Athletic Performance and Fitness Training
Since 2006, I have been a proud participant of Disney’s Goofy Race and a Half Challenge. It’s the crazy event where you run a half marathon on Saturday and a full marathon the following day. I commend the people who log in lots of running miles to prepare for this. This event is just a “fun’ event for me, where I am not trying to qualify for the Boston Marathon or set any records. It’s all been about finishing the event and celebrating the achievement.
2012 marked the seventh year of running Goofy. I went in with the same attitude of having fun and enjoying the spirit of the spectators, runners and characters along the route. I try to run conservatively in the half marathon to save my legs for the next day. I calculated that I had to run a minute slower per mile than I ran the Kiawah Island Half marathon in December (1:42). I was tickled to finish the Goofy Half at 1:55:11 (8:48 pace) despite being stuck in Corral C and having to work my way through the pack of runners from Corral B and A during the run.
After seeing Runners Relations on Saturday, I was able to place a spot into Corral A for the marathon. On Sunday morning, I noticed that my legs were not tired, but they definitely did not feel fresh! My plan was to start at a 9:00 minute pace and see what I could do after the halfway point. I was surprised to maintain an average pace of 8:45 throughout the marathon where I finished at 3:49:17. My legs did not feel DEAD tired until the last mile, and by that time, I was ready for the event to be over!
I maintain a running log and noticed that I averaged about 22 miles per week in November and December last year. Everyone will have their formula of what will work for them for a running event. In previous years, I've logged 35 to 40 miles a week the two weeks before running a marathon and have been sure to run one in November or December in order to feel I could finish the Goofy event without too much trauma :). My husband and I couldn't find a marathon that struck our fancy in the fall, so I ran a half marathon in November and December and had a long run of 20 miles in November (day after Thanksgiving) and December (two days after Christmas).
I give tons of credit to Coach Cyrus Peterson at Advanced Training Concepts and his Kettlebell Lifting program I have been participating in since August 2010. The time and commitment has paid off, and it was reflected in having my best Goofy Challenge time ever! The irony behind this was that my only goal for this marathon was to finish. Cyrus tried to explain to me that Kettlebell Lifting builds muscular and cardiovascular endurance in addition to strength and power. Kettlebell Lifting for timed sets involves both aerobic and anaerobic functions leading to an increase in blood plasma volume as well as V02 Max. I was able to run more comfortably due to the increased pain tolerance and lactic acid threshold. All of these benefits acquired from Kettlebell Lifting helped me run like the wind and also attain a Boston Marathon qualifying time for my age division!