The Powerbar Trial
As you may recall, I totally bonked on my Memorial Day Marathon in Coeur d'Alene.
R's fiancé works for Powerbar.
He read that I showed up without my own race fuel and likely hit the wall due to the poor electrolyte and carbohydrate quality of the race's provided fuel and immediately set out to make certain I would not suffer the same fate again.
So, a wonderful care package arrived on my birthday:
Just in time, too. (Thanks B!)
This week is week -15 on my training for the California International Marathon. My goal is to run a Personal Record (which means I need to beat my previous CIM time of 4:04). Ideally, I'd like to break 4 hours and I'd love to break 3:50 or even 3:40, but I need to see how my long runs are looking closer to the race before I can determine if those are reasonable goals or not.
I do, however, feel pretty damn good about the prospect of a PR this race as I have several things on my side:
1. The Powerbar products. Up until this training cycle, I've always been fairly haphazard about fueling during training because I often prefer to take the performance hit and run slower without fuel for the weight management benefits. For CDA, I only used fuel on the longest run of the week and races -- I performed much better on those runs. This time around, I'm taking a different approach. I'm going to use fuel on every run over 10 miles and work to push myself on speed and performance instead of worrying about the calories. I'm hopeful that using fuel to improve the quality of my training will improve the quality of my race performance as well.
2. I'm already in decent running shape. If I had to, I could run a reasonable half marathon today (as opposed to when I started training for CDA and I still needed to put in 5 weeks before I could comfortably run a half marathon at a 9 minute pace.)
3. More Mileage. I'm committed to the most aggressive training schedule I've ever attempted for a marathon. For CDA, I did an average of 31 miles per week over the 17 week training cycle (which was the most I'd ever done). This time around, I'm shooting for an average of 43 miles per week. I'm pleased to see that even though I'm finishing up the first few not-so-serious weeks of training, I'm already more than 20 miles ahead of where I was for CDA with 15 weeks to go.
4. I have a running buddy. I haven't ever trained for a time-goal marathon with a friend. This time around, H, the friend who flew up to Washington to join me for the Kirkland Half Marathon, is committed to a similar training schedule for CIM. We've got plans for two runs together during the week, and weekends as well, if we're both in town. It's so much easier to motivate for those medium long runs when I have a training buddy. Thanks, H!
With all of those benefits, I'm feeling very well positioned to get into shape and run a great race on a fast, downhill course. Onward!