Tuesday, February 27, 2007

Last 50+/60+ week

(X,12,6,12,8,5,20)=63.1; Week 16/24 (in 23)

Tue- Sun, Cloudy, 32F(25F) - 12 w/7 @ LT: Awesome LT run which is nice given that this is the last LT run in this training cycle. Each LT mile was faster than the previous one - an ideal progression run.

Wed- Cloudy, Rain, 34F - Recovery 6 w/6*100m striders: 240 miles for the month.

Thur, Sun, Clouds, Light Snow, 30F - 12 Medium-Long: The trails were covered with a thick layer of powdery snow which was nice to run on. Of course I had to work harder to run on it but it was fun. There was also a bit of light snow falling during the first few minutes of the run.

Of course the trails were deserted (what else can you expect after a "snow storm" – even a sprinkling of snow seems to be called a snow storm here :) ), except for a few confused geese, a couple on cross country skis and a lady walking her dog in a hooded fur coat. The lady looked like she was in Vladivostok and not Redmond. Of course I was out in just shorts and a waterproof layer. At this point it's going to take sub-zero temperatures for me to have to don my long pants for the first time this season. I hope the snow melts before tomorrow's VO2max workout else I'll have to head for the TM.

Fri - Treadmill - VO2Max 8 w/6*600m @ 5k, 90s jog in between: I decided to get in this workout on the TM since I wasn't sure of the conditions on the trail and I didn't know if I could get to VO2Max intensity outside. On the TM there would be no option to slack :) I found a useful effort-based treadmill pace chart taking into account the TM incline. I run with a 1% TM incline.

With this run I've made up the deficit for the 24th week. I get to advance by two weeks on the 24/55 this week!

Sat - Cloudy, 50F(48F), Recovery 5

Sun - Cloudy, 53F, Long 20: My quads were a little sore going into this run (perhaps from Friday's w/o). It was a good exercise of getting in a long run on tired legs. It was a well paced run though I did struggle a bit running up the steep hill at the end. I weighed myself before and after the run for a delta of 7 pounds. It's a good excuse to indulge in my twin vices - chocolate milk and orange juice. I read some where that chocolate milk can actually help recovery :)

Monday, February 19, 2007

Miles and miles...

(11+XT,9,6+XT,13,X,16,5+XT)=60.1; Week 14/24 (in 23)

Deficit (8VO2max) = 8 Miles

Mon- Cloudy, drizzle, 22mph winds, 42F(35F) - Medium-Long 11: With this run I've just got 8 more miles to make up the week 24 deficit. I again had to run into a head wind during the second half of my run. I felt pretty strong running up the hill back home - this is a good sign.
PM- 60 min XT

Tue- Sun, 13mph winds, 39F(32F) - GA 9 w/10*100m striders: It wasn't too bad outside considering how much it rained last night. I could do without the winds but I'm not complaining. The toughest part of the run is getting out of the door and starting to run. After that it feels great. Today I tried to convince myself that I was tired and needed to sleep more. Finally, I negotiated with myself that if I got in my run I could skip going to the gym in the evening. I guess a deal is a deal so no gym tonight!

Wed- Sun, 37F(31F) - Recovery 6
PM- 60 min XT

Thur- Sun, 37F - Medium-Long 13

Sat- Cloudy, Rain, Wind, 41F(34F) - 16 w/12 @ PMP: I didn't quite make it to the MP I was hoping for but that's ok. Considering the wind and the rain I did the best I could. Towards the end of my run after the attempted MP miles I began feeling lightheaded which very rarely happens to me. I immediately stopped and got my HR down before continuing. All in all it was a good w/o with 12 fastish miles and the hill at the beginning and end.

Sun- Cloudy, 44F(39F) - Recovery 5 w/6*100m striders: Enjoyable run
- 60min XT

Tuesday, February 13, 2007

Finally a 20 mile long run...

(XT,11+XT,6,13,5+XT,20,5+XT)=60.1; Week 13/24 (in 23)

Deficit (8VO2max, 11) = 19 Miles

My training for Eugene is going to end up being pretty different from my training for my PR at Steamtown. The differences:

i) Peak mileage: Steamtown (82), Eugene (64)
ii) Number of 20+ milers: Steamtown (7), Eugene (3)
iii) Weeks of training: Steamtown (15), Eugene (23)
iv) Longest run: Steamtown (23), Eugene (21)
v) Normal weekly mileage: Steamtown (60-80), Eugene (40-60)

I've been wondering how these differences will impact my final result. I had a feeling while training for Steamtown that I might have crossed a mileage threshold beyond which I was getting no benefit but just prolonging my recovery. So this could play out in a couple of ways:

i) I will be fresh and appropriately trained for Eugene
ii) Unlike Steamtown where I had a very strong second half and last 10k, at Eugene I will suffer and fade during the last 10k.

We shall see in 11 weeks...

Mon - 60 min XT

Tue - Cloudy w/rain , 40F - 11 w/6 LT: Need more than 5 1/2 hrs of sleep!
PM - 60 min XT

Wed - Cloudy, 42F - 6 Recovery w/6 *100m striders

Thurs - Cloudy, 23mph winds, 49F(43F), Drizzle - 13 Medium-Long: It was very difficult running into such a strong head wind. It was as if I was running into a wall. At least I avoided the predicted downpour.

I was running after just 4 hours of sleep. I was feeling so tired last night but I just could not fall asleep as I thought about work and other stuff. In the morning I was tempted to sleep in but I realized that I had to get in the 13 miler. I would not have been able to reschedule it as I needed to get in 20 on Sat (when the weather is supposed to be perfect). I guess I'll just have to turn off the lights in my office and sneak in a couple of cat naps :)

Fri - Cloudy, 44F, Cloudy w/sunny breaks - 5 Recovery
PM - 60 min XT
Sat - Sunny, 55-60F - 20 Long: WOW! It's not because I'm using Windows Vista Ultimate (I've been using it for 9 months now so it does not make me go wow any more) but because I saw a bald eagle perched high on a tree during my run today. She was so arrogant, pompous and regal! She completely ignored the 20-30 odd people below, excited at seeing her and some of whom were taking pictures. There's no doubt that this is the most appropriate choice for the American national bird :)

It kind of nice to get that first 20 miler of the training cycle out of the way. A 20 miler is a check mark item in any marathon readiness list.

Sun - Cloudy, 47F(41F) - 5 Recovery, 60 min XT

Monday, February 05, 2007

Peak mileage week

(13,6+XT,9+XT,12,X,18,6)=64.5; Week 12/24 (in 23)

Deficit (5R, 8VO2max, 11) = 24 Miles

Mon- Cloudy, 44F - 13 Medium Long: I didn't fall asleep till 3:30am. This is not unusual for Sundays when I oversleep. So I did not think it would be wise to wake up early. Instead I snuck out for my run (2nd makeup run for week 24) during lunch time. I saw more runners on the trail than I see in the morning. These were serious runners (I guess why else would they be running of all things in the middle of the day :-) with Boston marathon shorts etc. It was foggy & felt nice. I ended up averaging a sub-8 pace for the run (faster than MLR pace) perhaps aware of the fact that I needed to head back to work ASAP.

I was thankful that I was not in Boston today. The wind-chill there as I ran was sub zero! I remembered how I had to run with a balaclava in sub-zero temps in 2005... Today I was able to run in just a T & shorts.

Tue- Cloudy, 41F - 6 Recovery: My last run before I retire my current pair of running shoes. It's been good to me for a shoe mileage PR of 603.6 miles. It still has quite a bit of life in it so I'll have to see if there is a collection center for "One World Running" around here.
PM- 60 min XT

Wed- Cloudy, Drizzle, 46F - VO2Max 9 w/6*800m@5k, 2min jog in between : My first VO2 max workout in 15 months! I tried to find a track to do the w/o but the local high school track was locked. I ended up doing the w/o on the trail. This probably makes more sense anyway given that marathons are not run on rubberized tracks. Note to self: Thou shall not eat spicy food the night before a vo2 max workout (hint: heart burn).
PM- 60 min XT

Thur- Cloudy, 44F - 12 Medium Long: I added the steep hill leading to the trail into my run today. So the biker's comments on Saturday did help spur me on. Running up this hill at the end of my runs will surely make me mentally tougher. I'm looking forward to tomorrow's rest day after 10 straight days of running.

Fri - Rest: I made it to a Bill Gates talk on his foundation (the third time I got to see BillG in person). Melinda Gates joined him for the Q&A. The talk was interesting, informative and motivating.

Sat- Cloudy w/ sunny breaks, 56F - 18 Long: A beautiful day!

I made it to the Kings-Sonics game today. It was worth seeing Artest, Bibby and Abdur-Rahim but that's it for this season. The Sonics suck so badly that it's demoralizing and painful to watch their games.

Sun,- Cloudy, 50F - 6 Recovery w/6*100m striders: Thought about the great cause Chris is running his marathon for.

Sunday, February 04, 2007

Almost half way there...

(X,11+XT,7,10+XT,5+XT,17,5+XT)=55; Week 11/24 (in 23)

Deficit (5R, 8VO2max, 11, 13) = 37 Miles

I'm almost have way through my training schedule. So far things seem encouraging. I noticed on a couple of my runs that my HR seems to be decreasing while running at a given pace. This could only mean one of two things - my HR monitor has finally started working or that I am getting fitter. Hopefully, it's the latter.

Tue - Cloudy w/Sunny breaks, 22F windchill - 11 w/5 LT
PM - 60 min XT

Wed - Sunny, 31F - 7 w/8*100m striders: Makeup run for the missing 24th week. This run got me past 200 miles for the month. While 200+ months were a standard in 2005, in 2006 I didn't have a single 200+ month. That shows what a bad year 2006 was for me.

Thurs - Sunny, 26F windchill - 10 GA: I was running at a pretty decent pace yet my average HR was only 156. This sure is an encouraging sign. I missed my gloves.
PM - 60 min XT

Fri - Sunny, 27F - 5 Recovery: Last sunny day before the rain comes in...
PM - 60 min XT

Sat - Rain, 40F - 17 Long: The trails were practically deserted with all the fair weather runners/bikers/walkers/dog walkers staying indoors. I'd bet three years back a day like this would have me sitting on the couch watching TV and eating junk. Instead today I was able to enjoy the outdoors. With a light breathable layer it was not bad outside. The good thing about the Seattle rain is that it rarely pours...

There is a very steep 0.5 mile hill between the trails and home. Last year I had been running up and down this hill. However, in this training cycle I've been playing it safe to avoid the risk of injury. I walk down (as a warm up) and up (as a cool down) the hill. When I was about to head back after my run today a biker told me - "Come on man, run all the way up!". I just smiled at him. How could I explain to him why I wasn't running all the way up ...

Sun - Cloudy - 51F - 5 Recovery: An awesome running day
- 60 min XT

Thursday, February 01, 2007

Zoom Zoom!


My new car - an Onyx Black 2007 Mazda 6i Grand Touring edition

I had debated getting a trim with a stick but just picturing myself trying to change gears after running a marathon was enough to convince me otherwise (of course there were other factors that influenced this decision ;) )

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