The Connection Runners + YOGA

Today's run... .Miami... ..and Yoga

Today was my first run in three days, a tough but rewarding 11.8 mile run. The blizzard dumped around 18" of fresh snow yesterday, and I couldn't wait to get out there this morning. Only about half of my route was on actual pavement - the rest was was a struggle in a sloppy mix of snow and slush. My senses are heightened when conditions are poor, as the last thing I need is to slip and break a bone. Staying healthy is key to finishing my 12 marathon challenge, so I push but am cautious at the same time, always aware of the cars in my vicinity as well as the road conditions ahead.

Whenever I hit clear pavement I put the hammer down, and would slow down as necessary. More often than not, I would high step through it all, knees up - so I was generally pleased with my splits:

1
00:08:32
1.00
08:32

2
00:08:33
1.00
08:33

3
00:08:37
1.00
08:37

4
00:08:35
1.00
08:35

5
00:08:54
1.00
08:54

6
00:08:45
1.00
08:45

7
00:08:58
1.00
08:58

8
00:08:58
1.00
08:58

9
00:08:59
1.00
08:59

10
00:08:40
1.00
08:40

11
00:09:13
1.00
09:13

12
00:07:13
0.84
08:33

1:44:01 for 11.84 mi (08:46 Avg min/mile) is actually a pretty decent time for this run. I did it in 1:39:12 back in late August, and 1:43:12 on September 4. The only mile over 9:00 was at the 11 mark, and that included going up the hill at Miller Rd. which was a bit slick. The fact that I kept my intensity level and pacing relatively steady even through the snow is a good indication that my cardio and pacing are starting to peak in preparation for Miami.

When I first started by running regimen last year I relished my winter runs - it was my way of getting through that long, cold period in between the holidays and spring. I enjoy cold weather running, or I should say I have adapted and learned to enjoy it - the brilliant white landscape, the rush of dry, cold air through your lungs - but truth be told nothing quite like an early morning run in the tropics, when there is just enough warmth and humidity in the air to loosen those muscles and provide a quick sweat to let you know you're working hard.

So yes, even though I made the most of today's run, it had me thinking about how good it will feel to run in just shorts and a tee, looking at palm trees instead of snow-covered pines. Miami is less than three weeks away - and I can't wait.

Here is an 8 min video of the entire course:


It begins at 6:15am, so it will be fairly cool at the start. It is a very interesting course, starting by the American Airlines Arena, crossing over the MacArthur Causeway to South Beach, up Ocean Drive to 14th Street, up Washington Ave to Dade Blvd, then across the Venetian Causeway to Miami again (Mile 11). Then it's basically a 7 mile haul down to Coconut Grove where we turn past the Biscayne Bay Yacht Club and head up S. Bayshore until we hang a right onto the Rickenbacker Causeway (towards Key Biscayne) only to make a U-turn on the bridge, back down again, then onto Brickell Ave (past Brickell Key where I used to live!) and then over the Miami River drawbridge and wind up to Bayfront Park for the finish.

Simply put, I can't wait. I am still uncertain about my goal time - one more week of training and I will make an honest, realistic assessment - but it's no secret I want to beat my personal best of 3:39:19 from Sugarloaf back in May of last year.

Speaking of personal bests, in my desire to set a new marathon p.b. in 2011 I have decided to incorporate yoga into my training. Yes, yoga. My wife lassoed me into it and now we use the Shiva Rea dvd on those evenings when I don't have Taekwondo, and already I think I am reaping the rewards of it. Now I am still figuring out my Uttanasana from my Pada Hastasana, but I basically follow her lead and I seem to be getting the hang of it. It's tough, but works so many muscle groups. My running form is rather upright and rigid, so I want (perhaps need?) to improve my flexibility and this is unquestionably a great way to do it. It will be especially beneficial for Taekwondo as well.

Good running everyone!

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Today's run... .Miami... ..and Yoga + YOGA