Friday, August 31, 2007

Motivation

These past few weeks I have been running with relative consistency. Because of that, I am seeing the same faces of runners who, like myself, are braving the elements to get in their weekly miles. I've been asked: "Why do you run so much?", "How many miles do you run?", "What is your training pace?", "What is your 5k time?", and my recent favorite... "What supplements are you on?"

My answers?

I run so much because I love running. My mileage changes from week to week based on how I feel. My training pace is as fast or slow as I want to go and my 5k time is faster than my last race. What supplements am I on? A pair of size 10.5 Asics Gel-Landreths 3-6 hours per week. What are you on?

No matter who you are, as long as you are training you can bet that we have something in common. Suffering. No, we might not all know what it feels like to cross over the threshold between dehydration and death, but we do know what it feels like to push through a cramp. We are all equal no matter what our motives are for running and racing. It is all relative and therefore it is all the same.

Sunday, August 26, 2007

4 out of 5 Runs

Weekly Summary

The past few weeks I have been struggling with keeping to my scheduled runs. The required mileage, pace/effort is not too demanding, but there always seems to be a last minute variable that side tracks my intentions.

This week I was able to keep up with 4 of the 5 required runs. My pace is remaining around 7:30 per mile on average throughout the week and the legs and lungs are feeling strong. I have been reading that by keeping a high percentage of training at easy pace you will get stronger and faster than if you flip flopped the intensity percentages so I'm confident I am heading in the right direction.

Saturday, August 25, 2007

8.5 miles, 5 lbs, and Bonking

Run Summary
Distance: 8.5 Miles
Time: 1:07:36
Avg Pace/Mile: 7:50
Max Pace/Mile: 7:37

Okay so today's run was pretty awful. I mean, I enjoyed the suffering, but I had no idea I would be without water for the run and the heat finally caught up with me. Normally I get some gatorade at the turn around point but today there was no support on the trail and I ended up over 5 lbs. lighter when I got home. Not good.

I learned a little bit on this run. I need to take a little something with me when heading out into the heat. I started running around 8:00am, but that still might have been too late in the day here in Atlanta.

Overall, my legs and lungs felt good. My head was a bit cloudy from the sodium and glucose stores at zero. More suppliments could be in my future. My knee jerk reaction is to go by a box of GU and call it a day. Sounds like a plan.

Friday, August 24, 2007

Endurox R4 - The Recovery Drink

First off... I have not been paid or given anything free from PacificHealth Labs for blogging about Endurox R4. I just like the stuff.

I posted a couple days back about a supplement I am using, Endurox R4. This is not a new miracle recovery drink, nor is it a hidden secret of a select few Russian athletes from during the cold war era who were able to rock it during the Olympics. No, its just a well thought out formula of carbs to proteins that I think have actually helped out my recovery.

Running long is something I enjoy, but since I have moved to Atlanta the hills of Georgia have given my legs a good thrashing. Because of this, I wanted to find something I could take on a regular basis besides Advil or ice bath. So, I have been using Endurox R4 for a few weeks now after EVERY run and I actually feel like I am coming back strong.

So, if there is anyone out there interested in giving a recovery drink a shot... try out Endurox R4. I have the Tangy Orange flavor and mix it with water and ice to recover while stretching. I think it works, or at least I have done a good job convincing myself that it works. Either way, I'm feeling good.

Polar RS200sd with Footpod

I have been running with a Polar RS200sd with the Footpod for the past 100 miles of my training. The battery finally gave out on the Footpod after about 100 miles or 12 hours 30 minutes. I think that is pretty good for a standard AAA battery, but if anyone out there has used the Footpod for a longer amount of time, please let me know.

The paces and distances I have been running have been reporting pretty consistent on the watch up to this point. I am now thinking of upgrading to one of Polar's other HR monitors with footpod that I can use with the computer. Something a little more user friendly because right now I am entering the information into a Google Spreadsheet for the reports you see on this site.

At any rate, this has been a great tool to have along for my mileage ladder training plan. I would recommend this to anyone looking to keep track of some of the distances and paces they are running during training. I have not used it during a race, but I might give it a shot next month.

5 Seasons Rest Day

Tonight we went to dinner with Jordan's mom. I have been looking forward to my long run tomorrow morning all week so I didn't want to sideline my training by having too many micro brews. So, I decided to take on the role of designated driver. That was something new. I enjoyed the hell out of my food and have hopefully set myself up for a good run.

10 hours and counting...

Sunday, August 19, 2007

Another week in review

This was a strange week for training. Was able to get out 3 times but work has been a bear and late nights at the office tended to sideline my afternoon runs. This is becoming more of a trend so I plan on running my shorter distances in the morning before work. Tomorrow will be the first test.

Weekly Summary

Saturday, August 18, 2007

8 is Enough... for now

Long Run Summary
Distance: 8.15 Miles
Time: 1:00:17
Avg Pace/Mile: 7:21
Max Pace/Mile: 7:04

Today's run felt very good. My pace was faster than expected. A lot faster, but I ran based on my perceived exertion and that was pretty low. My legs were strong throughout the run and I accelerated through the hills passing a few fellow runners that I see each weekend.

I have started taking 2 new supplements: Endurox R4 and Source of Life - Vitamin, Mineral and Protein Energy Drink. The reasons for taking these two supplements are two fold: 1) For accelerated recovery time (maybe) 2) A Multi-Vitamin Supplement.

So far I have felt strong and have seen an increase in energy. I was off the coffee for a day and actually made it through without killing someone. So, I think this will be a good way for me to start focusing on my nutrition while stepping away from the caffeine habit.

Sunday, August 12, 2007

Weekly Run Review

This week I spent more time thinking about running than actually pounding the pavement. The race on Saturday took more out of me than I originally thought and my run on Monday reflected the fatigue. So, rest days on Tues through Thurs was a good idea because my Saturday run was back to normal.

Overall, it was a good week to take a look at my current running goals and to make sure I am committing to my training for the right reasons.

Weekly Summary

Saturday, August 11, 2007

Saturday, The Long Run

Long Run Summary:
Distance: 8 Miles
Time: 1:01:32
Avg Pace/Mile: 7:33
Max Pace/Mile: 7:16

I've been thinking about the long run for quite a while. This is one aspect of running that I enjoy and wish I could do more of without completely blowing my legs up, ripping my knees to shreads, or making myself an average long runner without much speed. My current training plan, Mileage Ladder, is doing the job of getting me acclimated to the hills of Georgia without over working my legs, but I'm having trouble satisfying my desire to run long.

In September I will move from the Mileage Ladder plan to either 5k, 10k, 1/2 Marathon or Marathon training. I have a few goals that I want to accomplish which include: Sub 3:10 Marathon, Sub 40 Minute 10k, Sub 18 Minute 5k, Sub 5 Minute Mile. However, based on my past experiences and from what most of my friends have said, not to mention the experts, each of these plans requires a unique training strategy with a focus on niche factors that don't necessary transfer from one distance to the next.

So, over the next few weeks I'm going to try to figure out if I can make these goals work with one training plan. It is probably not possible, or even probable, that it could all come together... but I'll give it some thought.

Friday, August 10, 2007

Friday: Real Rest Day

So, got some good news at work and went out for Pizza and Wine. Long run tomorrow so I held back from opening up the second bottle of wine. Need to get some good sleep and head out early in the morning. It has been over 100 every day this week. Anything after 9am will be too late...

Thursday, August 9, 2007

Thursday: More Rest

Today's run got put on the back burner. Needed one more day of rest before getting back in to the serious focus that I am going to need over the next few weeks. Had a glass of wine with dinner and got to bed early. Planning on hitting my 8 mile long run on Saturday early in the morning so I can get out there before the heat of the day.

Wednesday, August 8, 2007

One more day off..

Okay, I think I'm good. Soreness is just about gone in the right hamstring and I am feeling like I've got good mobility in the leg as well. I am REALLY over-thinking this whole thing, but two years ago I ended up turning my ankle and then running sub 6 minute miles on it and was out for 3 months trying to figure out what went wrong.

I will probably run in the morning tomorrow and then rest all day Thursday and Friday then long run on Saturday. That sounds like the best plan.

Tuesday, August 7, 2007

Run day... Rest day

So, keeping with the adjusted plan, I did not run today. My leg is feeling better, but knowing what could happen I opted to wait rather than risk injury or prolonged soreness. Good choice.

Monday, August 6, 2007

Monday: Another easy 4 Miles and Change

Today was a good day to take it easy. The hamstring issue was still lingering so I thought I would take it slow. It was a good run and I was able to use the massage stick after the run with a little stretching. I felt strong and a bit more flexible afterwards.

Good run. The next two days I will take off to give the hamstring a bit more rest. Pick up the miles on Thursday and then long run on Saturday. That is the plan. Here is how today looked:

Run Summary:

Sunday, August 5, 2007

Rest Day - Bike Cross Training

Today I felt a little bit tight in my right hamstring so I woke up and spun my legs on the bike. I took it for about 12 miles and hardly broke a sweat. However, I was able to loosen up my leg and stretch it. Felt good but got tight again as the day went on. I will keep an eye on this over the next few days as I pick up the mileage.

Here is how the week turned out:

Weekly Summary

Saturday, August 4, 2007

Old Soldiers Day 5k Race Results

Saturday morning started early. I woke up at 5am and ate 1/2 a Peanut Butter Crunch Cliff Bar. We made it to the race site at 6am and I warmed up for 10 minutes before the start at 7am. During the warm up I got my heart rate up and ran one acceleration. Some light stretching at the starting line was all I needed to get focused on what was about to go down. I knew it would hurt, and I welcomed those thoughts. I had a few goals to hit, and I was committed to hitting them.

After the gun went off, I weaved through a couple of old ladies and little kids to make my way up to the break away pack. There were a couple of high school kids who went out fast, but we caught them around the first curve about 1/2 mile into the race.

First mile came quickly and I was right on pace at 6:04. I reached down to my watch to hit the split button and ended up hitting stop. I didn't find that out until half way through the second mile, so I ended up starting the clock once we hit the 2nd mile marker.

The route was up and down the whole way. I made sure to keep my pace even on the up hills and to run at least 30 seconds hard once the hill crested. The downhills were a bit rough because they were so long, but I quickened my step and used them to my advantage, making sure to remain in good form though those efforts.

There were a couple of high school cross country runners around me and they paced off the back and side of me during the last mile. Once we were about 1/4 mile out I began to pick up the pace and they matched it. Then, with about 200 meters left I opened up my stride and increased my turn over rate. They could not respond and I entered the finish shoot alone and under my goal pace at 19:23.

It was a great run. Here is how my goals turned out:

Goals
1) Race hard and have a good time (Accomplished)
2) Finish under 20:00 (Accomplished = 19:23)
3) Finish in Top 10 (Finished 11th)
4) Podium Finish (Accomplished = 1st Place Age 30-34)

Race Results:

Friday, August 3, 2007

Friday - Rest Day - Race Goals

Today I decided to hold off going to happy hour and to commit to the race tomorrow morning. I have not been in a 5K for a while. The last 5k I ran was pretty slow: 20:20 and I was not happy with the outcome. I came out too hard and then bonked, running my last mile around 7 minutes. It was a disaster, but the problem was a lack of race plan. Even in a race as short as 5k, it is important to have a race plan.

This time around, I have a few goals that I want to accomplish:

1) Race hard and have a good time
2) Finish under 20:00
3) Finish in Top 10
4) Podium Finish

If I can just reach one of these goals, I will be very happy. My training has been productive, but I'm not sure where I am at competitively. This race will give me a chance to give my legs a nice stress test as well as my lungs, nerves, and brains to hold together a solid race plan.

Thursday, August 2, 2007

Thur: Another Rest Day

Yesterday was a great day off, but today's rest day was even better. I got home from work and was shocked to find Jordan at the stove, cooking some pork tenderloin and roasted new potatoes. Two bottles of red wine were on the counter and a block of stinky cheese was staged next to the wine opener.

That is my kind of rest day!

On The Run Vlog

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Wednesday, August 1, 2007

Wednesday - Rest day for the Race

I have made the decision to take today and tomorrow off from my previously scheduled 4 mile runs. It has been a while since I last raced and I want to make sure I have fresh legs on Saturday.

Instead of running I will hang out at the house and relax a bit. Work has been crazy lately so this brief departure from stressing my legs out on the hills will be nice.

Morning Run

Got out this morning, again, for a morning run through the hills. They are not as daunting as they were when we first moved to the hill cou...