Monthly Archives: March 2008

Half Training: Week Nine

Well another week down! It was another crazy one as we spent Monday in Anderson seeing some friends and getting up pretty early and by the end of the week I was in Alabama at a wedding!

Monday – Run 4 x 2400 meter repeats at 10K pace. Jog for 800 meters between repeats. Cool down with 800 meters of easy jogging. I took today off, we were exhausted from the traveling and such and I didn’t really have time to fit in a run and be productive.

Tuesday – Run 6 miles easy. Run 5 acceleration strides. So this week was a little off again. I did the 2400’s today. 2400 is 1.5 miles which is a pretty long interval. My plan was to run them around 9:30. The weather was some of the nicest in awhile. I only had to wear one long sleeved shirt! I ran along the Greenway, I went straight out instead of looping around one of the lakes this time. This was the farthest west I had gone to date. My interval splits were: 10:31, 10:52, 10:12, and 10:44. All right around 7 minute pace.

Wednesday – Run 3 x 400/800/1600 meter repeats. Run 400 meters at 20 seconds per mile faster than 5K pace, 800 meters at 5K pace and 1600 meters at goal half marathon pace. Take no rest between the distances. Recover between the sets with 800 meters at an easy pace. Cool down with 800 meters at an easy pace. I was going to take it easy today and run the 6 miles. Sadly it didn’t go as planned at all. About 3/4 of a mile into the run I got some sharp pain in my right shin and some pain in my calf. I stopped and tried to stretch it out and ran for a little more, but the pain kept coming. I turned around and eventually walked home. The total run was 1.75 miles. I iced and took Ibuprofen when I got home. I also massaged my calf a little bit.

Thursday – Run 4 miles easy. Run 5 acceleration strides. My leg didn’t hurt all day yesterday after running, so I thought I’d try and do the workout. It felt pretty good for the most part, I stretched a little more than usual and focused on running on the shoulder of the Greenway trail when possible. I also did more walking during the 800 recovery than normal (which may impact the overall benefit of the workout, but I think helped my leg). The splits were nothing spectacular and I only did 2 supersets instead of 3, by the end my leg was starting to hurt more and more. The total workout was 5.71 miles in 45:08. My splits are: 1:21, 3:15, 7:04 and 1:33, 3:28, 7:02. More ice and Ibuprofen.

Friday – Run 4 miles easy. Run 5 acceleration strides. I took Friday off since I was getting up at 4am to catch a flight to Alabama for a wedding. When I finally made it here it was nice and warm mid-70’s and it kind of made me want to run, but there wasn’t really time and since my legs been hurting it was all good!

Saturday – Run 16 miles. Run the first 11 miles at an easy pace. Run the last 5 miles at goal half marathon pace. I kind of knew that this probably wouldn’t happen, but I came prepared to run the 16. It is kind of funny since this is a wedding with all of my old cross country buddies, but only 3 of us went this morning. We ended up doing 5.5 miles in 43 minutes in the balmy 66 degree weather. I wasn’t sure how 16 would go with my leg, a factor of time, and the fact that another guy is training for a marathon and has had some knee problems.  Is that enough excuses for you??? What about the fact that I’m not sure I need to run 16 miles to perform well at a 13 mile race?

Sunday – Rest!

Totals: 22.1 miles in 2:53:33.

This was a crazy week. Hopefully the next two weeks will go smoothly.

[tags] Half Marathon, Training [/tags]

Importance of the Push-Up

What is the best test of fitness? Running a mile all out? Running a 400? Or is it maxing out on the bench? Maybe even sprinting a 40. Or your vertical leap?

I would never claim that a push-up is the best test of someone’s fitness. But I’m just a dude sitting in Minnesota, what do I know?

The New York Times claims that:

The push-up is the ultimate barometer of fitness. It tests the whole body, engaging muscle groups in the arms, chest, abdomen, hips and legs. It requires the body to be taut like a plank with toes and palms on the floor. The act of lifting and lowering one’s entire weight is taxing even for the very fit.

I agree push-ups can be difficult but come on, surely there is something else we can use to judge fitness levels.

But many people simply can’t do push-ups. Health and fitness experts, including the American College of Sports Medicine, have urged more focus on upper-body fitness. The aerobics movement has emphasized cardiovascular fitness but has also shifted attention from strength training exercises.

I would agree with that. I think on any given day I can easily whip out 15 push-ups (without a break) no problem! What about you?

[tags] Push-ups, Fitness [/tags]

I Miss Trail Running

Reading this post over at Bad Ben Rambles, reminded me of how much I actually miss trail running. Before moving to Minneapolis we lived really close to Mounds State Park which provided great trails to run on. You had the basic 5 mile loop and a 3 mile loop with a variety of others. You could always figure out some combination of loops and segments of loops to create the perfect run distance. There was also almost always somebody to run with while there too.

While I miss those aspects, I also miss the softness of the trails. I’m really tired of pounding the pavement but it isn’t as convenient to get to real dirt trails around here. On Bad Ben’s scale I was definitely falling towards the “bad” end of the pyramid – addiction and now sadly I’m going the other way I’ve only done one trail run since we’ve been here and it was actually on snow pack, not dirt!

Hopefully as things warm-up I’ll be able to do some long runs on trails or even go race some trails. Minnesota has a trail running series. I might check out some of their races throughout the summer.

On a side note I was able to run on trails over Easter weekend.  While we were at family’s house in Indianapolis I was able to do almost half of my 14 miler on trails at Fort Harrison State Park.  It felt great – hills, mud, and good stuff!

[tags] Trail Running, Minnesota, Indiana [/tags]

I Got Blog Bling

That’s some good English right there! Did you notice the new blog bling? Probably not unless you looked really closely. It is called a FavIcon.

Still can’t find it? Look up… farther… in the address bar. Found it? Yes it is a 16×16 pixel picture of me running (see right for a larger one)! Whenever you go to any Team Cross Runs page you should see that itsy bitsy picture of me!

If you don’t, you’ve left Team Cross!

Want your own FavIcon? Obviously you should because all the big sites have them! You can go here to find out more about how to set one up! It is a fairly painless process with very little knowledge necessary!

Enjoy!

Half Training: Week Eight

Image provided by stock.xchng.

Well this is another crazy week here. The race last Sunday is still playing havoc with the training schedule as well as a quick trip south for Easter.

Here’s what I got for the week:

Monday – Run 2 miles at 10K pace, then slow down to goal half marathon pace for 5 miles. After the 5 miles at goal pace, speed up to 5K pace for 800 meters. Cool down with 800 meters at an easy pace. I actually did 4 easy miles in fluffy white snow with the temperatures right around freezing. It felt good to just go for an easy run and loosen up after Sunday’s race. I ran it in 33:30.

Tuesday – Run 6 miles easy. Run 5 acceleration strides. I ran Monday’s workout on Tuesday for a grand total of 9.14 miles in 1:13:59. It was way off pace for each segment mostly attributed to the 2-4 inches of fresh, wet snow covering the trails the entire 9 miles! I’ll report my actual times but not the goal times: 2 miles in 14:57, 5 miles in 40:37 and 1/2 mile in 3:33. You can do the math and realize that these were all way off track, but the difference between each segment was approximately the same as the pace goals.

Wednesday – Run 30 minutes alternating between 30 seconds at 20 seconds per mile faster than 5K pace and 30 seconds at an easy pace. Cool down with 5 minutes at an easy pace. I just did an easy 5.5 miles along the Greenway. It was a little cooler this morning at 28 but not very icy which was a nice change! I took it very easy and ran it in 46:28. No reason to push too hard. Overall I’m feeling a little sluggish and tired since Sunday’s race. It might be partly due to bad eating habits lately. I don’t know.

Thursday – Run 6 miles easy. Run 5 acceleration strides. You guessed it I ran 30 minutes alternating 30 seconds all out and 30 seconds easy. This was a nice run with the temps hovering around 30 with no significant wind factor. I ran out and back along the Greenway. I’m sure I ticked off one runner as I went flying by him, only to slow way down for 30 seconds right in front of him. Then when he almost caught back up, I went flying off again! The joys of being controlled by a beeping device on your wrist! I almost caught him again on the way back but he turned off before I did. Nothing too exciting to report – the overall run was 6.05 miles in 45 minutes.

Friday – Run 4 miles easy. Run 5 acceleration strides. I probably should have run since it was sunny and almost 40 in Indianapolis, but after driving and sleeping in a car all night I’m not overly rested – and I usually cross-train once a week anyways. We don’t have any YWCA Fitness Centers around here so I can’t use a reciprocal membership to my advantage.

Saturday – Run a 10K race or a 10K time trial. Run the race or time trial in your best possible time. That’s what I did last week at the Human Race 8K. I was planning to go long today, but our schedule didn’t really make it possible without getting up at 4am Minneapolis time. So I got 2 days off in a row!

Sunday – Rest Day! Happy Easter! I was hoping to rest today but the travel schedule made today a lot easier to run. It turned out being wonderful! It was like 28 without any wind in Indianapolis. I took off under a full-moon or at least near full moon and ran around the neighborhood before heading towards Fort Harrison State Park. I ran along part of the course for the Indianapolis Half and Full Marathon in the fall. I snuck into the park through a side gate to avoid having to pay the entrance fee. It is a pretty hilly course, which I’m not really used to. I ran around the park and ran around on some of their trails which felt great. Everything was fairly muddy, but it was a crisp morning with lots of birds chirping and my first spring run! I ran a total of 14 miles in 1:57:33 which wasn’t too bad with all the hills and running solitary.

Weekly Totals: 38.7 miles in 5:16:26. I guess it was good I took 2 days off, this was the highest mileage week of the year!

[tags] Half-Marathon, Training [/tags]