Thursday, January 31, 2013

So, this happened.

I'm talking about this, a few weeks back, on my favorite trail (the Custis).  Oh, this also happened, very recently.  And this happened some time ago.  Attacks on a variety of DC area running routes.

(and no, I wasn't the involved party in any of these.  Just another reader of local media.)

Usually, when something like "this" happens, we look for "the cause."  Was s/he running alone?  Wearing headphones?  Running at night?  Running on a secluded trail?  

And of course, by "the cause" I mean "the thing that I can use to distinguish between what this person did and what I do, so that I can feel safe."

[interesting to see how many people miss the point of this post, and respond with a litany of all the actions they take to ensure their safety]

But the truth is, we're never completely safe.  We each have a balance that we strike between risk and security.  For myself, I won't run on trails by myself when it's dark, and avoid heavily wooded or isolated trails at anytime when alone.  I also don't run with headphones at all.  Some think that I'm overly cautious - "headphones are fine."  Others think I'm overly risky - "I never run by myself."   And that's fine.  We each have our own balance, our own comfort zone.

And that's what it is - a comfort zone.  We feel better for being in it, and maybe we've improved our odds, based on our choices.  But the comfort zone isn't a cone of invincibility, we're never safe.  There are no guarantees against not getting jumped while running.  Except not to run.  And not running is firmly outside my comfort zone.


That same urge to differentiate occurs any time a friend gets injured.  We make snap judgments about the "cause" -- "well, what do you expect if you only run on the treadmill/towpath/concrete?"  Or..."of course he got injured, he wears Vibrams/Newtons/Kayanos/Adrenalines."   You ask the injured person if they've ever tried foam-rolling/stretching/etc.

The selfless part of it is that you want to be helpful, and you don't know what else you can do.  The other, selfish part is that you want to distinguish between yourself and your injured friend.  If you don't run in that shoe or on that route, if you foam roll daily, then maybe you're safe.  It's only those who don't pool-run every Tuesday that get injured.  It's a bizarre type of elitism.

But it's just like the trails.  You can make choices that control your odds to some extent, but in the end there is only one certainty.  Shit happens, and the only certain way not to risk running injury is not to run.  And that's not an acceptable choice.

So we run on, zealously adhering to our careful selection of shoes/routes/accessories, convincing ourselves that those choices create an impassable barrier between us, the injured, and the assaulted.

Monday, January 28, 2013

Training log - Week ending 1/27/13

This week was 73.5 miles of “real running” plus 14 “miles” pool running -- training log is here.  

Interesting week.  I didn’t feel great at the beginning of the week due to the last bits of my head cold, plus some fatigue from the Sunday race.  But by Wednesday I was finally feeling like myself again.  Just in time for a bit of wintry weather to hit DC on Thursday.  Nothing too horrible, just enough to make the track and trails too slick for Friday’s scheduled tempo.

From Google street view; originally posted at
So, we relocated the workout to under the Whitehurst Freeway.   For those of you not from DC, the Whitehurst Freeway is an elevated highway in Georgetown, a bit less than a mile in length.  There’s a local road under it that’s shielded from the elements and can serve as a running route in a pinch.  That became our “track” as we ran back and forth between two intersections.   Run to the cross walk, turn 180, run back.  Repeat.

It was good for me, if not my favorite workout.  I’m definitely a rhythm runner – I pick up a pace and just gradually build speed with each lap, running on momentum.  I find that hairpin turns break up that groove and my zen and annoy me.  This was an opportunity to work on holding an even effort while having to continually stop and start – good practice.

Sunday’s long run was pretty cool.  I don’t usually get concerned about long runs – they tend to be the easiest workout of the week by far for me.  But I had a bit of trepidation this time.  I was scheduled for 20-22 miles, but had missed the previous week’s 16 miler (in Arizona), as well as the 18-20 miler the week before that (sick).  I had run 16 three weeks back, but that seemed to be in the distant past, and from 16-17 to 21 is a big jump.  But nothing to do except to do it, so to speak.  And it went very well – better than I possibly hoped it could.  21 miles felt easy, and the last two miles I dropped significantly below marathon pace without any intention of doing so – just couldn’t seem to slow down.    Big confidence boost.  So yay.  And onward.


Monday:   In the morning, 40 minutes of easy pool-running for “4 miles.”   Foam rolling at night.

Tuesday:  12 miles easy (8:02) in the morning; foam rolling at night.

Wednesday:   In the morning, 9 miles very easy (8:37 pace) followed by yoga.  Later did another 6.5 miles easy (7:59).  Foam rolling at night.

Thursday:   In the morning, 60 minutes of easy pool-running for “6 miles,” followed by upper body strength training and some injury prevention work.   Foam-rolling at night.

Friday:  In the morning, 13 miles, including a tempo workout of a bit over 27 minutes at tempo effort.  Followed with injury prevention work and 20 minutes shakeout pool-running.  Foam rolling at night.

Saturday:   In the morning, 12 miles easy (8:02 pace).  Foam-rolling, injury prevention work, and strength-training in the afternoon.

Sunday:   In the morning, 21 miles progression style, averaging 7:37.  It broke down as 8:21 for first 7, 7:40 for next 3.5, 7:22 for next 3.5, 7:04 for next 5, and 6:47 for last 2 miles.  Followed with 20 minutes shakeout pool-running.  Yoga and foam rolling at night.

Thursday, January 24, 2013

Doing it.

No whining.

It's a rule that Victoria imposes on the girls she coaches at synchronized swimming meets - as she explains,  "one person vocalizing their unhappiness can quickly bring the entire group spiraling down into a mess of negativity."  And that negativity then becomes an obstacle that the athlete has to overcome.  Why make competition tougher on yourself, and put yourself at a disadvantage?  Whining isn't bad because it's annoying (though it is annoying), it's bad because it blocks you from your best performances.


Recently, the DC area's been hit by a spate of cold temperatures.  It's been pretty chilly - colder than we're used to, though not as cold as it gets in many parts of the country.  And we've had some snow too.  But we soldier on, getting up early, before the sun rises in many cases, to log our miles.  Yay us.  Not too much whining, but a lot of self-recognition of the fact that we were out there, doing our thing.  It was cold and dark (oh MY freaking cold and so damn early), but I got out there and got my run in.

And that's the problem.  The self-praise for getting it done.  My use of the word "soldier on."

It seems like a positive thing at first, the self-praise.  The recognition of the fact that I went out and got those miles in, despite the obstacles of cold and wind and snow and lack of light and the blackberry constantly buzzing.  Or the heat and the humidity and the lack of water fountains.  Yay me.  Positivity is a good thing, right?

In this case, I think not.  At least not this variation on "positivity," which isn't so positive after all.  Just like whining, the self-congratulation actually creates obstacles that weren't there before.   The cold and the snow and the early dawn really haven't been that bad, especially for those of us in the sheltered DC metro area (I can visualize my New Hampshire and North Dakota and Minnesota and Colorado friends nodding fervently).  But by celebrating myself for "overcoming them," I've made them into something much harder.

Perhaps easiest to explain with an example.  Suppose that I normally do a track workout of 8x800m on the track.  That's my norm.  Nothing special.  One day, it occurs to me that 8x800 is a lot, and most people only do 6x800.  And wow, some people barely make it around the track.  Hey, 8x800 is actually kinda crazy and hard and difficult, and it's really pretty exceptional that I pull it off.  Yay me.  I'm pretty cool.

Next time, that track workout is a lot harder for me.  8x800 just seems imposing in a way it never did before.  I've just created a mental hill for myself, where none was before.


It's simple.  Running is what we do.  It's not a big deal to run before dawn.  Or after dark.  Or on the treadmill.  Or when the thermometers show numbers different what what you usually see.  It's still just running.  Something that you choose to do because it fulfills you.

Either I do it, or I don't.  The background of my running is not a big deal until I make it a big deal.  Then it's one more thing I have to overcome.  And my training cycle just got a bit tougher.  Not because of the weather, but because of me.


I'm not advocating a lack of positivity.  Positivity is a good thing (and something I'm working on) -- it brings you to your best performance.  I'm also definitely not advocating that one ignore situations that require one to change plans, like slowing down when it's super hot or super cold, skipping or modifying a workout to avoid injury, running on the treadmill instead of in the hurricane, accepting that one can't breathe because of pollen, etc.  Positivity doesn't mean the denial of reality.   Sometimes, you have to adapt.

But I've come to understand that self-congratulation for doing normal things in non-normal conditions is not really positivity.   It's so much better to be truly positive - basking in the fun of running.  It's not that you "got out there despite X"; of course you got out there.  It's what you choose to do.  It wasn't an issue - you were happy to do it.  Instead focus on the great time that you had running - the friends you chatted with, the pretty sights, the runner's high.

See how that works?  Life becomes a bit easier, in the end.  Plus when I successfully maintain this mindset, I don't have my friends from the upper mid-West laughing at me.  And that's valuable too.

Monday, January 21, 2013

Training log - week ending 1/20/13

This week was 57.5 miles of “real running” and 3 “miles” pool running, plus 1500 yards of swimming breathing drills -- training log is here.
This week was spent fighting off the same bug that caused me to miss last weekend's long run. I'm not horribly sick; it's just one of those things that lingers, fades away, and then flares again.  I went back and forth on whether to show up for Tuesday's hills, and ended up giving it a shot - didn't feel great at the end, but didn't feel horrible.  By Thursday, I was feeling a bit better, and then a short workout followed immediately by a 5 hour plane flight to Arizona on Friday pushed me into a moderate relapse.  Not bad enough not to race (heck, I was there anyway), so race I did.  

I was happy with the race overall and how I executed it.  I wish I was a bit more fit (and I really wish I hadn't been fighting this head cold) -- I was just a bit weak and lacking in stamina, so unable to take advantage of the great course and weather.  But that's fine.  It will come.  And there will always be other races with great weather and fast courses - that's the great thing about running.

My coach has ordered me to take several days very easy.  No argument here - the flight back post race wasn't much fun either. 


Monday:   In the morning, 8 miles easy (8:14 pace) plus some light injury prevention work.  Foam rolling in the afternoon.

Tuesday:  In the morning, 12.5 miles, including a workout of 6 hill repeats – nonstop circuit of up a hill for about 2 minutes, a 90 second easy jog, a stride, and then some more easy jogging to the bottom (whole circuit takes ~5 minutes). Followed with injury prevention work and 20 minutes of shake out pool-running.  Floor barre and foam rolling at night.   

Wednesday:   In the morning, 9 miles very easy, (8:24 pace) followed by yoga.  Later, 5.5 miles easy (7:56 pace).  Also foam rolling in the evening.
Thursday:   In the morning, upper body strengthwork and injury prevention work plus 1500 yards of swimming breathing drills.  Foam rolling at night. 

Friday:  In the morning, 7 miles, including a 1600m pick-up (6:01 - too fast). Then a plane flight to Phoenix.

Saturday:  Off.  Foam rolling in the afternoon.

Sunday:   2 miles warm-up and then half-marathon in 1:29:00, followed by flying back to DC.

Sunday, January 20, 2013

Race report: PF Changs Rock and Roll Arizona Half

I ran the “PF Changs Phoenix Rock and Roll Half Marathon” today (sponsor names are important), finishing in 89 minutes flat.

Of course, this race report begs the obvious question: why Phoenix?  Especially since this wasn't a "goal race" for me -- usually people don't go to the trouble of flying to the other end of the country for a race unless that race is the peak of their season.  Well, there were a couple reasons.

1) I live in Washington DC.  This was Inauguration weekend, where DC gets overrun by the patriotic and the touronistic, with substantial overlap between the two groups.  It's hard to get around; it's difficult to run or to train.  Getting out of Dodge City for the weekend was really appealing (and no, this decision was made in September, pre-election, and had nothing to do with which candidate was being inaugurated).

2) My friend Madeline was looking for a January marathon to run.  I've always had a bit of a fascination with this race (I don't know quite why), and I've heard it's very well run, so I suggested this marathon to her.  Which meant that if I ran the half we could be roommates.

3) Though I haven't run a marathon yet, I'm assuming that I'll run more than one in my lifetime.  And/or that I'll want to run other goal races in other places far away.  At some point, I'm going to have to fly to a goal race in another time zone.  So why not go through the exercise of traveling by plane to the other side of a country for a race that wasn't an "A race," to get the kinks out.  I'd get a feel for how close I could schedule a plane flight to a race, and figure out exactly how to pack.

[and yes, I'm not new to traveling - there are times in my life when I've lived out of a suitcase.  Heck, as a teenager I flew back and forth between DC and Florida every weekend in the winter to compete in the horse show circuit down there.  But traveling to a running race raises its own separate issues.]

Of course, all of this stuff about "just doing it to get out of DC and practice traveling to a race" didn't mean I wasn't racing it.  Absolutely, this was a race, not a training run, and I'd be running the best race I had in me (caveat:early in the training cycle, not in top shape, etc etc).

Packing light
And so, I schlepped out to the other side of the country.  For your information, I did pack efficiently while managing to still get all the essentials out there.  No need to check luggage (the secret is to ship yourself a care package ahead of time).

The flight itself, though completely uneventful, wasn’t fun.  I’ve been fighting a head cold.  Even at its worst, it hasn’t been horrible, but it’s one of those things that’s taking forever to clear up completely – just a bit of sluggishness that won’t let go.  Between the quick mile pick-up I did on Friday morning followed by the 5 hour plane trip, I experienced a bit of a relapse (in retrospect, I should have just slept in on Friday morning). 

My stash.
But then I landed and had a bit less than 48 hours to try to clear it up with rest, fluids, zinc (my friend Madeline ended up skipping the trip, which was sad, but also meant that I had a private room to wallow in – silver linings).  I shambled through the local CVS to acquire the necessary goods and slept a ton, and by Saturday evening I was feeling a lot better.

Sunday morning was simultaneously early and not.  I left my hotel room at 5:30 am to get to the race – granted, the race didn’t start until7:50 am, but I was relying on public transportation in a strange city to get to the start, and I didn’t want to risk anything.  Additionally, I had paid out $50 for a “warm zone” – I got a special pass to a heated indoor area close to the race start, complete with its own set of bathrooms.  So no reason not to get there early and just chill in the warm zone, so to speak.  Plus 5:30 am local time was 7:30 am my time, so not so early after all.

I hung out in the supa-speshull warm zone until around 7:10 am and then checked my bag and did my 2 mile jog.  Then a few drills, 1-2 strides, and squeezed into my corral. National Anthem, wheelchair racers, and then we were go.

One of my big goals here was simply to pace the race well.  When I’m racing regularly, I’m pretty good at pacing, especially at executing my coach’s start slow/finish fast methodology (is that copyrighted yet, BTW?).  But when I take time off, I lose some of my feel.  Since starting workouts and races again last month, I’ve been going out a smidgen too fast in many of my workouts, and my New Year’s Eve 10K race was poorly executed, if I do say so myself.  Dammit, I was going to run this race patiently.  Pace well or else.  And I did.  Yay me.

The race course itself can be divided into two parts.  The first 8 miles were pretty nondescript – we started on ASU’s campus and ran through that for a mile, and then through what seemed like an endless sequence of strip malls and gas stations, with very few turns.  It was boring if you’re into scenery.  Fortunately, I’m not into scenery.

The “strip mall” segment was essentially flat, but with some very very slight incline changes that I actually welcomed – I believe that perfectly flat courses can tire one out simply from using the exact same muscles, while very slight shifts make the course faster.  This course had just enough slight variation to keep things fresh. 

But, other than that, boring.  I didn’t talk much to other people – to be frank, my head was hurting slightly.  Not horrible, but I wasn’t particularly chatty.  My one bit of excitement came when I reached for a GU at around mile 6.5, opened it, and dropped it.  Fortunately, this is why I always run with many more GUs then I expect to use.

I was REALLY mindful of my hydration in this race.  Plane flight= dehydration.  Mild bug=dehydration.  Desert climate=dehydration.  So I ran with a handheld water bottle, using each mile marker as a cue to sip, even if I wasn’t thirsty.  Around mile 8, my handheld was drained.  And this, fortunately was right where some unofficial group was handing out unopened water bottles – like rain from the desert gods.  I barked thanks and grabbed one.

After 8-9 miles of Targets and Circle Ks and the occasional cacti, we turned into a park.  And this is when the course got pretty cool.  We were climbing up the only real incline change (for DC  runners, it was a climb similar to the Capital Crescent trail, so not severe at all) with rust-colored-dust and boulders and palm trees and BIG cacti to each side.  I got flash backs to the Wild West section of Disney World.  We kept pressing upwards (I was starting to up the effort here), and then turned into a nice gentle decline that I was able to ride.  The last 4 miles or so of the course were the most fun.  I was passing person after person, while gliding through some really cool scenery (OK, I’m sometimes into scenery.  But it has to be the right kind of scenery).

I’m actually a bit disappointed that I wasn’t able to pick it up more in this section – I think if I was in peak shape, I could have blasted this.  But 13 miles was seeming like a really long way to run – my stamina just wasn’t quite up to its norm.  Which is fine – it’s early in the training cycle yet.

So, rolled to the finish, working to stay relaxed and fluid and focused.  By the 20K mark, I was DONE, but successfully held my form and my focus all the way to the finish.  The finish of the half was combined with the finish for the “mini marathon” (5.4 miles), which meant that there were walkers to deal with, but they were encouraged VERY STRONGLY to stay to one side, and there was little issue here.

Splits were:
Mile 1: 7:00
Mile 2: 6:56
Mile 3:6:52
Mile 4: 6:54
Mile 5: 6:55
Mile 6: 6:42
Mile 7: 6:56
Mile 8: 6:51
Mile 9: 6:54
Mile 10: 6:49
Mile 11: 6:30
Mile 12: 6:38
Mile 13: 6:27
Last bit: 0:38 (5:55 pace)

Other points: 
  • Stayed at the Hilton Garden Inn by the airport, and it worked well.  The hotel was about an 8 minute walk from the “Metro light rail” which took me right to the Expo and also to the race start/finish.  I was able to finish my race at 9:20, and be through security and at the gate for my flight by 11:30 (and yes, I showered).  I didn’t rent a car, but I think I will in the future; taking public transportation had me on my feet a bit more than was optimal for the days before a race.  Especially when I wanted to spend a decent portion of Saturday napping, not waiting for trains on a 20 minute schedule.
  • Ended up within a few seconds of my half-marathon PR, which is kinda meh.  My half-marathon PR is weak, I think (though the fact that I’ve attempted 3 halves since without breaking it belies that fact).  Someday I will run a half marathon in great weather when I’m in shape and not fighting off something.  Someday.
  • Ran this one in my trainers, not my flats.  Perhaps I gave up a bit of time in doing so – I’ve run all my previous halves in the Saucony A4/A5, which is a very light shoe.  But I’m also thinking that the stresses of racing in those very light shoes, when combined with the stresses of marathon training, may have been one of the factors that contributed to my recent bout of plantar fasciitis.  If I’m going to race in my flats, I need a bit more post-race recovery time than I’ll get during marathon training.  So flats get saved for periods of time when I’m focusing on shorter distances; until I complete my marathon in mid-March, I’ll be wearing my Kinvaras (what I intend to run the marathon in) for everything.
  • As I wrote above, the flight wore me out.  Though I’m sure a large part of that was the remnants of my bug, I also know that flying in general tires me.  Note for the future: if I fly to a marathon, I need to fly in two days before, and three might be even better.
  • Was worried that the super dry air might aggravate my asthma – usually it’s high humidity that does me in, but super dry air gets me every once in a while.  Nope, absolutely no breathing issues here.
  • Race was very well done.  Would totally do again.

Thursday, January 17, 2013

Sick day

I skipped my long run this past Sunday.  I was sick.  And word from my coach was that if I was sick, I should skip the long run - I have plenty of 20 milers on the schedule ahead of me, so missing one 18-20 wouldn't be all that bad.

And so I found myself at home on a Sunday morning.  It was stunning.

My Sunday mornings are usually carefully orchestrated.  Long run, then proceed directly to gym (guzzling sports drink and eating hard boiled eggs on way) for injury prevention work.  From there to the pool for 20 minutes of very easy pool-running, to assist recovery, and then I hit Whole Foods, spend way too much money, and head home.  Long run starts at 8 am, I get home around noon-12:30.

No long run this weekend meant I was home instead, with a large block of time.   At first it was obvious what to do.  I was sick, after all.  I lay back on the couch, popped in Batman Begins, and vegged.

But then I started feeling a bit better.  Sore throat eased, and not quite as miserable.

I debated going for a short run, but opted against it.  I didn't feel 100%, and frankly if I was going to skip my long run, I'd gain more from a day free of aerobic exercise then I would from an easy hour's run.

So I stayed in, and ended up turning to all those things I keep meaning to do, but never actually accomplish.

Over the course of the next few hours, I filed paper work and shredded documents too old to keep.  I did laundry and reviewed my investment portfolio, making a few tweaks and additional purchases (I think now's a very good time to buy stock, if you're looking for long term gains).  I identified tons of clutter that could be dispatched to Goodwill.

[All this, plus the general work of being sick.   I attack my head colds.  I wash all my sheets, gargle with listerine constantly, drink as much fluids as I can stand, and pop echinacea, zinc, and vitamin c.  Plus multiple hot showers.  I don't take my sickness lying down.]

It was, again, stunning.  Everything that I got done.  But I'm honestly not posting this to brag (though I know it looks that way), but rather to reflect.

If I had not had a long run planned on Sunday, I would not have accomplished all this stuff.

And that's the rub.  Our lives, including our running, our personal errands, etc, expand to match the space we allocate to them.  My house is admittedly always a bit cluttered, the kitchen a bit dirty.  But the truth is, they'd remain that way even if I didn't spend umpteen hours a week running, foam-rolling, etc.

Interesting.  I'm not taking this as a message to try to fit in more -- I think one can go overboard to the point where everything is scheduled and planned - therein lies madness.  But it was an illustration of how much of the way we live our lives (and how frequently we file our paperwork) is a matter of personal choice, though we use phrases like "I don't have the time."

It's not that we lack time, but rather that we choose to spend time in other way.  Again, worth a bit of reflection.

Sunday, January 13, 2013

Training log - week ending 1/13/13

This week was 50 miles of “real running” and 8 “miles” pool running, plus 1700 yards of swimming breathing drills -- training log is here.
Adventures and misadventures this week.  The good news first.  I've been dealing with some recurring hip issues on my right side.  Nothing brand new or earth shattering - it's just that I tend to get a lot of psoas tightness on that side, combined with some hamstring tightness.  Both of these tend to flare when I'm coming back to running after time off, and also seem to be triggered by fast running downhill.  Plus occasional bits of stabbing pain in my pelvic area on that side, where the various muscles of the upper leg tie into the pelvis.  And (possibly) related to this, I've always noted that my right hip "snaps" or "pops" when I lift my leg forward in a certain way.
As I noted, none of these are new, but I noted them again as I started this training cycle, and I decided it was worth a pilgrimage to my preferred orthopaedist to check it out.  It's a journey - Dr. Pereles is in Kensington, which is about 30-40 minutes from me (I'm used to having all my doctors within a mile of me - spoiled), but Dr. Pereles is worth it.  I wanted to make sure that I wasn't teetering on the edge of a significant injury - i.e. a pelvic stress fracture or labral tear - and I trusted Dr. Pereles' evaluation.
He took x-rays and did an eval (of course, it wasn't hurting at all when I was in his office, so I had to simply describe the situations in which it would hurt), and issued his diagnosis - a very mild case of osteitis symphysis pubis.  I'm totally fine to run and train and do 20 milers, especially when I'm not feeling it at all.  If it flares, back off on the running and take some NSAIDs.  But good to go.  
So yay.
And then, of course, I got sick and missed my long run anyway.  In a way, I was a bit relieved to discover I was sick.  On Friday, despite great weather, I had a tempo workout that was a slog and much slower than I expected.  I run my workouts off of perceived effort, rather than goal paces, and I was glad I did, because I most certainly would have crashed and burned had I chased my normal splits.
At the time, I attributed to having had blood drawn for my annual physical the day before, which always leaved me feeling a bit off.  But I also feared (wouldn't we all), that I was in bad shape.  
Friday night I started feeling lousy.  Saturday morning, after some debate, I went out for an easy run, doing 8 instead of my scheduled 10-12.  Felt OK if sluggish during the run, but then even worse as the day went on.   My throat got sore on Saturday night, and  I declared myself sick and skipped my long run in favor of the couch.  Sucked to miss the long run, but a bit of a relief to know what was behind that lousy tempo. 
Most annoying aspect, besides the missed long run itself, was the fact that my resting heart rate remained low.  I monitor my resting HR regularly, to get advance warning of when I'm getting overtrained or sick, so I can cut back before I dig myself into a hole.  But it failed to warn me this time.  Apparently (based on discussion with others), resting HR doesn't always rise when you're getting sick, especially if you don't have a fever.
I feel so betrayed.


Monday:   In the morning, 50 minutes of easy pool-running for “5 miles” followed by injury prevention and upper body strengthwork.  Foam rolling in the afternoon.

Tuesday:  In the morning, 13.5 miles, including a workout of 7 hill repeats – nonstop circuit of up a hill for about 2 minutes, a 90 second easy jog, a stride, and then some more easy jogging to the bottom (whole circuit takes ~5 minutes). Followed with injury prevention work and 15 minutes of shake out pool-running.  Floor barre and foam rolling at night.   

Wednesday:   In the morning, 8 miles very easy, (9:55 pace) followed by yoga.  Later, 8 miles easy (7:51 pace).  Also foam rolling
Thursday:   In the morning, upper body strengthwork and injury prevention work plus 1700 yards of swimming breathing drills.  Foam rolling at night. 

Friday:  In the morning, 12.5 miles, including a workout of 5K at tempo effort (20:20, split as 6:35/6:31/6:29/0:45), 5 minutes break, 1600m "hard" (5:59).  Followed with injury prevention work and 15 minutes of shake out pool-running.

Saturday:   In the morning, 8 miles easy (8:18 pace).  Foam rolling in the afternoon.

Sunday:   Off.  Just foam-rolling.

Monday, January 7, 2013

Training log - Week ending 1/06/13

This week was 72 miles of “real running” and 10 “miles” pool running, plus 1000 yards of swimming breathing drills -- training log is here.

Another week in the books.  A bit of an odd week, in that I raced a 10K on Monday.  Big lesson for the week - if you race and then go out and have a decently late night, failing to drink enough water in the process (not my fault - it was like pulling teeth to get a bottle of water at the club) you'll end up with a hangover the next day, despite having drunk nothing more than a thimble's worth of champagne.

So not fair.  Took me two days to recover.

The race itself was fun.  I'm not in peak shape yet and went out too fast, but that's exactly why I did it.  Racing is a skill that needs to be practised, and I was rusty.  And I think you get a boost in both fitness and enthusiasm from racing - isn't that why we train, after all?


Monday:   Race a 10K in the afternoon, so 10 miles, including warm-up, race (40:58 for something a bit longer than 10K), and cool-down.  Followed with 20 minutes of shakeout pool-running for “2 miles” and some foamrolling.

Tuesday:  11 miles at 8:20 pace, followed by some upper body strengthwork and injury prevention work.   Foam rolling at night.  

Wednesday:   In the morning, 7 miles very easy (10:08 pace), followed by yoga.   Later, another 5 miles easy (7:50).   Sports massage at night.

Thursday:   In the morning, upper body strengthwork and injury prevention work plus 1000 yards of swimming breathing drills and 30 minutes of pool-running for "3 miles."  Foam rolling at night. 

Friday:  In the morning, 12 miles, including a tempo workout of 2x3200m plus 1600m (800m recovery between each) - splits were 12:31 (6:19/6:12), 12:24 (6:15/6:09) and 6:07.  Followed with injury prevention work and 20 minutes shakeout pool-running for "2 miles."  Pilates and foam-rolling in the afternoon.

Saturday:   In the morning, 11 miles easy (8:10 pace).  Upper body strengthwork and injury prevention work plus foam rolling in the afternoon.

Sunday:   In the morning, 16 miles progression averaging 7:32 pace, split as first 4.5 at 8:08 pace, next 3.5 at 7:45, next 3 at 7:25, and last 5 at 6:53.  Followed with injury prevention work and 30 minutes of shakeout pool-running for "3 miles."   Yoga and foam rolling at night.