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Archive for the ‘The BQ Questionnaire’ Category

Name: Ron

 

Sex: Male

 

Age (at the time of first BQ): 56

 

Height: 5”10”

 

Weight (at the time of first BQ):158

 

At which marathon did you get your first BQ? Fox Valley Marathon, St Charles, IL 3:37:38

 

How long had you been running when you ran your first BQ?

23 years

 

Did you run in college or high school?

Ran track and XC my last year in HS

 

What was your approximate lifetime mileage at the time of your first BQ?

12,000 miles-injuries every few months.(back issues)

 

How many miles did you run in the year before your first BQ?

1722 miles in 2010

 

Approximately how many races did you run in that year?

(didn’t answer)

 

Did you follow a canned program? If so, which one? If not, give us an idea of what your training philosophy was.

 

Pfitzinger’s Advanced Marathoning UP to 55 miles per week

 

Did you run with a running club or utilize a coach?

I have been part of a running club for twenty two years.

Did cross training play a role in your training?

No cross training. I did start running ultras in November of 2010.

 

Any other thoughts you would like to share with those of working towards a BQ?

The most helpful part of the training was the mile repeats. I used the McMillan calculator.

 

I was on the verge of  over training, The last 3 weeks I had to cut mileage from 45-55 to <30 mpw.

 

 

 

 

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Hi readers,

I’m still very interested in your stories of qualifying for the Boston Marathon. Check out the answers I have recieved so far here. If you want to share your story of what it took to qualify for Boston, drop me an email at dearjtd at gmail

 

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It’s the return of the BQ(Q). I have a couple of these in the hopper waiting to go up, but I am always looking for more people interested in doing this survey. Thanks Dave for taking part!

Name:  Dave E / www.beachesrunner.com

Sex: M

Age (at the time of first BQ): 42

Height:  6′ 1″

Weight (at the time of first BQ): 195

At which marathon did you get your first BQ? What was your finishing time? Tell us a little about the race. 

Mississauga – 3:19:10 Spring Race, 16 minute PB

How long had you been running when you ran your first BQ? Did you run in college or high school?

3 years, no HS running, played a lot of hockey with some light running as training

What was your approximate lifetime mileage at the time of your first BQ?

4500 miles

How many miles did you run in the year before your first BQ?

1800

Approximately how many races did you run in that year?

10

Did you follow a canned program? If so, which one? If not, can you give us an idea of what your training philosophy was?

Hal Higdon Intermediate 2, hard on the hard days, easy on the easy days, long midweek runs

Did you run with a running club or utilize a coach?

Group runs, and as well, I coached a marathon clinic

Did cross training play a role in your training? If so, how?

Core strengthening, some swimming, some cycling

Any other thoughts you would like to share with those of working towards a BQ?

RUN MORE, run with a group, preferably faster runners

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A great BQ(Q) with legit fast denizen of running ahead MikeyMike. I gotta quite this awesome passage:

That’s the question I think a work-a-day hobbyjogger has to always ask: am I willing to do the work?  Because for nearly all of us the limiting factor is not our God-given talent or genetics, it’s simply how hard we are willing to work–to what extent we are willing to prioritize running against all the other things we have in our lives.  It’s a tricky balance to get right but one that I think makes it all a little more interesting.

Thanks Mike!

Name: Mike G / Hobbyjogger Chronicles

Sex: M

Age (at the time of first BQ): 30

Height: 5′ 9″

Weight (at the time of first BQ): not sure…160 ish.

At which marathon did you get your first BQ? Tell us a little about the race.

It was at the 2000 Baystate Marathon, on the old course that started and finished at the Greater Lowell Tech School in Tyngsboro.  It was only my 2nd marathon–the first being Big Sur in 1999 which I ran almost on a lark, woefully under trained.  I decide in the spring of 2000 that this was the year I wanted to finally qualify for and run the Boston Marathon.  Originally I wanted to run Chicago with a buddy but he got injured almost right away so I changed plans to Baystate so I wouldn’t have to travel.  I followed a plan that I found on the race website, I think it peaked at about 65 mpw.  I had no idea what I was doing and I was hurt and running through injuries the whole time.  Luckily I didn’t know any better and wasn’t aware of any online running message boards where people would have told me how crazy I was for trying to BQ in only my 2nd marathon when my first had been a 3:40.  I needed a 3:10 to qualify (I didn’t even know about the “59 second rule” and ran a 3:09:40.  It took absolutely everything I had.  At the time it was definitely the highlight of my athletic life.

How long had you been running when you ran your first BQ? Did you run in college or high school?

I always ran a bit for fitness, but that was about it.  I had run in high school but that was really sprints and middle distance (800m) so no real distance background.

What was your approximate lifetime mileage at the time of your first BQ?

Maybe 10,000 miles if you include 4 years of high school track 12 years earlier

How many miles did you run in the year before your first BQ?

Not sure.  I wasn’t running at all really before I started my 16 week or whatever marathon training.  Probably 7-800.

Approximately how many races did you run in that year?

1 including my BQ marathon.

Did you follow a canned program? If so, which one? If not, can you give us an idea of what your training philosophy was?

Like I said above, I found a training plan on the Baystate website.  It was written by John Barbour who at the time was the coach of the Greater Lowell Road Runners.  If I recall it was a fairly standard “intermediate” marathon plan.  It focused on tempos and a weekly long run and a lot of easy distance.   I actually bagged a lot of the workouts because as I said I was constantly battling little injuries.  My preparation was not ideal by any stretch.  Looking back I was so unprepared but I didn’t know any batter.  I felt like I was right on the edge of major injury or breakdown that entire summer/fall leading up to it.

Did you run with a running club or utilize a coach?

Nope.

Did cross training play a role in your training? If so, how?

Not really during my marathon build-up although I probably had pretty good basic fitness just from being athletic my whole life.  I had done a ton of skiing, mountain biking, some running and other sports.

Any other thoughts you would like to share with those of working towards a BQ?

The thing that strikes me most now, looking back, is how hard I thought I was working and how impossible it seemed at the time.  And now, 10 years later, I’ve actually lowered my marathon PR by a full 20 minutes from that 3:09:40.  Training really is a progression and every time you reach a new level you need to really look down the road at what’s next.  I’ll be the first to admit that it was easier for me to BQ than for a lot of people but the thing is I didn’t stop there.  If I look at where I started, with a 3:40 at Big Sur, then a 3:09 at Bay State a couple years later to now having run 2:49 last fall at age 40 I think that proves that over the long haul training really works.  And I still feel like, if I was willing to put in the work, I could do a lot better.  That’s the question I think a work-a-day hobbyjogger has to always ask: am I willing to do the work?  Because for nearly all of us the limiting factor is not our God-given talent or genetics, it’s simply how hard we are willing to work–to what extent we are willing to prioritize running against all the other things we have in our lives.  It’s a tricky balance to get right but one that I think makes it all a little more interesting.

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James is a triathlete and trainer, thanks for taking part in the survey!

Name: James D Power Multi Sport Twitter

Sex: Male

Age (at time of BQ): 37

Height: 5’ 8”

Weight: 160

At which marathon did you get your first BQ? What was your time? Tell us a little about the race.

Mardi gras Marathon (Rock and Roll New Orleans).  Late FEB, flat.

How long had you been running when you ran your first BQ? Did you run in college or high school?

I started running when I was 30 to lose weight.  I quit smoking (smoked for 13 years) and lost about 65 pounds.

What was your approximate lifetime mileage at the time of your first BQ?

Maybe 5000 miles

How many miles did you run in the year before your first BQ?

About 1000

Approximately how many races did you run in that year?

In my build for Mardi gras I raced a lot – in my 10 week training plan I raced 6 times – 1 12k, 3 half marathons, 1 25k and 1 30k.  I PR’d every race.

Did you follow a canned program? If so, which one? If not, can you give us an idea of what your training philosophy was?

I followed a FIRST (Furman) with many high volume blocks.  I guess the Furman was in name only – I wanted three well-defined workouts each week consisting of a speed session, a hard tempo and a challenging long run.  However, I work for a university and get a lot of time off over Christmas.  I ran several 3 day blocks (ultra runners call them back-2-backs) of around 50 miles (10 / 15 / 20 or 15 / 15 / 20 – at a very easy pace) and then recovered for 2 days.  I also raced a lot, these were my hard tempos, and hard long distance runs.  For good measure, I did speed work for 5 weeks consisting of Yasso 800’s.  I guess, looking back, I threw the kitchen sink at it.

Did you run with a running club or utilize a coach?

I ran with everyone.  I am in a running club but I am self-coached.

Did cross training play a role in your training?

If so, how?  Being a triathlete I do bike and swim a lot, however, for my marathon builds the swim and bike take a back seat.  I did it some but nothing was planned.

Any other thoughts you would like to share with those of working towards a BQ? Perhaps my BQ came too easy (first marathon – I needed a 3:15:59 and ran a 3:08:44 with even splits) but I think the necessary components are a consistent build, the hard runs need to be hard (that is for mental prep as much as anything else – I really need a race to perform well), and staying injury free.

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Thanks Ginny from Happy Feet 26.2 for filling out the questionnaire!

Name: Ginny Happy Feet 26.2

Sex: Female

Age (at the time of first BQ): 41

Height: 5’ 10

Weight (at the time of first BQ): 143

At which marathon did you get your first BQ? What was your time? Tell us a little about the race. St. George, Utah, 3:49:17 (needed 3:50:59) – the best marathon out of 19 so far.

How long had you been running when you ran your first BQ? Did you run in college or high school?

I started running my senior year of high school (1986).  I have run off and on since then.  Dec. 2003, I walked my first marathon, Feb. 2005 ran my first marathon, fall 2005 became obsessed with qualifying, fall 2009 finally did it – my 15th marathon,  April 2010,  I RAN THE BOSTON MARATHON.

What was your approximate lifetime mileage at the time of your first BQ?

I have no idea.

How many miles did you run in the year before your first BQ?

1300-1400

Approximately how many races did you run in that year?

16 – various distances

Did you follow a canned program? If so, which one? If not, can you give us an idea of what your training philosophy was?

I created my own schedule.  Alternated hill repeats and track.    Hard run, followed by 2 easy days.   It was a rotating schedule.  My long runs came up every 9 days, tempo every 9 days, hill repeats or track workouts every 9 days.  (not the standard long run every Sat. or Sun)

Did you run with a running club or utilize a coach?

My running partner was preggo, so I trained mostly solo for this one.

Did cross training play a role in your training? If so, how?

Unlimited yoga the month before the marathon.  Prior to that, 1-2 classes per wk.  Walk or easy bike for recovery.

Any other thoughts you would like to share with those of working towards a BQ?

I max’ed out with 63 miles before my BQ race.  This was my highest mileage, at that time.  For me to BQ, it was a total package effort.  I lost some lbs., I had 2 recovery days after each hard workout, I did unlimited yoga, I hit new high mileage, I incorporated ice baths after hard workouts, I improved my nutrition, and I trained year around.  I also believe racing shorter distances is an important part of training, but not to “over race” leading up to the marathon. Keep running, keep dreaming, it CAN be done even when you don’t have natural talent to BQ.   

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Anyone who says big dudes can’t get a BQ hasn’t met Tim. At 6’5” 209, he got it done. What is your excuse? Thank you Tim for filling this out!

Name: Timothy E

Sex: male

Age (at the time of first BQ): 41 qualified / 42 age running at Boston

Height: 6’5”

Weight (at the time of first BQ): 209

At which marathon did you get your first BQ? Tell us a little about the race.

Wineglass, Corning, NY — for me [being a Clydesdale], temps are the most important factor.  I can easily lose more than 10lbs of sweat during a long run in the summer … Corning weather was just about perfect — started in the high 30’s and probably was 58 and sunny at the finish.

How long had you been running when you ran your first BQ? Did you run in college or high school?

I ran XC in HS but it was really a way to kill time for basketball as opposed to someone who considered themselves a serious runner.  [I was a mid-pack runner at best — I feel like I train so much more intelligently now.]  Anyway — I didn’t run at all for about 20 years … got fat and lazy.  Started running again about 4-yrs ago.  I would say that I had been running consistently for 2.5 years before I qualified.

What was your approximate lifetime mileage at the time of your first BQ?

Really no clue

How many miles did you run in the year before your first BQ?

In the 12 months prior to Wineglass I certainly ran more than 2000 … from January to January  I ran about 1800 and ran about 2400 the year of the BQ for the same period

Approximately how many races did you run in that year?

I signed up for 2 marathons — the Spring marathon I DNF — temps hit 80 and I just pulled the ripcord.  I also ran 3 halfs; 1 10miler; 2 8k’s; 1 5miler and 2 5k’s [so I guess that’s 11 races]

Did you follow a canned program? If so, which one? If not, can you give us an idea of what your training philosophy was?

Nope

Did you run with a running club or utilize a coach?

I used to train with the North Jersey Masters [Tuesday nite speed] but I really like running early in the AM … I have a “coach” who sends me workouts [even to this day] … I tend to follow them, but frankly, at this point, I know the drill and could do it myself however I really like the idea of feeling like you are letting someone down if you don’t do the work.  It simplifies my life and allows me to wake up and say — I got 10 miles this AM including a 4 @ tempo pace.  I also have read extensively — books; blogs and, of course the posts here on RA.

Did cross training play a role in your training? If so, how?

nope — none

Any other thoughts you would like to share with those of working towards a BQ?

I feel pretty lucky that I have 3-4 guys that I do the majority of my running with … if I do 60m in a week I bet 40+ of those miles are with buddies.  We bullshit for hours and it makes the running something that I really look forward to b/c we spend hours busting each others chops.  My point in mentioning this is that having others to train with is a true motivating factor for races and tough workouts.  2 of my training partners are right on the cusp of sub 3hr marathoners but I can kick both of their asses in a 5k — so we have fun with some good competition mixed into it.

 

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