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January 31, 2010

Napa Valley Marathon (3/7/10) - Jeff Reichbach’s second entry on his road to a Boston Marathon Qualifier

Written by Dena Evans

For me, waking up and running well before dawn is something I dread, and I’ve only turned to it as last resort.  So, when driving rain, howling wind and a flooded track, are piled on top of that, it starts to feel like torture.  As a result, the last couple of weeks in the bay area have been a significant test of dedication to my running goals.

For any of you who’ve been out trying to do speed intervals in those conditions or the like, you know how tough it is to hit your splits.  Even taking the extenuating circumstances into account, it’s not a confidence booster to struggle with a workout.  Of course, if that was the only challenge that arose in the last two weeks I’d be gushing about my good fortune.

Instead, I also sprained my ankle halfway through a sloppy, muddy run on a trail that used to be mostly paved, but was completely torn up in the week since my previous run on it.  Luckily, it’s turned out to be fairly minor, with no visible bruising and I think it’s pretty well healed now, thank goodness.  To complete the trifecta, my job is requiring me to spend two to three days a week working from our Los Angeles office.  Though that will stress my time management skills even further, I guess I can at least hold out some hope that the weather will be better down there than here, because the rains are forecast to return this week.

On the other hand, today was a perfect running day.  It was about 60oF and mostly sunny with a mild, intermittent breeze.  The warm sunshine and blue skies over the gorgeous, green, hill-ringed Crystal Springs Reservoir brought me a feeling of peace and appreciation for the natural wonders of the bay area.

My long run was 15 miles and while my heart rate was higher than I would expect, I felt good.  Now, there are exactly 5 weeks until the race, which sounds awfully short.  At the same time it’s quite long enough for all kinds of things to happen, as I’ve experienced in the last two weeks and many other times before.

So, my plan is to just put my head down, trust the training plan, and tick off the runs one at time.  But, I’m also keeping my fingers crossed that I have five weeks of good luck ahead of me, and I wouldn’t mind if you kept yours crossed for me too.

Last modified on October 10, 2010
Dena Evans

Dena Evans

Dena Evans joined runcoach in July, 2008 and has a wide range of experience working with athletes of all stripes- from youth to veteran division competitors, novice to international caliber athletes.

From 1999-2005, she served on the Stanford Track & Field/ Cross Country staff. Dena earned NCAA Women’s Cross Country Coach of the Year honors in 2003 as Stanford won the NCAA Division I Championship. She was named Pac-10 Cross Country Coach of the Year in 2003-04, and West Regional Coach of the Year in 2004.

From 2006-08, she worked with the Bay Area Women’s Sports Initiative, helping to expand the after school fitness programs for elementary school aged girls to Mountain View, East Menlo Park, and Redwood City. She has also served both the Stanford Center on Ethics and the Stanford Center on the Legal Profession as a program coordinator.

Dena graduated from Stanford in 1996.

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