Monday, May 24, 2010

Training Week 5/16 - 5/22

Semi-sorta-kinda moderate week. See, my training is very specific...

Onto the numbers...

5/16, Sunday: 5 - 42:32, Homeplace Loop. Nice day, but windy along the powerlines. And, it is somehow always in your face in both directions. Overall, I felt a bit sluggish, but much less tight.

5/17, Monday: 6 total, 6 x Mt. Ararat. Devised a section for some hillwork that is .25 long with a trail to use for a more gentle descent. Plan was to make it moderately difficult, but not really busting it. 6 repeats in 1:51 (oops), 2:03, 2:00, 2:02, 2:04, 2:02. Felt like I could have handle another 2 or 3 at that pace. 1.75 warm up and cool down.

5/18, Tuesday: 3 - 23:57, Suck Loop. Good.

5/19, Wednesday: Off, but the tightness that had been in my right calf—then went away—had found a new home in my right hamstring. Very tight.

5/20, Thursday: 6.75 total, Spring Trail Running Series at Great Glen Trails. My original plan was to do some type of longer tempo run, but decided that one more hard effort wouldn't hurt. Still tight going in, my hamstring actually felt better as I went along. That being said, my head just wasn't in the game, as I didn't have the mental edge to really push it. I was subconsciously (and consciously) thinking about Pineland, so I didn't see the point in really making it hurt. With that, however, I was only about 20 seconds slower. 3.6 miles: 26:56. 2 mile warm up / 1.25 mile cool down.

5/21, Friday: 3 - 23:42, Suck Loop. Very tight to start out, but loosened up nicely.

5/22, Saturday: 5 - 42:12, Bike Path with Sam in the B.O.B. Felt good, despite battling the wind. Wasn't sure how many miles I was going to get in, but since Sam didn't fall asleep until about 2 miles into the run, a 5 mile run meant she got about a 30 minute nap. Worked out pretty well.

Miles: 28.75
Trail: 17.75
Road: 11

Overall, nothing too exciting for the week. The tightness in the hamstring was a bit shocking and unsettling. Seems to be working itself out, though. Mentally, however, the week was a totally different story. I have two very conflicting threads running through my thoughts of late.

First, my level of uncertainty/concern/fear over Pineland is high. I have no idea if my training has been "correct." I really don't know how I'm going to feel on race day. I definitely have some strength built up from snowshoeing, and I ran mostly comfortably in the half marathon 8 weeks ago. Since then, I feel like my "speed" has increased, but I'm not sure I haven't gone too far in that direction. Maybe I should be running the 10k on Saturday instead? And, yeah, I'd really like to run well and significantly faster than I ran in 2008, so there's some internal pressure.

The second thread is the complete opposite: I'm feeling pretty good about my running right now. In fact, I feel like I'm back to where I was in college. My times aren't as "fast," but the position feels about the same: the front of the middle. On a good day, I may sneak up to the bottom of the first tier. I'll take that. I also feel like I finally remember how much I can really push. How good I am at suffering. The two-mile workout last week really highlighted that. So, I know at Pineland, I'll be able to suffer with the best of them. At races now, I feel like I'm racing, not just participating. Big difference. Plus, the other day, D told me that I looked skinny. Being an 87-pound midget, I consider her an expert on these things.

So, yeah, I'm all over the place. Maybe it's taperitis.

No tunes this week. Instead, here's a video I made for the Bradbury Scuffle. I've jumped on board to help Ian as Assistant Race Director this know, get him coffee, make copies, that sort of thing...

Bradbury Scuffle from sn0m8n on Vimeo.

Sunday, May 16, 2010

Training Week 5/9 - 5/15

If last week was an easy week, this week was the complete opposite. Not a big week in terms of mileage (are mine ever?), but plenty of intensity. In fact, my hamstrings and calves are on strike, specifically, the right leg. Same as before. Again, though, it shouldn't be an issue as long as I pay attention to them. With two weeks to go until Pineland, the plan is to take it relatively moderate this week and then easy the week before.

Onto the numbers...

5/9, Sunday: 3 - 23:10, Suck Loop. Ran the loop in the reverse direction for a change since I'm tired of running down the Highland Green Road into the wind—it seems to always blow in that direction. Felt great, which could in some way have been inspired by my sister-in-law and Jeff's performances at the the Sea Dogs Mother's Day 5k. Had a great time hanging out at the race, and then in the afternoon after my run, we took the Little Lady out for her first "hike" on the Cathance River trails.

5/10, Monday: 10 total, 3 x 2 mile on Mt. Ararat Trails. SO HARD. There's a natural loop within the Mt. Ararat trails that according to MapMyRun is .55 miles long, so 4 laps equals 2.2 miles. I warmed up on the loop to get an idea of what pacing would make sense based on the terrain, which includes a 50 yard stretch of pavement, hardpacked trail, rocky uneven ankle snapping trail, soft sand and a couple puddles. Oh, and it wasn't real flat. My hope was that I could pull off 7:00 pace, but after the first lap of the first interval, I knew that was a stretch. I ended up with 3, 2.2 mile repeats in 15:28 (7:02), 15:51 (7:12), and 15:54 (7:13). This was the hardest workout I've done since college. It hurt. After the first interval, I seriously considered shortening it, slowing it down, altering it, going home. After the second interval, I couldn't imagine running a third. But, in all honesty, I knew I'd be posting the workout here, so I didn't want to let my fan(s) down. That being said, I'm really glad I pushed through, but I clearly underestimated how hard it was going to be.

5/11, Tuesday: Off. Not based on how I felt after Monday, but more due to travel and time.

5/12, Wednesday: 6.5 - 57:11, Cathance River Trails with Jeremy. A little creaky from Monday's workout, but, overall, I felt good. Always nice to introduce someone to some trails.

5/13, Thursday: 6.75 total, Spring Trail Running Series at Great Glen Trails. What I like to call "forced speedwork" began for the season, and I was happy with my effort. My plan for this week was to "take it seriously." I wanted to put in a good, hard effort—treat it like a race. Although billed as 5k, the course is closer to 3.6, and I ran 26:36 (7:23). That was certainly slower per mile than I had hoped, but I took what the terrain gave me, which wasn't much. Although there is a fair amount of carriage road, the singletrack is tough, and the entire course is far from flat. (If I remember, I'll bring the Garmin next week to get a course layout and elevation.) I'm not going to go all out again on the course until sometime after Pineland but before Mt. Washington, so hopefully, I can improve that time before the season ends the first week of July.

5/14, Friday: 3 - 24:45, Suck Loop. Holy tight, Batman. I could really feel the effects of Monday and Thrusday, so I was happy to just take it easy.

5/15, Saturday: Trash Run! 5 - 43:36, from downtown Brunswick to the Commons, and return. Jeremy (with a very minor assist from myself) organized the inaugural run of the Maine Trash Runners, and we picked up trash along the main road (Rt. 123) that borders the Brunswick Town Commons. We had a dozen or so folks show up to help us clean up, and it was a lot of know...for picking up trash. It is truly amazing how much we picked in about a mile stretch of road: 18 bags. And, I didn't find this little bit particularly surprising, but 85% of the trash was either cigarette butts, cigarette packs or fast food waste (primarily McDonald's and Dunkin' Donuts). If that's not a sociological marker, I don't know what is: if you're fat and smoke, you litter. We also found a whole bunch of car parts, a hockey stick and a gorgeous lighthouse motif welcome mat. Good times.

Miles: 34.25
Trail: 23.25
Road: 11

Good week. Tough week. Fun week. That's the combination I'm looking for, and that should bode well moving forward.

Tunes! Look how depressed and arty I am!

Monday, May 10, 2010

Training Week 5/2 - 5/8

Goal for the week was to take it easy. Mission accomplished. After feeling a little sluggish and just not quite right last week, the rest was welcome and needed. As a whole, I felt much better this week.

One lingering concern is my right leg, specifically my hamstrings and calf. I'm definitely not injured, but I'm experiencing what I'll call chronic tightness. It's concerning because of my history of calf strains, but I feel like I'm on top of it: stretching, foam rolling, massage, etc. Hopefully, it won't turn into a real issue.

Onto the numbers...

5/2, Sunday: Off

5/3, Monday: Off...ahhhhhh

5/4, Tuesday: 5.5 - 46:46, Twin Brook with the Trail Monsters. Weird day weather-wise, and the run started in light rain soon turned to sunshine and humid. Felt great.

5/5, Wednesday: 5 - 42:55, Homeplace Loop. Second time on this new loop, so I ran it in the opposite direction. I think this will actually become the normal direction...just flowed a little better. Breezy day, but I felt good.

5/6, Thursday: Off

5/7, Friday: 6.25 - ~1:20, Bradbury Scuffle course. Ran very easy, and stopped numerous times to get pics and video of the course. I'm still working on editing the video, but the pics are here. Calf felt a bit tight at first, but loosened up nicely.

5/8, Saturday: 5 - 39:59, Highland Green Loop. I think this is the fastest I've ever run this loop on an easy run. It wasn't intentional, but I felt good. Or, I was just trying to get it over with since it was cold, rainy and windy.

Miles: 21.75
Trail: 16.75
Road: 5

Yup, an easy, mellow week, and a really good decision.

However, I have to admit I'm a bit concerned about one aspect of my training: the long run. I'm racing 25k on May 30, but I haven't done a run longer than 13 miles since the beginning of April. I've been racing and done a few hard workouts, but no long run. I think the strength is there, but I have that tiny little voice in the back of my head telling me I should be worried. That being said, I'll probably do one more longish run before the race, but I'd rather be a bit undertrained than cram a lot of hard training into the next three weeks. Perhaps, if I didn't care about my results, training would be easier...

Sing it!

Sunday, May 2, 2010

Training Week 4/25 - 5/1

Bit of a strange week. Started off fantastic, but then I fell non-violently ill. By week's end, I felt 100 times better, but that feeling didn't come through on any of my runs. But, I still ended up with an average week mileage-wise.

Onto the numbers...

4/25, Sunday: 8 total. Mud, Muck & Moose.

4/26, Monday: 0 - Sick. I felt completely fine when I woke up, but by 9:30 I felt a little off. By noon, I was freezing, shivering uncontrollably and literally passed out on the couch at about 2:30. Not good times.

4/27, Tuesday: 0 - Less sick. The shakes and fever were gone, but I felt totally depleted.

4/28, Wednesday: 3 - 24:50, Suck Loop. It was in the low 40's and rainy when I went out, but I NEEDED to get out the house. I was feeling a lot better, so I went for it. I felt surprisingly OK.

4/29, Thursday: 5 - 42:16, Highland Green Loop. Bolstered by the OK feeling on Wednesday's run, I figured I could get back at it on Thursday. Due to scheduling, I didn't get out until after I got home from work (2 hour drive) and we had put the Little Lady down for bed. So, out the door at 7:15 I went, and nearly turned right back around. I felt pretty crappy, and the effort felt much harder than the time shows. Also, my right calf and hamstring felt really tight and twingy. I did see three deer and heard D's Towhee.

4/30, Friday: 9 - 1:22:47, Cathance River Trails. Not wanting the week to be a total wash, I chose a not-quite-long trail run. The loop is terrific, but I felt off from the get go. I attributed that to the "heat." Plus, my right calf felt tight the entire run. I didn't exactly limp home, but I certainly didn't feel energized by the end. Saw an Eastern Kingbird a bit up the trail from the river.

5/1, Saturday: 4 - 33:40, Bike Path with Sam in B.O.B. The day's when I'm on daddy duty, the B.O.B. is my main weapon in the fight to get Samantha to take her afternoon nap, and today was no exception. The one exception today was that she fell asleep almost immediately. That was great! It meant I didn't have to run for too long, since I still wasn't feeling all that frisky. Calf was slightly noticeable.

Miles: 29
Trail: 17
Road: 12

Numbers-wise the week doesn't look all that bad, but it was a zero on the quality scale. Reasons are clear: I'm tired. Part of that fatigue comes from all the road miles I did last week. Another factor has to be the recent races (3 weekends in-a-row) and hill work. And, finally, there's a certain almost 7-month old in this house that often wakes up every two hours in the night. With all that in mind, I'm going to take it very easy this week. No reason to try to run myself out of fatigue. I tried that last summer, and it didn't work so well. Rest is the best option right now. It will also give my calf a bit of a break and give it some quality time with foam roller.


Music needs more xylophones.