Thursday, January 27, 2011

Back on Track at Baker St.

After a tough week of traveling and enduring 60-70 degree running temps, I made it back to Baker Street for one of my better workouts of late.  It was a little chilly at the start of the warm up, but I felt pretty good, considering I did a 5 mile tempo on Tuesday.   I was planning to do 3 x 1600 @ about a 6 min pace.  Brad was up for it, so we headed out.   As usual, we started out a little fast for the first mile, but settled into a groove by the second lap, hitting the end at 5:52, with Brad at about 6-6:05.  We took about 3 1/2 minutes between reps, and the second was a little slower, but not by much, 5:54.  By the middle of the first 800 of the third rep, I was pretty sure I wasn't going to be able to hold it, and as soon at that thought starts in your mind, it is like a cancer and it takes over.  I did 2:59 for the 800, brad kept it going for another lap, and when he finished I did another to finish it out at 2:55.  I felt good about the workout,  but I am really feeling it in my calves today.  I was surprised when nobody showed up at Armadillos with a PSP or  Nintendo DS, but nonetheless, it was a great time.  Unfortunately I had to leave early, just when Boj was buying the next round.    Man, these guys are faster than me, better at video games, and now probably can even out drink me.  Damn.

Last weeks totals:
MON. : .10 mi am, 3 mi pm

TUES. : 7 am
WED. : 7 am
THU. : .
FRI. : 5 mi FART
SAT. : .
SUN. : .16 mi

Thursday, January 20, 2011

A Little Off Track

The last few weeks have been a little difficult for me to stay consistent with my training plan.  Weather, colds, travel, work, it's hard to say which had the greatest impact.  But all combined, it seemed like a conspiracy to nock me off my stride, and just as the training started.  It's hard to even go back and look at the last week to remember why I wasn't able to run too much, I just know I didn't.  Oh well, I am feeling good right now, and I had a couple of nice days in California running in shorts, sans shirt.  It would be easy to get complacent, being able to just throw some shoes and shorts on anytime and head out.  But for how great the weather was, running on concrete with cars zooming past definitely  brought the overall enjoyment down.  I wish I had more time to make it to the mountains by La Quinta, but the trip was too short.  Getting in 25 miles and still leaving by 7 am the third day was pretty good for me.  I went to the local high school to see if I could get a speed workout in, but there were a couple of teams on the field, so I bagged it.   I'll still try to do a speed workout if the weather permits this week.  Otherwise, I'll just try to get back at it next week.

Week of 1/3 -1/9
MON. : 0
TUES. : 8 mi w/5@ 7:03(35:18)
WED. : 9 mi w/ 4x800 (2:52/2:52/2:54/2:58)
THU. 5 mi w/ Nautilus
FRI. : 9 mi
SAT. : 5.5 mi
SUN. : 15.5 mi (1:56:40 / 7:31 pace)


Week of 1/10-1/16
MON. : 0
TUES. : 5 mi
WED. : 5 mi in the snow
THU. short snowshoe
FRI. : 
SAT. : 
SUN. : 


2011 TOTAL MILES : 85

Friday, January 7, 2011

Baker Street

Ok, I hate this song and I've heard it about 10,000 times too often, but hey, Gerry Rafferty just died so you gotta show a little respect.  Gerry Rafferty - Baker Street.
The Wednesday Workout went well for me this week.  There was a great turn out this week, 10 Keenyans.  I was planning to run 4 x 800 @ 2:52.  After the warm up I was surprised to see that Brad, Boj and Clint  were all interested in doing the work out.  This was the largest group I have ever run a workout with on Wednesdays, I was pretty psyched.  Of course, when I told Roma about it later, she had to remind me that one was injured, one was recovering from the flu, and one has had open heart surgery. I can always count on her to put things in perspective.   So, anyways, we started out, and the first two rounds went great, 2:52 on the button.   Clint pulled out a little on the second, for something like 2:49.  Brad seemed like he was tiring a bit, and Boj was running steady. The 3rd was still good for me, 2:54, with Clint turning it on for about 2:42.  I started to die on the last round, coming in at 2:58, but I really feel like I ran the whole thing hard and it was my best speed workout for the beginning of my training.  It was really great running around town with such a big group afterwards, and Armadillos was great too.  Plus with the new $5 burrito night & $2 beers, I'll have to quote from an earlier blog "certainly Armadillo's is, as a matter fact, generally quite fun indeed. It is unquestionably the de facto spot for post run meal and conversation. Really."  Plus now it's cheap.

Sunday, January 2, 2011

New Year

I haven't had too much time to blog with the holidays and being sick, but I feel like I am starting the new year in a good position to improve my running.  Last year was great for me, mainly due to the fantastic people I run and train with.  I have always enjoyed the variety of runners who meet on Sundays, and this year our group grew a bit and became a little more consistent.  One of my favorite aspects of running is the social camaraderie.  Everyone runs by themselves for some, if not most of the time. But the opportunity to meet up, socialize and share the experience is something most other sports don't lend themselves to.  It's tough to cary on a conversation on a bike, and even harder while swimming.  Plus, there are few workouts which can max you out so quickly.
The addition of the Wednesday Workout has, without a doubt, been the biggest boon to my performance and overall running enjoyment.  It was just barely a year ago that I got up the courage to join these guys, and it's been a great ride ever since.  There is always a bit of apprehension joining a group, especially one where you are certain to be the slowest, and by quite a bit.  But there has usually been someone for me to try to keep up with on the workout, and the warmup and cool downs are always fun, and challenging.  Plus it is great to see such fantastic athletes go thru their own similar cycles of ups and downs.  Everyone is on their own path, but if you can tag along with others for part of the way, it is more enjoyable and you can go further than you ever thought you could by yourself. 
As far as the races this year, Boston was certainly the high point.  I had a PR by over 8 minutes, 3:17:53.  Mount Washington was great, but I didn't do as well as I had hoped.  There is no way to know what to expect with that one, but I look forward to doing it again.  Pisgah, Elijah's Race, The Greyhound Race, 4 on the Fourth, The Cranberry Run, Bridge of Flowers.  I had pretty good times at most of these, but I certainly look to improve on them this year.
Probably my favorite thing that happened this year, running wise, is how a few people I know have been inspired to take up running, in part, because of me.  Running can be a daunting task to those who don't do this.  But it is great to see someone give it a try, stick with it for a while, and realize, hey, I can do this.  I still want to train hard and improve my running, but getting more people involved thru the Sunday Run and now the even more casual Friday Afternoon Running Team is something that I think will continue to grow, and I enjoy that immensely.  

My only real goals for the year are 3:10 at Boston, a low 19 minute 5k, and under 2 hours at Pisgah. I feel pretty good about my chances.

Here are the last two week's running logs.

12/20 -12/26
MON. : 3.5 mi & 2 x Nautilus workout
TUES. : 7.5 mi, 5 @ 7:02 (35:10)
WED. : 9 mi, 4 x 800 2:55/2:57/2:58/2:59
FRI. : 5 mi FART
SAT. : 
SUN. : 15 mi @ 7:48 (1:57:05)

TOTAL : 40 mi

MON. : 5 mi am, shoveling,
3 mi pm & Nautilus
TUES. : 4 mi
WED. : Sick.
THU. Better, but still sick.
FRI. : 5 mi FART
SAT. : 10 mi, w/45 min 10k as tempo
SUN. : 13 mi @ 7:30 (1:37:36)

TOTAL: 40 mi

2011 TOTAL MILES : 23