Sunday, August 31, 2008

week of 25 August

Monday 6.14 1:00:44 9:53 133 (66%)
Tuesday 6.15 0:58:49 9:34 133 (66%)
Wednesday 14.00 1:58:45 8:29 150 (75%)
Thursday 6.42 0:59:58 9:20 133 (66%)
Friday 9.90 1:22:29 8:20 154 (77%)
Saturday 10.08 1:34:16 9:21 136 (68%)
Sunday 18.06 2:42:09 8:59 147 (73%)

This Week 70.75 10:37:10 9:00 143 (71%)

I pretty much followed the plan I laid out for the week. I was originally ambitious and was going to do 12 on Saturday but rethought that and wanted to make sure I didn't leave myself too sore for the 18 on Sunday. This was quite a nice schedule Wednesday was the only day I had to drive in early to work to get in a run. As a result, I got to see the kids before work 4 out of 5 days, which is nice.

The heart rates really tell the story. The easy days were easy and the hard day were hard. Today's 18-miler was kind of interesting. After the 14 went so easily on Wednesday, I thought I'd cruise today, but my heart rate really climbed by the end. It didn't really feel that much harder though.

Time Distance Split time Split distance Split pace Avg. HR
0:09:52 1.01 9:52 1.01 9:49 131 (66%)
0:19:05 2.02 9:11 1.02 9:01 133 (67%)
0:28:04 3.03 8:59 1.00 8:58 138 (69%)
0:37:17 4.04 9:12 1.01 9:08 140 (70%)
0:46:27 5.04 9:10 1.00 9:08 138 (69%)
0:55:26 6.05 8:58 1.01 8:55 141 (71%)
1:04:25 7.06 8:58 1.01 8:54 142 (71%)
1:13:36 8.07 9:11 1.01 9:06 143 (72%)
1:22:35 9.07 8:59 1.00 9:00 144 (72%)
1:31:25 10.07 8:49 1.00 8:49 142 (71%)
1:40:25 11.08 9:00 1.01 8:54 147 (74%)
1:49:23 12.08 8:58 1.00 8:58 150 (75%)
1:58:20 13.08 8:56 1.00 8:56 153 (76%)
2:07:18 14.08 8:58 1.00 8:57 154 (77%)
2:16:01 15.08 8:43 1.00 8:44 158 (79%)
2:24:48 16.09 8:46 1.01 8:44 160 (80%)
2:33:39 17.09 8:50 1.01 8:46 163 (81%)
2:42:09 18.06 8:30 0.97 8:49 165 (83%)

It was 73 w/ a dew pt of 64 at the start and climbed to about 77 by the end. I just had water (maybe 20 oz), which probably wasn't enough. I also think I'm just one of those cats who doesn't handle heat well. I'm hoping it cools off before the half marathon on the 14th. Looks like Mindi suffered the same fate today, but with higher temps.


I watched the golden league on the treadmill on Saturday. Bekele was unreal. He has to be from another planet or something. He just ran completely by himself for the last 8 minutes or so on his way to a 12:50 a week after winning double gold.

Friday, August 29, 2008

marathon pace and breakfast

I did a tusca pick 'em this morning -- meaning I grabbed one of the workouts he suggested and did it. I did 2 mi wup, 4 x (1 mi MP, 0.5 mi MP + :30), 2 mi cdn for 10.0 miles. I did the MP on a .1 miles per lap track. Miles were (from memory) 7:35, 7:33, 7:32, 7:32 and "rests" were ~ 3:53 - 3:57 (didn't quite slow :30). On the last MP effort my heart rate was around 168 for the last half of the last MP interval, so that's right what I'd expect. It would generally drop to ~157 by the end of the MP + :30 segment. All of this was in a steady rain that left me soaked. I don't really mind running in the rain except that my shoes get soaked. Weather was 68/dp 68 (100% humidity), so this was a decent result. Still I think I'm north of 3:15 (7:26 pace) right now even with an ideal course and ideal weather. If I dropped some of this weight though, I think I'd be in business.

Now onto breakfast. I usually don't eat breakfast except a granola bar in the car. Yesterday I felt awful by lunch and realized I ran 600 cals and then ate only 140 by lunch. That can't be good. This of course leaves me starving and I end up eating 70% of my calories between 6 and 9 pm, which probably isn't good. Anyway, this morning I had Recoverite (180 cals) when I got back, a bowl of Kashi (160) after I got out of the shower and a Trader Joe's granola bar in the car (140). Well, it's a start.

How do you allocate your calories throughout the day?

Thursday, August 28, 2008

small circles in the rain

Bowing to the will of the knee I went to run quarter-mile loops on the grass at a nearby elementary school. With the light rain and long grass, my shoes were soaked halfway through the first lap and I moved to the tenth-mile crushed gravel track, which is almost as forgiving as the grass and has the added benefit of being flat. 60 minutes of monotony. I had the iPod though, so I just zoned out. I need to fix the squeaky treadmill. It might be more entertaining while I rehab the knee.

I weighed myself last night and was astonished to see 166.8. Wow. Time to cut down on the food.

Wednesday, August 27, 2008

14 moderate on hump day

My tweaked knee is still tweaked as it has been for the last 3+ weeks, but I felt like running and came away with some (nearly) round numbers. 14.0/8:30/149 in 1h59m. It felt good to shake the rust off. I also like the ~2hrs, ~150 bpm, and 8:30 min/mi roundness of it all. Having a medium long run to go with your weekly long run is a necessity for marathon training in my book.

This 14 felt very easy. I think I've stretched my miles about the best I can with the 3 high days, 3 low days strategy. When the high days shift mid-week, I can't get anymore than about 14/day in the morning, so I'm stuck in the low 40's for my 3-day mileage total. I also think I need to add some speed endurance to my endurance.

So with a nod to the 7-day week and some inspiration from Joseph's comment, I'm thinking of doing

Mo - 60' ez
Tu - 60' ez
We - 14 miles moderate
Th - 60' ez
Fr - some kind of "workout" (could just be 4-6@80%) - total ~10 miles
Sa - 12 or 13 miles easy
Su - 18+ (building to regular 20+ milers)
Total - ~70 mpw

I've become a firm believer in the back-to-back thing so I'm leaving the Sa/Su. One of my biggest jumps in running came when "training" for the Disney Goofy Challenge (half on Sat, full on Sun) where I did 13 on Sat and 18+ on Sunday.

Tuesday, August 26, 2008

kinda edgy

I think the long drive on Saturday and hard run on Sunday put me on edge. I slept horribly Saturday and Sunday night. I've kept the runs on Monday and Tuesday to only 6 miles. Part of my motivation today was to be able to see my daughter this morning before work (rather than drive in and do a longer run) because today is here 9th birthday.

I'm in the self doubt phase of training right now. This phase gets exacerbated by reading too many running web sites and looking at high temperature/humidity runs.

Here are the data from the first 10 miles of Annapolis and Frederick.

----Annapolis 10--------Frederick marathon

Temps averaged 74 with a dp of 67 during annapolis and were mid- to upper-50s during the first 10 miles of Frederick. Total elevation gain in Annapolis was ~1000' according to motion-based and it was ~1400 feet gain over all 26.2 miles and the second half was way, way hillier, so I'd conservatively say <400' for the first 10 miles. So how do these apples and oranges compare? Who knows?

Frequency, duration, and intensity. Those are the only running variables, but it's amazing how you can drive yourself crazy wondering if you're doing the best mix. My 3 up, 3 down experiment has been interesting, but I'm getting anxious. I have done any runs over 17, but I feel 17/13/13 on consecutive days is worth more than a 20 miler. But is it? I've also been plodding around waiting to adapt and be ready for more speed, but shouldn't I just press it (A10 was a start). Do I have enough time? About 13.5 weeks away now and some of that is for tapering.

I'm sure of at least one thing. My mid-section is larger than it was. Fried seafood isn't conducive to weight loss. Need to do something about that. Blah.

I'm hoping for good weather at the half on the 14th. I'm racing that sucker like I did last year, which will be a real data point if the weather is good.

Sunday, August 24, 2008

week of 18 August

Date Distance Time pace Avg. HR
Monday 6.55 0:59:08 9:02 133 (66%)
Tuesday 6.31 0:58:07 9:13 130 (65%)
Wednesday 15.30 2:22:31 9:19 139 (70%)
Thursday 15.04 2:17:37 9:09 137 (68%)
Friday 12.05 1:52:15 9:19 140 (70%)
Sunday 10.10 1:19:22 7:52 168 (84%)

This Week 65.34 9:49:00 9:01 141 (71%)

Monday through Friday were on St Simon's Island, GA. Temps at 7am ranged from 75 to 81 and dew points were between 72 and 76 (sticky!). I got to share my Wed-Fr run with tropical storm Faye, which provided for some 30+ mph winds to make things sporty. It was pancake flat though, so my paces weren't bad. Saturday was an off day as we made the 11 hour drive home.

I ran the Annapolis 10 miler today. The plan was to run it like the first 10 miles of a marathon. I planned to run all the miles <=169 avg hr, but as you can see, I cheated, especially in the last mile when I ran and chatted with a guy who also happened to be doing a marathon pace run (nobody else looked like they felt like chatting!). Still I ran more conservatively than the first 10 miles of Frederick (160, 168, 170, 169, 170, 171, 171, 171, 171, 171). Here's the elevation chart and splits. Time Distance Split time dist pace Avg. HR Elev. chg.
0:08:05 1.05 8:05 1.05 7:44 156 (78%) -48

0:15:36 2.05 7:31 1.01 7:30 165 (82%) +22
0:23:21 3.06 7:44 1.01 7:40 169 (84%) +10
0:31:18 4.06 7:56 1.00 7:58 169 (84%) +12
0:38:47 4.99 7:29 0.93 8:02 170 (85%) -17

0:46:34 5.95 7:47 0.96 8:07 170 (85%) +68

0:54:35 6.93 8:00 0.99 8:07 171 (85%) -18
1:03:16 8.03 8:41 1.09 7:57 170 (85%) +13
1:10:53 9.02 7:36 0.99 7:41 169 (85%) -83
1:19:21 10.10 8:28 1.08 7:53 173 (86%) +58

Avg hr: 168, pace 7:52 per Garmin (actually 7:56).
(The mile markers were only approximately at the miles as you can see. )

At start time it was 73 with a dew point of 67 and cloudless. An hour later it was 76/66.

Last year at A10, the temp/dp were 73/72 -- quite a bit more steamy -- and I did a 4.7-mile warmup. I was much slower then. 1:23:46 and heart rates were higher 162, 169, 171, 172, 172, 172, 172, 173, and 181 -- avg 173. It's hard to compare with the higher dew pt and long warmup (versus no warmup), but I'm pretty sure I'm in better shape. I figured before the race that I'd be happy with <8 min/mi and marathon-like heart rates, so I think I achieved that.

An oh by the way... Don't wash and dry your cell phone with your water bottle holder like I did on Friday. Of course it didn't work when I tried it after the laundry service, but amazingly after a couple of days, it dried out and came back to life. Thumbs up to LG.

Sunday, August 17, 2008

week of 11 August

Mo - 6.2/~9:00/136 -- usual home route. no garmin
Tu - 4.2/8:22/143 -- Ft. Walton Beach, FL; chased by in by thunder storms
We - ~6.5/8:55/139 -- Ft. Walton Beach, FL; distance a guess since garmin was stopped for ~15 minutes
Th - 17.2/8:49/141 -- Atlanta, GA
Fr - 13.4/9:13/137 -- Atlanta, GA
Sa - 13.5/9:17/133 -- Atlanta, GA
Su - 6.7/8:56/137 -- St Simons Island, GA

Week - 67.7 (don't have my s/w with me for other stats)

Did a tour of the Southeast this week. The weather was very good for where I was. Th was especially nice and I took advantage and did my longest run then. Whenever I travel I appreciate just how hilly my routes in northern virginia are. Atlanta is pretty hilly actually but not where I was. Ft Walton beach is basically flat and St Simons is a pancake. They are *humid* though.

By far the toughest run was the Saturday run. After the 17 and 13, the last 4 miles felt like the last 4 of a 20 miler. This is what I'm going for of course.

Monday, August 11, 2008

56 degrees!

Holy cow, the weather was amazing this morning!

Sunday, August 10, 2008

week of 4 August

Mo - 10.32 9:00 139
Tu - 6.31 9:21 136
We - 6.17 9:35 139
Th - 6.16 9:31 137
Fr - 12.77 9:03 140
Sa - 15.45 9:08 143
Su - 12.07 9:26 137

This Week 69.25 10:40:12 9:15 139

The weather was fantastic the last three days -- a little under 70 and dew point in the mid-50s. I'm surprised my pace/heart race wasn't better.

The left knee is a bit tweaked. It only bothers me on very steep downhills though and when walking up and down stairs.

Friday, August 08, 2008

Month by month

I upgrade to SportTracks2 and played with some of the graph features (which at first weren't very intuitive). Anyway, I came up with the above. That March to April improvement was pretty nice. I dropped 16 secs/mile while dropping a bpm.

Thursday, August 07, 2008

Boogie Chillin'

Listened to John Lee Hooker on the way home and this struck me as a great title for a post. Unfortunately, I'm not creative enough to tie it to something about running. (OK, maybe high pace with low heart rate is boogie while chillin' but that's the best I can do.)

Three days of one-hour runs. No new is good news. I still tweak the left knee on the one very short, steep downhill, but it seems to be improving. The three days of slacking are over and higher mileage is ahead.

Wednesday, August 06, 2008


Of course, I haven't followed through on the diet. I haven't even been weighing myself. This morning, however, I looked in the mirror and thought I'd put on a few. I hopped on the scale and saw 162.7. Yikes. I was in the 157 range before Frederick. If I'm not < 155 before 29 November, I'll have no excuses. Still, I've ramped up my mileage in the last couple of weeks and I don't like to add the stress of dieting at the same time. My pattern seems to be to gain weight during base training and lose it when I start doing intervals. I have no idea why that is. Maybe there's something to this high intensity interval training for weight loss. Of course, it's no good in the long run for aerobic development.

Sunday, August 03, 2008

Week of 28 July

Mo - 10.34 1:38:53 9:34 131
Tu - 13.04 2:02:28 9:24 136
We - 6.11 0:59:59 9:49 134
Th - 6.64 1:02:56 9:29 141
Fr - 6.26 0:59:17 9:28 138
Sa - 12.82 1:59:14 9:18 142
Su - 15.06 2:21:04 9:22 135

Week - 70.27 11:03:51 9:27 137
July - 282.99 43:31:44 9:14 139
January - 296.06 45:32:10 9:14 139

July was my second biggest month ever. I ran 296 in January. That's not a typo above. My average pace and heart rate were identical for January and July. I feel pretty good about that considering it's a wee bit warmer in July.

My left knee gave me trouble today. I think I've reported before that I've had this problem where my left knee can occasionally hyperextend and give me a sharp pain in the back of the knee. I never get the sharp pain during running (it usually happens carrying my daughter to bed or something like that), but I sometimes feel a strain back there when running. Today was one of those days. I also had a couple of times today on very short steep downhills where my knee didn't quite track right and I got a sharp pain on the medial side. I noticed this last week when I had trouble walking down the stairs during a fire drill at work. If there are no stair-like descents, I don't seem to have a problem.

Have a good week everyone!

Saturday, August 02, 2008

Brian Sell interview

This interview will Brian Sell is worth reading if you have a minute.

"as far as feeling fresh, it’s always been just a kind of calloused dull feeling in the middle of these 160, 170-mile weeks where I never feel great but I never feel like just stopping and walking either."

"What have been your high mileage weeks in this cycle?
BS: About 166 this week, and hopefully about the same next week or maybe 170, and then probably start coming down a little when I head down to Florida."

"I’m hoping for the worst conditions possible."