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Training Journal: 05/06 - 05/12/2013

Sunday, May 12, 2013

Week 13 of 16

Total Miles: 61.48

Base Run
Distance: 4.25 miles
Location: Ledge Mtn

Splits: 17:33 / 10:04 / 9:45 / 13:12

Notes: I can't believe that I'm still able to do an afternoon run outside on May 6!! It was in the low 70's, very humid, but overcast so no direct sun to deal with. I'm feeling pretty much back to normal. I ran the big hill twice, but didn't push it. This will be my biggest mileage week ever, if I make it through all the planned workouts.

Hill Run
Distance: 9 miles
10x90" hills at HM effort (9:05)
Location: Gym Track (treadmill for hill repeats)

Splits: (g) 10:37 / 10:30 / (c) 10:25 / 10:22 / (g) 10:08 / 10:13 / (c) (hill repeats on treadmill)

Notes: I used a 3% grade for the hill repeats at 6.6 mph (9:05 /mi). Since I was on the treadmill, I couldn't really do jog down recoveries, so I just walked and monitored my heart rate. I made sure it had dropped below 110 (60%) before starting the next repeat.

I debated where to place the repeats in the workout and chose to do them at the end of the run. I'm not sure whether it matters. Last time, I did them in the middle, but they also were not quite as long. I figured I would be fairly tired after running up hill 10 times for 1:30 at HM pace (I was) and would be ready for the run to be over.

I alternated gels and hard candy today. I indicated in the splits where I consumed each. You'll notice that my pace picked up every time I ate something.

Medium Long Run
Distance: 13.15 miles, last 1-2 miles uphill if possible
Location: Ledge Mtn

Splits: 17:08 / 10:48 / 10:32 / 10:34 / 10:46 / 11:01 / 11:03 / 12:17 / 11:41 / 11:43 / 12:02 / 11:11 / 14:45

Notes: It was quite overcast this morning, which kept the temps down. So I decided to do this run outside rather than at the gym. However, I had to wait for a workman, and by the time he got here, the clouds were starting to break up a bit. But I was all set up to run outside, so I decide to try it and see how far I could go. If needs be, I could always finish at the gym.

The sun was in and out of the clouds for the entire run, although more out than in by the second half of the run. But at least it was never 100% sun. There was also a stiff breeze in spots, which helped. On the other hand, it was very, very humid and around 80 degrees.

By mile 7, I was beginning to think that I would have to give it up and go to the gym. But first, I decided to try just slowing it way down. I switched to :20/:40 intervals in mile 8 (up til then I had been using :40/:20), and that enabled me to finish out the 13 miles without totally wearing myself out. I also took several longish water stops, standing in the shade to cool off a bit.

This run called for making the last 1 to 2 miles up hill. Instead, I ran one long and one short hill at the end of each mile.

Tempo Run
Distance: 9 miles
miles 3-7 @ tempo pace (8:32 - 8:52)
Location: Gym Track
Ave Pace: 9:01

Splits: 9:50 / 9:48 / 8:38 / 8:38 / 8:31 / 8:23 / 8:04 / 9:50 / 9:24

Notes: I knew from the way I felt in the warm up miles that I was recovered from yesterday's 13 mile run and that this was going to be a good run. Switching to :20/:40 yesterday for the second half of the run made the difference, I'm convinced, running in the heat and humidity.

One other change I've made this week is that I am eating more. As I've mentioned in previous journal entries, I've had a number of (suspected) low blood sugar incidents at the beginning of runs. I feel better and get faster with each gel I eat during the run. Plus, I've noticed that I am quite hungry an hour or two before dinner, even though I always eat a post run meal. Finally, I got on the scale yesterday afternoon (which I rarely do) and found that I've lost several pounds.

I am not cutting calories; I am eating the same amount of food I always do. And that's the problem. I am running more now, especially in the last month. I need to eat more to fuel that additional work. So I've added another small "snack meal" to my daily intake on running days. In addition, I ate a piece of candy as I drove to the gym. It really seems to have helped. I did not notice any of the early run sluggishness today that I have been dealing with recently.

Level of effort for miles 1-2 and 8-9 was "easy." Level of effort for the tempo miles was "moderate," except for mile 7 which I pushed to "moderately hard." As I was running miles 3-6, I was remembering the tempo workouts I did last fall when I was training for CIM. Those were a mix of HM and 10K pace and I never did more than a 2 or 3 at 10K pace at a time. It was mostly HM pace. And when I did 10K pace, it definitely required more effort than I needed today.

So I have improved. But it isn't the paces. I've been able to run these paces for the last 3 years. But not so many at one time and not so easily. I think this is what Brad Hudson means by "fatigue resistance." On the other hand, I'm pretty sure Cindy can still out sprint me.

Sports Massage

Base Run
Distance: 4.13 miles
Location: Ledge Mtn

Mile Splits: 17:06 / 9:41 / 9:35 / 15:23

Notes: We had rain yesterday evening, almost 2 inches, so it was nice and cool over night. It was sunny this morning and starting to warm up, but still nice for a short, easy run.

I did this one "by feel," slowing down and / or walking as needed to keep the perceived effort "easy." It is reassuring that marathon pace now feels fairly easy.

I was reminded of Brad Hudson's comment that "because the endurance challenge of the marathon is so severe, your goal marathon pace has to be a virtual cakewalk, aerobically," that you must train your aerobic system to "sail through the full marathon, even if your legs don’t (and they never will!)."

Long Run
Distance: 21 miles, last 3 miles at MP
Location: Gym Track
Ave Pace: 10:06

Mile Splits: 10:45 / 10:22 / 10:15 / 10:12 / 10:25 / 10:18 / 10:16 / 10:21 / 10:06 / 10:12 / 10:14 / 10:16 / 10:00 / 10:17 / 10:18 / 10:07 / 10:09 / 9:53 / 9:13 / 9:15 / 9:02

Notes: This run went really well. Since I was running on the gym track, I used landmarks for walk/run breaks. But I timed the walk a few times to get an estimate of how long I was walking. It was about 25 - 30 seconds in each lap (10 laps to the mile). That works out to a little under 5 minutes of walking and a little over 5 minutes of running in each mile. That was the first 16 miles.

At mile 17, I was starting to get a little tired, so I slowed down the run segment a bit and shortened the walk break by about 5 seconds. That actually increased the average mile pace by about 10 seconds, but it still felt comfortable. (My goal was to maintain an easy pace [by feel] over the course of the run, varying the walking time as needed.) For the last 3 MP miles, I reduced the walk by another 5 to 10 seconds. I tried to maintain the same running pace, but given how much the mile pace increased, I suspect I unconsciously pushed it a bit. Something about telling the brain, "we're doing race pace now." Ironically, I had already worked up to race pace without adjusting the walk.

One of the benefits of the 3 months I spent last winter doing the low-heart-rate running by time is that my brain learned how to hold a steady pace right at my aerobic sweet spot. I tried to use that today during the run segments. I was not going for any particular pace (in terms of time) but rather for a pace that felt easy. And this run really did feel easy until the last few miles, when I started pushing it a bit.

I had none of the negative chatter, low blood sugar problems today that bothered me last week. So increasing my calories (and eating a piece of candy during the drive to the gym) seems to have done the trick. This run felt good from the first step, I warmed up quickly, and the miles sped by.

When I was done, I did a little foam rolling, then spent some time in the pool followed by 10 minutes in the whirlpool.
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Member Comments About This Blog Post
    Good for you figuring out you need to eat more - before you crawl into bed and don't crawl out! You seem to have adjusted pretty quickly. These details you provide are motivating to me - as well as tracking for you!
    I appreciate them.
    1738 days ago
    What a week!
    A marathon is not sprinted - and who cares which one of you can outsprint the other? emoticon

    Your easy runs are faster than my sprints!
    1744 days ago
    Great week!! I bet that whirlpool felt fabulous :-)
    1744 days ago
    Once again your week of running exhausts me.
    1744 days ago
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