I've been recovering well from Philly, back running again, and keeping the miles relaxed and easy. I'm shooting to get the volume back up relatively soon, but will keep the pace slow until late December, when I'll do a couple of workouts ahead of the half in January.
I'm restarting a gym routine consisting mostly of core/hip work. After my hip bothered me for most of the marathon, I've decided that me and the "sex machine" (i.e., the hip ab/adductor machine) need to get reacquainted--Mark and I did the 30-Day Shred early in the last cycle, but I almost never went to the gym. I am also downright weak in the upper body and want to not be that weak. So I'm doing the Hundred Push-Up program. And I'm not talking about girly push-ups, either. I want to get better at the real thing. I managed 3 in my initial test. I know! Pathetic, right? But I made it through Week 1, Day 1 yesterday. I foresee many repeated weeks. But I aim to be more consistent with strength work in general this cycle, and all I have to think about to motivate me is Boston...Boston...Boston.
I know there are people who make it to Boston and think, "Well, the hard part is over. I made it. I'm going to just run and not worry about it and have a good time." I actually sort of wish I felt that way. But I don't. I want to knock it out of the park at Boston. It's a challenging course, and PRing there is a mark of pride among marathoners. And I still want to get to the finish line of a marathon feeling not relieved, but triumphant.
I experimented a lot with my training for Philly, and of course some of the events over the summer contributed to making the training even more experimental, i.e., practically non-existent for several weeks! I am eager to experiment further. I will try a relatively short training plan again, probably in the neighborhood of 12-14 weeks (starting a week or two after the half) with a 2-week taper. But this time, instead of relying on my old friend Pfitz to get me to the finish line, I'm going to line up with Brad Hudson. I've started reading his book and will draw up a plan based on his training philosophy. It will stay high-volume, but will introduce a lot more intensity than I'm used to. For this reason, I probably won't increase my mileage much (although the average mileage will hopefully be a bit higher through better consistency and a more solid base).
I am just hoping for a nice, boring year.