Sunday, December 31, 2006

1:08:30 :: 10 miles

Frustrating run. Just ten miles, roads are very bad. We got hit with eight inches of snow last night in 30 degree temps, so a lot of the snow melted on the road, then turned to ice overnight. Basically back to the poor traction we had a few weeks back--compacted snow on top of ice. Plows hadn't gotten to some of the roads yet when I was out, so anywhere from 10-40 seconds per mile slower in various places on the route. Ran six outdoors and started feeling my hamstrings and shin, so I went in to run on the mill, but quickly fell victim to wussiness and stopped after four miles.

Tried to go for a second run later in the day, but it didn't work out. Just not a good day.

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Saturday, December 30, 2006

1:25:06 :: 13 miles

Another great run. Snow and ice on the roads again, but still averaged 6:31 pace, ranging from 6:40 down to 6:15s. The whole run was just in the sweet spot of being comfortable, but a bit more challenging than 'easy'. Average HR of 144. The last three miles slid down just under 6:20 pace, so I cut the run at 13 rather than going for 14, knowing the goal for today is to be recovered well for the next three days (long run, fast run, moderate longer run).

Snow and ice caused a couple of little tweaks in the hamstrings and caused my left shin to flare up for a couple of miles. Both went away quickly, but reminded me to take steps to prepare them for the next couple weeks of 'modified traction'.

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Friday, December 29, 2006

1:10:53 :: 11 miles

Legs felt pretty good. Breathing was a bit out of sync through the first few miles--breathing more than the pace should have required. HR was averaging 142-144 with pace at just under 6:30. Once I settled in to a slightly faster pace (~6:20) the breathing settled down, HR went up to 148-150, and I felt smoother.

Overall, the run was comfortable, but I thought to myself several times during the run that this effort had a fair amount of 'pressure' to it. It didn't feel easy--just beyond that, but not a challenging effort. And an hour later, I feel great. Really good run. The overall pace was right at 85% of goal MP--again, no meaning, just a comparative number.

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Thursday, December 28, 2006

1:11:46 :: 11 miles

Moderate to hard run. Felt a bit tired heading out the door, but everything came around nicely within a half mile or so. Nine miles in 55:26, 6:10 pace, 155 average HR, then two miles on the mill at 8:00 pace to cool down. Felt good, good conditions. No problems from the shin(s) at all, which makes an amazing difference in how these runs feel. I actually do have a positive attitude when I'm not writhing in severe pain!

Pace was kind of sloppy--all over the place, but the effort felt consistent. Break it down:

6:47|140 : 6:13|150 : 6:08|152 : 6:09|156 : 5:50|158 : 5:55|162 : 6:04|161 : 6:12|160 : 6:03|163

I don't think the 5:50 is accurate, as it was on the mile with a 180 degree turn. Maybe five seconds off. Something happened around mile six. The pace slowed with no perceived change in effort, and continued dropping before heading into the last mile, which always seems faster due to the 'git done' effect. Overall this is right at 90% of goal MP (probably 98-100% of current) which is nothing more than mildly interesting. At least it isn't 80%. Then I'd be in trouble.

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Wednesday, December 27, 2006

1:59:17 :: 17 miles

Easy run. Felt kind of tired and borderline depleted the whole run, and heavy legs with a tinge of soreness started creeping in around eight miles through about fourteen. Different than I have felt before.

Legs feel good a couple of hours later. Not feeling like going for another run or anything wild like that, but feeling pretty relaxed. Average HR was 134 for the run, and the trend of 'minus five bpm' seems to be holding up over the last several days. Interesting. BUT WHAT DOES IT ALL MEAN!? =)

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Tuesday, December 26, 2006

1:02:55 :: 10 miles

Moderate run. Feeling a little tired from yesterday. First mile was 7:15, then down into the 6:15 range. Had a few miles right at 6:00-6:05 in the middle, then back to 6:15s to finish. Average HR right at 150, got into the low 160s during the faster parts.

Shin was pretty good. Not much discomfort, and only tightened up for about two miles between three and five.
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Monday, December 25, 2006

1:29:46 :: 14 miles

Moderate run. Recovery must have worked. Started with a 6:45 mile at 136 average HR, then dropped the pace a few seconds per mile for the next several miles while maintaining a 140 HR. Mile five was 6:27 and 143 average HR, so I pulled back to 6:40s so as not to get carried away on a 14 mile progression run. Stayed at 6:35-6:40 pace and 139-142 HR through mile nine, then decided to throw in five miles between 150-155 HR just to check the pace, which ended up being 6:05-6:10. Last half mile was an extended pick-up from about 5:30 pace down to 5:00 pace for an overall 5:41 averaging the typical 162 HR.

Left shin locked up moderately bad through mile four and legs felt kind of thick, like I was running through syrup, but regardless, everything was working. Got a massage after, which made any lingering tightness from the long run and today disappear. HR was a good five bpm lower at 6:40 pace than it has been. Maybe a new level of fitness, maybe just a good day. Either way, good run.

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Sunday, December 24, 2006

2:20:00 :: 20 miles

Another tough run. After a few miles of feeling like shit, I just decided to let my legs find the pace they were happy with. That ended up being 7:15 to 7:20 for a few miles, then down into the low 7:00 range for most of the rest of the run. Finally, by fifteen I was feeling better and started dipping into the sub-7:00 paces. I threw on a 5:40 mile to finish, which felt good (and burned off some frustration).

The left shin locked up on me again for about four miles, at 7:00 minute pace, which is incredibly frustrating, but expected, following these three mile test runs. It's good to know I can run fast without the lockup issues as long as I get some miles in first. I'll have to do some other test workout, because the shin thing is absolutely wrecking any chance of these things being a positive experience.

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Saturday, December 23, 2006

41:16 :: 6 miles

Another horrible test run. Right out the door I knew it was going to be a bad day, but I thought I would try it anyway on the chance that I would come around after a warmup. Three mile warmup at seven minute pace, and the HR averaged in the mid-140s. Not a good sign. Breathing was heavy as well. Didn't get any better as I started the fast part. Locked in to 5:40 pace quickly, but both shins locked up within half a mile and I turned into the wind and started struggling along at 163bpm. I managed a 5:42 for mile one, and another 5:42 (167 avg HR) through a painful second mile, then called it quits a mile early, recalling the shin and quad problems following the first test run. I recovered from 169bpm to 153bpm in the first 30 seconds or so, then to 105 after about a minute. At two minutes, I was at 98bpm.

Minus the incredibly painful shin muscles, the workout would have been fine. Still, I think I was not recovered from the previous few days, if not the last week or so, of workouts. The HR at seven minute pace was a good ten beats high, especially that early in the run. I think it will end up a Good Thing that I cut this run. Something just wasn't right today.

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Friday, December 22, 2006

1:22:18 :: 12 miles

1:22:18 :: 12 miles
Originally uploaded by esondag.

Bread and butter run. Easy running with eight strides in the middle. Strides between 5:30 and 5:00 pace, about 150 to 200 meters each. Felt very smooth and fast. Quads were better, but still not one hundred percent. Good run.

Thursday, December 21, 2006

1:06:30 :: 10 miles

Felt easy for the most part, but HR averaged 146, so it was in the moderate range. Nice morning, no wind, 15 degrees. Perfect running weather. Legs are still a bit sore, no better than yesterday, but no worse. Knee was good. No other problems.

Feels like the paces are getting faster with a consistent effort. Finally starting to feel as fit as I did 10 weeks out from TCM, but now I'm 21+ weeks out from Fargo. Don't get hurt...don't get hurt...don't get hurt...

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Wednesday, December 20, 2006

1:29:22 :: 14 miles

Moderate run, hard finish. Legs were about 70%, much better than yesterday. Took a few miles to shake out, feeling better around 7-8 miles. Most runs lately I've started feeling good around 50-55 minutes into the run, regardless of the pace. Not sure if there is a reason for this or not. First mile in 7:00, then several miles at 6:25-6:30, dropping down to 6:05-6:15 for the rest of the run. Finished with half mile in 2:44 feeling strong, good stride. Average HR of 148.

Post-run, the legs feel great. Almost like they're filled with helium. Sounds strange, but they feel light and full of zip. Still icing the knee, just to be safe.

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Tuesday, December 19, 2006

No Run :: 1:00:00 bike

Did a (short) run to test the legs, didn't last very long. Very sore to the point it's affecting my stride. Like I don't have one it hurts so bad. Stuck to the bike, and will try to fit in a short run later today depending on how the legs feel.

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Monday, December 18, 2006

55:11 :: 7.75 miles + 50min bike

Recovery run. Legs pretty beat up from the hills, feeling the DOMS. Hit the bike to offset some of the pounding and warm up well, then got in just about 8 miles before the kids woke up. Worked well to take care of that .25 miles from yesterday. =)

Knee felt good, left calf was good too. A light massage last night and icing the quads this morning should help clear off the pain a bit quicker.

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Sunday, December 17, 2006

1:45:38 :: 15.25 miles

Moderate run over hills. Ran in the St. Johns University wildlife refuge/campus area. Really nice rustic trail system. Footing was dodgy at times, lots of rolling hills. Not as severe as yesterday, but much more numerous. Windy in the open areas. Around fourteen miles the hills started irritating the knee just a bit, so I stopped just over 15. The effort was solid, and I'm not used to hills like this. Two days of hills turns out to be like starting weight lifting--lots of DOMS in the quads.

On the flatter parts of the run, I was hitting 6:40-6:45 pace at 145-150 heart rate. Good follow-up effort to the 10 miler yesterday.

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Saturday, December 16, 2006

1:03:40 :: 10 miles

1:03:40 :: 10 miles
Originally uploaded by esondag.

Big hills, soft dirt, good times. 10 miles in 1:03:40. Felt fast and strong. Long run tomorrow. Looking forward to it. Paces ranged from 5:20 to 7:20. Avg HR 155, range 145 to 170. Windy in places. Have a good weekend.

22:15 :: 3 miles

Test run. Everything went fine with the knee, so I'll do a longer run this afternoon once we get to the grandparents' house. Still icing for the next couple of days to keep it managed. Some problems with the left shin again. I was wearing flats on the treadmill, which is supposed to help rather than make it worse. Will try some massage techniques to loosen the muscle sheath and hopefully prevent the pain.

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Friday, December 15, 2006

No Run :: 55:00 bike

Leg felt good on the bike. Still sore. Icing and light massage.
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Thursday, December 14, 2006

10:00 :: 1.25 miles

No run this morning. It rained most of the night and temps hovered between 30-35 degrees, so it's water on top of ice everywhere. Just like how hockey rinks are polished.

More importantly, the tendinitis in my knee is still bugging me, and it got pretty painful after the last two days of slipping around. I'm going to continue icing and try a run after work, which will give it more time to loosen up.

Knee has gotten somewhat less painful, but still hurt a bit on a test run, so I'm going to rest it until it's feeling better. Iced five times today and did some light massage.

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Wednesday, December 13, 2006

1:22:19 :: 13 miles

Frustrating run. Still slippery. Managed seven miles in the middle around 6:05 pace, about 160 HR. Bookended the faster stuff with three milers at an easy pace. Sick of the ice, sick of six-minute miles feeling like a sprint, and sick of thinking about old goals. My goal isn't to crack 2:30. My goal is to crush 2:30 and crack 2:27. Right now I don't feel like I'm progressing toward that goal, but I'm an idiot. Maybe I am making progress and I need to be patient. Maybe I just can't get there from where I am in 150 odd days. I have no idea. That is what is so frustrating.

Yesterday I read about this 20-something dude from Alaska who got second in the Fargo Marathon this past May in 2:32. He followed that up in October with a 2:28. He's coming back to Fargo in May and I want to be able to compete with him. 20 weeks.

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Tuesday, December 12, 2006

1:38:41 :: 14 miles

Recovery run. Really, really, really slick outside today. Aside from a few patches that were sanded for cars, the roads and sidewalks were a 29 degree wasteland of freezing drizzle and fog. Absolutely awful traction to offset the otherwise beautiful December morning.

Hit 6:55-7:05 pace for nine and change outside, then ran on the mill for a total of 14. Overall decent run, but the poor traction the last two days has my hamstrings acting up again. Ice, ice, baby.

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Monday, December 11, 2006

1:17:43 :: 12 miles

Moderate run. Short warmup, a bit over a quarter mile, then nine miles around 6:15 pace. Took a few miles to settle in, but felt good otherwise. Heart rates very consistent in the 155-158 range. Not too much fatigue in the legs, they seemed to turn over just fine. Tried to stay closer to 6:20, but everything locked in better around 6:15s. Required a bit of focus to fight the mental fatigue. I'm finding I'm not as 'tough' as I thought I was mentally. It will be good to do some work on that.

Finished with 2.7 on the mill at 7:00 pace. Overall, this went really well.

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Sunday, December 10, 2006

2:21:48 :: 21 miles

Long run. Ran with College Guy, Skip, and That Guy. Good times, let's do it again sometime. Run went really well until I started to bonk at mile 17. Held on and tried to work through it. Quite painful, but managed to maintain pace until the wheels fell off at 19.5. Managed a 6:57 for mile 20, then took a 200m walk break and resumed running the final mile home in 6:33. This bonk was definitely more mental than physical given the quality of the last few miles (6:25, 6:35, 6:57, 6:33). Even though I felt like I was crawling, when I was focused and fighting the pain, the pace stayed strong. Mile splits mostly 6:40-6:45 with a few outliers. Pace felt easy until about mile 14, then a took a little more effort until 17 when it took a lot more focus. Average HR 144 overall. Reached average of 147-149 for mile 16 through 20.

Took GEF at the beginning of the run rather than in the middle, which probably did me in. Today just wasn't my day to burn fat, I guess. Good learning experience and mental exercise.

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Saturday, December 09, 2006

December 3-9 :: 91.5 miles [8 runs]

Total miles: 91.5
Core miles: 91.5 in 8 runs (87.5 in singles)
Supplementary miles: 4 in 1 runs

87.5 in singles, one second run of 4 miles. The four miler was decent quality though, so I'll count it in the week core total. Week was screwed up by a couple of minor injuries which I would attribute to going too hard on the Sunday run, and slipping on the ice at higher than normal speeds (5:50 pace) for 10 miles. Lesson learned. Had to cut the next day's run in half and cut out the second runs due to time constraints, otherwise the mileage would have been consistent with last week.

Feeling good about the change in paces so far. It will take some getting used to but I'm confident I can adapt.

1:16:32 :: 11 miles

Recovery run. Wore the Icebugs, and unfortunately had some problems. They are heavy and chunky shoes, which aggravates my shins and causes that 'lock up' condition I always bitch about. Even at seven minute pace my shins were getting painful, so it's time to put those shoes back in the box. Intended to go 12-14, but it didn't work out. Figured a couple of miles at easy paces is nothing to worry about.

Also added a four miler (26:57) in the afternoon as temperatures reached an unseasonably warm 43 degrees. After a week of unseasonably cold weather, I didn't want to miss the opportunity.

Haven't been doing the second runs like I wanted to as it has been to difficult to get them in and get back to work. I may try to ride the trainer instead, as this would be a way to elevate the pulse and get some blood flowing without having to warm up and do all the other time-eating stuff that a run requires.

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Friday, December 08, 2006

1:01:32 :: 9 miles

Evaluation run. C-. Three mile warmup in 21:15, avg HR of 138, then three miles in 17:06 (5:43|158, 5:43|163, 5:40|167). Stopped and took heart rates for recovery. Averages for each 30 second period for two minutes--:30(157)-:60(109)-:90(107)-:120(106). Three mile cooldown on the mill around seven minute pace, avg HR 135. Had a slight tailwind, maybe five mph. Traction was good with the new studded shoes.

Shins locked up around the end of mile two, which messed up my rhythm and was very painful. Working on dorsiflexor strength to prevent this from happening. Really sick of this problem over the past year. Overall, the run was tougher than I hoped it would be. Still good though. I'm excited to track my progress over the next several weeks, as I have a feeling I will be moving much better soon.

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Thursday, December 07, 2006

1:32:17 :: 13 miles

Recovery run? Woke up late due to the kids messing with the volume on the alarm clock. I'll have to thank them later for that. Blisters are back due to the excess heat and sweat from running indoors on the mill, so had a bit of taping and such to do to get comfortable. After that, one mile warmup and 12 miles at just under seven minute pace. Felt okay until mile eight or so, then started feeling really good. Good run overall. HR in the low 130s for most of the run, then up to low 140s for the last few miles. Overall average HR was 131, which gives the appearance that I am pretty well recovered from the two previous days. Actually a bit surprised by that due to how the efforts felt. Good good.

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Wednesday, December 06, 2006

1:47:53 :: 16 miles

Seppuku run. Would have killed myself at mile seven but I was too tired to pick up the knife. Only half joking. Mile one to warm up just under 8:00 pace, then down to steady 6:40s on the treadmill. Mentally quite difficult due to some lingering fatigue and from being on the treadmill. The legs felt pretty good, which is important. Stuck it out and started feeling better around mile ten. Heart rate stabilised around 148-152 at mile ten and onward. Good run, but mentally very tough.

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Tuesday, December 05, 2006

1:18:59 :: 12 miles

Easy run? How about the 'new' easy run? The new easy is the old moderate. Anyway, had some problems with my ankle this morning before I even started running. In a eureka moment, I realized that even the pressure of a sock across my sore ankle tendon caused pain, so after a bit of fiddling, I sliced my sock open to expose the tendon and pulled the tongue of my shoe way over to expose the area, et Voila! No pain. I wish I had figured that out yesterday.

The first two miles were full of fiddling with shoes and socks, but the last ten were good solid effort, right around 1:04:15. On the treadmill, I find the effort is harder for the time, so I'll take it. Heart rates for the first seven were 140 rising up to 150, At just after nine miles, a strange good feeling hit me and continued through the end of the run. The last five were at 153-155 HR, and 6.3 pace on the mill, equating to 6:23 pace on the watch. I was definintely tired at the end, but felt I could continue for some time longer. Good run.

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Monday, December 04, 2006

51:51 :: 6.5 miles

Recovery run. Started outside, but had a familiar problem with my ankle. On the left leg my shin tightened up once yesterday on the icy part of the run, and today after about .25 mile on the ice, the front of my ankle really started burning. So, I turned for home, got on the treadmill and hoped it would go away. It was okay for a while, but didn't last. Icing it today and will probably be on the mill tomorrow. Overall, really slow, but otherwise felt fine.

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Sunday, December 03, 2006

2:06:16 :: 20 miles

Long run. I've been frustrated with feeling slow lately, and after getting some comments from Fatboy and an anonymous (probably a genius, and very likely kind, generous, and handsome) reader, and reading about some of Andrew's Renato Canova-inspired training, as well as some Daws, and some Lydiard, it's become very clear that base training doesn't mean slow training. I've been conditioned over time to think that anything faster than 6:00 pace is 'hard' and 'fast'. I need to get past it, and today I took a step.

I did five sets of two miles on two miles off. The 'on' portions were at my best guess at a high aerobic pace, a pace that felt comfortable enough to settle into and feel good for a while, but still quite strong. This ended up consistently being 5:45-5:50 pace and a heart rate of 158-160. Here are the splits: 5:47-156|5:50-159, 6:20-158(hill)|5:45-160, 5:44-159|5:48-160, 5:44-158|5:44-160, 5:54-158|5:56-160. The last set was interesting. I was coming back into a breeze, maybe a 5mph wind, and I got really cold. I could also feel my form wavering. I don't know how much was just getting tired, and how much was the cold and the breeze. HR was consistent though, so I would guess 50/50.

The 'off' portions ended up being 6:30-6:45 pace and heart rates of 140-145 early and 145-150 later in the run. 6:19 pace and 152 average HR overall. Felt like I could have gone another two or four miles, but it was very cold and a good time to stop.

Overall, I felt great, and 1.5 hours later, I have some general tightness and a bit of a depleted feeling. The weather was a big factor today, as you will see in some pics I will post, but I overcame it pretty well, I think. I'd better get used to it, because the weather won't get much better until March. WooT!

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Saturday, December 02, 2006

Nov 26 - Dec 2 :: 95 miles [7 runs]

Total miles: 108
Core miles: 95 in 7 runs
Supplementary miles: 13 in 5 runs

Not sure how I will break this diown going forward. This is an attempt. The extra miles are really just to shake out and move blood, so no real benefit other than recovery. So, I hesitate to count them in the total. It's not about miles, it's about training, but the number is motivational to some extent.

1:25:27 :: 12 miles

Easy run. 135 Average HR, although it felt slightly harder than that. Tweaked something in my lower back slipping on the ice. A little bit sore, but not bad. Iced it. No second run today.

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Friday, December 01, 2006

1:25:15 :: 11 miles

Recovery run. Ran on the treadmill due to slippery conditions outside. A light snow on top of ice provides about the worst traction possible, so to avoid injury I just hit the mill. Interrupted a couple of times by kids waking up too early, but otherwise uneventful.

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