Poignant Irrelevance

Wednesday, September 26, 2007

'taper trap'

this is totally me:
Trap: Pressure to Perform

Symptoms: The overwhelming fear that the time goal you've set and trained for diligently is now somehow much too ambitious (what were you thinking?).

Cause: Once your peak training is over, it gets harder to feel confident in your abilities to maintain your goal pace. Many marathoners obsess on the five- or 10-minute gap between their goal time and the time they "fear" they might actually run--for example, crossing the line in 4:10, not 4:00, which would somehow make the marathon a failure.

Solution: Insert a couple marathon-pace miles in the middle of some runs during your taper (say two to three miles at marathon pace part-way through a couple of eight-milers) to reinforce confidence in your ability to hold that pace. You should also develop an alternative time goal that you can live with that's five or 10 minutes slower than your ideal goal in case the weather on race day--or your body--just doesn't cooperate.
the full taper trap article is here.

yesterday i ran my scheduled 7-miler with 8x100m strides. it was good times. love those short bursts where i feel strong and confident. plus 100m is not enough to really get tired. i really dig these opportunities to burst through the crowds and glide along the path at a "fast" pace, if not for just a minute or two.

tonight i was scheduled to run a relatively tough 8-miler with 3x1600m (~1 mi.) at about 5k race pace with 2 minute rest in between. i ran 3 miles to warm-up, then got in 2x1600 before the lightening really picked up. lightening freaks me out a bit. plus the wind picked up (a leaf hit me in the ear, seriously--hehe), plus: thunder! rain!

currently, its no longer raining (of course) but its dark out! very disappointing to not get in the last mile at 5k pace because we all know the last one is the one that really counts. i won't duplicate this workout but maybe i'll sneak in another faster 1600m split during a different run this week.

if a 'taper trap' can be defined as obsessing over whether or not certain goal times are achievable, i've been trapped all week. i can't even focus enough to buy a new fall/winter jacket (which is badly needed). ha ha. who wants to go shopping and risk tripping over uneven carpet at the store? or slip on a banana peel?


  • Perhaps you should cover yourself in bubble wrap until the marathon. I wouldn't want a banana peel to ruin all your hard work. Take care *Brent. :)

    By Anonymous aprilanne, at 10:27 PM  

  • ok this is why I like weight-lifting. It's hard to overthink it. Pick up heavy thing. Put it down. Repeat.

    You need to go chew some gum!

    By Blogger M@rla, at 9:07 AM  

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