Saturday, July 5, 2014

The Cranford Jaycees Firecracker 4 Miler 2014: My story

Across this great Country we celebrate our day of Independence in our own ways. Runners race. Why not? You have the day off, and you probably don't need to "start the party" at 9am.(although I'm sure I've done it at least once myself.) So, start a tradition for yourself, go run your local road race on the 4th of July!

I have run the Cranford Firecraker five times. 2006, 07', 09', 13', and this year's race.  I have placed no worse than 7th and no better than 2nd...until yesterday.

You may have seen on an article that told you I won the race by .3 seconds, narrowly beating Elias Howard, a Cranford native. The truth is, it was a tie. If you saw the photos of us holding hands, you may wonder, "wait, it looks like they tied!" Yes, I won, but in my opinion he did too. So, I will tell you what happened. Since the author of that sad excuse-of-an-article did not bother to interview me "the winner" or "Eli", as he is known by the many people who cheered him on throughout the 4 mile course.
Elias Howard and I linked in Victory. Photo credit to
We are #1! photo credit to

First Mile-The temperature for racing in July was about as good as it gets, low-mid 70's, a bit humid, but hey, it's July, good enough, I can hope for a good time in this. The race literally started with a BOOM from a cannon! It always does, and with no count down, so it startles me every time.  In the first 600m, I followed a guy who stopped a the turn from Springtfield Ave onto Kenilworth Blvd. Leaving me with the lead into the wind. I do not always enjoy trying to win a race wire-to-wire. So i eased off a touch, and let a couple of guys ahead of me a bit for two reasons: 1) Let someone else eat the wind we were heading into 2)visually inspect my competitors and hear their breathing.
From 600m-1mile, there were perhaps four or five of us(including Eli) in a pack. As the 1 mile clock came into view I glanced at my watch and saw already 5:08, and by the time we passed it, 5:23 was the split. My personal time goal for this race was 20:59, looking for 5:15 here. I know I have to make a move, quickly.

Second Mile-I make a surge to begin the 2nd mile and have no intention of allowing anyone to stay close. I'm pushing solo into the wind, Eli is following or running alongside me. Everytime he pulls even I surge ahead. He gets ahead as we turn onto S 21st St/Orange Ave, but I refuse to let him hold the lead for long, we are running even again as we pass the 2mile mark, splitting a 5:08 and back on track for the 20:59 I was hoping for. Eli grabs a cup of water and splashes himself, I press on running evenly with him as volunteers and spectators cheer us on. "Go Eli!" I'm clearly not the favorite here.

Third Mile-Just a few steps before the turn onto Birch St, a narrow, wooded street that allows access to a school parking lot; I surge ahead again to take the best line into the turn. About 120m later we make another 90 degree turn onto a narrow bike/foot path that later ends onto Belmont Ave. We headed straight down this path dodging puddles, and a few overzealous volunteers further compressing the already narrow path.We split a 5:22, I figure the 21:00 is out the window. I'm still holding a narrow margin and not relenting.

Fourth Mile-Eli is still hot on my heels, I know he is right there. We approach a left turn onto Riverside Dr, which is followed by a climb onto a roadside path, onto a very narrow footbridge that crosses the Rahway River. We make a right off of the bridge down a short steep decline onto Balmiere Pkwy and another sharp incline onto a path that cuts back through some woods and dumps onto Park Dr. These four turns all come in a short distance and as soon as we hit the path through the woods I gave it another push, still no separation. We cover the 100m on Park Dr before the last 480m. Now after trailing me for a mile and a 1/4, Eli runs alongside and maybe gains 1/2 a meter on me now. I take the inside of the turn and pull even for the final time...
We have a bit more than 400m left now, what's at stake? The thrill of victory? Another cheap medal and low-cost tech tee? Yes on both counts.
Eli, calmly says to me "Want to hold hands and tie?"
I say, "Alright, sure."
"It will probably be the first time that's ever happened here", he says.
"They will probably give it to one of us, but I'm fine with whatever happens", I say.
So we motor along looking to even our stride, and with about 40m to go, I reach out and say, "Ok" Eli grabs my hand, we raise them up between us, We raise our other hands in triumph. We cross the finish line to light applause. I'm shot, glad this one is over. We hit 21:09, last mile in 5:15, shy of my goal, but that's alright. It was still my fastest time on this course in five tries.
Moments later, nearby volunteers congratulate us both, I congratulate Eli on a great race. And it was, neither of us were sand-bagging, I know I ran it hard to the end.

Frank Short and Bill Rodgers finish in a hand-holding tie at the Virginia 10 miler in 1975
Do I wonder who would have won it if I had said, "Nah, let's rumble!" and put on the after burners? Not really. There are times in life when you can show the strength of the human spirit in sport, and we were evenly matched throughout this race. It was Eli's idea, and I hadn't thought of it at all, but I liked the idea just fine. In my mind, we were both the victor of this race.  He's a very good runner, and a nice kid for the times I've interacted with him(having met him at a road race while he was still a HS runner). Now competing for Dickinson College in PA, he has proven his ability through dedication and hard work. That is something that I can respect in a younger runner. I took his gesture as a nod of repsect and recognition, and was glad to oblige him and reciprocate. Frank Shorter and Bill Rodgers did it! Why not Eli and Me?

Thursday, June 19, 2014

The Presidents Cup Nite Race 5k Race Report

Going into this race I was confident that it should have gone well. I have done a good amount of quality speed work since the Boston Marathon, and I did a 14mile run the morning of the College Ave Road Mile. All signs pointed to a road 5k pr. But sometimes, you just get unlucky with an illness.  A couple of days after the College Ave Road Mile I suddenly started feeling symptoms of a sinus infection.  Instead of going to see a Dr. a few days after when I was free to do so; I stayed home and tried to sleep through it. Well, that was dumb. It didn't work.  This turned into an Upper Respiratory Infection(which I only confirmed two days after the race upon finally seeing a Dr.)

What can you do? If you are too ill to compete, then don't. I was still undecided 36hrs before the race. The day before I did a 32min easy run. I felt relatively-okay, despite the lung butter. Yuck.

Established: I was far from 100% healthy to race a highly competitive 5k road race. But this is the President's Cup! The most competitive long distance race in the USATF-NJ Club Championship Grand Prix! If you have no fever and your legs are not broken, you run!

From the start, I felt decent enough, surprisingly not struggling to breathe while pushing to a 5:04 at 1mile. Hard to know how much to back off when your breathing is compromised by illness, and it proved to be too much. Through the 2nd mile I was fading a bit and clicked off a 5:11, I knew this meant I was in for a difficult last 1.1075. I found myself stuck running alone from the 2mile mark until I had crested the long incline for the second time with about 600m to go. There I was re-joined by John Welsh, Jarrett Kunze, and later on, Peter Bolgert. Kunze blazed away from us with a very strong last mile, and Bolgert passed me late with a blistering kick. Yes, I struggled, but avoided total implosion. 16:07 was my time, 17th position. Neither are my best at this race, but I am proud of my effort given the tough competition and my poor health.
Check out my progression at this race through the yrs:

2005-17:05-46th(2 spots and 5 seconds behind Olympian Julie Culley!)
2010-16:24-17th(day after a 24hr relay run where I ran more than 30miles)

I've had my ups and downs, but the excitement of the event draws me back! The best part is the Free Sam Adams beer after you finish! Events like this really bring the whole running/racing community together to enjoy a good battle and an even better post race buzz! Much fun was had by all!
Perhaps most impressively, the GSTC Men's teams finished 1-2-3-4-8.  The first four teams were separated by only 26 seconds.  The 2nd and 3rd team by less than 1 second! The calculation in creating those teams is uncanny!
Enjoy the photos!

The start, some real studs on the front line, aaand a few pretenders. Even at "Open Championships" things can be a bit too relaxed. I call for reform. Note, I am in the 2nd row, behind people that I know are faster than me.

1st time around on the two loop course, unknown runner in Sneaker Factory singlet challenges the eventual winner, Chris Johnson (center-white shorts). Closely following in a loose pack, Will Griffin, Mike Soroko, Ken Goglas, Adam Gruchacz, and a couple others.

A solid chase pack led by Chris Schneider, Myself, Zak Martins, Jarrett Kunze, Matt Eder, and Rob Nihen at the rear.

Running the No-Man's Land around 2.5miles

Evening the score with John Welsh, as he had beaten at this race the previous yr.

Chris Johnson pulling away from Thomas Young for the win!

Friday, June 13, 2014

The College Ave Road Mile Race Report

The start of the Emerging Elite heat at the College Ave Road Mile June 7, 2014.
As usual, Peter Bolgert runs a short distance faster than I do.

The College Ave Road Mile was an incredibly fun event.  I enjoyed the very fast racing of both 1mile and 1/2mile during the two person relay. My Partner, Karen Auteri, and I, ran roughly 4:56 combined.  We took third the in Mixed M/F division!  As an individual, in the Emerging Elite heat I ran a 4:40.25(3rd in the heat). I am reasonably pleased with this result. I had hoped for 4:39. Pretty darn close.  Eight 90 degree turns will do that to you. The weather was good, not too hot, no noticeable wind to speak of. Many of my GSTC teammates had very fast performances in the Elite heat pior to mine.  I was immediately inspired to produce my best.
Equally as important, numerous USATF-NJ clubs teams came to compete. Men and Women of all ages toed the line. In many cases, I wa impressed by the speed and determination of others!
 I'd say this was a good kick-start in a uptempo period of training, but I have since fallen ill with a sinus infection. The past three days I have mainly been jogging, and resting whenever possible. This past Tuesday, feeling lousy, I still ran a workout. 4x400 @5k pace, 2k at threshold pace, 4x400 @5k pace.  Some days you will feel lousy when it's time for a workout, and you will have to work though them. Sunday will be a nice loooong run. Time to amp the endurance back up for Chasing the Unicorn Marathon!

That's all for now.
Happy Running!

Wednesday, June 4, 2014

Get a Mile PR and a Boston Qualifier this Summer!

The College Ave Road Mile takes place on Saturday June 7th, sign up now, click the image below. This is a club team championship event.  If you are not a club team competitor, come anyway, race a mile! Watch others race a mile! You can even run with a partner on a 2x1/2mile relay team! Or do both! If you haven't raced a mile "since High School", you might surprise yourself, relive some moments of Glory! Take a chance at outkicking someone! Let's race!
Sunday August 17th, Washington Crossing Historic Park, PA 7am start-flat flat flat, cruise control get er' done, get that last chance BQ!

During the in between, there will be:
President's Cup Nite Race-5k Mon June 16th-NJUSATF club team championship all divisions
Cranford Firecracker 4 miler-Fri July 4th-a great local race in Union County that actually starts with a BOOM!

If all goes according to plan, I will set new PR's for the road mile, 5k road, 4mile, and break my own CR at CTU. At the least, these are good springboards into tougher cycles of training for the fall. Summer racing isn't easy, but these are great events in their own right! I encourage anyone reading this, as a competitive runner of 18+yrs I can say that it is worth testing yourself at a variety of distances.

Mark Parisen and Jaris Rousseau showing me a clean pair of heels at the 2013 College Ave Road Mile

Hope to see some of you at one or all of these races!

Saturday, May 31, 2014

News from the 2014 Stockholm Marathon

The Belgian Beast did work today!  Below are splits for my friend, Johan Ghillebert, who ran the Stockholm Marathon today! This was his first sub 3hr marathon! His pace was astoundingly even through most of the race! I'm super proud of him! He's been working hard for this. Who won the race? I dunno. All that matters is Johan has entered into the realm of the sub 3hr marathoner! Yup, 2:59:00. Please note, he was in 762nd position at the 5k split. Midway, had moved up 157places, and then lowered the boom on another 272 runners until in the 2nd half of the race! He passed an average of 11.5 runners for every 1k from 5k-42k. 

Here is a photo of Johan from today, crushing it...Why? He has a beard, and follows training plans like a smart runner does. 
 Three cheers for Johan and Beards!

Split time of day time diff min/km km/h place
5K 12.21.14 0.20.57 20.57 04.12 14.32 762
10K 12.42.20 0.42.03 21.06 04.14 14.22 662
15K 13.03.23 1.03.06 21.03 04.13 14.25 635
20K 13.24.30 1.24.13 21.07 04.14 14.21 609
Half 13.29.08 1.28.50 04.37 04.13 14.24 605
25K 13.45.41 1.45.23 16.33 04.15 14.15 529
30K 14.06.59 2.06.42 21.19 04.16 14.08 468
35K 14.28.20 2.28.03 21.21 04.17 14.05 376
40K 14.49.43 2.49.26 21.23 04.17 14.03 335
Finish 14.59.17 2.59.00 09.34 04.22 13.77 333

Wednesday, April 23, 2014

The 118th B.A.A. Boston Marathon

Post race Celebrating with Will and Dave at The Rattlesnake on Boylston St
Monday, April 21st, 2014 I ran and finished the 118th running of the B.A.A. Boston Marathon. I knew I had to run this marathon within hours of the bombings that took place at last year's race. I know many runners felt the same way, and not only Americans, running crosses boarders, language, and culture. The Boston Marathon is one of the special events in the world's culture.  We all run, we all love. When we run the marathon distance we celebrate the strength of the human spirit and will to push on through pain to achieve our best. I outright refuse to allow anyone to rain on the running parade, I had to be there this year.

Of all the marathon races that take place in our great country, this has to be the best one. Maybe the best in the world! The people that live in each town along the course come out to the roadside en mass. Spectators and volunteers cheer you on through the entire course. The race organizers provide essentially all the things you need to get through, but that doesn't stop the good people of Massachusetts from offering more food, drinks, ice, wet sponges. It is a nice reminder that there are good people everywhere. There were moments during Monday's race that I felt as if I was moving faster from the force of the voices alongside the course lifting my feet and pushing me forward.  The cheering will give you chill, trigger an adrenal response. If you ever wondered what the Runner's High was, it's kinda' like that.

Going into this race, I had a new and mysterious pain in my right quad. The drive up wore me out rather badly and by the time I got out of the expo I was feeling shaky. A bottle of some fruit/veggie stuff helped a good bit and by the next morning I felt ready for one last pre-race run with teammates and friends along the Charles River. The run was okay, my right quad still tight and stiff near the IT band, left knee always questionable.

Fast forward to race morning: 5:08am-wake up. Dress for the morning chill, eat my oatmeal and banana. 5:55a.m.-walk over to the "T" down and ride to Boston Common. Teammate Will Appman and his fellow Penn State Alum, Dave Moyer, and I , meet up with Ken Walsh, we check our gear for the finish and get on a line for a school bus ride to Hopkinton! Spirits are good on the bus ride, people make new acquaintances and tell stories of their other marathon and running experiences. Just runners being runners on a school bus.
8:10a.m.-Arriving at the Middle School in Hopkinton, the Runner's Village is already hopping, people grabbing last minute food and drink, using toilets, laying out surrounded by heat-sheets biding the time until they called Runners to move out toward the starting corrals. Will, Dave, Ken and I meet up with the Penn State University XC/TF club athletes (about 10 representing).
9:10-9:59a.m.-We start walking with the hoard of runners in Wave 1 toward the start corrals, I'm overly nervous, anxious to a point of discomfort, also a bit emotional. But I laugh at the sign on a front lawn that offers "Cigarettes, Donuts, Beer", no lie, one guy had a pack of Marlboro Menthol open and free for the taking. Still nervous, my body is reacting, you might say I was "shit-scared". Final pit stop done, retieing my shoes about 2-3 times, I walk into the start corral after the National Anthem has played. I slink through the back half of the first corral and find the PSU gang with Will and Dave. We wish each other good luck, and finally the starting cannon fires!
10:00 and 11seconds a.m. I get across the starting mats, I can figure I'm probably sitting around 500-600th position. For a brief few seconds, I can see the front of the elite pack up the road. I do not think, "Who will win? Will it be Meb?" I am pleased to learn after I finish, Meb won! Meb is definitely someone to look up to!
The race itself unfolded with much apprehension for me. So now I move to mile splits:
Mile 1-5:56-being cautious, warming up the legs, letting the maniacs make regrettable surges all around me.
Mile 2-5:42-legs are warmed up, oops too quick, "when will my right quad start to tighten?" I think.
Mile 3-5:45-another downhill mile, but it's alright, 5-10secs fast on downhill miles will happen, gravity.
Miles 4, 5, and 6 -5:44, 5:47, 5:47, the last of 6 consecutive downhill miles and I feel alright, crowd support has been amazing already and I spot former GSTC teammate and RSG coworker of yrs past, Mark Del Monaco, we run together for about 2.5miles before he picks up the pace, I'll see him later on.
Mile 7 thru 9- all 5:49's-virtually flat ground through Framingham heading into Natick
Mile 10 thru12-5:55, 6:01, 5:54-my left knee suddenly hurts sharply on a single footfall, this worries me and I back off the pack a touch favoring it, now I'm thinking, "how will I finish this race if this gets much worse?" not long after this I hear/see the Decarlo's, Rob and Meghan, thanks guys!
Mile-13 thru 15-5:54, 5:53, 5:57-Knee still hurting a bit, I can't resist kissing a couple girls at Wellesley College, thanks girls! Great tradition! In the town of Wellsley, I pass the halfway point in 1;16:32 and I think "Wow, I'm on pace for a PR! Don't F*ck it up!"Just before you start the first of four climbs in Newton, there is a significant downhill, but I will say that I definitely got a boost around mile marker 15 from my friend and former teammate, Mike Loenser! You definitely have highs and lows in long races and Mike's voice and energy kept me smiling for at least a 1/2mile!
Miles 16, thru 21-5:48, 6:06, 6:08, 5:53, 6:01, 6:09-Down one hill and up four! The infamous Newton hills! Where many runners fade and crumble. Where the strong ones remember, after each climb there is a brief respite and they take advantage, or at least manage to recover a bit for the next climb. I worked through this section with methodical caution, legs are starting to get heavier here. But Morris Co Strider, Randy Miller was out there around mile 18 on one of the climbs, high-fived Randy! Cathy Stutzman of GSTC was out there around mile 19.5, snapped a nice shot of me climbing.
Working up the hills, battling for bragging rights with another son of NJ, I think I got him in the end.

Miles 22 thru 26.2 5:43, 5:48, 5:47, 5:57, 5:58, 1:15(final .21875miles-5:42pace)  After the last incline "Heartbreak Hill", a runner says to me "Was that Heartbreak?" I say, "I think so, but don't quote me on that." We both chuckle, we're both tired, but sure enough that was it. Funny how you can loose count of hills you are climbing in the middle of a marathon. I manage to comfortably roll down into Brookline. At the 21mile split my elapsed time is 2:03:49, 5.2 to go. I think, "keep em' under 6 and you've got it!" I'm blowing by faders along the way. This is a good feeling past 20 miles in a marathon. I see a guy with a Runner's High Singlet, I push to reel him in, I'm battling a guy wearing the colors of the Chinese National flag, he gets away but I keep passing runners, including Mark which was a bit of a bummer. I'd hoped he would hit his goal, he is very dedicated to his training. For the rest of the 26 mile I continue to pick off some faders, and find myself too far away to pip anyone at the line. I have the last .2 miles to myself, I know I've got some fast twitch muscles that I haven't completely trashed yet, and I open it up as best I can. I raise my arms up as I run the last 50 meters or so, I pump my fist! I finish! I take 2 steps and my left calf is donezo! Almost fall over, but keep it moving...somehow. I shout to the crowd, "PR! That's a PR!" Few moments in life match breaking a 4yr spell of "No PR today".
I try to linger to congratulate those who I had narrowly beaten, I recognize a few that I had run near or alongside going up the hills for several miles. Mark does catch up to me and we chat, pose for a photo, he's disappointed, but I tell him, "I'm glad we were able to run together for a while and that we both were here on this day."  We walked back to the gear check area, and then just spent some time waiting for others on Boston Common. On the walk to the gear check from the Finish line to I chatted with a guy from Alaska, and a guy from Scotland. And the aforementioned Chinese guy, Liangwu Ma, I saw later at the gear check, I had to congratulate the guy for running so well over the last 2k, but he spoke no English! As I spoke to him, we were both smiling, he showed me his finish time on his Garmin watch, and I congratulated him and shook his hand again. Running speaks volumes across the world.

Final Numbers
Finish time: 2:34:18 splits of 17:59, 17:56, 18:06, 18:33, 18:18, 18:45, 18:25, 18:09, 8:09
Position: 160th overall, 137th male, 128th 18-39AG, 3rd NJ Male
Am I happy with this? YES!! I wanted to crack the top 100 this yr, and honestly, this race went better than I expected given my mental and physical state 48hrs before the race.

Statisticians will find this race was faster in my range, simply lots of good runners came to Boston this yr. 4yrs ago I finished 145th overall, 131st male, and my time was 2:15 slower.

Did I say that the Boston Marathon is the best Road Race on the planet? Well I just said it, it is. If you can't Rock n' Roll, then start running, and you will know what it feels like to be a Rock Star!

Thereafter: Celebrated at the Rattlesnake on Boylston, went to a rooftop party in the Fenway neighborhood, went into another bar near Northeastern. And today, Wednesday, my knee hurts...a lot. Worth it.

Thank you to Rob DeCarlo for coaching me, GSTC, RVRR, Randy Miller, Jess Hyland, Mike Loenser, Pat McCloskey for both organizing the race that qualified me for Boston but for also shouting my name in the 25th mile, Cathy Stutzman, Meghan DeCarlo, Mrs, Appman, the Moyer family and anyone else who I couldn't spot out of the corner of my eye as they cheered for me. Thanks and Congratulations to Meghan Bruce, Will Appman, Dave Moyer, Erin Higgins, Karen Auteri, Aysha Mirza, and all my teammates who were in the race, tracked us online, made the trip with me, celebrated with me, and sent the good vibes that carried us through 26.2miles of awesome! I didn't win the race for real, but I sure feel like I did!
A Northeastern student congratulates me on a rooftop near Fenway. I'm working on growing the fanbase in New England.

Monday, March 10, 2014

Half assed winter training and a trip to the UK

At the foot of the London Bridge

I have been long absent from writing about my running. The winter really crushed my spirits. So, catching up, I went to London after Christmas and the New Year to see my friend and protege, Johan. I met Johan while I worked in Jersey City at the now defunct Runner's High Newport. Johan wanted to be a runner, in short, I told him to learn long distance training theory. He has run very well, and quite a bit. It seems he probably has run now 6 or 7 marathons in under 3yrs. He holds a marathon best of 3:02, and I am fairly sure he will soon get under the magical 3:00:00 mark. It was good to spend some time with my friend in his adopted home. London is huuuuge, we spent a lot of time in the tubes, but it was cool to be in a different place for a short while. After this trip, the winter reeeally felt like winter.
So here are a handful of photos from the trip, and as you continue on, I'll fill you in a bit about my "training" through this winter.
The Regents Canal, where Johan and I put in some miles on several runs. Interesting, but not as nice as the D&R Canal Path

Johan and I along the Thames by Tower 4:45pm. It is just a bit sad how early it gets dark there. We stayed in good spirits, but alcohol surely was a factor.

Some art that I saw while in London. I like old dirty cars.

The display of flourescent tubes produced some interesting shadows on the adjacent wall. I found that more interesting than the "art exhibit".

Soviet Propaganda

In front of the British Imperial War Museum. This shell could be fired roughly 15-16miles as I recall.

Maybe the other beers were better, this one I thought was uninspiring. But the English Breakfast was very tasty, sadly I was too hungry to remember to photograph it before I attacked it like a starving wolf. Overall, this was a nice place to take in a meal.

Trafalgar Square, fancy huh?
The tubes, weird little walkway over this line. The tubes are a maze.

A street in Camden Town, near Johan's apt. The ground was wet the entire 6 days that I was there.

So,winter, yeah, we all had to deal with it.  I can't quite figure it all out, but being in your 30's is a lot different than teens or 20's.  Darkness, cold, ugh. This winter really got me down. Too many days came and went where I just couldn't motivate myself to get out the door for a run before or after work. Between my work schedule and constant half-injured state, rolling my left ankle on broken pavement by the Army Reserve base near Kilmer Rd, I skipped indoor racing this year. It feels a bit weird, and I want a time trial prior to the Miles for Music 20k on 3/23. My training calendar looks a bit like a piece of swiss cheese. Not proud of myself for this. But as I write this, I've run 6 days in a row and feeling a lot better about it.

Since the Club National XC Championship in December, I figured I could take a week off, and get rolling with training for the Boston Marathon. Despite what I would call fairly inconsistent training, I have done a long run every weekend.
Week 0-14 in Richmond Park (outside of London, UK).
Week 1- 16
Week 2- 16.5
Week 3- 17.6
Week 4- 21
Week 5- 19
Week 6- 19
Week 7- 22.2
Week 8 -21
Week 9- 20.06
Week 10-18.35
Thinking back, I know that I've put in more volume and it led to success. I still have some time, and being that my overall weekly volume has been about 75% of the ideal. I just don't want to be kicking myself later thinking, I should have added 15mins to some of these long runs. The good news is, I've maintained fitness and probably have my self more ready for a marathon than I might think.  I have had a tendency to finish these runs at or just udner marathon goal pace, and not tearing myself up too badly in the process. The intervals workouts I have done are faster than those that I did in 2010 or 2012, that has to be a good sign.
My goal is likely to need adjusting, which is incredibly frustrating, 2:29:59 might have to wait a while longer still. Perhaps, 2:30:59-2:31:59 is possible. All in all, I want to feel like I'm competing and battle it out with other high quality marathoners from Hopkinton to Boylston St. I want another duel to the finish with someone like the one I had in 2010.