Tuesday, September 30, 2008

No residual effects from the "race" on Saturday.. I ran a very easy 5 yesterday. Legs feel very fresh and ready to go today. ~1-1/2 mile warm-up at MAF, then ~3.12 miles at 2-8 beats below LT, 1-1/2 warm-down. Felt great today, the 3 miles at tempo were 6:22/AHR 163, 6:25/AHR 164, 6:31/AHR 166.. Easy run tomorrow then a double on Thursday with hill repeats in the evening.

Saturday, September 27, 2008

Race Report..

Went very well.. Stuck to the game plan and felt good throughout. Controlled and consistant miles through 10, 6:58, 7:00, 6:57, 6:49, 6:53, 7:00, 6:58, 6:57, 6:57, 6:57.. (these 10 felt great, effortless)then took the HR up a bit for the last 5k, 6:42, 6:32, 6:36.. But the funny thing is the last 5k was very easy.. It felt like I could have went 10-15 seconds faster without any problem... Ran with Jon and Mike from start to finish. Very happy with the effort as it wasn't an all out red-line from the start kind of race for me.

There were more hills than I anticipated, but it really wasn't an issue... For an inagural race, it was top notch and well managed. I don't think they'll have any problem selling out again.

Oh yeah.. my time was 1:29:49.

Friday, September 26, 2008

Very easy run today in prep for tomorrows Half Mary. Today's run was an out and back toward the State Park... On the way back I had to stop and let PePe LePew cross the road about 20 yards in front of me.. Didn't want to get any closer than that.

I'll limit tomorrows half effort to 5-10 beats above MAF through 10 miles which will put me around 6:45 - 7:15 pace and then run the last 5k at near LT.. I'll be running with Jon and Mike to keep me honest.. Jon's coming off a nice effort from last weekends Parlor City Trot Half Marathon (1:22:50) and plans on the same race/training effort as I'm doing, Mike's still training for his trip out to xterra the following weekend but plans on mirroring Jon and I.
There are some things that really matter in life. There are times in a persons life when politics, patriotism, service of one kind or another and even work seem to be all important but as you get older you realize there are some things that take a precedence over everything else and are as important as breathing.
I think the greatest of these life needs is love. I am not talking about the lust of sex but the love of a man for his wife and vice versa. I am talking about the love of a parent for their children or grandchildren. The times when we just hold each other and experience the energy of oneness. There is no emptiness like the loneliness of being alone in the world. There is no one as vulnerable as the one who feels they are unloved.
There is no sense of personal accomplishment as great as what you experience when you reach out to someone in true caring. No material gain can match the feeling you experience when you realize you have filled someone’s personal need. This tells me that a persons greatest accomplishments and most grandiose moments are when we are fulfilling someone else’s needs.
This does not mean we can be like the monk who ignores pain and suffering and locks themselves behind the doors of a monastery while the world goes to hell. We are a nation of freedom loving people. This freedom is a light that shines into the darkness of dictatorships the world over. Those who support those things hate the light of Christianity, democracy and freedom. To borrow the words of Jesus Christ who was specifically talking about the good news of the Gospel, said; Luke 11:33 "No one lights a lamp and puts it in a place where it will be hidden, or under a bowl. Instead he puts it on its stand, so that those who come in may see the light."
Over two hundred years ago a lamp of freedom was lit and that light has shown through the darkness of oppression the world over. That light was hope to hopeless people. The numbers of those who have come through Ellis Island to carve out a life in this land of the free are uncountable. Some found wealth and happiness that was unbelievable. Others found the peaceful simplicity of living free.
There has to be government. Our way of life has to be defended. Our way of life itself demands that we try to extend the freedom and democracy we take for granted to all people and sacrifice as a people to deliver others from oppression and domination by evil. The goal of America should be to extend peace and freedom to all people the world over. The outreach of America must be the hand of peace and friendship.
There are two powers that we must possess to survive as a people. We must have the power to overcome any enemy who would trample and subdue us and destroy our way of life. Freedoms light cannot be extinguished, not by power hungry tyrants using armies or mindless religious fanatics who use the yoke of bondage to subdue people to their whims.
We must never allow ourselves to be lulled into the sleepy state of do nothing while our enemies plan the destruction of our way of life. Leaving our children freedom is the greatest gift we can give them.
Second, we must always have and exhibit the power of love and friendship. Neither of these qualities means that we must be soft to our enemies. It does mean that when our enemies are subdued and defeated, we must extend the hand of true friendship to the people who have lived under the yoke of horrendous bondage for more years than many of us are alive. This act of friendship will demand a different kind of sacrifice than our brave soldiers have been called upon to give. It will demand we be capable of putting behind personal loss.
Just like the gift of freedom for us cost our forefathers more than we can possibly imagine, purchasing the freedom of people like the Iraqi’s has a high price tag on our generation. Just like Americans were called upon to bury the hurt experienced by loved ones under the Germans and the Japanese. When the war in Iraq is over it will be time for our generation, like those before us, to learn what it means to “Love your enemies”. Matthew 5:44 "But I say unto you, Love your enemies, bless them that curse you, do good to them that hate you, and pray for them which despitefully use you, and persecute you."
Love is all-powerful. The love of God is above all that the most spiritual person could possibly understand. That is why we just have to accept his love by faith, believing what to our carnal mind is the impossible. We cannot expect for these people who have lived in the most horrible bondage we could imagine to understand the why’s about what America is doing for them. Let us hope they embrace their hard won freedom. The price is so high. I hope they will embrace this newfound freedom and they too will be a light shining in a dark area of this world. This alone will make the sacrifice of so many so worthwhile. Maybe then, they too will learn what it means to “love your enemies”.

Wednesday, September 24, 2008

Another soild day of training... 6-1/2 miles with 4 "hills" to run.. easy up (5-10 beats above MAF) then fast controlled running on the downhills.

A follow up visit to a urologist today for some more probing and poking.. Looks like I'll need to have a cytoscopy done here within a few weeks just to make sure the bladder is okee dokee... Better safe than sorry I guess.

Sunday, September 21, 2008

Well, I just got back from 5-1/2 hours in the emergency room... After my 8 mile run this morning, and without being too graphic, I started peeing some pretty thick blood. Not good I thought.. I felt great but decided to get it checked out anyway.. After a couple of CT scans and the always favorite rectal exam.. I'm back home and feeling the same as when I left..

Saturday, September 20, 2008

Parlor City Trot 10k

I ran almost exactly what I thought I would today.. After my tempo run (well, it was more of a let's see how fast you can run, run) on Tuesday, I determined that right now, a 6:25 - 6:30 pace is about all I can mantain for 10k. My 39:53 today was a reflection of what I ran last Tuesday.. My splits were pretty darn even, 6:22, 6:33 (slight uphill), 6:25, 6:24, 6:18 (slight downhill), 6:32 (rolling) then a 1:17 to finish. Overall very happy with the effort seeing as how I haven't done any speedwork (except the tempo run last Tuesday) for over 2 months. The only "speedwork" I've done are 10-20s pick-ups during my MAF runs twice a week.

The pace today felt good, I never struggled to hold it but at the same time I don't think I could have gone faster without hitting the red line. All is looking well...

Thursday, September 18, 2008

5 miles - moderate progression run. 1st mile @ MAF, last mile in 6:19... After reading over my notes on what constitutes a "moderate progression run". I ran this too fast as the fastest mile should be my approximate goal pace for the marathon. Goal pace for me right now is 6:53.. I may lower it later (or Tim may) as I get farther into my build up for Boston, but for now I should have held back. Lesson learned...

I started off the run feeling a little lathargic, but started feeling better after about 10 minutes and just went with it.

The weather is looking good for this coming weekends race. The Parlor City Trot half marathon has always been good to me. I've run some of my best times on this course.. 1:18:55(95'), 1:19:12(88'), 1:20:20(87')... Maybe this time next year, I can add another one to the list!

Wednesday, September 17, 2008

Evaluating MAF...

About a month ago, when I first started using MAF as a way to control the efforts of the base building phase of my running. I determined through research and recomendation that my range would be 135 - 145. I used this range for about a week until Lucho recommended I bump that up to 140 - 150 based on my current fitness and most recent race results. Since then I've ran all runs with a max HR of 150.. of course there was the occasional 152 or 153 but was quickly brough back down.
On 8/21/08 I started to throw in 4 x 10s - 15s pick-ups at slightly faster than 5k pace as a way to build strengh, speed, and economy without cheating on base work. These were done with plenty of rest in between so as not to get fatigued. Fatigue is a bad thing as it actually reduces your economy.
My MAF tests are producing very nice results and tell me that definitley something is going right. After confirming with Lucho on what's been going on, it's time to start tempo runs, progression runs, hill repeats, in other words... let's go fast! (at least some of the time) Hey, now your talking...

Yesterday I took off at an easy 1st mile, below MAF, then let it fly and went almost as hard as I could for the remainder of the run. 7:18, 6:43, 6:33, 6:41, 6:48, 6:40. (a far cry from my sub 6:00's that I was running during the summer)That's probably as fast as I can go right now without blowing up... AHR for the run was 161.. AHR for 1st mile was 145, AHR for the 5 miles at tempo was 168.. This tells be that my MAF is around 148. This also tells me that my range for my MAF is ~142 - 152... very close to what I'm currently running anyway. I should have limited that run to 3 hard miles and the rest at MAF but I wanted to get the data from running a hard tempo to evaluate my MAF range. Tempo runs, for now, will be every other week. The next one will only be ~3 miles at 2-8 beats below LT and then will build on that.

I have a 10k race this weekend that will give me an even better indication of where my range and LT should be. More on that after Saturday.

Even though my MAF is improving at this range, Tim is having me bump my HR 5-10 beats and then focus on that intensity thus stimulating the muscles to build strength that is specific to running hard in marathons.

4 miles easy run today with an AHR of 148.. Progression run tomorrow..

Good things to come!!!

Sunday, September 14, 2008

10.3 miles... Great run today.. I checked the radar early and again after church, and it looked like I would have a window of about an hour to get a run in and although I knew I wouldn't be able to get in the entire run done within an hour, at least I would have part of the run dry. Well, as it would happen, I made it about 5 miles before it started to come down, and down, and down.... Aside from the fact that I was completely wet and my shoes were sloshing with every step, I had a great run. I felt very relaxed and finished as fresh as I started.

Saturday, September 13, 2008

After this mornings MAF test...

1 8:18.......7:49........7:40........7:27
2 8:23.......8:02........7:48........7:33
3 8:29.......8:18........8:03........7:41
4 8:41.......8:35........8:10........7:48

Thursday, September 11, 2008

Last three MAF test results comparison...

MAF results
1 8:18.......7:49........7:40
2 8:23.......8:02........7:48
3 8:29.......8:18........8:03
4 8:41.......8:35........8:10

Wednesday, September 10, 2008

Below is a graph of my average pace at my MAF since I first starting using MAF on 8/4/08 as a way to control my training efforts during this base building stage.

My pace on 8/4/08, 9:14/mile, AHR 145. My pace on todays run, 7:52/mile, AHR 147. That's a 15% improvement of pace/m in a little over a month using the same HR/effort. The outlier on the 29th day was a run done without a HR monitor. I just ran a nice and easy relaxed pace to where I felt good, the average pace for that run was 7:30/mile. If I had worn my HR monitor, it felt like it could probably be around 160.
I have come to accept that, in common with a good number of runners, I share the emotional and personality traits that William Sheldon (1945) ascribed to those whom he called ectomorphs and whose body resembles those of distance runners... a love of privacy, an overwhelming desire for solitude, an inability to relax and talk in company, an overconcern with physical health; typical patterns of mental behavior that include daydreaming, absentmindedness, procrastination and an inability to make decisions... The ectomorph's eternal quest is to understand the riddles of life. If you ask the people closest to me, they'll tell you that sums it up pretty well. Additional info can be found in the tomes of Stoic philosophy or the lyrics to Weezer's song "Pork and Beans" ;-)

Monday, September 8, 2008

Jacob, my youngest son’s birthday is coming up in a couple of weeks, the big 4 oh…my. His first day of pre-school is today and I have to admit that it made me smile as well as be sad at the same time. I had to call him and wish him good luck and be a good boy. “Ok daddy..” is all he said. “Be a good boy and remember to pull your pant’s up after you use the bathroom!” He tends to like to walk around with his pants around his ankles after he uses the restroom. So now all three of my boys are in school.. Dylan 1st grade, Adam in Kindergarten and Jacob in Pre-school. I’m sure my wife will appreciate the added peace she gets during this time. Those boys are a handful sometimes (ummm, excuse me, most of the time..) as most of you in the same situation can probably agree. Still, life wouldn’t be same without any of them. They are a gentle reminder of a life without care, one where you don’t have to get up at 5:00 to get ready for the days events, or wonder what kind of stress you’ll encounter during works in’s and out’s. Or having to come home and keep working, whether it’s washing clothes, mowing, help getting dinner ready or doing a few honey-do’s. The biggest thing on there plate is, am I hungry or not…

Still, I’m glad big Jake is growing up and giving Cindy an extra few hours of alone time. I still remember every moment of all my boys being born. In Jacob’s case, he decided to pee all over the doctor before the umbilical cord was even cut, hmmmm.. a sign of the times? Have a good time at school buddy.. before you know it you’ll be chasing girls and have more things on your plate than you know what to do with…
Yesterday I ran a little over 10 miles.. but the run has me a little confused. The route I ran I am very familar with as I've run it several hundred times.. I know where all the mile markers are at within' +/- 2-3 seconds.. The run started off very good, 1st mile 7:39, then 7:59, then the route gets rolling, with some downhills and uphills.. pace from miles 3 - 7 vary between 8:18 - 8:40, then the last three miles were all under 8:10??? From past experience using MAF and keeping my HR under 150, each successive mile through the end of the run usually gets slightly slower, so I was surprised to see my pace actually get faster the last 3 miles of this run.. what gives?? Maybe this is the result of improved endurance? I knew that the pace would vary through the uphills and downhills, but I thought the pace of the last 3 miles would be more around 8:30 - 8:50.. Of course I should just take Lucho's advice and not over think it!!

Saturday, September 6, 2008

Week of 8/31 - 9/6: 38.2 miles all done below MAF HR of 150bpm, 4 x 15s sprints at slightly faster than 5k pace done on Tuesdays and Thursdays..

MAF test on 9/6/08:

Mile - Time
1 - 7:40
2 - 7:48
3 - 8:03
4 - 8:10

1 mile warm-up and warm-down...

Definite improvment from last weeks test.. hey, maybe this does work! ;-)

Wednesday, September 3, 2008

Week of 8/24 - 8/30: 38 miles all done below MAF HR of 150bpm

MAF test on 8/30/08:

Mile - Time
1 - 7:49
2 - 8:02
3 - 8:18
4 - 8:35

1 mile warm-up and warm-down...

Coming from someone who's use to running ~6:30 - 6:50 miles for a training run. It just feels so unnatural for me to run this slow.. but I have to trust the concept and believe in the end result. I'm still 34 weeks out from Boston, so there's plenty of time for the training to take root and to feel more comfortable at running below my MAF. I anticipate a plateau before too long and then I can at least crank it up a notch.

Speaking of Boston, I made the commitment and registered today. I've qualified several times but never actually made the trip. I have to do it at least once! Now do I drive(~840 miles) or fly out?