Saturday, February 19, 2011

BAAseline Adjustments

I know you know about what they did. I get that changes were necessary, but I have a difficult time with the idea of BQing but possibly being blocked out of the race. In theory, you could BQ every year, maybe by just one second, and you could never actually be accepted into the race. If you have a background in philosophy and history then such a thing poses quite the mental quandary, as it calls into question what it really means to BQ.

That said, it seems I need to make some adjustments to my training. No longer will training to run a 7:15/M average be acceptable (at least not until I get a little older). So, I adjusted my training times and goals. Which means my I-can't-wait-for-this-weekends-easy 13M run became a run at 7:00/M pace.

Before I get to the numbers, a quick discussion about expectations for a run and the actuality of a run. While sitting around yesterday and planning my run my goal was to start off with a 7:05 to 7:10 mile for the first two to three miles and then build up to a 7:00 pace until around mile 10, where I would try to pick up the pace to around a 6:45 to 6:50.

Yet, I make these plans knowing I'd be running a modestly hilly route. It is almost as if I make my running plan on the assumption that I'll be running a perfectly flat course. It wasn't until mile three (a 7:10 into 25mph winds) that I actually realized I'd need to modify said running plan to account for the miles into the wind and the hilly miles; then try to push hard during the flat miles and the miles with the wind at my back.

This meant a run with all kinds of crazy fluctuations (like a 6:46, 7:10, 6:55, 7:10). After mile 9 I was about 30 seconds slow. This meant turning 'it' on for the last four miles, going 6:39, 6:48, 6:50, and 6:35. These last four miles were enough to give me a 6:57/M average.

This just demonstrates the point that you can't always run the exact pace you want every mile (unless you are on the treadmill), but you can still get to your overall goal if you can accept the slower miles the terrain forces you into and pick up time on the miles that will give them to you.

Ah, running. So easy. So hard.

Also, seems I owe the Redhead something cotton.


Running and living said...

I think in a couple of years with this system most people who qualify and want to run Boston will. By cutting 5 min for each AG, a huge group of runner was eliminated, as most people barely qualify. Next year is going to be a mess bc now that Boston is "elite" most people who qualify will want to make it in. But after that things will calm down. There are many people (like me) who could register first wave, but have no interest in running Boston again...Nice run!

Ironman By Thirty said...

I'm curious as to how many repeat runners Boston gets. If it is a large percentage, maybe they should do a "no two years a row" rule to make sure that those who "only" qualify by a second get a chance to run.

I guess there is always this one instead:,7120,s6-243-297--13469-0,00.html

Nitmos said...

I was looking forward to getting the "extra" 5 minutes on the qualifying time this year so I can get a bit lazier and still BQ. Now, I'll need to maintain. The good news is that I won't actually need to get any faster - like yourself - but, of course, this still gaurantees nothing. SO maybe I better get faster after all..

Anonymous said...

If I talk about the rolling admission I think my head might just explode.

The Laminator said...

Wow, you're getting kinda fast! At this rate, I don't think you'll even have to worry about any BQ qualification adjustments because you're gonna CRUSH IT! Just saying =)

Looking good for Boston, Spike!

Adam said...

Ugh. Not a fan. They had to do something though, I just wish it wasn't to me. :). You know, raise taxes, just not mine!

I've made a few slight tweaks to my paces too. Maybe the change was the kick in the ass I needed!