More about me as a runner

2017 Target Events

  • 15th Jan - Standard Chartered Mumbai Marathon - 3:49:54
  • 12th Feb - Auroville Marathon HM - 1:46:28
  • 29th April - Western Pacific Marathon
  • 15th October - Bangalore marathon - tentative

Blog Archive

Sunday, October 31, 2010

Hartford marathon : further analysis

The body does not want you to do this. As you run, it tells you to stop but the mind must be strong. You always go too far for your body. You must handle the pain with strategy...It is not age; it is not diet. It is the will to succeed - Jacqueline Gareau , Boston Marathon winner 1980

This quote sums up what I went through at the Hartford marathon on 9th October 2010With a stronger will to succeed I should have handled the pain better and finished closer to my goal of 3:55. If I had avoided stopping in one less time I would have made it a few seconds under 4 hrs.   I was doing quite fine till about 32Km. After that the cramps in lower legs started and I started to slow down quite a bit. The last mile was really terrible. I had to stop multiple times to stretch and walk as a result of which the last mile took me 12 minutes nearly 3 minutes more than my avergae pace of 9:10 per mile. This is the first time ever I had such severe cramps in a run.

Based on  write-ups about causes of leg cramps in articles such as Toe cramps cause   and What Can be Done About Toe Cramps? it looks like my new pair of shoes was to blame. I had done only a couple of 10Ks and one 25K with this pair  before the marathon.  All my previous marathons have been run with a Addidas Supernova cushion which has now been discontinued and replaced with Addidas Supernova Glide and this was my first real long un with the Glide.  The other possible reason for the cramps, apart from the new pair of shoes, could be fatigue factor. That is my legs had not fully recovered from the 58Km at KTM 2010 that I had run just 20 days before this race. Other useful articles on this subject that I found are How to to prevent foot cramps while running  and Help with running cramps.

Two weeks after a slightly disappointing run  at Hartford  I did a 53K trail run with the same pair of shoes albeit much slower. I did this at a trail in Whitefield completing 42.2Km in 4:49 and an overall time of  6 hrs 15 minutes for another 11Km. Therefore, I have also concluded that running a fast marathon say at an average pace below 6 minutes per Km has a high probability of causing cramps for me. This is also consistent with the struggle I had finishing Mumbai 2010 in 4 hours. I therefore need to train specifically to be able to do a stronger last 10Km while running close to 5:40 per Km average pace. Maybe I need to look at interval training something that I have not done so far and also need to strengthen my calf muscles.
Following is an analysis of the split timings of my four best full marathon timings.

Race 1st Half 20 mi/32K Finish Last 10.2K
National Marathon Washington DC (21March09)1:55:10 2:58:34 3:56:49 59:15
Hartford Marathon(9Oct10) 1:53:59 2:56:464:00:03 63:17
SCMM(17Jan10) 2:12:55(24Km)2:45:21(29.7Km)4:00:56
Richmond Marathon(10Nov07) 1:59:58 3:05:174:04:09 58:52

From the above I feel that I sould have been able to do a sub 3:57 at Hartford if the cramps had not hit me.
In order to achieve this   I need to do 32K in 2:57 and the last 10.2K in sub 60 minutes. My training program for a fast FM needs to focus towards achieving this.  Though my medium term goal is to improve my FM pace and achieve sub 3:52 in SCMM 2013(3:55 in SCMM 2012 following 3:59 in SCMM 2011) I decided to  stay with 75K at the Bangalore Ultra 2010. I felt that the sooner I get  the longer one out of the way  the better it will be for my focus on improvin my FM pace.


MJV said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
MJV said...

Good to see your analysis on the split timings sir.... Hope you do a fair bit fast FM after ur long ultra is done... I have carried a small niggle in my left ankle after my 24km run in my native:-) slowly healing it now sir... c u in ultra... bests for ur 75km in ultra bhaskar...