. you are going to do aweswome, just awesome. Im in my fourth year of running and when I grow up, i wanna run as fast as you.