Friday, May 8, 2015

/5/08/2015 quick run a day after the pyramid, and some hot weather

I will never complain about warm weather.  Today is sunny, mid 80's and I love it.  I do think I need to get acclimated to the heat again, but that's fine with me.  

I was interested all day to see how my body would feel running today after the killer workout I put in yesterday.  To my surprise, I felt pretty good.  I hit a 6 mile run with significant hills in the return loop.  It took me 22:50 on the 3 miles headed out and 23:20 on the way back.  I am happy with the small difference, because the run is a lot of flat and downhill on the way out and uphill on the way back.  

Combined with the heat, I am happy.  I also have hit around the 30 mile mark for the week so my fitness and mileage are right where I want it to be.

Thursday, May 7, 2015

05/07/2015 pyramid of pain and fitness

Today, I put myself through the speed ringer.  I did a pyramid workout and stretched it out longer than I have in a long time.  I did the following intervals and in between, I jogged 400 meter rests.  Included next to the distance is the time I did each one in.  I was quite happy to finish up at the end with faster times than in the beginning as well.  In all, I ran about a 7.5 mile workout.

200 meters- 41 seconds
400 meters- 83 seconds
800 meters- 3:00
1 mile- 6:10
1 mile- 6:10
800 meters- 2:50
400 meters- 80 seconds
200 meters- 35 seconds

I contemplated not doing the second mile split in the middle.  I almost skipped it and started back down the pyramid, but I decided to not wuss out.  I have mantras and quotes and all this tough talk, but to get better, I told myself I had to take the pain.

Consequently, it hurt, but I did it and I got stronger today.

Tuesday, May 5, 2015

05/05/2015 my favorite number and a progressive workout

Today is a great day.  Another nice day, another workout, and my favorite number is all over the date.  Since I was in high school, on the baseball field, my favorite number has always been 5.  If you ask my kids, they should know.  When in school, and I ask the kids to pick a number between 1 and anything, the answer is always......5.  You would be surprised to know that even though I always tell them this, they still never guess 5.

Today, I ran a progressive run of 6 miles, totaling about 46 minutes.  By progressive, I mean that each mile I got a little bit quicker from the first mile right through the end.  It ended well, with a finishing mile around 7:15/mile pace.  Also, the entire run was done on hills so keeping the pace up was important to me especially since I suffered a little on the hills yesterday.  

I finished the workout with a half dozen sprints on the field at about 80-85% speed.  I would estimate they were about 75-80 meters in length.  It is great to open up the speed after a run.  It really helps teach you to be able to finish well and run fast on tired legs.  It can help with leg turnover as well.

Monday, May 4, 2015

05/04/2015 the heat is here and I love running in it

Today, the sun is out, it is hot, and I love it.  There is just something about summer weather that makes me happy.  I think it has something to do with not being cold.  Anyway, coming off of yesterday's race, I just wanted to get in some miles and keep it simple.  I headed out for a 7 miler at a decent clip and ended up running about 8:06/mile pace for the duration.  It is worth noting, that during mile 6 there was a big climb and I died during it.  I think it was partly the heat and partly being tired from yesterday.  Overall, the run went well though.  

I did start to think that maybe I should dial down the miles and dial up the speed work and intensity stuff even more these next few weeks.  I am going to consult with a couple resources and a couple people to decide the best course of action.

Sunday, May 3, 2015

05/03/2015 Radburn 5K race report and 2nd place overall

First, I will go through the race report, then I will give my performance report.  A smaller race, the Radburn 5K race is a benefit to raise money for the Radburn Elementary School.  This was the first year I have done it.  The race is held in Fair Lawn, New Jersey, and Maura and I lived in Fair Lawn and enjoyed our time there and walked a lot of the same areas that the race covered.  I really enjoyed the race.  It was a great atmosphere and there were a lot of volunteers and families participating, enjoying the DJ, and hanging out socializing.  Roughly 5 minutes after being there, a good college friend of my wife's that she hasn't seen in years came up and we ended up spending pretty much the whole pre-race and post race with hime and his family.  It was a great surprise and fun to catch up.

The race was well directed before the start and when the gun went off, about 200ish people got out onto the course.  The course was flat and fast.  Also, it was probably one of the best marked courses I have been on.  There were a lot of directional cones, volunteers, signs, etc.  I never felt like I didn't know where to go.  When the finish line came around, there were a lot of spectators, cheers, and volunteers there to immediately take my chip and direct runners through the chute and to awaiting refreshments.  Post race, there were bananas, bagels, water, and the standard post race items for runners.  The DJ provided lots of music, dances, and games for the kids.  It was really a great atmosphere and I think if it continues to be run this well, it will grow.  My only suggestion for the race would be a little bit more organization for the awards ceremony at the end.  It was a bit of a mess, but I cannot complain too much, I have never had to be in charge of one.

Now on to my performance.  I wasn't sure what to expect today.  I haven't raced since the middle of March and I really have gotten a bulk of training in since.  I was hoping for a good race, knowing that it was a bit flatter than some races.  Today was really about seeing where my speed was.  My only issue was that yesterday I hit a Communion buffet pretty hard and pre-race, my guts were not too happy.  I was quite nervous where I would be once the gun went off.  This was also my second race since developing a real warm up.  In the past I would simply do a couple strides and not warm up well.  Starting last race, this is my go to warm up:

3-5 minutes slow jog
2-3 minutes medium level run
5-10 sprints and/or power skip strides.

For the second race in a row, I felt great to start.  I was loose and fluid and did not feel my effort at all.  The first mile I ticked off in 6:15.  The second mile was 6:20.  I finished it up in 19:20 over the 5K course.   With that finish, it means I ran the last 1.1 miles in 6:45.  That equates to a 6:08/mile pace.  I am very happy with that.  Also, I took possession of 2nd place overall at about 7:00 into the race and was never challenged the rest of the way.  The only dude in front of me was in my age group, so I was second in my age group as well.  

This is my highest finish ever in a race.  Even more important than my pace however, the speed is coming back into these old legs.  I have about 6 1/2 weeks before my main race and I will get in some really key speed sessions as well as some distance and hill work.  Knock on wood, I am headed in exactly the right direction.