26 February 2012

A Little Bit Faster

~Weekly Stats~
Runs: 6
Rest Days: 1
Miles: 64.9
Time: 8:41:49

This week I started doing more speed work and marathon pace work. I have a target marathon in mind but am waiting to post about it. I still am not sure if I can afford the race. It is several hours away so I would need to stay overnight somewhere, cost of gas is going up and the race fee itself. Since my wife and I are only working part time and I have student loans that we are paying off, this race may not be in the cards. But if it is, I want to be ready for it.

I had three quality runs this week. Tuesday was an 8 mile run with 6 miles at goal marathon pace. I ran with a friend who is training for Boston. Luckily, my goal marathon pace is his tempo pace. So we targeted 6:51 per mile and ended up running 6:49's.

Thursday was my 6 mile run with 4x1 mile @goal 10k pace. Splits for that were 6:06, 6:05, 6:07 and 6:02; this was slightly faster than last week and gave me a lot of confidence in my chances at a PR in two weeks.

My final quality run was my long run yesterday. I ran 20.4 miles @8:14 pace. I would have like the average pace to be a bit faster but it was crazy windy during the run. I think the gusts were up to 40 mph. There were several places where we felt we were being pushed back. I ran the first 17 with Tom. Here is the breakdown of those miles; 11 @ 8:19, 5 @ 7:19, 1 @ 8:5x. We ran with another group of people who were going at a slower pace. Once we finished the distance Tom wanted, I headed back out on the trail to catch the other three runners in our group and finish with them. In all it was a good run.

I have noticed my patellar tendinitis flaring up a little. That is why I took today off from running. I have had my knee taped up all week but it really bothered me during the last few miles yesterday. I think part of it is how much I have picked up my speed this month. In January, I ran 250 miles @ 9:04 pace. So far I have 225 miles @ 8:15 pace this month. Next week I am going to make sure my easy runs are super easy and hopefully that will help. If not, I may need to re-hash my training schedule.

I was able to get to the gym twice this week for strength work! The goal is to keep that up all year. I do need to change the days I am lifting though. Stupidly, I lifted Friday knowing I had a long run Saturday morning. My arms were definitely sore and my water bottle felt like it weighed twenty pounds. No more weights on Friday. Next week will be my last at this mileage and intensity before my 10k. I plan on backing off mileage a little that week to give myself a better shot at a PR.

19 February 2012

Week 10: The Start of Something New

~Weekly Stats~
Runs: 7
Rest Days: 0
Miles: 60.2
Time: 8:13:36

This was a great week of running! And I made it to the gym twice for strength training. One of my major downfalls is that I do not do any cross training and very little strength training. So I am trying to lift weights and do core work at least twice a week.

My three workouts this week were Monday, Tuesday and Thursday. Monday was a 5 mile progression run starting at 6:48 mile pace and ending at 5:57. Tuesday was an 11 miler including 8 miles w/800+ feet of elevation gain (so 1600+ feet of elevation change). Thursday was 4x1 mile at goal 10k pace. Splits for that were 6:07, 6:07, 6:07, 6:04. No, I'm not that good at pacing. I just did the workout on a treadmill.

While I am still doing my easy runs much slower than before, I think I am transitioning out of HADD training and into a race cycle. I will still do the HADD fitness test to see how I am doing but after nine weeks of base training I feel ready for a cycle. I'm still not 100% sure about how this cycle will end but it may be an attempt at a sub-3 marathon. I know I said a few weeks ago that I am a long ways off from that but I think I may have been wrong. Once I run my 10k on March 10th, I will have a much better idea what kind of shape I am in.

See ya'll next week. Same bat-time, same bat-channel.

12 February 2012

Week Nine

~Weekly Stats~ Runs: 7 Rest Days: 0 Miles: 63.3 Time: 8:36:46

06 February 2012

HADD Benchmark #1

It might be two weeks late but I finally got around to doing my HADD fitness test. I did my baseline test back in December. You can see where I was starting from here. These were today's results:


For those keeping score who don't feel like looking at the previous post, here is how I improved/didn't improve.

HR/Pace Change(seconds/mile)

Overall a I am showing good improvement. I've still got a long way to go before making a serious attempt at a sub three hour marathon. I am very happy with these results.

The differences between this test and my baseline test: location, warm up/cool down, and rest. The baseline test was not done exactly how it should have been. I didn't warm up or cool down and I ran straight through each 1.5 mile interval with no rest. This test I did right. I had a short warm up and cool down and took a 90 second rest between intervals. As for the location, I decided I didn't want to run laps anywhere so I drove down to the Foothills Trail where there is a nice, uninterrupted (read no street crossings), flat section of trail for 2 miles. This is where I did the repeats. So read into this as much or as little as you would like. I feel that the location has little affect on my paces. The rest, however, probably worked out in my favor. While I did show improvement almost across the board, it probably would have been by a slightly lower margin had I done rests in my initial test.

I signed up for a 10K race which will take place on March 10th. I'm not going to shift my training toward that distance but still hope to run a PR based on my (improving) level of fitness. Since it is six weeks until that race, I will do another benchmark test in five weeks to see if I show more improvement.

Run Strong.

05 February 2012

Week Eight

Ok, so there is only one blog post this week. I had initially planned this post plus a post around Thursday with the results of my HADD fitness test. Well, the test got pushed back. Instead I did a speedwork session with my friend Tom who is getting ready for the Boston Marathon. More on that session in a bit.

Weekly Stats~
Runs: 7
Rest Days: 0
Miles: 54.2
Time: 8:07:33

This was a great week! It was my seventh straight week of 50+ miles and coming off of a week that had a 25 mile long run! Since I did run 25 last Saturday (Jan 28), I took it easy pace wise for Monday-Wednesday. Then on Thursday I ran a speed workout with Tom to help him get ready for Boston.

Warm up and cool down aside, the workout was 4x1 mile with 0.5 mile recovery between. The splits I got on my Garmin were 6:20, 6:23, 6:16, 6:08.  I pushed the pace a little on that last repeat to get a better idea of my max heart rate (since I'm doing this whole HADD training thing, I thought it might be a good idea). So, instead of operating with a max hr between 185 and 190, I now believe my true max is closer to 200bpm. Tomorrow I will actually due my fitness test...which I should have done two weeks ago...oh well. Life happens.

Run Strong.