This web log was created to keep you up to date with the athletic pursuits of Blake Boldon. It will be updated regularly with competition schedules, results, and photos.

Saturday, January 31, 2009

One week and counting

I think it's been over a month since my last post so I'm not sure exactly where to start. I came into 2009 without a sponsor and without a phone after breaking my blackberry before Christmas.
Next Saturday will be my first race in over six months and I'm looking forward to getting the first one out of the way. The US Cross Country Championships in Derwood, Maryland will be my first cross country race in three years and the first time that I've ever raced farther than an 8k. I decided to try my hand at the 12k distance to start 2009 as a first step in moving up in race distances from the 1500. Racing almost seven and a half miles on a cross country course will be an entirely new experience for me but looking back through my training I feel as prepared as I possibly can be. In each of the last eleven weeks I have run at least 100 miles and over the last sixteen weeks I have run right at 1600 miles. This is definitely the best block of consistent training that I've ever had and I finished it off with a great week of sea level training with Coach Simmons in Charlotte, NC. I crashed with my good friend Jeff Gaudette and had a good time hanging out with him and the training went well. On Tuesday I did 25 x 400 on a two minute interval and averaged about a second and a half faster than the last time I did it. Considering the weather was about 35 degrees and windy I'm really happy with the progress I've made. After two days of rest I came back with a solid 7-mile Predator Run and finished it in 35:17. It was my second consecutive week at 110 miles and it was a good mental session in preparation for the 12k. When I moved to Colorado Springs in mid-November I set a goal of ten weeks of at least 100 miles each and I remember thinking that it would be impossible. I struggled to maintain my mileage and the quality of the workouts certainly didn't match the effort. I have successful put that training behind me and today's workout stands as a good example of the progress that I made. In the first week of training under Coach Simmons my second workout was a 3 mile Predator Run. I ran it in 15:04 on a track at sea level (near sea level - in my hometown of Osceola, IA). Today I ran 3 miles in 14:57 at 6000 feet on a rolling gravel trail. Neither workout was an exceptional effort but comparing the two sessions shows me how well I'm handling altitude training. A couple weeks ago I went for my first run in a pair of non-Saucony shoes. I had hoped to be in Saucony's at least until I finished running competitively but that wasn't in the cards. Fortunately, Cody Hill at the Boulder Running Company here in Colorado Springs has generously given me a couple pairs of trainers, a pair of spikes and a jersey. I'm back in the brand that I wore all through college, adidas, and I'll be representing Boulder Running Company/adidas at the cross country championships. Part of the reason I haven't posted more frequently since the start of the new year is that I have a few things in the works but unfortunately I haven't finalized any of those details. Hopefully I'll have some news to report even before I leave for the D.C. area. In the meantime, here is a link to the meet information for next weekend: