Saturday, December 31, 2011

Dec 31: First 20-miler for Albany 2012

FIT:
I just reached the top of the second mini-cycle wthin the marathon training plan.


Yesterday, I wasn't feeling the same enthusiasm for the scheduled 20 that I had felt for last week's 18.  There was a knotty, potentially stress-fractury spot on my right outer shin (vs. the left outer shin a couple of months ago), and I wasn't peppy overall.  Stretching didn't help fix things this time.  It could be monthly hormonal things or the stress that comes with knowing that winter break is almost over or the accumulation of fatigue over the past couple weeks' 16er and 18er. 

I signed up for a race a couple weeks ago for next weekend, so I also thought about taking this week easier than the schedule called for, to stay fresh and uninjured for that Half Marathon. 

I ended up going for the 20.

20.0 in 3:08:16, 9:25 ave.  1605 cal.

I intended to do the same pace as last week's run (9:15ish), but I ended up slowing.

Splits> 9:19, 9:05, 9:13, 9:26, 9:32, 9:44, 18:32 (9:16 for 2), 9:40, 9:30, 9:39, 9:24, 9:28, 9:51, 8:54, 8:53, 9:39, 9:41, 9:54, 8:44. 

FUEL:
For breakfast, I had some tortilla chips and Reduced Fat Gouda (from Trader Joe's).  I wanted salt.  I also had 2 cups of decaf and a successful trip to the bathroom.

Since I finished last week's 18.4 still feeling pretty good and not needing water at all, I thought I could maybe go for all 20 without water. I started getting thirsty at about mile 8, and I didn't drink until mile 16, since the water was back at the car.  I gulped down 2/3 of a liter in no time.  I also ate a low-sugar (3g only) Detour Bar.  I had 2/3 at mile 6.5 and the rest later on.  It has 170 Cal, 15g protein (protein intake during the run helps minimize damage to your muscles, at least when it's a sport drink like Accelerade, so I'm guessing it may help me here, too), 3g of sugar is all the real carbs in it, and 5g fat.  Delicious, but the carbs probably would've helped me overall.  It tasted like a Snickers bar. 

I did have a Honey Stinger waffle with me, but I wasn't hungry, and in the late, late miles, my tummy didn't want any food.  It just wanted me to finish. 

Afterwards, I wanted to replenish my carb stores and get a little bit of protein to help recovery so that I could still perform decently and safely at next week's Half.  I had an orange, a carrot (I always crave healthy food after hard workouts, maybe because my body wants good raw materials to work with for recovery), 2 pieces of multigrain toast with garlic (helps the immune system) and a bit of Laughin Cow Lite Cheese Spread, and a bowl of hot and sour soup (had some tofu and eggs, plus vinegar, which I always crave after long runs or long races). 

Next, a shower.  Then, a nap.  After the LR, I was so tired that when I got home, I thought for a moment about just taking a nap right in the car, since it would've been too much effort to walk into the house. 

My legs are a bit banged up at the moment, but I'm stretching now and it helps a bit.  I did try a bit of dynamic stretching immediately post-run, and I also walked for a while, but neither helped much. 

GEAR:
- Oxysox compression socks (which I almost always wear to work and whenever I run)
- Nathan compression/relflective sleeves (to keep me warm and to keep me visible... just got this particular one, with elastic around the top, which makes it stay up better than my other pair without the elastic, can)
- Visor
- Sunscreen (I was smarter this time, after feeling the sun on my shoulders too much last time)
- Tech tee with the sleeves cut off
- Nathan Shadow Pak with the Detour Bar and car key and uneaten Honey Stinger Waffle
- New Balance 1225 Stability Shoes with Sofsol Arch Supports
- Oakleys
- iPod Shuffle
- I found a pair of Silly Bandz on course, so I put those on.  I also found a quarter, which I put in the Pak.
- Timex Ironman watch, which has the timer set, too, in case I mess something up on the Garmin like hit the stop button instead of the lap button

Looking forward to dinner.

Happy New Year!

Wednesday, December 28, 2011

Dec 28: Treadmill Intervals

FIT:
Still got it!

After not doing intervals in 2 weeks (not that that's long) and doing long, slow distance, I wondered if my speed was going to suffer.  Not the case!  Some people think that marathon trainng makes you slow, but I think for all the top 0.0000001% of runners, for whom specificity is key to pushing the human limits, increased training of any sort will help you get stronger at all distances.  You'll need to stay sharp in all of those areas by having a good mix of speed and endurance in your training plan, of course.

I was glad to see that I still got it.  I did a treadmill interval session because after my nap, it was dark outside, so no track.  I wanted to do a bit of treadmill work, anyway.  I've been used to running on lots of grass in the past week and a half, and the motion and forces are probably a little bit different, so I do want to keep my body well-adapted to that surface as well.

I either met or exceeded my previous difficulty level for treadmill interval workouts, which is cool.  The treadmill I used today was really good - very stable and heavy-duty and pretty user-friendly.  The only downside is that it had distances to the 10th of a mile, not a 100th.  So I tweaked my workout a bit.

The workout:
1 mi warmup btwn 7-7.5mph, 4 x [0.7 mi @ 9mph, 0.3 mi @ 7.5 mph].

5.0 in 36:30, 7:18/mi ave.

Glad my left knee is fine when running.  Walking, sometimes I can tell that it's not 100%, especially when turning, but it seems to be on the mend.

Dec 26: Beach Recovery Run - p v

Beach run!

My family and a few other families went up to Myrtle Beach on Christmas, the day after my 18er.

We bowled, played cards, watched TV, and after-Christmas shopped.

On the 26th, it was time to get in a run.  I went with my sister.  Since I just wanted to get back into it after the LR, and since beach running can be risky for your calves and achilles and my left plantar fascia was flaring up a bit again, I was ready to take it easy.  My sis normally runs 2-3 mi, so I was really excited when she made it the whole 5.5 mi without issues.  We were going slower than she normally goes, so she could handle it.  The run felt easy, since we were going so slowly. 



I chose to run without my iPod - it's not often that you get to enjoy the sounds of the wind and ocean and birds, the feel of the sand and wind, and the sights of the buildings and big sky and little shells, so I went sans iPod.  I couldn't convince my sister to do the same, but whatevs.


Looking at that now, I notice that there were people around, haha.


We were going to go from one pier to another, but there was a river-like thing running off into the beach that was too deep and wide to jump or walk through, so that was as far as we went.

The ground was firm enough to not worry me too much, once you got past the deep dry sand.  There was some camber, so we tried our best to stay on the flattest portions. 

My left inner achilles started bugging me with about 2 mi to go.  Still runnable, but it happened.

I massaged it and stretched afterwards.  The next day, my left knee started hurting sometimes when I would walk on that foot, once my weight was put on it.  Dunno.  Seems okay now, enough that I may try an intervals session today.

Risk... reward... eh. 


5.5 in 49:19, 8:58 ave.  I sprinted at the end to make it sub-9 pace.  I would've gone faster if I was on my own, but it was fun to run with my sis for a whole 5.5 mi.  I don't think the distance was that hard for her, either, since we were going slowly... so maybe she can do a Half sometime!

Dec 24: Second big LR - p

FIT:
I did the first "big" LR of 16.4 on Sunday, Dec 18th.  All the way through Thursday, I wasn't feeling particularly sharp on my runs.  I was feeling sluggish and stiff.  I was suprised by how long it was taking to bounce back.  How was I going to get in any quality workouts between my weekly LRs?

On Friday, I stretched, for the first time in 4 days (Monday), and it did wonders to loosen me up and make my legs feel fresher.  Before that, I kind of felt like I had been shuffling rather than running.  I'll need to keep that in mind.

Since I was feeling better on Friday, I was excited about the next day's 18er all day.  Instead of the dread that I'd sometimes feel, knowing how long and potentially difficult it would be, I looked forward to it, perhaps because the previous 16er had gone well, and I felt good even at the end.

I ended up having to do the LR on Saturday rather than Sunday, missing an extra day of recovery, because of travel plans the next day. 

I went out alone this time, and I didn't worry about not having water on the course, since I went through 16 last week without big thirst at the end. 

I focused on going at a VERY easy pace this time, since I figured out that the suggested paces of the SmartCoach plan assumed I was going to go for a 3:17 marathon, and I probably wouldn't be shooting that high on race day.  I don't want to cash all of my investment on workouts instead of race day anyway. 

The run was enjoyable.  I took no detours, since I wanted to get good distance estimates of the standard out-and-back course so that I would know how far it was between each landmark, so that I could figure out what legs I could repeat to achieve my target distance.  I ended up miscalculating somewhere and had to make up 2 missed miles by going back and forth on some shady patches of grass, but it's all good. 


My legs did get a little tired of the same motions towards the end, so I did some butt kicks and shorter steps to shake things up for them and to reduce the same pounding feeling on my legs.

I had 1 100-Cal mini-Clif bar at mile 9.5, and I had absolutely no thirst at the end of the 18.4er, which was cool. 

I wore a new Adidas singlet with a handy hole near the top for the earbud wire, which really helped to reduce bouncing of the long wire.  It ws chilly, at 43-52-58 degrees that morning, so the shirt was good.  It was sleeveless, so I was feeling the sun on my shoulders more than I would've liked towards the end.  I may go for sleeves next time.

Unlike during last week's LR, I  did use the iPod this time.  I love listening to race recordings (the podcaster records while he's doing the race), since you hear all of the cheering and breathing and racers and stuff.  It keeps you really pumped up during the run.

18.4 in 2:50:32, 9:16 ave.  I think that's a good pace.

GEAR GUIDE: Adidas CC Ride

Feels like the first run in a while. Inertia… once you stop for an extended period, it can be hard to get out the door again.

I got my sister new Adidas shoes the other day – the CC Ride. I saw some cool-looking Adizero shoes, but they felt way too uncushioned to run in.


Since we are the same height and have about the same foot size, I decided to give them a try.

Flexibility:
The zig-zag sole makes them really flexible, so I expected them to be more barefoot-like than the shoes I’m used to.

Footstrike:
I found myself naturally wanting to strike more forefootish, maybe because of a smaller heel-toe drop? One website estimated 6mm. I could feel it. It was different from what I was used to. If I did want to run in these long term, I’d need to move it into the rotation gradually, to make sure my Achilles didn’t get too stressed.

Stability:
The toebox is a wee bit smaller than what I’m used to in the Saucony Kinvara and the New Balance 1224/5 and the Asics Gel Evolutions, which are the main shoes in my rotation. I also found that running on the uneven grass, my feet tended to pitch left and right a lot. I had to be careful to not roll my ankles. I don’t know why that was the case. I was running on uneven, wet grass, but I run there often.

Upper:
It was very meshy and light, which I like.

I don’t regret not getting a pair for myself, since I have a history of rolled ankles and need something more stable. I did stick a pair of arch support insoles in there, which supposedly help with my overpronation, and that aspect of it was fine. As I mentioned earlier, I would also like a tad bit more cushioning. It could have a place in someone else’s rotation, but not mine. My sister likes it. She’s just getting back into running and does maybe 8-10 mpw. She likes that it’s so light.  However, she also complained that it was too wobbly left and right.  She also tries to run on grass whenever possible, so she'll save these shoes for treadmill runs.

So…. Those are my thoughts after a single 4.4mi run, in mostly wet grass, on a humid, pre-Tstorm day. It was 64 degrees.

4.4 in 35:58, 8:11 ave. 339 cal. It took me a while too warm up, according to the splits. 18:51 for lap 1, 17:06 for lap 2. Quite a difference. That’s a 8:54 ave pace for the first lap and a 7:31 pace for the second lap.

I don’t often run on wet surfaces, now that it’s winter and 2/3 of my runs are on treadmills. But going on asphalt, on older asphalt where the pebbles are exposed, you take a step forward and end up slipping like 1 inch backwards as you toe-off. On newer asphalt that’s all black, the grip is fine. Just something I noticed.

The next day, Dec 22, I did an easy 6.7 to try to recover from the previous day and the previous weekend's LR.   Splits> 19:20 (8:40 pace), 18:42 (8:17), 18:01 (7:59).  I started comfortably slow and picked it up a bit towards the end naturally as I got loosened up a bit.

Dec 18: First big LR of Marathon Buildup - p

FIT:
Looong run!

Long run actuals so far for this build-up (planned in parenthesis):

11.5 (10), 8.9 (12), 15.5 (14), 7.4 (6), 16.2 (16).

16.2 in 2:23:30, 8:51 ave. The Runner’s World SmartCoach schedule calls for a 8:33 pace, but it also plans for me to run a 3:17 for the marathon, which probably won’t happen. It assumes race pace is 7:31, and 8:33 is about a minute slower. I don’t try to hit the recommended goal times because I try to go with what my body thinks it’s safe to do while giving a good effort, naturally. If I think 3:30 is reasonable for my finish time, then MP is 8:01, and I should be going at 9:00ish for my LRs right now, assuming 1 min is right. So maybe I went too fast, but I wasn’t really pushing the pace or anything, and I was pretty much even the whole time, not fading at the end. I finished feeling pretty good.

My dad joins me for runs on his bike when he can. The thought of doing 7ish laps around our neighborhood for 16 mi wasn’t that appealing, so we went to a nearby subdivision instead, one that’s by the track I used over Thanksgiving break. I had thought about doing a run there, so it was worth exploring.

We parked at Publix and headed out. They had plenty of grass on the sides of the road, compared to the smaller strips of even yet somewhat cambered grass that I have at my subdivision. It was great. It was in the morning, so we had shade about 60% of the time. I had a whole wheat banana chocolate chip pancake, milk, and lots of green tea before the run, so even though my dad carried my Nalgene with him as we went, I didn’t need to drink the entire time. I wouldn’t have minded water towards the end, but I wasn’t uncomfortable.

The main road of the subdivision is long. I didn’t know how long, so I just kept following it. It ended up being like 5 mi long or something, with lots of smaller subdivisions branching off of it. We did a detour into one branch with the clubhouse and some apartments. After we hit the 5mi mark, we had gone through two big subdivisions, and we were at a highway. We decided to cross it and continue to a third subdivision. There, we went by the houses more. My parents were used to looking at houses on the market there, so my dad knew his way around.




We turned around after about 7.5 miles, which was early, so even if we made it back to Publix, without some extra detours of about 2 mi, I wouldn’t make the 16 mark. I got hungry at about 7 mi, and I had a 100-Cal mini Clif bar. I’m more into solid foods these days – it’s less messy than Gels when it comes to stashing the trash in your pockets, and it sticks less to your teeth and isn’t as excessively sweet as Chomps/Gummies. For races, I may still go with Gels since certain flavors give a caffeine boost, but we’ll see.

I wore a tech shirt, the one from the Camp Croft Half Marathon, the whole time, since it was windy and chilly enough, ranging from 40-43-50 degrees over the course of the run. I also had my handy dandy Adidas visor and Oakleys. The shades were a splurge that I justified by the fact that my old New Balance ones were great and cheap if you could get them at TJMaxx, but they’d break sometimes. Eyes are important, anyway.


When I got close to Publix, I made up the gap by circling the different fields at the recreation complex…. Soccer, football, baseball, track x 3, pond… eventually racked up enough that I could move on. I made it with 0.2 mi to spare. I did roll my left ankle (not the right this time) while at the complex. I think I normally roll my right one. It was a little slower to bounce back to normal during the run, but I could still run it off before the end of the run.

The first part of the run went by more slowly than the last half, where you knew you just had to go back. Especially on a new course, time is stretched because there’s so much to take in per step. On the way back, you know it already, and it flies by. The last 2 mi circling around did take a while though. Maybe because it was somewhat exploratory and meandering, and maybe because it was towards the end of the long run, and I was anticipating the end.

The next day, I did a strength session. I had to work that day, despite the fact that it’s my vacation. Boo. Same with the next day. My legs were still a bit in recovery mode 2 days after the run, but by night time, I felt like I could’ve gone for a run if I wanted to.

Friday, December 16, 2011

Dec 16

FIT:
2 days ago, standard progression run.  My legs were still getting off of soreness from Insanity, followed the next day by intervals.  They wanted a good banging to work it out. 

5.0 in 39:43, 7:57 ave. 
Splits> 16:31 (8:15 ave), 7:51, 7:48, 7:32. 

I had misjudged how much time I had at the gym by an hour when I went out, so I had an extra hour after my workout.  I ice bathed in the pool, to just above my knees, for 10 minutes.  I don't know how much it helps because it caused me to get little kinks in parts of my legs as I was walking back home.  Oh well, I can experiment, if I get more opportunities.

Today, bike.  I drove to Atlanta and back last night to pick up my sis, so nothing yesterday.  I had scheduled a strength session yesterday, but I was tired after a 12+ hr workday followed by 4.5 hrs of driving.

45 min, 11.8 mi, 370 cal.  Read Running Times.  I haven't biked in a while, so the time went by slowly.  The past couple times I biked, my deltoids... at least my left one... didn't get sweaty for some reason.  Sweat's back.  Odd that my left sweats less than my right.  Maybe I work my right one more, and higher sweat rates are an adaptation to increased work and the need to cool down.  So it's not necessarily the case that I'm working my right one any more than my left when I bike, but when I get hot at all, the right one is more efficient at sweating?  Dunno. 

Wednesday, December 14, 2011

Dec 12

FIT:
Intervals!

I’m thinking about starting to list the type of workout next to the date. That way, you know more about what you’re getting into. I know that most of my posts are the same… every week… progression run most of the time. How tired I am. That’s it most of the time. Intervals and long runs occasionally. The redone title would at least provide a better overview of my training when you dig into the archive. We’ll see. Maybe I’ll even go through the 750+ previous posts and re-name them. Many of the early ones would probably be daily fuel recaps, rather than only workout recaps, so I haven’t really done 750+ workouts since the blog started. That would be a lot of workouts. It would be fun to do the re-naming, though. It’s like reading through your old diary. You see patterns. You remember good times. You look back on bad times and are thankful for how God has been faithful and has pulled you through times when you couldn’t see your hand in front of your face because the future looked so dark. We’ll see. Maybe over Xmas break when I don’t know what to do with all of the extra time. Two weeks of it!!! Aaaaah.

So… intervals.

Oh yeah, yesterday…

I did an Insanity workout DVD after taking 7 weeks off. I took the time off after I felt like I may be starting to get a little stress-fractury spot on my shin. Who knows whether it was anything like that. But I felt like Insanity might’ve caused it, and I needed to be careful. But I haven’t noticed that spot in the past 3 or so weeks. Plyos is proven to have very real benefits when it comes to 5K times, and a little goes a long way. It does stress tendons/ligaments/muscles, so I thought that if I was going to put stress on it, it’s best to get the stresses and major adaptations going early in my training cycle, before I got to the really long runs and got close to the race date, when I’d have to manage risks. Now, even in the early stages, is when I’m doing a lot of the work. When you’re up to weeks before the race, not much of what you do will help at that point. It’s what you put in now and in the coming weeks that are going to be paying dividends later on. So I’ll invest some now in plyos. Maybe once a week or every two weeks.

I did the Pure Cardio + Cardio Abs DVD. P.C. still gives me a good working. I wondered how it would feel to get back to Insanity after time off, but I think the muscle memory is still there. I’m afraid of annoying my neighbors with all of the jumping, so I’m very careful to land as softly as possible. I wonder how that influences the type of workout I get. Does it make it better? Worse? Does the extra work of trying to land softly get offset by my possible limiting of the height I go for in my jumps? No complaints from my downstairs neighbor so far, who happens to also be one of the managers of the apt complex. So I want to be careful.

Afterwards, I got in my Xmas light walk. It ended up being a walk, but it was a very good walk. A walk was less worrisome, since I didn’t have to carry a map or cover lots of ground or worry excessively about gear. Instead, I put on some reflective armbands and reflective gloves, wore just 2 thinner layers, and headed out. I got to chat on the phone with my old college roommate, which was really nice. The Xmas lights were also nice. No extreme houses, but any decorations, no matter how small, are enjoyable.

The next day (today), I was sore. My upper back, hammies (from squats), and upper arms (not biceps… more like deltoids, bit of triceps). I don’t get sore often. Felt this way all day. While at work, I felt like a run may feel good, to loosen everything up. It was a long, stressful workday. But I guess it’s satisfying.

Ok… intervals.

I thought that a slow 3-4 mi run might feel good for loosening up, but when it was getting close to time to go to the gym, I was feeling like intervals may be good. It was good timing, since I just had an off week, which marked the end of the first cycle within my training program. 3 weeks of build-up, then 1 pull-back week, which just called for 3 days of 6 mi easy (8:33 pace). So it was getting to be time to bring back some speed, and doing it early in the week would give me plenty of time to recover by the weekend long run day. It was maybe a little risky to do it the day after plyos, since sprinting is somewhat plyo-like. But I think it was ok.

Workout: 1 mi warmup in 8:27. Took me a little longer to move away from 7mph than normal. 4 x [1/2 mi @ 9mph, ¼ mi @ 7.5mph], ½ mi cooldown (progressively faster) in 3:53.

Good. Not the big 3 x [3/4 @ 9, ½ @ 7.5] that I hit two weeks ago, but the variation is good, and each variation probably has its own benefits. There’s probably one that’s better than the other, like maybe after X minutes @ 9mph, you get diminishing returns, and it’d be better to do more reps vs. longer reps. Or maybe it’s the opposite and keeping it going past Y minutes @ 9mph does a lot to make you even tougher. Dunno. So maybe it’s best to shake it up in my workouts. Keeps things interesting in any case. And keeps me from getting stuck in the comparison game all the time, putting too much stock into how I feel one week to another doing the same workout.

I was so tired before the run. It was a 11.75 hr non-stop workday. I forgot to bring my 75% light cheese to lunch today, and when I realized it this morning, I started panicking. I like cheese. It was okay. I at least had Goldfish.

Anyway…. I was tired, but I found training videos at competitor.com, and they’re inspiring. You watch how pro athletes live and approach their runs, recovery, nutrition, all of that.

As I was walking back to my apt after the run, I relished in how maybe I wasn’t a pro athlete, but working at a normal job but also getting to be hard-core about your running after work is the next best thing. I can’t run all day anyway, so why not spend the 8 hrs of not running and resting my legs with work? On the downside, with work, I don’t get as much sleep as I should, which hinders recovery and the ability to absorb better training. And I don’t have time to do all of the foam rolling, massaging, drills, etc. But it’s alright. I do a bit of stretching, maybe once every 1.25 days on ave, post-workout, normally, for 20 or so min. It’s good.

Oh, and coming out of the gym still with my body hot, makes clouds of steam roll off of me as I go back home. That’s always cool.


Saturday, December 10, 2011

Dec 10

FIT:
Outside run! at the park.

My body kind of wanted a good workout last night, but I was tired.  I thought about doing an Xmas light run, where I'd go to the fancy neighborhood across the street and look at big houses that are hopefully decked out.  And then I'd finish off with some short, steep hill repeats on the median of the road.  But I was tired, and when I googled a potential course, it looked like there was no loop I could really do, and there was no clear route.  I didn't want to get lost at night.  I don't like running on asphalt, either.  Maybe I'll go on a walk some night this week instead.  That whole asphalt thing is why I don't do any night or super-early morning running.  Grassy, easy-on-the-legs paths have roots and holes that require sunlight to run on safely, and asphalt, I don't do.

But I did get in a run today.  I usually try to avoid running in full sunlight, so that I don't get skin cancer.  I waited until near sunset and went to the park.

7.4 in 1:00:38, 8:09 ave.  586 cal.
Splits> 6:25, 6:14, 6:12, 6:06, 6:06, 6:00, 6:03, 5:58, 5:50, 5:41.

It's fun to discover new features on existing tech that you've had for a while.  I found the mile alert switch on my Garmin, so now I know when I hit miles.  I also got to use the back-light feature on my last run.

FUEL:
Dinner was Brown Rice with home-made Peanut/Garlic/SoySauce/ChiliPepper sauce, early grey tea, 2 boca burger patties, skim milk with cocoa and instant decaf coffee, mixed greens salad w/ soy-ginger dressing, and a chunk of dark chocolate. 

Now, I'm making a tofu chocolate cake, which I'll top with peppermint oreo insides as a sub for frosting.  Oreos are wayyy too sweet and oily to me with insides, so I always just eat the outsides with maybe a tiny amount of insides, usually with milk.  So now, I can make use of the insides, since I didn't add any sugar to the cake othe than 2 bananas... yeah, it's an interesting cake.  You can add a moderate amount of sugar to a cake but not even notice, so I just save it and not bother adding.  The flavor you notice usually comes from the topping or a small burst of chocolate chip, anyway.

Thursday, December 8, 2011

Dec 8

FIT:
Tired pre-run today.  Was a beast today at work, going 90mph.  It was kind of like one of those games where there are different lanes where some monster (plant zombies, angry chickens, battle bears, etc) are coming at you, and you have to keep shooting at them to knock them dwn before they get to you and eat you up.  My guns were blazing.  Stayin alive.

But I was tired after work.

Took a nap after dinner (leftovers from a P.F. Chang's work-team holiday dinner... mmm...), and it was 40 min til closing time at the fitness room.  My legs were a bit sore-ish (not that they're consistently sore, it just goes through phases), and I was soo tired, but I don't want only 1 day out of the past 5 with running, and since I was already feeling my fitness decline a bit.  So I changed and dragged myself to the fitness room, thinking that I could at least manage 3 or 4 miles... just get something to keep the fire burning and to not lose it.

It was a loooong first 4 miles.  Dragged on and on.  Maybe b/c I was so tired.  Never really perked up.  Had to start really slowly b/c my legs were not used to moving fast, but it got better after a mile.  Some progression the rest of the time. 

4.8 in 39:26, 8:13 ave.  (about BQ pace... 8:12)  72 degrees in the gym.\
Splits> 8:34, 8:26, 8:17, 8:04, 6:04 for 0.8.

Monday, December 5, 2011

Dec 5

FIT:
Hills!

It's good to be on my first pull-back week of the marathon build-up.  It's low-pressure, not having to worry about hitting the weekday workouts (1 speed, 1 base) plus my weekly strength session, while saving something for the longer-than-ever long run.

The schedule calls for 3 x 6 mi for this week, and I'll throw in my strength session, plus either a bike or a shorter run session.

My legs were iiiitching for a run today because they were a wee bit x-sore from the long run and wanted to be worked out a bit.  Hills seemed like a perfect fit, because they work you while still being low-impact.  It would also allow me to stay at a slow pace to keep the run relatively easy.  Normally, if I do a treadmill run, I have to keep upping the speed so that I don't keep having to hit the same muscles at the same angles over and over again (b/c there are no naturall hills, uneven ground, speed changes).   I could keep at a slow and steady pace while varying the muscle action with the hills on and hills off.

5.0 in 42:05, 8:25 ave.  435 cal, 68 degrees.
The workout: 1 mi warmp @ 1 degree @ 7mph, 3 x [0.5 mi @ 1 degree, 0.5 mi @ 5 degrees] @ 7mph, 1 mi shakeout @ 1 degree in 7:51 (progression).

FYI, 5 degrees @ 7mph = 7:19... ooh, nice!  Sounds fast, though.  The effort wasn't that hard.  The first rep was hard, but it was easier after that once your legs got used to it.  Not that it was super easy, since I didn't do any more reps than 3, but it wasn't bad.

Good run.  I was looking forward to doing a run all day.  Although after I got home and had dinner (sprouted grain tortilla w/ tomato sauce, cheese, and fresh garlic... roasted pizza!  and tortilla chips with queso and a bit of carrot), I got less and less inclined to run.  Get it?  Inclined?  Oh boy.

Saturday, December 3, 2011

Dec 3

FIT:
Long run.  Took it easy so that I could negative split and feel good the whole way.  It worked out pretty well.

My appetite's been flaring up, maybe because it's back to low-ish sleep (6 hrs every night).

I didn't get to my LR spot until 3:50, so I'd be doing a bit in the dark towards the end.  As I was parking, I saw some floats being prepared for a Christmas parade.  I later saw a sign that the big parking lot would be blocked until 8:30pm, so I might have a chance of seeing some of it.

I brought 1 bottle of water + lemon juice + salt for the run, plus a mini-Clif bar.  I wore a singlet b/c it was cold enough.

14.9 in 2:13:37, 8:58.  I thought I had been going at 8:33 right until the last lap, so I was suprised when the ave pace field on the Garmin started reading 9:00.  I don't know what happened.  Maybe the splits will shed some light on it. 

Splits> 9:05 b, 6:12 p s, 7:28 c, 7:28 p (perfect split), 7:30 b l, 6:14 p s, 7:35 c, 7:28 p, 7:21 b l, 6:18 p s, 7:43 c, 7:36 p, 7:26 b l, 6:13 p s, 7:28 c, 7:23 p, 17:00 car.

Hmm... the Garmin says that it took me 7:28 to run 0.2 m for that last trip from p to ...it should've been 0.85 mi, so maybe I really ran 15.5 mi... I think that makes more sense.

So... 15.5 in 2:13:37, 8:37.  Yes.  I wouldn't have run 15.5 if I had known, since the Garmin only called for 14.  I'm ready for 15, but the plan knows what it's doing.  Doesn't hurt, though, because I have lots of halfs under my belt.

Anyway... on my way back to th car, I ran into the parade and had to run upstream.  It was quite an experience.  It was dark.  I had just run the past 3 miles in relative darkness.  There were some people on the sidewalks, so I had to jump a bit between the road and the sidewalk.  Forutnately, it was just for a block.

Afterwards, I packed up my drawstring bag with all of my post-run food from the car and started following the parade to a good viewing spot.  I drank a vanilla protein powder + coca + instant decaf shake, and I ate a banana.  Good thing I chose to wear a singlet.  I started watching the parade about halfway through, and I got cold in the last third of the second half.  I started walking back, and I got to the parking lot right as the final Santa float was pulling out, so I was got to see the whole rest of the parade and get a jump on traffic.

I was happy to get back to my warm car, and once I got home, I took a nice warm shower to make my muscles feel better.  Then, black bean chili and an orange and some snackage (a bit of tortilla chips con queso and peanuts).

Now, I'm watching Rocky... inspirational.

I now have 2 weeks of 29+ miles (with weeks going Sun-Sat the messed up way it is in my log).  After being right at 15mpw the whole year, it's a good thing a rest week (3 x 6 mi) is scheduled for next week.