Mon - 8 miles (1,650') easy. Horsetooth Audra. No watch.
Tues - 5 miles track. No warm up. kilo, 200 easy, 5x600 w/200 easy, 400 easy, kilo. 3:30, 1:59, 2:00, 2:00, 2:01, 2:02, 3:26. Mile cool down. Had to work harder than I wanted for these reps, especially as I didn't get a chance to warm up.
Weds - Managed to stay disciplined and take a day off.
Thurs - 9 miles easy'ish. No watch. Went out for 6 on lower valley trails (Soderburg to Arthurs), but it was such a beautiful day out that I tacked on another 3 via Overlook, one of my favorite trails in Lory. On the way back, I started running fartlek to the pace of tunes on my ipod shuffle. Ending up going longer and harder than planned, but had fun. Still not convinced on music while running, but I kind of like it on non-technical, frequently traveled trails like on today's run. I find I get into much deeper thought with tunes than if I'm getting my main sensory stimulation from the surroundings I'm running through. Kind of fun this time of year as I think about possible goals and plans for next season, among other things.
Fri - 6 miles easy. No watch. Soderburg to Arthurs and back. Took the Brooks T6 flats out for their first ride and came home with blisters in the achilles area. Shoes are going to need some breaking in and I'll probably have to tape in sensitive areas for Dublin, but other than that they felt great. I always pooh-pooh people who sweat an ounce here and an ounce there in their shoes, but the difference was actually very significant - like someone had taken a block of concrete off my feet. The shoes are essentially half the weight the shoes I normally run in, so a pretty significant lightening of leg-end load.
Sat - Off
Sun - 13 miles Blue Sky (1,000'). No watch. Mixed up the effort, but generally felt lackluster and sore in the hamstrings. Not quite sure why I am sore, but I think it's due to a lot of bending over with heavy weights on Saturday when I was re-tiling around our fireplace. Hoping it will be gone in a couple of days because it feels pretty tight right now.
Total: 41 miles (2,650')
This is my second real taper of the year and I can't say I'm feeling too good right now. I don't really feel like my training for Dublin ever got going with any degree of seriousness, so I've been thinking the whole three-week taper thing might be a bit overdone. However, with my legs feeling the way they have today, I'm pretty happy to have another week of rest.
I'm getting pretty curious to see how the race goes next Monday as I really have no confidence in any particular time. I mean, usually going into these things, you've run a half marathon tester three or four weeks out, you've been holding certain extended threshold and marathon paces in training and therefore have a good idea of where your body's at with reference to certain time goals and paces. I haven't run a road marathon in almost three years and have done nothing but middle-distance reps at the track in terms of speed work, with the exception of races which have all been trail and offered little feedback with regards to road form.
Another x -factor might be the schedule. I fly out Thursday, arrive Friday am, couple of beers Friday night, groom's breakfast Saturday am, wedding pm, fly to Dublin Sunday, race Monday. It's pretty much non-stop to race morning with jet-lag and wedding-reception over-zealousness being additional x-factors. Pacing is definitely going to be key both Saturday night and Monday morning.
As is it currently stands my PR is 2:54. Barring complete and utter disaster, I should at least be good for a new PR. I'm pretty confident I can run something in the 2:40 zone, and I think I'll be happy with a low 2:40. The 2:3x is probably something of a long shot with my current fitness, but definitely doable on the right day. Just not sure I'm going to have the necessary road fitness. Any which way it goes, it'll be fun finding out.