Stories to follow during the NYC Marathon.
1 - Is Wilson Kipsang still the worlds best marathon runner not named Eliud Kipchoge? He's been super consistent over the last 5 years with the exception of that DNF at the world champs. In the spring he grinded it out until the finish with Kipchoge who's the top guy in the world right now. Kipsang was the worlds undisputed king of 26.2 from 2012-2014 as far as I'm concerned and I feel like he is still as the height of his powers as he looked really strong in London. I'm taking Kipsang for the win here in similar fashion to last year, breaking away at around 20 miles with 2-3 others like Desisa, Tsegaye and Biwott before dishing out a final blow over the last mile to take the win.
2 - How will 10000m/XC stud Geoffrey Kamworor look at the distance, he certainly couldn't do anything to touch Mo in the 10000 at worlds despite making it a fast race in hot conditions. Will we see him knock the marathon out of the park and stay on the roads from here on out or go back to the track and wait it out for mo to eventually move up to the marathon? He's the worlds second best 10000m runner and has great range as he displayed running a fast half and winning world cross but he lacks the devastating finishing speed of a true world beater in the 10k. The roads are where he will need to go so long as Mo plans to run the 10.
3 - Will Meb have another strong performance and solidify himself, with Dathan as the favorites to make the Olympic squad come the US trials in February? My gut tells me Meb will run well here and should easily be top American over the likes of Arciniaga and Leon. If a few east Africans try to go with a big move from Kipsang and blow up Meb could be top 5 once again this year.
4 - How will Mexico's Juan Luis Barrios do? Will he figure out the Marathon and run it at the next Olympics or will he go back to the 5k/10k. He produced a strong 60 minute half this year and he's very credentialed over the 5 and 10 so it's just a question of figuring out the marathon. He certainly has the ability to run 2:06/7 eventually on a Berlin type course. His goal here should be to stay in contact for 20 miles, then close strong when the break happens and pick up the carnage that's left behind when the Africans make the big push for home.
5 - Can Mary Keitany defend her title? On paper she's the best by a minute, but this race to me could go to one of 4 women, Keitany, Jeptoo (if she's in the form she was in 2013), Deba (Who should seriously apply for american citizenship!) or Tufa. I suspect it will be tactical early with a fast last half. I'm going to go with Keitany for the win but this really can go either way.
Week that was in training.
7 miles easy on the treadmill at my hotel - AM
OFF/Travel - PM
10 miles easy - AM
10 miles easy - PM
Workout - 20 minute tempo at Lactate Threshold. I didn't want to do anything quick right off the bat after racing the half but my legs felt good so I figured this was a good one to do. I figure my LT pace is between 5:05-5:10 at this point based on my 10k and half so that's where I ran it. The 20 minutes went by in a hurry and it felt super smooth. I guess having done workouts like 2X35' made something like this much more manageable. I averaged 5:06/mile. I'll attach the garmin activity here - https://connect.garmin.com/activity/934020992
12 miles with workout - AM
8 miles easy - PM
11 miles with 10X200m in 30 seconds off a 200m jog mid run - AM
9 miles easy - PM
14 miles easy - AM
6 miles easy - PM
Workout - This was a cross country type session done on the Long Pond trail. It's a very hilly path on the outside of a pond that goes up into the woods on one side. The trail is about 3000m all the way around. I got this workout from Colin Fewer who was there with Art Meaney the coaches of the University Cross Country team here in St. John's. The session was 1 lap of the pond at tempo/LT pace then a 3 minute recovery followed by 5'-4'-3'-2'-1' with 1' active recovery between everything. I did the first lap in 9:18 which felt good, and then did the 5' and 4' also at tempo pace or around 5 minute pace effort which came out to 5:15 or so over the rolling hills and the final 3', 2', 1' at 10k race effort which was 4:50/55 effort that came out to being about 5:05ish pace. All in all this was a great session and built some strength for sure. Here is the garmin activity - https://connect.garmin.com/activity/936506912
10 miles with workout - AM
10 miles easy - PM
16 mile long run with strides at the end - AM
4 miles easy - PM
So that was my week. I ran 128.4 miles I believe and had two good quality sessions. I'm really making a push in training from now until National Cross so let's hope the workouts continue to go well and the fitness improves a little more over the next 5 weeks. I had a nice little session today of 1km reps and fast 200's which I'll outline in next weeks blog, things are off to a great start this week and I'm crossing my fingers the weather stays the way it is for the next while.
Anyway, thanks ever so much for stopping by, keep those sticks on the ice.