Tag Archives: Hal Higdon

Marathon Training: Week 14

Image from stock.xchn.

Only a few more weeks to go and I think the fall weather has finally arrived.  I ran what was hopefully my last “hot” run on Monday.  It is amazing how much the temps have dropped through the week.  Monday morning was 70 and the temps barely broke 70 for the rest of the week! This was also the first week back for students at school so that was a little added stress but overall a very good week.

Monday: 4-6 miles. On Labor Day I did a random 6 mile route that took me downtown and across the Stone Arch Bridge and down to the river on some random trails I hadn’t done before.  I took it pretty easy and ran in 50:23.  It was 70 with high humidity. My stomach was a little upset and my legs a little tired from the 20 miler still.

Tuesday: 8-10 mile progression run. We met at Lake Harriet for our group 10 mile progression run.  We ran around Lake Harriet for a warm-up, did Calhoun to Isles at Marathon Pace, did the entire Isles at half-marathon pace and then the short side of Calhoun at 10K pace.  We hit each pace a little fast, so the overall 9.82 miles in 1:11:14 was actually at 7:15 or marathon pace.  The Marathon Pace segment was 2.54 miles in 18:19 or 7:12 pace.  The Half-Marathon Pace segment was 2.63 miles in 17:36 or 6:42 pace.  The 10K Pace segment was 1.43 miles in 8:48 or 6:10 pace.  I was quite pleased with the workout and how I felt overall at the end.  The 10K segment hurt but I never felt my pace was out of control. It was in the mid-60’s for the run.

Wednesday: 5-7 mile recovery run.As always when I run on Weds in the morning I am pretty tired and sore from last night’s workout.  This 3.5 mile run at Powderhorn Park was no different.  My left achilles and right ankle were a little tight, so I enjoyed running a lot of the run on grass and was glad to get home and ice! I ran it in 30:16 and with the 52 temp I was wearing long sleeves!

Thursday: Rest Day! I nice day of rest.  I didn’t do anything today except work and lounge around at home!

Friday: 6 mile run. This was a nice easy run along the Greenway.  I felt comfortable the entire 6 miles.  I went east for the first time in awhile.  It was 53 and sunny, so I wore a long sleeve shirt again and by the end I was getting pretty warm. I finished in 46:59.

Saturday: 10-12 miles. Because of tomorrow’s race I didn’t want to run today, however the training group was getting a 30% discount at Marathon Sports after the morning run.  So, I rode my bike there and bought a few items and rode home.  It was a scenic ride down the Greenway and around Lake Calhoun and Harriet.

Sunday: Cross-Training. I raced a 25K this morning instead of cross-training.  This was the last race of the USATF series and a beautiful morning.  I set out to run marathon pace and instead ran a very nice 1:48:40 or 7 minute pace and PRing in the half-marathon.  Stay tuned for more about the race!

Weekly Mileage:

Running: 40.9 miles

Biking: 33 miles

Hal’s Tip of the Week: Too much racing can compromise your marathon training. In the marathon training class in Chicago, we used to recommend that students race no more than three out of the 18 weekends at distances between 10-K and 25-K. Now we don’t recommend any racing out of fear of injury. Races, nevertheless, can help you determine your fitness level and help select you predict marathon pace. Here’s a handy formula for predicting marathon time. Multiply your 10-K time by 4.66. (For instance, 40:00 for 10-K predicts 3:06:40 for the marathon.) First-timers, however, should take a more conservative approach and multiply 10-K time by a factor of 5. (For instance, 50:00 for 10-K predicts 4:10 for the marathon.) By choosing the more conservative formula, and starting more slowly, you’re less likely to hit the wall.

[tags] Marathon Training, Hal Higdon [/tags]

Week 14

Reblog this post [with Zemanta]

Marathon Training: Week 13

This was a pretty nice week of running with some great weather and camaraderie. This was the highest mileage week of the season and it felt pretty strong. It seems the rest day always comes at the best time! I started running in my new shoes on Monday – Mizuno Men’s Wave Inspire 4.

Monday: 5-6 miles comfortably. 6 miles along the Midtown Greenway, felt pretty good this morning.  The temperature was 57, it was a little humid but at that temperature you don’t really feel it too much.  I just went 3 miles out and back. I ran it in 46:18. The Greenway was a little crowded with commuting traffic, but not too bad.

Tuesday: 8-10 miles at marathon pace. Ran a total of 10.5 miles around Lake Calhoun.  We did three 5K laps and then tacked on a little bit here and there – mostly for water stops. The total run was 1:19:22 (7:32).  Our 5K splits were 23:22 (7:32), 22:57 (7:25), and 22:39 (7:20).  In the last mile and a half we did 6 strides to almost 100% effort for 15-30 seconds.  Those felt really good even as my legs were getting tired from the Marathon Pace running.  It was 80 with no humidity and a nice breeze off the lake.  I went for a quick dip after the run and was almost cold afterwards.

Wednesday: 5-7 miles easy. This morning I ran just with my wrist watch, but I ran the 4 mile downtown course so my 31:45 is pretty accurate.  It had just stormed pretty hard as I was waking up so it was pretty humid and was 67 out.  I felt tired but ok given yesterday’s workout.

Thursday: Rest day! I did rest! I had to take the car to work – can’t carry several cases of pop on my bike!

Friday: 10 miles (some at pace) I decided to run about 10 miles down the Greenway and around Lake of the Isles. Isles is just under a 3 mile loop so I decided to pick-up the tempo around the lake and run home.  The total route ended up being 9 miles. I ran the 2.63 miles around the Isles at 7:20 pace and the overall run in 1:09:30 which is 7:43 pace.  It was 57 but 80% humidity, but it didn’t feel too bad.

Saturday:20 miles. For today’s 20 miler we met at the University of St. Thomas and ran 5 miles out – going backwards on the marathon course.  We turned around, went past UST and ran the last 5 miles of the course before turning around and running to our cars.  So basically we ran the last 10 miles of the Twin Cities Marathon course.  It was a good run with lots of discussion about strategy, especially hitting some of the hills in the final miles.  I ran 20 miles in 2:35:07 (7:45).  It was 60 at the start but humid and the temps rose fairly quickly. If we felt good we could drop to marathon pace at the end.  Well for most of the run we weren’t too far off marathon pace, but in the last mile I did hit a 7:21, despite having almost bonked around mile 18. After the first mile my slowest mile was 8:09 mile 18.

Sunday:Cross-training. Rode my bike to the Midtown YWCA, only to discover that the entire pool area was closed for routine maintenance.  “Crap, now what…” As I was biking home I realized, “duh just go to another YWCA.” So I rode to the Uptown YWCA and did my swimming.  I swam 300 total yards and actually swam 100 yards without stopping!

Weekly Mileage:

Running -49.6 miles

Cycling – 32.5 miles

Swimming – 300 yds

Tip of the Week: Stretching is important for marathoners, who risk losing flexibility because of their high-mileage training. Include some stretching in your daily running routine. The best time to stretch is not before you run. Pre-workout muscles may be tight; the risk of injury is increased. Instead, stretch during–or after–your run, when muscles are warmest. Stretching on the off days also makes sense.

[tags] Hal Higdon, Marathon Training [/tags]

Week 13

Reblog this post [with Zemanta]

Marathon Training: Week 12

What a roller coaster of a week.  After a terrible run on Tuesday I was able to come back and PR in the half-marathon distance on Saturday.  I’m glad this week is over and looking forward to more good weeks of training.

Monday: 4-6 easy miles. I extended my downtown-Park Ave 4 mile loop to make it close to 5 miles and ended up running 4.83 miles in 40:21.  It was 66 which felt great even with the higher humidity.  I took it nice and easy for my first run after 20+ miles on Saturday!  I was a little tired and sore but felt pretty good.

Tuesday: 8-10 mile threshold workout. This ended up being a downright brutal workout due to the heat and humidity. I think it was in the mid-80’s with near 100% humidity. It was raining north and south of us but not on us.  They gave us a progression workout for a 10 mile run.  The plan was 2.5 easy, hydrate, then 2.5 at Marathon Pace, turning around and running 2.5 at Half-Marathon pace, water stop and then recover for awhile do a mile at 10K pace and recover to the start.  No one in my pace group did the 10K pace section.  We ran along the East River Parkway, next to the Mississippi River, but the scenery didn’t help the run any.  Also the East side of the river is significantly hillier than the west, so our downhills out made for some tough uphills towards the end of the half-marathon pace.  I should note that I was outside most of the afternoon, but tried to stay hydrated.  We ran the first section in 20:21 (8:01 pace) and completed the marathon pace section in 17:46 (7:12 pace).  So far so good –  MP for me is 7:15. I ran the half-marathon pace section in 17:21 (7:03 pace Goal Pace would be 6:54), during this section our group of 5 got strung out pretty good.  We stopped for water and I hit the porta-pot.  When I came out the group had a small lead, but I was never able to catch back up – which I think hurt mentally for me.  I finished the last leg in 20:05 (8:13 pace) and was glad to be finished.  We commiserated about how bad we felt and went our separate ways.  I got home, showered, ate a quick dinner, and was asleep by 9pm.

Wednesday: 5-7 easy miles. I didn’t wake up until 7:30am which is really sleeping in for me.  I still felt really drained and all around terrible.  I finally managed to drag myself to work, thankful I was going in late due to working later than normal yesterday. I drank a lot of water and by the evening felt like I should give running a try.  I wanted a little motivation so I went to Pike Island and ran on the scenic dirt trails around the island that marks the confluence of the Mississippi and Minnesota Rivers.  I wanted to take it easy and just run how I felt. I ended up running 4.3 miles in 34:10 and felt really good.  I picked up the pace for a little bit when a group of college runners went by, but kept reminding myself to slow down! I’m glad I motivated myself to go and it was nice to just run and enjoy the scenery.

Thursday: Rest Day. A much needed rest day, even though I bike commuted it felt good.

Friday: 6 miles at marathon pace. An unscheduled (kinda) rest day.  I was still back and forth about racing over the weekend so I knew that if I ran it wouldn’t be the scheduled workout.  I had to go to work earlier than normal and thought I’d be able to run in the early afternoon.  That ended up not working out, but taking the day off shouldn’t hurt too much since it is a stepback week.

Saturday: 10-12 miles In his notes Hal Higdon says this would be a good week for racing a half-marathon.  A group of people from my team were racing a half-marathon so I went with them.  Am I glad I did. If you read the introduction then you know that I set a new PR.  Breaking my 3 year old PR by about a minute and a half! Quite an exciting race.  I felt terrible for the middle – last part of the race so I was delighted to see the clock showing a PR!! It was a perfect day to race – temps in the mid-60’s, low humidity, a fairly shady and flat course.  My watch had me at 1:33:22, which was also my official chip time.

Sunday: Cross-Train. We rode our bikes to church and the Minnesota State Fair for a total of 13.3 miles on the bike and several miles wandering around with the hoards of people at the fair.

Weekly Mileage

Running – 32.1 miles

Biking – 53.4 miles

Hal’s Tip of the Week: There is no such thing as “bad food,” only bad choices. There’s even a place for burgers, fries and shakes in your diet. You just need to balance everything you eat. If you eat a well-balanced diet, that includes ample fresh fruits and vegetables and whole grains, you can avoid expensive supplements. Tape these words to your refrigerator: “Eat a wide variety of lightly processed foods.”

[tags] Hal Higdon, Marathon Training [/tags]

Week 12

Reblog this post [with Zemanta]

Marathon Training: Week 11

A pretty good week that ended with my longest run ever! I definitely started to feel the load of building up the miles this week though, especially on the hills.  The weather has been great for pretty much all the runs so that is really nice.

Monday:4-6 easy miles. 5 mile recovery run. It was nice and slow as I was feeling yesterday’s race. I ran around Powderhorn Park doing laps around the lower level until I got to 3.5 so that I would hit 5 on the way home.  I finished the run in 42:05. The temperature was around 60 with high humidity, but it was cool enough that the humidity wasn’t much of a factor.

Tuesday:8-10 miles with hills. 8.6 miles at Hyland Hills again. This time we didn’t run up the ski hill, but it didn’t matter too much because my body was quite tired.  I really felt all of the previous hillwork and racing on hills during the run.  Hyland is a great place to run because it has a lot of options for hills and flat spots too. 1:08:30 was our overal time on a pretty good evening to run.  We got the run in between some major deluges, so it was pretty humid and around 75. Surprisingly the trails weren’t really that wet.

Wednesday: 5-7 easy miles. I had planned to run 6 miles today but ended up only running 4.  I felt pretty wiped out and didn’t want to push it too hard.  I was suffering a little bit from Olympic sleep deprivation and this run is always pretty tough anyways. I did my Downtown via Park 4 mile loop in 33:22.  It was a nice 61 degrees but 94% humidity made for a nice sweaty run! I seemed to hit a lot of red lights today – which I didn’t complain too much about!

Thursday:Rest Day. I did a pretty good job of resting, but I did bike commute 8.6 miles, but I tried to keep it at an easier pace.

Friday:10 miles. A nice 10 miler to start the weekend off! It really would have been nice to get out on some trails but I did what has become my normal Friday loop of running around the Minneapolis Riverfront – Boon Island, Nicollet Island, and the W River Parkway.  I tacked on some miles running through the University of Minnesota East Bank Campus and made it home in 1:22:20 for the run.  I wanted it to be an easy run as the 20 miler loomed on Saturday, so that definitely fit the bill. It was in the low 60’s and humid for this run as well!

Saturday:18-20 miles. Ta dah, my longest run ever and the route-maker made it a little long, thanks Nathan! Couldn’t have asked for a better day for this run and a great group of about 10 people to run with for it.  We ran almost the entire first half of the Twin Cities Marathon Course and got a waterstop provided by the marathon. We ended up running 21 miles around the Lakes for a pretty decent run.  We finished in 2:45:22 before it got too hot.  Temps started in the mid 60’s and were in the mid-70’s when I got home. We felt the heat on some of the exposed areas around the Lakes but much of the run was shaded! I felt good for the first half and struggled more in the second.  After the last stop at 17.5 I started feeling bad for awhile (I had taken too much water) and finished valiantly with a long slow uphill in the last mile. My hip flexors and toes hurt the worst!

Sunday: Cross-Training. I rode my bike to the YWCA and swam a total of 400 yards.  I did my best Phelps impersonation and failed miserably! I did swim 200 yards without stopping – alternating freestyle and backstroke.  I didn’t feel too sore upon waking up so that is a really good thing! It was nice to sit in the hot tub though!

Weekly Mileage Totals:

Running – 48.6 miles

Biking – 52.2 miles

Swimming – 400 yards

Tip of the Week: Occasional racing may be important for marathon success. Particularly this is true for Novice runners who have raced infrequently–or not at all–before catching the Marathon Bug. One reason for racing is to test your fitness: to get an idea of how fast a pace you will be able to carry in the marathon. Another is to test all your strategies from the shoes you’ll wear to grabbing fluids at water stations. Leave nothing to chance. Too much racing, however, can lead to overtraining, so don’t overdo it.

Week 11

[tags] Marathon Training, Hal Higdon [/tags]

Reblog this post [with Zemanta]

Marathon Training: Week 10

This was a pretty good week of training overall.  The weather finally cooperated for the most part with only a few humid days and many excellent nights.  My in-laws came in Monday night and left on Saturday night so we had plenty of touristy things to do around town.  We had a great hill workout on Tuesday followed by a PR in the 15K on Sunday!

Monday: Easy 4 miles. Four nice easy recovery miles on a cool but humid morning. It was 70 degrees again with like 90% humidity. I ran down Park Ave towards downtown and came home on the LRT Trail my Downtown-Park 4 Mile loop.  Its a good loop mixing in some scenery with the Metrodome and just being downtown! I ran it in 31:11.  I failed on the first attempt at Day 1 of Week 5 of push-ups.  So back to Week 4 for me!

Tuesday: 8-10 miles with hills. I finally started bike commuting again this week so that has been fun! With the marathon training class actually meeting in south Minneapolis I was even able to ride to class which felt great! We met at Lake Nokomis and then ran to the Ford Dam on the Mississippi River for a hill repeat workout.  It was in the low 80’s without a lot of humidity so a pretty good day for a tough workout. From our starting point to the bottom of the hill it was just under 2 miles. We then proceeded to run up a 1/4 mile hill 10 times! My Garmin says it was like a 10% grade without 70 ft of elevation gain (Does that sound right?), but the Garmin’s elevation profiles are notoriously off. I do know that we ran up the hill 10 times and here are my splits: 1:37, 1:32, 1:30, 1:27, 1:23, 1:36, 1:34, 1:31, 1:34, and 1:15.  This was a fun workout not only having the guys I normally run with but also having the entire training class running up and down the hill passing each other all the time – it was a good “team building” workout.  We took our time jogging back to complete the 8.25 mile workout in 1:05:21.  Afterwards it was a quick swim in the lake before heading home on the bike for 23.5 miles of biking.  I was worn out, but luckily the National Night Out block party was still going on!

Wednesday: 5 easy miles. I thought I would be completly exhausted and worn out after so much excercie yesterday, but I didn’t feel too bad. In some ways I think biking like that helps clean out some of the toxins from my legs.  I did my push-ups before heading out and did 77 back on Week 4 Day 2. Yesterday evening I left the car at a tire shop to get a screw pulled out of the tire and fixed so I planned my run to end at the tire shop. It was a beautiful morning in the upper 60’s and it felt really nice despite the humidity.  I ran along the Greenway and ended the route perfectly at the shop for 5 miles in 40:45.

Thursday: Rest Day! This was a day of rest from running, but we spent a lot of time walking around.  My in-laws are visiting so we did some touristy things like visiting the Walker Art Center, wandering around St Paul, and much more.

Friday: 9 miles at race pace. I was still a little undecided about racing on Sunday or not but thought I should keep my options open and not run at race pace. I can always make it up later! I ended up running 9.5 miles with a starting temp of 61 and some nice breezes.  It was humid but the low temp kept most of it away! I ran the route that takes me downtown and makes a square around the river.  I added a little bit of distance by cross the Stone Arch Bridge twice and running along the East side of the river towards the Univ of MN before cutting back across on 10th Ave Bridge. The bridge seemed to take forever but it gave me plenty of time to look at the new 35W Bridge that is rapidly nearing completion. I took it nice and easy and could feel a little bit of the Tuesday workout. My overall run time was 1:17:45.  I did my push-ups before leaving again and managed to get 85 done for Week 4 Day 3.

Saturday: 10-12 miles. I took today off since I knew we’d be doing more walking and touristy stuff today and I’m planning to race on Sunday.

Sunday: Cross Training. 15K Race today in 1:03:22 unofficially.  It was the MDRA 15K which was a 3 lap course with some hills on a beautiful morning temps stayed around 60 the entire race.  Check back tomorrow for more details!

Weekly Totals:

Running – 36.1 miles

Biking – 24.5 miles

Hal’s Tip of the Week: Practice makes perfect. Practice not only running, but everything else related to race day. That includes equipment. Do you know what shoes you’ll wear on race day? Buy a new pair now! How about shorts and singlet? Test your clothing in training to make sure nothing chafes or causes a blister. Do you expect hot or cold weather race day? Weather can be unpredictable. Will you be prepared if the temperature suddenly drops (or rises) 30 degrees on race day? Consider every scenario you might encounter.

Week 10

[tags] Marathon Training, Hal Higdon [/tags]

Reblog this post [with Zemanta]