Friday, April 29, 2016

Nike 1982 ad

04/29/2016 Today's speed work and the importance of pacing

Today, I decided it was time to try and get some speed work in.  I haven't done any in awhile and my legs, although getting more and more fit, need to get back into the faster turnover of speed work.  I set out to do a round of 400 meter repeats with a full jog recovery.  This is what they looked like time wise:

1.   86 sec.
2.   95 sec. (WTF)
3.   86 sec.
4.   87 sec.
5.   85 sec.
6.   86 sec.
7.   87 sec.
8.   86 sec.
9.   85 sec.
10. 82 sec.

If it were gymnastics, we could drop my best and worst and I'm sitting at 85-87 seconds for the remaining 8 intervals!  The intervals were important for me because it allowed me to test my left side and realize that the hamstring and piriformis, although not feeling great, seems manageable.  If I can hit an 82 second 400 meter for my last in the series, I am pretty strong.  That is a pace of about 5:28/mile.  Also, it is important to get your body into different paces during training so that you are comfortable in different zones.  

It is not beneficial to run the same pace all the time, especially if you race at all.  There should be distinct differences in you recovery, easy pace, your tempo pace, interval paces, and even your long run pace.  Once your body has spent some time at a particular pace, it can get used to it, thereby building a tolerance and efficiency during that pace.  

For example, workouts that focus on fast finishes and running faster during the second half or end of a workout tend to train your body to run fast at the end of a race, even when you are tired.  Familiarity with a faster pace can get you through the pain of the end of a race.  

You may be saying, "I race very little," or "I run a 35 minute 5K, my pace is just slow, it doesn't matter."  This could not be more untrue.  

It doesn't matter your end times, everyone can benefit from changing paces.  All runners benefit from pace change whether it's changing between 6-8 minute paces in the workouts or 9-11 minute paces, each person needs to judge pace within themselves, not against others that are faster.

I suggest setting up a chart, listing your race or training pace ideas, as rough as they may be.  This is what mine might look like:

1 mile training pace 5:45-6:00
5 mile tempo pace 34:00-35:00
Long run pace per mile 8:30ish
Recovery jog 8:00-9:00 for comfort
200, 400m sprint interval pace 40-45, 85-90 seconds

Obviously, these paces are organic and can change weekly or not.  It's all just a guide.  It doesn't have to be perfect, as my 2nd interval shows today.  It was 95 seconds because I was trying to settle in.  

Thursday, April 28, 2016

04/28/2016 Hill repeats, what's the grade of that hill?

5.5 miles total today, not a ton.  It brings me to 25 for the week, plus I add in tomorrow and will hit 30+ for the week.

On the run today, I hit a big hill and ran it, went down in, and back up again.  By a big hill, I mean its about .8 miles long, and I ran it twice.  My featured race, the 5 mile stretch of the triathlon in June is a lot of hills.  Consequently, my a@# needs to get in hill work.  I do not mind hills, they hurt and let me know I'm doing something.

As for the grade of the hill, I am working on it.  Basically, it breaks down to- Grade= vertical gain/horizontal distance.  For this run, I gained about 290 feet over about 4400 feet.  That works out to almost a 7% grade.  Not bad for the distance I ran to achieve it.

If you are wondering how I figured this out, I used the Nike dashboard of my running site at Nike Plus.  I am going to devote a larger post about hills, grade, etc. shortly.

Wednesday, April 27, 2016

04/27/2016 Yikes, I am already tired of running without a watch!

6 Miles without a watch.  I ran a clip of about 7:45/mile, best I could tell.  I am in need of a watch.  The unfortunate part is, I do not see one on the horizon any time soon since I have to wait for the return of my current watch, the processing, and the voucher to get to me.  F!  All that sounds like light years away.  I am in the process of trying some secondary approaches to this, but the chances are thin.  I will get back to you.  As far as today's run, eh.  My stomach felt gross for 99.9% of the run.  I do not know if it was the peanut butter sandwich I had 2 hours ago, the stomach virus my daughter has, or some stupid stomach pain of my own.  Either way, it made today's run less than fun.  

Tuesday, April 26, 2016

04/26/2016 Today's run, a fundraiser, Laps for Flint

Today, at my school, the student council, members of the faculty, and the student body, participated in a fundraiser called Laps for Flint.  From 3:20pm until 4:30pm, students and staff ran/walked laps in the school to raise money for the crisis in Flint, Michigan.  Personally, I supervised and ran for the entire time in my gymnasium, monitored students, drummed up the support, and played DJ with the sound system.  For about 70 minutes, I ran a comfortable pace, although in a cramped gym.  I figure I ran about 7-7.5 miles, give or take.  It was a nice event, well run by the student council and teacher supervisors, and the students got some exercise in a fun, stress free environment.  

It was also another opportunity for my students to see the staff, myself included, participating in personal wellness.  It's easy to preach it from our perspective, but the students learn as much, if not more, by seeing it happen with teachers, role models, parents, etc. trying to be healthy themselves.  

I am not sure how much was raised, but overall it was a success.  From community spirit, to the monetary side, to the wellness factor, it was a great hour at Sicomac School.

RIP Nike Sportswatch, you served me well

Final resting place, back to Nike.
Well, it's official, the Nike Sportswatch is dead.  I spoke to a rep at Nike Support and after trying a couple of things, she called the time.  My Sportswatch is no more.  It served me well for a couple years and faithfully tracked my runs, gave me my spits, and kept me informed.  On the bright side, the rep from Nike was very helpful and took into account my years of use, mileage put in on the watch, and my blog reach.  She was nice enough to give me warranty coverage even though I am over a year past my warranty.  I am getting a full Nike credit for the purchase price in about 7-10 days.

The downside of the deal though, Nike no longer manufactures the Sportswatch.  I could still get it from a third party if I want, or I can go with a different watch.  No decisions have been made, but I am a little nervous about not having a watch to track for awhile.  

Monday, April 25, 2016

04/25/2016 A new week, without my Nike Sportswatch?!?!

I'm in the middle of a good stretch here.  Monday comes, decent weather, and a 6 miler to bang out.  I look down at my Nike Sportswatch this morning when I pick it up from the counter, F, it's completely blank....  I get to work, plug it in my mac, nothing.  I google how to reset it manually, hold down the select button and the up button, nothing.  

Now, right before I run this morning, I send messages to Nike, a blogger I talk with once in awhile, and hope for some help with this situation.  Now I wait.....

I ran a information-less 6 miles today, around an 8:15-8:20/mile pace.  I ran on grass to keep the pounding to a minimum.  I am putting in some longer miles tomorrow and this week in general so I want to be smart about the pounding of the pavement.  It's funny, because I sometimes unplug on runs anyway.  However, when you are forced to go without a watch, it is uncomfortable.  I missed my ability to get real time results, even if I was just looking for time or distance.  

Time to fix or get a new watch.  I am currently in contact with Nike.