Wednesday, September 14, 2016

London, Rio and Beyond

It's been a while since my last post. Nothing much happened after the London Marathon but I wanted to update you on how it went. I raced the 2016 London Marathon in my last attempt to qualify for the Olympic Games in Rio. I didn't make it.

After many struggles with injuries, I finally got healthy and to the starting line at London. I arrived in London ready to race and definitely thought that the standard (2:19:00) was attainable. Unfortunately, it didn't happen in London. I went through the half feeling comfortable in 1:09:05ish. Unlike other professional athletes in the field, I didn't get my personal fluid bottles. I carried  two Untapped gels in my hands. I took one at mile 16 as I had planned but accidently dropped the other soon after. At mile 20, I was still on pace for qualifying to Rio, but soon after, my body went into a shock. Glucose levels dropped and I found myself suffering from hypothermia and hypoglycemia from mile 21 to the finish. I fought as hard as I possibly could just to finish. I ended up in the medical tent as I crossed the finish in 2:21.

Fast forwarding from April to June, I missed Rio Olympics. It was tough to miss the team, but I have no regrets of any of the past races I did because I gave possibly all I had. Instead of being down about Rio, I focused on recovering well from London and getting a jump-start on the next training cycle. During that time, I was also super busy with selling a house, moving to a rental and buying another house. That's all done now and things worked out great!

At the beginning of the summer months, I also made some changes to my training, going from a Canova based training philosophy to a Portuguese training system. I believe the Portuguese system fits better with my running background, my racing goals and lifestyle. I've done several road races this since then. Some of which I was very tired and some that went really well. One in particular was this past weekends Great North Run Half Marathon, which was my fastest half (65:53) since 2011. I'm focusing on the Valencia Marathon for November 20th where I hope to qualify (run sub 2:18:00) for the 2017 IAAF World Championships taking place in London. So far, I'm really enjoying the Portuguese training system. I feel healthy, explosive in my workouts and yet strong in my tempos and races (when rested). I feel like a new person fresh out of college and ready to tackle on some bigger goals in 2016 and beyond. Not making the 2016 Olympics, has actually motivated me more than anything to get back to training and set some new goals. So, as we begin the new cycle for Tokyo 2020, here are some of my goals:

Short Term Goals (next 6-8 months):
-Run 2:16 at Valencia (Spain) Marathon on November 20, 2016
-Indoor Track sub 4:05 Mile, sub 8:05 3k. PRs are currently 4:07 and 8:07
-Outdoor Track sub 13:45. PR is currently 13:56.

Long Term Goals (next 4 years):
Sub 64:00 Half Marathon. PR is currently 65:25.
Sub 2:15 Marathon. PR is currently 2:18:47.
Compete and place high at IAAF major World Championships
Compete and place high at 2020 Tokyo Olympics

I realize that these goals will not be easy to by any means, but so is my training and my dedication. I believe that if I continue to train the way I am and stay injury free, every single one of these goals are attainable. I'm 29 years old and have the right tools. Only time will tell..