The Run SMART Project had a solid showing by several athletes at the Philly Distance Run on Sunday, September 21. Bob Lenehan, Erin Stout, and Avi Kravitz traveled out to Philly together with a common goal of setting new personal bests. With Erin and Avi crushing their previous PRs, and Bob having a very respectable day after over a year away from racing, all three went home satisfied with their efforts.
When Avi Kravitz signed on with the Run SMART Project he had the goal of making the Boston Marathon qualifier by 2009. Having come in with a PR of 3:27, Avi dropped his PR to 3:10:32 at Chicago this past fall. This granted him the Boston qualifying mark for 2008!
You would think that just to run Boston would have been enough, but Avi had other plans. The quest was now to run as fast as possible at Boston. Avi dedicated himself to improving upon every small detail. By working on his training, nutrition, flexibility and core strength Avi saw small but gradual improvements in his fitness that would help carry him to this elusive new PR.
One month prior to Boston Avi knew he was in the shape of his life and ready to run, but as his coach I was getting a little nervous. I was afraid that Avi was ready too soon. His workouts were faster than prescribed and he was using words like “great” and “easy” far too often. I feared he was on the verge of peaking early. Two weeks later my fears were confirmed. I received an email from Avi, stating that he was feeling tired and sluggish. We backed off the workouts, but the fresh legs Avi had become so accustomed to hadn’t returned. A week and a half before the race Avi was still feeling tired and flat. My advice at this point… “Take two days off.” Avi resumed training a couple of days later and kept the positive attitude that had brought him so far.
The finial result was another PR. Avi managed to drop over 19 minutes off of his time in Chicago, finishing the race in a very impressive 2:51:12! Coming through the first half in 1:26:07, Avi negative split Boston’s tough second half closing in 1:25:05.
Sometimes things don’t go as planned… Run SMART client AviKravitz had been training for the Houston Half Marathon for several months, but a last minute change in plans wouldn’t allow him to make the race. Rather than miss the racing opportunity altogether, Avi found a local 5 Miler. Despite having trained specifically for the half marathon, Avi clocked a time of 29:54! That was good enough to best Avi’s former PR from only 6 weeks ago by 35 seconds, on a tougher course. Avi’s next major race will be the Boston Marathon in April.
On Sunday, October 7th Avi Kravitz did what few could do during the Chicago Marathon… He set a 17 minute PR. The high temperatures for the day (an 88 degree high) made it hard for many athletes to even finish the race. Avi’s initial goal was to break 3:20:00, in the hope that he would be able to get another shot at the Boston qualifier of 3:10:00 early next year. The early pace felt so easy that Avi decided to go on and give it what he had, splitting several sub 7 minute miles along the way. He finished in a final time of 3:10:32, which was good enough to qualify him for the Boston Marathon in the spring.