Emily's training blog

Monumental Indianapolis Half Marathon

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Member Since:

Sep 17, 2007



Goal Type:

Olympic Trials Qualifier

Running Accomplishments:

2 x Deseret News 10k winner

3 x All-American at BYU (back in the day)

10 x state champion in high school (way back in the day!)

3 x USA team member

Short-Term Running Goals:

I would like to run an Olympic Trials Qualifier in the marathon.

I would also like to run on one more international team before I pack it in!

 Stay healthy!  (My biggest challenge!)

Long-Term Running Goals:

Run my whole life, and then live vicariously through my children. (just kidding) , but I do want to pass on a healthy lifestyle to them.

Help coach East High to a state championship. (hope it doesn't take a lifetime!)


I've been running since I was nine.  I'm married to a fellow runner who inspires and supports me.  We have two children:  Cole (4) and Lily (18 mos.)  I help Bill Cobler coach cross country at East High School.

Miles:This week: 0.00 Month: 0.00 Year: 836.55
NB 580 Lifetime Miles: 49.79
Race: Monumental Indianapolis Half Marathon (13.1 Miles) 01:21:50, Place overall: 11
Easy MilesThreshold MilesMarathon Pace MilesTrack speed mileageHill mileageTotal

What the heck? That wasn't good. Time for a little blog/ self analysis.

So, conditions for the race were less than ideal. 29 degrees, 20 mph winds. The einds were from the north, and we spent the majority of the race running north. I can't blame the nastiness, though. The first girl was 1:12. Course record.

I decided to be cautious to start. Maybe that was my mistake. I decided to pace with the 2:39 pace group, and then make up time over the second half.

The first 10k went perfectly. I settled in the group and went through the 10k at about 37:22. I felt fine. The group gapped me a bit when I grabbed water, and thensplit at seven miles. My wheels totally came off. I ran 6:20's to 6:30's the rest of the way. Mostly around 6:25. I could not break the pace. Even with the tailwind.

I made a pathetic and desperate surge to break 1:22. Really?

So, what happened? I think it was a mix of physical and mental.

It's no secret I have had a rough training block over the last four weeks. I have been sick twice, and strained my soleus. I haven't missed much training, but maybe training through these things has put me in a bit of a hole. Last week's longrun was brutal. Maybe an increase in iron would help.

I think racing in the last month of a marathon cycle is always tough. I came down in mileage this week, but still felt flat. I also have a hard time pushing out of a pace once I settle into one. Any good workouts for changing up a pace? I'm thinking a little AT/LT workouts might help. I think I need to incorporate some short turnover workouts in. I get really flat without some quick stuff.

So, what can I tweak these last few weeks? I know I'm more fit than this. Conditions were really hard, but that's no excuse. It makes me concerned for CIM. Thoughts?

I cooled down four miles. Aerobic capacity seems fine.

From runningafterbabies on Sat, Nov 01, 2014 at 15:11:40 from

Sorry you were disappointed in the outcome!. You have had a rough month. Personally I think wind is one if the worst elements to battle with. One of my favorite gear changing workouts is a longer run with 8-10 miles at MP followed immediately with 2 miles at 10k pace. I also like workouts that mix in intervals with tempos. Like a 20 min tempo followed by a fartlek or 400/800m repeats @5k pace then finishing up with another 10-15 min tempo. Another idea is descending miles tempo (4-3-2-1) starting at HMP and working down to 5k pace. I've been curious about the LT/AT wave workout myself so if you try it let me know how you like it. I believe in you and your training!

From allie on Sun, Nov 02, 2014 at 10:55:37 from

emily -- i'm sorry it wasn't what you wanted. it sounds like the conditions were pretty brutal. i know you don't want to use the weather as an excuse, but it was a factor for sure. even the great deena k just said that the wind threw her off her pace at NYC today. wind can really suck (or blow?), and cold temps are challenging as well.

you've definitely had a tough few weeks leading into this. you not only had to deal with your own illnesses and injuries, but you took care of everyone else as well. you balance a lot. also, you haven't started tapering yet. you have months and months of hard work on your legs. all of that considered, i think this was a pretty good result. that said, if you aren't happy with it, blabbing words like this won't help -- i get that. :) it's okay to be disappointed about this one, but don't let it shake your confidence for CIM. use it as fuel! you are very, very fit and if you have any doubt about that just go read your log over the past two months. you have definitely put in the work.

From Rachelle on Mon, Nov 03, 2014 at 10:34:34 from

Great advice already given by two of my favorite runners.:) Not much to add to what they said but what I love about you is that you are fierce and your a strong competitor. It is okay to be mad about your performance. Take time to be upset and then use it as fire to propel you moving forward.

Also remember that your goal race is CIM. You are in the middle of high mileage and a hard training cycle. So cut yourself some slack, look back at the awesome training runs you've had, and most importantly be kind to yourself and believe in yourself. I believe in you!

From Jake K on Tue, Nov 04, 2014 at 09:55:07 from

So, what can I tweak these last few weeks?

-Probably don't need to tweak much. Building marathon fitness is a process. Get a few more long runs and some marathon effort work.

I know I'm more fit than this. Conditions were really hard, but that's no excuse. It makes me concerned for CIM. Thoughts?

-You are more fit than this - the finishing time just doesn't reflect that b/c of the conditions and some lingering sickness, etc. Most great marathoners don't run really fast half-marathons or shorter races in general during the last two months before a marathon. Trust in the accumulation of what you've done for months and months.

From Sasha Pachev on Tue, Nov 04, 2014 at 14:03:50 from

As Jake said, there is nothing to tweak. The last two weeks before a marathon is just time to not get sick, not get injured, and not lose fitness through detraining. As long as those three happen you will run the time you deserve. Sometimes such time is slower than what you were hoping - I've been there many many times. The way I deal with it is run the first 10 K at the hope pace, then evaluate and adjust if necessary. In most races this has given me a positive split, and a few times resulted in losing prize money in the last 10 K, but I never finished a marathon with too many regrets wondering "what if".

That said, in planning for another marathon there are some things to tweak - up the mileage, increase the volume of running done at 6:10-6:20 per mile, as well as 5:50 per mile - within reason. This will need to coincide with sleeping in doubles - a good afternoon nap in addition to good night sleep, otherwise you will just overtrain. I realize very well this is easier said than done, but this is where the victory is won. As ironic as this may sound, you do not win the race by pushing yourself harder in workouts or even in the race itself - you win it before you start by the exercise of creativity to find the time for naps.

Maybe we should make a Fast Running Blog sign to hang over the bed with some clever wise crack.

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