Monday, July 26, 2010

Last week before Marathon Training - full disclosure.

After my time off and the 15k trail race, I decided I needed one "base" week of "real" mileage before starting my marathon training program. 14 full weeks before, so somewhat close to the often-mentioned 16-week plans out there.
GOAL: 3 early morning runs during the week: 6.0, 5.1, and 4 (hilly) miles and one long run, hoping for 12 miles.
Monday - 5:50am, ~75°. 6.0 miles, Oak Grove Lake Loop (Seven, 0.85 loops, pretty flat). Felt pretty winded throughout. Legs actually felt fresh, but very weak (if that makes any sense at all). Time was 54:56. Trying to blame my slow pace (compared to what I have been able to run this in the past) on the heat/humidity, but afraid that is just where I am these days.
Wednesday - 6:00am, ~74. 5.1 miles. Oak Grove Lake Loop (Six loops). Still getting winded. Legs began feeling it after 3 miles. Didn't I just run 31 miles straight only 6 weeks ago??? Time: 45:53.
Thursday - 6:15am, 76°. ~4 miles. ICAR campus (where I work, Hubbell, to Innovation Drive, turn around at Laurens Rd, back to the traffic circle on Millennium Blvd, that out to Laurens Rd, turn around and back to work. Mostly hills). Been VERY WARM/HOT all week and excessively humid. Ok, really for a few weeks now. I used to think 70° at 5am was I'm looking forward to low 70's. This run was all right, only slighly off my normal pace for this course. Time: 35:05
Friday - lunchtime yoga. 30 minutes. Beginner stuff still after 2+ years of 1-2x a week. Wishing to become more flexible, or at least flexible in some manner of my imagination.
Long run was planned for Saturday, but after another week of little sleep and a late night Friday with a cranky 20 month old, decided to sleep in Saturday morning. One decent night of sleep would better prepare me. Still up at 7, but that's an improvement.
Sunday - going to bed early the night before didn't happen. Oh well. 5:20am, 80°. Yep, 80 degrees. In my head I was going to do 12 miles. First few laps, was counting down from 12, until I realized 12 laps would only equal 10.2 miles. I'll just see how I feel - even 25 total miles for the week would be a positive for me. Wore my heartrate monitor just for kicks. Have worn my orthotics every moment sicne the trail run with no real issues. Foot seems to be getting better, but still not 100%. Some moments, I'd say it's better, other moments - ouch. Consistent pacing - 10 laps between 7:50 and 8:02, and six of those between 8:00 and 8:02. 2 other laps a bit over due to refilling my water bottle and pushed the last lap down to 7:24.
Consistent heartrate - After 3 laps, it was at 139 and evened off at 144. Overall avg = 140. I'd walk for 1 minute or so each lap, my HR would hit 1:48 about every lap. Felt good, even with feeling my thighs/quads about halfway thru the run. That subsided after a lap or two and could have gone further if I had more water or Needed to. But I didn't. I got in my 11.9 miles in 1:55:34 (which includes a 4+ minute stop to chat with a dog-walker I see often). Had a slight blister on the tip of my 2nd toe (rt foot) after the 15k, but gave it no though until after my long run - it was back. I blame the orthotics, but expect it will be fine.
27 miles for the week! SUCCESS!
On tap this week - my First speedwork (tomorrow) since January. Will use my 4x800's to determine what my marathon goal and training times will be for the Marine Corps - using the FIRST plan again, 3 days a week (but I'm adding a 4mile easy hills run each week for extra mileage.) 

Saturday, July 24, 2010

River Bound Trail 15k Race Report

River Bound Race Series
I did not come into this event with the best preparation. See if you can count how many of these fall into a typical list of "what Not to do".
For more than two weeks before the race, I did not run - at all. It has been well over two years since that has happened. I was resting my sore left foot and I finally conceded and went to the doctor 2 days before the race. I was told I had semasoiditis and given some off-the-shelf orthotics to help alleviate the pressure on the ball of my foot. I could run as long as I could stand the pain. After wearing them 2 hrs Thursday, 4 hours Friday - I thought I could run in them. I decided to go with my new Asics 2150 Trail shoes (I had only walked 3 miles in them so far), but I was Not going to race this. My friend Kristen was going to be there - otherwise I doubt I would have pushed myself to do it. It's always good to see your friends, and it would probably work out that we could run together - for at least some of it.
After what seemed a ridiculous amount of pre-race information thru the megaphone while standing in the already-baking sun at 8am, we got started on some gravel for a little run by the water of the US National Whitewater Center (a pretty cool place by the way, even with the $5 parking fee). Kristen and I settled into our run as people more concerned with racing went ahead. We chatted and watched the trail as we entered the singletrack with some ups and downs, rolling into no-mans land. It would be easy to get lost on the course without the race signs posted (and they were plentiful - Thank you!). The course itself was very good, all pretty runnable (for those in shape, unlike myself). It always seemed to be turning with gentle climbs and falls, with a good hill in every now and then. When we hit the first water stop. I was already feeling overheated and dumping water over my head only provided minimal relief. Soon after I let Kristen go on so she could "race" on her own. I was hot, winded, and I knew my legs didn't have a whole lot in them. I walked on and off the next few miles, even when the terrain would normally dictate that I run. The overheating issue subsided and I got my cardio back a little, but legs were still just weak. Five out of the six weeks since the Chattooga 50k I had averaged a whopping 8 miles/week. No wonder I was having difficulty. I did enjoy the course and at times there was no one in sight. I really had no clue how far there was left to go, but I did feel a little better the last couple of miles and ran much of the rest of the way. My competitive nature did kick in when someone on a bike said we were getting close and there were two runners ahead of me I wanted to pass, then I had to make sure they weren't going to pass me back as we entered the open area by the water. I may have looked strong, but it was tough and I was happy to have finished in 1:36:55. Kristen finished 2nd in her age group, about 9 minutes ahead of me.
There's a half-marathon in the Sept that I may have to come back and run!

Friday, July 16, 2010

X-rays, orthotics, Blue Ridge Relay

Forgot to mention yesterday - x-rays of the foot are very cool. Would have been interesting to see one of my right foot and the dislocated/broken toe that I had (surgically) fixed many years ago and I can barely bend. But even with no fractures (thankfully), it's still neat. Almost like a road map - I can just look at it and not get bored. I actually considered moving the mouse to knock the screensaver off the computer in the doctor's office while I waited for him to review it with me, but somehow, I resisted.
Orthotics seem to be helping (and the frozen peas I'm using to ice it in the evenings) as it feels better now after 6 hours in them today. Not sure about running in them...may test them out tomorrow before my 15k trail run. I'm going to it - and I expect to run as well. So many old trail shoes with 450+ miles on them or my new ones with only 3.5 miles? And that was just hiking. Water bottle or my camelbak? Now that I am not needing to train with the camelbak, maybe just the one bottle. I assume there will be at least one water stop?
I have no idea as to the terrain, hills, etc, so I have no clue as to how long it will take me. At this point, I am hoping to finish.
Our Blue Ridge Relay team (Do Not Resuscitate) got active today looking at the leg summary. They have (corrected) the elevation profiles, so they may actually be accurate this year. My legs from 2009 certainly look harder with the new charts - and they've changed the Moderate one to Hard to match the other 2 legs I ran as Runner 11. I'll post them sometime...

Thursday, July 15, 2010


So there are these two little extra bones under the big toe and they can get irritated (so I've now found out). This is sesamoiditis in a nutshell. I guess it isn't terrible news. I was given an orthotic to wear increasingly more until I can wear it all day - that will take some of the weight off that joint of my foot. Sounds like I can run as long as I can put up with the pain. As it was never too bad to run, my 15k trail race this Saturday is definitely a maybe right now.
(This "pain" began 3 days after my 50k, during my second recovery walk)

More guest's this weekend and next week - so back to sporadic posting when the computer room is free.

Monday, July 12, 2010

Doctor Appointment made

So I have a doctor appointment for Thursday to get my foot checked out. As my normal Orthopaedist** is booked for the next 6 weeks (I see him every few years), I found a new one and got an appt for this Thursday morning. Downloaded the 10 page "New Patient" paperwork - wow, was that a workout to complete!
Seriously - after a weekend off, back to the stationary bike and assorted workouts this week.

Results Thursday. Cross your fingers.

**He's the one that repaired my broken/dislocated toe back in 2003 - I wish it was more exciting, but it was playing shortstop in softball. Just landed wrong jumping for a line drive. Still got the ball on the next grounder to me before hopping to my car and driving to the ER.  

Saturday, July 10, 2010

Cross training

So I've been relegated to cross training this week: hiking, or in the gym for stationary bike, elliptical, rowing machine, leg press, ab-work, yoga. Every day this week I've done anywhere from 2-5 of these. I have felt pretty good (other than my foot, which I am still considering a doctor visit for). Started some leg weights to get some strength - since Chattooga I've felt particularly weak on hills, so that "soreness" has been nice. I like the feeling that I've done some work. I have missed running, but it has been quite hot this past week, so I don't miss beng out in that. I do wonder where my fitness will be once I get back. Can I wake up after 2 weeks off and do a 15k trail race? Can I jump into a 16 (or 15, 14...) week marathon training program for my Halloween race? Will the Blue Ridge Relay be painful (in a bad way!) in mid-September?
Still expecting to do the River Bound 15k next weekend. Will keep you posted!

Friday, July 2, 2010

Needing a break?

I got my 2 hour run in last weekend at Paris Mountain - just an added benefit of having the in-laws in town! It went rather well - two loops around the upper lake, 2nd one only about 4 minutes slower than the first. I thought I was taking it a bit easy on the first loop, but after comparing my times to previous trips out there - it was pretty much the same. My trail running shoes (Asics 2120T; yes, three versions ago) now have about 450 miles on them and are definitely showing some serious wear. As a late birthday present - I went ahead and bought some Asics 2150T's online! Got them this week and am looking forward to trying them out. This week's runs went fine, but my left foot/toe joint is starting to bother me again, so I am considering taking off 2 full weeks. With Marathon Training set to begin just after that - it seems like I might as well do that now while I can afford to. I can still cross-train. The question is - do I do my planned 16 miles this Sunday (up at Dupont State Forest while my friend mountain bikes) or start my hiatus now? I'd love to get the mileage in, but I can get back to running sooner if I start now. I just hate Not running!
The River Bound 15k is in 2 weeks, so I could get started back up then. It's always easier running on trails coming off a break (I can make running on trails be a positive in ANY situation!). I could even start some weight training these 2 weeks...
I think I've officially called off the Triple Lakes Trail Marathon or 40miler. I have to finish Marine Corps this year - 10 years after I 1st registered for it and couldn't go due a hamstring injury (and serious lack of training, or knowing what I was getting in to!). Just don;t see myself recovering well enough to do it 3 weeks later. I will continue to put it on my calendar for next year, and maybe it will work out. (The Frosty 50k up in Winston-Salem in early January is looking  better all the time though!)
Some non-running notes: Been loving the World Cup as it's going on right now in South Africa - brings back wonderful memories of my 1994 trips to Orlando (5 games) and Dallas for the Brazil-Netherlands Qtrfinal match. Tomorrow starts another excellent event - the Tour de France. It's easy to want to follow it, especially with George Hincapie calling Greenville his hometown!