Sunday, February 28, 2010

Sunday Long Run (9.83 mi - 1:25:08 - 8:39 min/mi)

Six weeks to go until the Cherry Blossom 10-miler. I completed a challenging 17 miles this weekend. Funny, when begin training for my marathons those 17 miles will be just a Sunday run. I just glad that I can get out and run outside again.

Garmin Connect - Activity Details for Sunday Long Run (9.83 mi - 1:25:08 - 8:39 min/mi)

Saturday, February 27, 2010

Saturday Key Workout (7.07 mi - 55:51 - 7:53)

The idea was to do some time at my goal 10-miler pace. I thought about going one mile for a warm-up then alternate one mile at target pace and one minute of an easy pace until I reached seven miles. I was running for the first time in Greenbelt Park and thoroughly enjoyed it, but I had to adjust to the terrain.

My first reality check was the fact that the hills were pretty intense and second I had to find my way around the first lap. I tried to find my goal pace, but was working too hard to adjust to the hills to hit the mark. So, I adjusted a bit to the new course. I could run a 3K lap around my parking area and then recover with a walk. I began to find a pace around 7:45 min/mi I will have to push that time down a bit.

Garmin Connect - Activity Details for Saturday Key Workout (7.07 mi - 55:51 - 7:53)

Thursday, February 25, 2010

Thursday Interval Workout (6 mi - 49:15 - 8:13 min/mi)

It's time for me to get serious about a goal time for this 10-miler. I have toyed around with 8 min/mi pace for the 10 miles, but since I've already done faster in training I'll have to pick a faster goal. I think I've settled down on 7:30 min/mi, which will give me a 1 hour 13 minute race time. So, now I have got to figure out how to train for that.

I think I need a key workout each week to test out my running strength. I am going to do it based on training interval distances at my goal race pace until it becomes easy. Today, I planned to run a warm-up followed by three 1 mile intervals at goal pace followed by a minute and a half of jogging. I managed to do the intervals. Next key workout has to be on a Saturday where I will go for seven 1 mile intervals with a jog break.

Wednesday, February 24, 2010

Wednesday Aerobic Interval Work (4.06 mi - 32:53 - 8:05 min/mi)

Was supposed to do 5 to 8 miles of aerobic intervals (15 secs hard, 45 secs easy). The cold and the need to cook dinner cut the run distance a bit. I decided to take the run inside the neighborhood and ran nearly every street and was surprised to find how easy it was to get 4 miles in under the street lamps - two 'out-and-backs' would've done the trick.

Garmin Connect - Activity Details for Wednesday Aerobic Interval Work (4.06 mi - 32:53 - 8:05 min/mi)

Tuesday, February 23, 2010

Tuesday Easy Run (4 miles - 33:29 - 8:22 min/mi)

I went out this early evening thinking that I was going to run outside on a trail. I drove to the WB&A Trail and found the park's driveway only plowed one lane. I found some way to park my car without getting caught in the snow and decided to find out if the trail had less snow than the parking lot. I trudged about 100 meters and then the snow height grew to about 8 inches deep. I turned around and drove to the local high school track. The track was not plowed.

I just scooped up some dinner for the family, went home and jumped on the treadmill for a four mile jaunt. I started slow at 6.7 mph (8:57 min/mi pace) then stepped it up to 8 mph (7:30 min/mi pace) for the third mile. I then ran the last mile at 7 mph for three laps and sprinted the last lap at 10 mph (6:00 min/mi).

Sunday, February 21, 2010

Sunday Long Run (9.68 miles - 1:19:19 - 8:11 min/mi)

I ran outside today for only the second time this February. It was glorious. I scheduled a long run of 10 miles, but had a bit of a time crunch so decided to cut it short. I did two laps around the neighborhood and my legs remembered what hills felt like. Mostly even splits between 7:50 and 8:30 min/mi paces, nothing too strenuous. Much to my surprise was the fact that I weigh under 190 for the first time this year, which is weird given this weekend I have been eating Ledo's pizza and Five Guys cheeseburgers.

Note: Since I've been running most recently on my treadmill, trails, and city sidewalks I forgot what running on roads is like. Road camber (the tilt on either side of the street intended to assist drainage) stinks. I think my right leg absorbs more of my weight than left because I run on the left side of the road (which is the side facing traffic in my part of the world).

Garmin Connect - Activity Details for Sunday Long Run (9.68 miles - 1:19:19 - 8:11 min/mi)

Saturday, February 20, 2010

Saturday Easy Run (5 miles - 42:37 - 8:31 min/mi)

Today I ran an easy pace (roughly 6.7 mph or an 8:57 min/mi) for 5 miles with four 400 meter strides at a 9 mph (6:40 min/mi) pace. The average pace over the entire run was 8:31 min/mi.

I have been training for quite some time now without a race. The Cherry Blossom is coming up in 7 weeks but that will be 4 1/2 months of training without a race, but that's expected for a marathon not a 10-miler.

I plan to run outside tomorrow. I hope the WB&A trail is clear of snow.

Friday, February 19, 2010

Friday Cross Train (45 minute elliptical trainer)

Decided to cross-train today. I did a 45-minute elliptical workout with variable intensity (tension) levels. I accomplished 2,667 revolutions that equal 2.38 miles on the elliptical by my formula: (elliptical stride radius in inches * PI) / a foot multiplied by revolutions over 5,280 feet (one mile).

Thursday, February 18, 2010

Thursday Easy Day (5 miles - 41:19 - 8:15 min/mi)

Squeezed this run in today before my daughter's ballet practice. I gave myself a time limit rather than a mileage goal. Run as many miles as you can before 6 PM. I got started close to 5:15 and hit 7 mph (8:34 min/mi) on the treadmill. I kept that pace for 3.50 miles then picked it up to 7.5 mph (8:00 min/mi) for a half mile. Great it's now about 5:50. So, I said, "One more mile. A quick one." I ran 8 mph (7:30 min/mi) pace and finished the last quarter mile with 9 mph pace (6:40 min/mi).

This was a simple, compressed workout in a little over 40 minutes. I was supposed to make this an easy run, one mile longer than my usual easy run day. Well, that didn't happen, but the workout was good.

Wednesday, February 17, 2010

Wednesday Interval Run (3 miles - 23:35 - 7:51 min/mi)

Started off this run determined to run 6 miles of on/off intervals, 45 seconds of a med-slow pace (6 mph) and 15 seconds of a fast pace (9 mph). I did this for one mile then the safety cord popped out of the treadmill causing it to stop. I lost the low motivation I had to run then and just ran a med-fast 8 mph (7:30 min/mi) pace for two miles. I picked it up to 8.5 mph (7:03 min/mi) pace for the last lap and called it a night.

I really want to run outside. I might need to consider running through the parking lots at work to get some runs outside. I saw few guys trying that today.

Tuesday, February 16, 2010

Tuesday Recovery Run (6 miles - 51:03 - 8:30 min/mi)

I will be treadmill bound for quite some time. Six miles in 51:03 tonight. Running at 7 mph for 4 miles, a quick walk then up to 7.5 mph for the next mile and a lap. Then closed the run with a 8 mph for the final lap. Nothing to see here, move along.

Saturday, February 13, 2010

Saturday Long Run (10 miles - 1:19:39 - 7:58 min/mi)

Mental Toughness

Woohoo! Today's run might've been my longest, fastest ever negative split run. I ran 10 miles in 1:19:39 a 7:58 min/mi average pace. I ran 7.5 mph (8:00 min/mi) for the majority of the time, but since I planned on walking for a minute at the 6 mile mark I ran a bit faster (8 mph) at 5.75 miles. I slowed down to 4 mph to drank some water and ate a few fruit snacks and got back to running in a bit over a minute. I had serious time to make up in order to get my negative split. I finished 8 miles in around 62:30 minutes. I had to pick up the pace. I increased the pace one tenth of a mph every quarter mile until the last mile when I started running 8 mph and I finished running at 8.3 mph.

My training thus far has not had many negative splits. I negative splitted by a mere 21 seconds, but at that pace I would've been proud to gut it out. I used the Runner's World training predictor to calculate my paces and see my predicted finish times based on my most recent race performance. My 3:58:23 marathon performance proclaimed that I would get a 1:25:53 10 mile race result. I did not think that was right so I put that thought into my training today.

My scheduled workout today was to run 10 miles at 80% of my maximum heart rate. Um... what a max heart rate you say? Well it is a tool used to help athletes target a maximum efficiency from a workout and it is calculated using a variety of fancy formulas, such as 220 - (age * .8). Other than that I know that you typically want to train at 60 - 70% of your maximum heart rate most of the time and attempt to improve your conditioning by training at your 80% max heart rate (also known as the VO2 max) once or twice a week.

That said, I have no idea what my max heart rate is. I don't even know what my resting heart rate is. I know that I did not want continuously attempt to achieve arbitrary levels of intensity. I have no idea how fast I should expect to run but I no that I've never run to the level that I puked. So, theoretically I can go a bit harder. All this coincides with the article read on the mental side of running in the March Runner's World where Kara Goucher saw improvements when challenged to get rid of self defeating thoughts by sports psychologist Dr. Darren Treasure. Of the many takeaways I got from the article I got the affirmation word to use when things get tough, "Fighter." Another thing is that when you want to get better or win in the face of competition you have got to go some places that other people and even yourself fear. You have got to take them into deep water. I gonna have to leave the kiddie pool soon.

Friday, February 12, 2010

Friday Four Miler (33:21@ 8:20 min/mi)

A funny thing happened to me today when I was doing my four mile training run. I had spent some of this morning watching the replay of the 2009 Boston Marathon on the Universal Sports website. One of the most dramatic parts of that marathon was the three person race down Boyleston Street between Salina Kosgei, Dire Tune, and Kara Goucher. I noticed that Kosgei used a bit of a hunched over posture with some of her center of mass forward, ahead of her feet. I ran the first mile or so in my standard upright position and felt the typical treadmill running lethargy. I then pitched forward to emulate the 2009 Boston women's champ and could barely resist increasing my pace.

I ran the first 2.5 miles with the pace set to 7 mph (8:34 min/mi) after completing that distance I increased it to 7.5 mph (8:00 min/mi) with a fast finish final lap of 8 mph (7:30 min/mi). So, today's four mile run was 4 miles in 33:21 for an average pace of 8:20 min/mi.

During the faster portion of my run I thought of my expected race strategies. I am registered to run the Cherry Blossom 10-miler in April. I expect to set my pace for the 10-miler for 8:00 min/mi and try to negative split the second half and come in at 1:15:00. I wonder whether I have been training correctly for this speed. I have done few speed workouts and have been fairly consistently training for some kind of race since mid-November. I'll be looking for a proper training plan to get me some confidence for this time in the next few weeks. My base is strong.

Thursday, February 11, 2010

Thursday Easy Recovery Day (6 miles - 53:07 - 8:51 min/mi)

Micro blog today. Did an easy recovery run with a fast finish today. Mostly ran 6.7 mph pace, but ran 7.5 mph at 2.75 and walked a minute (4 mph) at 3 miles. I then ran for some time at 6.8 and finished the last quarter mile at 9 mph (6:40 min/mi pace). Legs are still feeling good. I tried out the Dynamic Stretching routine from the March 2010 Runner's World to alleviate some tightness I've been having post run. I am not sure if it worked yet.

Wednesday, February 10, 2010

Snow day run

Today's training was a schedule six mile run at a moderate pace with 4 accelerations. I ran on my treadmill again because of the Snowpacalypse outside. The pace I choose was 7 mph (an 8:34 min/mi pace) and I accelerated to 9 mph for a quarter mile at 2 miles, 3.75 miles, 4.75 miles, and 5.75 miles each time slowing for a 4 mph walk for 200 meters. The legs are feeling good. Running in the mid-afternoon feels good. The severity of this snowstorm is not good.

Re-did week 5 day 1 of the hundred pushups challenge: 36, 40, 30, 26, 45 (max out). Then did my first 8-minute abs session in quite some time as well as 8-min arms, which was new for me. Maybe the snowstorm is doing me and fam some good, my wife is putting in some quality workouts as well.

Tuesday, February 9, 2010

Back from Summer into the Ice Age

Back from Summer (in the Southern Hemisphere) and in to the Ice Age

Its been a while since have blogged or trained properly. I've been literally all over the world in the last 2 weeks. I have trekked all over San Francisco California, Sydney Australia, and Wellington New Zealand.

A thirteen hour layover in San Francisco before the next leg of my outgoing flight had me take the BART train to downtown San Francisco. After taking the obligatory trolley to Fisherman's Wharf I walked the entire length of the boardwalk down to the Bay Bridge and back to the Market Street trolley where I caught a bus to the Golden Gate Bridge. I walked more than half its length before turning around so I could have some dinner and catch my evening flight to Sydney.

I had an awesome hotel in the Circular Quay area of Sydney for my one night layover to New Zealand. I immediately changed my clothes and ran out around the Government House to the Sydney Opera House around the Circular Quay, through the street markets on Argyle Street and found my way up to the Harbour Bridge and did an out and back there before returning to the hotel.

In the morning I ran back to the Opera House and around to The Rocks and under the Harbour Bridge and back to the hotel. After a quick trip to Bondi Beach I was on my way to Wellington, NZL.

My early arrival and subsequent working day in New Zealand kept me from a run around the beautiful bay city of Wellington until the next morning. In the morning I ran out east along the boardwalk to the stadium at Wellington where the New Zealand Sevens rugby tournament would begin on that Friday. I ran a quick pace back and saw many fellow runners in the crowd. I later found out that the west bound route from the city center is a much better run, but oh well.

I didn't run any more during the trip, but proceeded to hike or as the New Zealanders call it "tramping" all over the immediate area. My first trip took me to the Botantical Gardens by cable car. I had an easy, beautiful walk back down to Lambton Quay and the Beehive.

On my last day in Wellington I sought out some awesome hiking trails. I took the train to Petone Station and did a three hour hike up the Kokoro Stream Track. I caught the bus back to Petone and walked around the Hutt City Trail until I could catch a bus to Days Bay. I had lunch and then took the Kereu Road track up the mountain, along the main ridge and down to Ferry Road - a two hour fifteen minute tramp.

The latter hike was really steep at times and harrowing at times. There were times when I had to question where the trail was, mud and shallow water covered certain areas, and I even saw what I thought were boar tracks. But, the walks were beautiful and it felt good to "go walkabout" alone. I caught the ferry back to Wellington in time to run into the celebrations for the first day of the rugby tournament that was making the town look like a giant, drunk Halloween parade.

The way home was not lacking in adventure. My flight into Sydney from Wellington was late due to some serious rainfall attacking the east coast of Australia. After cooling my heels in the airport for nine hours, I finally caught my flight home and found out about the snowstorm bearing down on my home. By the time I arrived back in the US I knew it would be unlikely that I'd get home that night. Indeed my flight was canceled and I was put up in the Embassy Suites hotel in Burlingame, which I must say is awesome. Beautiful indoor courtyard and just what a person who has been traveling for 36 hours needed a free happy hour, indoor pool with sauna, and a free well appointed breakfast in the morning. And, it was no continental breakfast with crossaints and coffee, but custom cooked pancakes, omelets and a wide array of juices and coffees.

I was fortunate to have the same ticketing agent who sent me out the Australia handle my re-ticketing to DC. She took pity on me and moved me slyly from the standby list to the only booked flight to BWI that day. I arrived only to find that most cars couldn't breakout of the long term parking lot, but my SUV and determination got me free so that I could cautiously drive on barely plowed roads at 3AM past stranded cars and fallen trees to finally get home!

Now things are back to normal. Well, as normal as the DC area gets when buried under more than three feet of snow with a second storm burying us as I write.

Training update

I did 6 miles in 52:24 on my basement treadmill. The run was done to train negative splits. I started off at 6.5 mph and after the first mile I ran one tenth of a mile faster each half mile topping it off with 8 mph for the last 800 meters. Good workout.