Saturday, April 21, 2007

Quick update on St. Stephen and my running


Well it was quite the experience - following Saint Stephen all through the Boston Marathon. I had signed up for e-mail alerts of his times, along with some of his other fans. Steve is so modest that he always claims to have just 10 listeners - well, Monday, he was proved incredibly wrong. My inbox groaned with the e-mails from other listeners which I was cc'ed in on, waiting to hear how he was doing. Amazingly, some were able to watch the marathon online across the world, others followed the e-mail and still others were actually able to watch it in person. We must all be quite geeky listeners because those who watched obviously went home and e-mailed about it - it was a wonderful experience. It was like we were all watching and spectating. When it became clear that Steve was having a hard time everyone started mailing in chants, like we would have done had we been on the streets of Boston, along the lines of "come on Steve, keep it going, you're looking great" etc. It later transpired that one of the e-mail readers passed this on to Steve and that this was one of the things that kept him going - that there was a whole community out there willing him along and sending out their positive vibes. Quite an experience.. I'm not through listening to his podcast about the race - I know he did not manage a PB, but given the conditions I think it was utterly remarkable he finished at all. St Stephen - a hero to us all!
I've been checking out the Boston qualifying times - what else does a girl do after a day like that? and I see that I was wrong - 4:00 is the qualifying time for 45-50 women - at the moment I'm 35 so I've got to get 3:45 (yeah, right) and when I'm 40 it goes up to 3:50. Sigh.. I've either got to get a lot better or a lot older. Can't decide which is easier..

In the meantime, on a positive note, however - my running is back on track. I've been doing my daily maintenance runs of 4.2 miles since Wednesday without trouble or discomfort and am heading out for an easy 10M tomorrow morning with Sally. We'll have a marathon conversation no doubt - she wants to do Nottingham but I'm secretly contemplating Amsterdam.. You may not realise this but I'm actually Dutch and go back home very regularly and it would be great to run a race my family could come out and support in some serious numbers! Also - as my parents would be there they could bring the kids and they could see me race. Finally - it's 2 days after my birthday (36) and I seem to be making near birthday marathons a tradition, saving the champagne for after the races... So I'm going to try and talk Sal out of Nottingham and into Amsterdam. Watch this space...

Finally - thank you all for your feedback on giving up on my May marathon.. You know, once I started watching Steve on Monday I put it all behind me. I realise that, somehow, part of me wasn't really focusing on it - I was not training mentally at all, the way I should have been. So I'm picking a new goal (oh joy!) and ... tatada! going to try a new training plan. I'm contemplating the Hansons moderate consistent plan but suggestions are welcome. If I do run Amsterdam, I've got a few weeks to go before deciding so let me know what you think would work. I've done one marathon on a Mike Gratton training plan - not particularly great, too hard for a first-timer, one marathon on Hal Higdon - good, but, as Terry says, not going to get you speedy - so now I'm looking for improvement. And I'm prepared to go the distance - she says boldly. So let me know what you think - what / who works for you and why?

5 comments:

Maddy said...

I think Amsterdam would be incredible. I will be watching to see what the best suggestions for which training plan you choose.

I have also been keeping track of the qualifying times for Boston - I think it would be more fun (maybe not any easier) to get faster.

Glad your running is back on track!

MarathonChris said...

Hey Petra, I am just catching up with all your posts. I am sorry to hear how hard your running has been but it looks like you are on the right track and listening to your body. As Adam had said, you want to keep it fun. I am glad your maintenance runs are going well.

Amsterdam sounds cool. I am half Dutch myself, my mother was born and raised in Rotterdam until she was about 17 years old. Maybe someday I can travel to Holland and run a race!

Keep up the great running.

Cory said...

Petra, you are so right about that magical day that Steve ran the Boston Marathon. I felt like I was there with everyone else on the side lines cheering. Glad to hear you are back on track with your running. Good luck in your training. I look forward to watching your progress.

ShirleyPerly said...

Hi Petra! Thanks for your comment on my blog. I've been meaning to check yours out having seen your name on MarathonChris' blog.

I think you made the right decision about your May marathon and am glad you're no longer bummed about it. I'd like to help you select a training program. How many marathons have you run, how much weekly mileage and how many days/week can you run, and what's your goal for your next marathon?

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