Tuesday, July 29, 2008

Back again

Last weekend was our last "weekend away" trip up to Colorado for the Rockygrass music festival. I was suprised and pleased that I got in runs both Friday and Saturday mornings.

Monday was another speed workout. It was the same workout as last Monday but at the track this time.

I did a total of 7 miles in 1:03. Here's the breakdown on the intervals:

.75mi at 8:36 pace (this one was supposed to be at goal 1/2 marathon race pace)
2x .5mi at 8:13 and 8:01 pace (these were at 10k pace)
4x .15mi at 7:41, 7:58, 7:25 and 7:24 pace (these were supposed to be about 5k pace but I definitely ran them faster because the interval was so short- I have to say, I like 200m repeats)

Otherwise, I'm up to 12 pushups and doing downward dog for 1 minute every day after my run. I'm trying to up my pushups by 1 each Sunday and Wednesday to get up to 25. I'm sure I'll hit a sticking point somewhere in there, though.

Also, I really need to do more long runs in preparation for the 1/2 marathon in Sept. That's my biggest weak point right now, I think.

I did have one sign on Monday that I'm making progress, though. On one of my recovery laps in between intervals I slowed down as much as I could, and I realized that I basically cannot run as slow as a 10 min mile (on flat ground) anymore. That used to be my regular pace. That's very exciting.

Thursday will be 2x2mi at goal pace. I hope I find it easy to "get in the groove" at the right pace, and it feels easy enough that I think I can hold it for 13 miles!

Tuesday, July 22, 2008

Been a long time

It's been a long time since I've updated this thing.

Last Thursday I did my last key workout for the 5k I'd been training for. 1mi at 5k goal pace with a warmup and cool down. I ran the mile at 7:50 pace, but it felt hard, and my stomach did not feel great. I think it was partly because I was getting used to the altitude again after being in SF and partly because I tried Nuun for the first time and mixed it in warm water. Yuck. The Camelbak electrolyte tablets are much better. Those 10 calories of sweetness goes a long way.

So anyway, I took Friday off, had an easy run on a slightly different course Saturday, and woke up Sunday morning to do an easy run before the 5k that evening. Unfortunately my right hamstring cramped up over night, and I couldn't even run a mile that morning. It was not a "this seems like it will go away once I've warmed up" kind of pain, but an "I need to stop because I can't extend my right knee all the way" pain. I hopped on the elliptical for an hour but still held out some hope that I would do the race later. Well, we were invited by some friends to go see the Batman movie and go out to dinner so I scrapped the race completely and enjoyed the afternoon in a different way. In some ways I'm really dissapointed that I didn't run this race. I'd been training for it. I probably could have done it. Now I have a cute t-shirt that I'd feel guilty wearing because I didn't actually run. But in some ways it seems like it just wasn't meant to be. There'll be other 5ks.

Yesterday I was back on the training wagon, starting the first week of 1/2 marathon training. I'm using the Runners World "Your Ultimate 1/2 Marathon Training Plan Intermediate" but modified to add extra miles. I did the first workout on the treadmill: 1200 at goal pace (I did this by going 2min at 6.8, 2 at 6.9, 2 at 6.8 and 1 at 7.0), then 2x 800 (2min at 7.2 and a little more than 2min at 7.3), and finally 4x200 at 7.7. I did the workout on the treadmill in case my hamstring started bothering me I could just jump on an elliptical. I'd say the most noteworthy thing about this workout is that I didn't have any anxiety going into it. In fact, I really wanted to move through my warmup quickly so I could get started on the speed part.

Today was just an easy run of 7mi. I'm also thinking about some strength training/ yoga goals that I'd like to work on for the end of the year to help keep myself motivated. I think I'm going to post those on one of the side bars.

Wednesday, July 16, 2008

Back in action

I was gone for the weekend in sunny (but chilly) San Francisco. This was to be our last big trip "out west" before we move up north.

For the first two days, just walking around was exercise enough for me, but I got in two runs on the hotel treadmill at the end of the trip when we had some downtime.

Last week was the "peak workout" for my 5k on Sunday. The goal was to run 5x1k at 5k pace, but really I was running them at more like my goal pace.

I decided to drive to the track and do my warmup and cooldown there to see if that helped me not feel so wiped out after these workouts, and I think it did. The break down was

2mi warmup

.65mi in 5:08 (7:54 pace)

.64mi in 5:03 (7:56 pace)

.65mi in 5:08 (7:54 pace)

.64mi in 4:57 (7:45 pace)

.65 in 5:001 (7:40 pace)

2mi cool down

Overall I was pleased both with my ability to do the workout closer to goal pace than my old race pace and the fact that I did the last two intervals the fastest. Running an 8min mile will let me sneak under 25 min. I'd have to run about 7:45 to beat my old PR of just under 24min. I don't think the second will happen, but as long as nothing weird happens, and I really push myself then I don't think I'll have any problems breaking 25min.

I also ran 2x1.5 on the treadmill at the hotel Monday. I was able to handle the pace remarkably easily, but that probably just means that it wasn't calibrated correctly and I still had my high altitude adaptations. Now that I think about it, today was the first high-altitude run I've done since I've been back so that may explain why I felt a bit sluggish.

Tomorrow will be 2.5mi w/u, 1mi at 5k pace, 2.5mi c/d. After this Sunday I'll start 1/2 marathon training. Do I have a 1:55 in me? We shall see.

Tuesday, July 8, 2008

Feeling better

Well, two days off + one yoga class = feeling much better. I did a 2 mi warm up and 4 mi tempo run on the treadmill today. It felt a little tough around the half-way point, but I was really happy that I hung with it. I would have like to do 8, but I needed to get back to get ready for the moving appraisal guy. I'll plan to do about 8 tomorrow, 8 with speed on Thursday, and 8 on Saturday, which will put me at 30 miles this week. Just fine because it's a back down week.

The main thing is that I need to remind myself that this training "cycle" is about adding speed, not endurance- although I guess the 1/2 marathon training is both. So rather than trying to ramp up to 50 mpw before my 1/2, I'm going to try to stay in the neighborhood of 35-40mpw. From experience, that's the highest milage my body is comfortable with, so I should stay in that zone but add intensity. After the 1/2 marathon I can hold the intensity constant (say one 3-4 mi tempo run and one run with 4-5 800s or even just fartlek-type stuff) while I increase my milage. I think if I can get comfortable in the 45-50 mile range by January I'll be set to do the Pfitz or Ulitmate Marathon training program without problems. Ideally I'd like to be able to start around 45mi and peak at 60, but that may not be realistic this year.

Saturday, July 5, 2008

June in review and plans for July

So this is a few days late, but this year is really flying by!

June was good for getting back into the groove with running and lifting weights. I hit a 40 mile week and I feel like I'm finally getting some development in my arms and shoulders. I think yoga has also been helpful as far as recovering from my workouts and staying free from injury. I ran a 5k in 25:21 and started a full 4-week training plan for my next 5k. Speed training has not been as scary as I thought. I've been able to meet my goals in most cases, and, if not, put forth my best effort and realize that not every day will be my best day. I started back on the No S Diet as far as sweets go (I can have them Fridays and Saturdays but not during the rest of the week) and am committing to eating at home when I'm home by myself and not buying smoothies or other snacks out. I'd like to lean out a bit, and hopefully additional miles + cutting out unnecessary junk will help that happen.

I have two more weeks of the 5k training plan before the next race on the 20th. I hit 43mpw this week and hope to be back in the 40s after this back down week. I'd love to get under 25min in the next 5k and think it's possible if I really push. Last, I'll spend the last two weeks of July starting a 9-week 1/2 marathon training program for the Fox Cities Half on Sept 20. Tonight I'm going to work on putting it into my calendar while D watches his last two episodes of The Tick.

Long term, I wanted to run 8 races in 2008- that looks like maybe one more 5k before Fox Cities and maybe the North Face Endurance Run half in October. That last one would probably be more of a "to finish it" kind of race, but it sounds so hard core. How can I pass it up?

Plans for this week

This will be a back-off week (35ish miles)- this works with my training schedule but also because we're going to San Francisco this coming weekend.

U- Either rest or elliptical. Probably elliptical because I'm feeling some Cold Stone induced guilt tonight.
M- 2.5mi w/u, 4mi at 10k pace, 2.5mi c/d
T- 4mi
W- 6mi
R- 2.5mi w/u, 5x1k at 5k pace, 2.5 c/d
F- walking around SF
S- 6mi

Hahaha, just kidding... more like
T-6mi with 4mi tempo
W-8mi easy
R-8mi with 5x1k
F-Vacation :)

First long run in awhile

I did my first long run in about forever today. 14mi in a little under 2:18, and I hit 13.1 in 2:06ish. That gives me hope that, with training, I can run my next half in something like 1:55. I did the whole thing right about 9:40 pace, which felt easy for most of the run, but I was definitely feeling the heat at the end. I need to get moving earlier and probably bring some electrolyte replacement drink with me.

Thursday, July 3, 2008

It's almost like Friday Thursday

I didn't post about my last two runs because they were boring. 4 easy on Tuesday and 6.25 easy on Wednesday. Today was back to the track with 5, 4, 3, 2 laps starting at 10k pace and getting faster. Well, I started slightly slower than 10k pace and stayed there until the last 800m when I sped up just a touch. I definitely wouldn't call it a bad workout, but I've hit all my paces perfectly in the last 3 I've done, and it would have been nice to do it again today. But honestly I knew that having a "slow" day was bound to happen sometime.

The breakdown was:

9.25mi in 1:27:23

2.5ish warm up
1.27 in 10:43 (8.25 pace)
1.02 in 8:33 (8.25 pace)
.75 in 6:20 (8.25 pace) Seem to be seeing a trend here...
.51 in 4:12 (8:10 pace)
2.5ish cool down

I'm planning to go to the gym to lift today, but I think I need to concentrate on upper body. My legs are basically shot. Luckily tomorrow is a very easy day... 2.25 with some elliptical. I think I need it :).