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Old 10-18-2011, 01:09 PM   #9
ChimneysweepGeorge
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Join Date: Aug 2011
Posts: 123

Congratulations!
Here is the thing about veteran runners...we weren't born that way. Celebrate!

I'm not John but I am an RRCA certified running coach...you are in good shape. The single biggest piece of advice is to ignore your speed and focus on distance...in other words, you are on the right track. I'll explain for you.

Speed is pretty much a function of two things; overall conditioning and neuromuscular response. The first one will only come as you train your cardio system more. That means a heart rate under 80% of max for as long as you can. If you don't have the base conditioning, trying to move faster is just going to exhaust you faster...and that's the opposite of what you want when facing 13.1 miles. You'll find as you are able to go longer and further, your speed will naturally increase. The second...essentially moving your feet faster, doesn't take a lot of time to train. It can be done in the last three to four weeks preceding your taper period if you find yourself lacking.

Oh and that's the second bit of counter-intuitive but true advice I'm going to give you, gradually reduce the volume of your run for the 7-10 days before the race. It gives your body time to fully recover and restore glycogen so you'll be able to give your very best. This REALLY messes with your head the first time (every time for some people) as your body fills with more energy and your brain starts second guessing the lack of activity but going into a race 10% undertrained is MUCH better than being 1% overtrained. :-)
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