The first 3 weeks of January were pretty consistent and the last week was a low week, as I went on a cruise. Picking a vacation the week before a goal race might not make much sense, but...that week would have been a slightly lower mileage week anyway. I probably would have drank a bit less the week before the race, but I did not go crazy with drinking or eating on the trip and I got a ton of walking in.
Myself, Zak, Croft and Keven started the year off with a work out on New Year's day; we did 6 x 1k at Goddard Park.
Each of the Sundays we had some solid long runs of 18, 17 and 19 all in which we progressed and finished in low 6's or under.
I was healthy the whole month, with only a small tweak in my right hammy, which I took one day off for and did all the right things in order for it to not mess with any other work outs.
My total mileage for the month was 245.9, which was including a 30ish mile week at the end of the month. I had 3 days off in there, two during the trip and one for the hammy.
Going into the race on Feb 2nd, I had a sub 28 min time in mind from Newport all the way to the race. I figured if I could run 5:44 pace in Newport....I could get down to 5:36s. So, that was the pace I based my work outs off of.
Come race day, I was a bit unsure. I haven't raced too much in the last year...I was over 180 pounds and I have started coming down with a cold. With all of those excuses out of the way (I didn't use any of those pre-race) I was focused and ready to race.
All of the GP races are packed with fast people, which obviously helps, but something a bit new for me, was to have multiple people that I train with all having very similar goals and being in similar shape. That definitely adds some motivation on the roads. Dave Principe, Steve Croft and Mike Daniels all wanted to run right around that 28 flat mark.
So.....a brief run down of the race action. I went out in 5:33 (race marker split, not GPS) I felt pretty good but not amazing. I felt like I was moving up the whole race, which certainly helps motivation. 5:31 through 2 miles and I start coming up and past Mike. I could see Dave up ahead and passed him around 2.5 miles. Through 3 in 5:26..I was very focused on mile 4, using the slight downhill to get the legs going again...5:20 at the 4. There was a slight uphill after the 4 mile marker, nothing steep but enough that I made what I would consider my only mistake of the race and I got too content there. Turning on the next to last road, I regained the motivation to push and started passing people again and seeing people I knew that I would like to nip before the line. You turn on the last road and have maybe 0.15 to go and of course everyone is just cranking for every second at that point. I passed the line in 27:19 (5:26 last mile)
Dave was not too far behind in 27:35, followed by Mike in 28:05 and Croft in 28:14.
Soooooo....overall a pretty successful day.
February will be more of the same, up the mileage a bit and stay consistent (most important).