Endurance training stands Ashley in good stead
Ashley Estwanik is anxious to see how her marathon training holds up in Friday’s May 24 Derby.
Estwanik had spent the better part of the year gearing up for the recently completed Boston Marathon, putting in countless hours of endurance training rather than speed running.
The shorter distance, however, will see strategies switch up at a moment’s notice rather than the patience required for the 26.2 mile event, and Estwanik is hoping that her endurance training puts her in a position to potentially repeat as champion.
“The training for Boston hopefully will help me in terms of endurance, but we took a few weeks off to allow the body to recover from pounding that distance,” said Estwanik.
“For me, emotionally and mentally I feel better this year than last because last year I did the Virginia Beach marathon and it was hard for me to motivate myself for the race.
“I’m more excited about this year and I have had only a handful of weeks to prepare and I’m hoping that what I have done is enough for me to run well.
“The endurance part is good in the sense that I have learned what my body needs in terms of hydration and intake of electrolytes, I have had problems with cramping in both marathons and the Derby, especially around the nine mile mark so I’m just hoping that all this will help me.”
Estwanik won her third May 24 Derby in comfortable fashion last year, completing the third husband/wife double for the family after husband Chris won his fifth in a row and restored order to the local women’s running circuit.
She didn’t run in 2011 as she gave birth to the couple’s second child, but finished the course last year in a time of one hour, 25 minutes, 35 seconds.
In what turned out be a one-horse race, Ashley admitted that with the humid conditions a record time was never on the cards last year but noted that this year she will be focused on the task at hand, regardless of the conditions.
“Weather conditions always play a huge role because most people train in winter in the cooler conditions and when you wake up on the day it is hot and humid. What you have to do is listen to your body.
“You have to take in a lot of fluids. Last year when we went over on the boat to the start line you couldn’t see Watford bridge because it was so humid and mentally I shut off in terms of running a fast time.
“I heard Chris was close to breaking his record at the end of the race and it was a lesson to me to not let the conditions or another competitor throw you off your race. You have to do your absolute best and let everything else take place.”