Thursday, April 30, 2009


A nice little hill workout this morning. Did 1 loop steady, then 5x HugeHill at a normal pace. Honestly normal pace was fine because there was a headwind and of course I was going against gravity, so these hills seemed a lot harder than they probably would have been. It was funny, there was a little boy who kept racing me when I ran by his house about halfway up. He did pretty good on my last trip down, and when I put out my hand for a high five, I said "good job" and he smiled real big and slapped my hand. It was fun.

The rest of the run was at moderate pace, Only about a mile and half left so I used it to do some accelerations with the wind, except the last one which was against it. Good workout I felt the hams a bit after the run, I also had to work a bit harder because of the wind, but it was no big deal. Just a moderate effort run, good medium-high quality strength workout.

11am. home. 69° 65%H 12 mph wind from SSW (mild + windy)
1:13:07(10.97)bf 1344 5xHH, 4x100m accels

Wednesday, April 29, 2009


A good run tonight. It was supposed to thunderstorm again, but never did. It was a bit cloudy though which was nice. It definitely made the run a little cooler. I tried to keep the HR down during the run today and it worked for the most part. I also tried to get up this morning to run and that totally didn't happen, I turned off both alarms. Should have went to sleep a little earlier, but I had to stretch and do my core routine before I went to sleep. So that's it for today, nothing major to report just a nice easy run, things felt good after the workout yesterday. It took a mile or two to get warmed up, but after that everything was running on all 4.

4:33pm. home. 78° 48% 12mph wind from ENE (warm)
1.04.10(9.42), bf 1335

Tuesday, April 28, 2009


am run

glorious run this morning. April was supposed to get up and exercise. She has been asking me to workout with her and I've been trying to help, but she is easily bored. She has tried fitness centers, running (for a day or two), yoga, exercise balls, jazzercise, but she always ends up getting bored and quits after a month tops. The thing about it is even if I do happen to motivate her, I just have this feeling that she'll quit on me after a month or so. She does need foot surgery, and I've told her to get it, but she doesn't want to take time off of work or have to be on crutches. I'm kind of through trying to convince her what to do. Anyway sorry for the rant, she just slept in - I reset the alarm, but she still never got up.

So it was a very nice run. The weather was a very cool 60 degrees and it just felt like I could eat the air it was so thick. Great for running and felt great the whole way. It was nice getting to run in the morning. I don't know how I got up so fresh as I usually am dragging, but whatever the case it was nice. I got to watch the sun rise as I ran, the first forty minutes just before it poked over the hills it was just beautiful. I really need to make morning runs a part of my routine.

6:20am. home. 62° 75%H 5 mph wind from SSW
1:06(9.69), bf 1327
estimated AHR155/MHR165

pm workout:

So most of the reason for running in the morning was so I could do a harder workout tonight on the track. Since April missed the AM, I invited her to come with me to the track. She decided to go (with a little convincing her it wouldn't take that long for my workout) and so we went. I stared with a one mile warmup, then form drills and a little acceleration - I've pretty much got it down now without having to think if I missed something. So I start off and it's a little rough, but I enjoyed being able to breathe freely. I used a pace calculator from my recent mile to get the splits I should be running. For 1200 meters at V02 max, the pace was 4:17. My first 1200 was 4:16 and I didn't push hard at the end or anything so it was good.

I ran with my stopwatch so I knew the splits would be accurate. Recover time was supposed to be equal time minus 30 seconds. So I just rounded down to 3:30 to keep things even. I gave myself appropriate recovery with a bit of jogging and walking and then started the next one. Second time around I felt really smooth. The big thing for me on this workout was being at a pace where I had to breathe hard, but not too hard. So it was interested when I changed from short quick in-out breathing, to a slightly longer slow breathing method. Things changed radically and I wasn't feeling like I was doing anything. The second 1200 flew by in 4:10 - and I didn't even try harder, the effort was equal to me. I didn't push on the last lap or anything.

So that was quite interesting. I tried the method again for the third. This time it worked pretty well, but at times I would slip back into the old breathing and have to focus to go back to the longer breaths. The third lap on this I felt my legs getting heavy, and I did push just a little harder on that one which gave me a 4:04. I was surprised because that felt relatively easy, but the previous two had worn me out a bit and since April was just sitting alongside the track listening to her ipod I decided to call it a day. I did another mile at about a tempo pace and finished the workout. It was a really great workout. I could probably repeat it Thursday or even add some because I really didn't do a whole lot. I mean a little over two miles isn't gonna cut it for a good 10k, but as I said I can do another workout later so it's all good.

My ipod has been wiggin' out on me. It's about time for a new one. It was used before I got it and it's been 2 years, so it had a good run. I think I paid about $100 for it and that was when they were a bit more expensive. I might pick up another one on craigslist or something if it keeps freezing. I'll try resetting and see what happens first.

6:20pm. home.81º %? 5mph wind (warm)
3x1200 @4:16, 4:10, 4:04
27:31(4.54)fasttwitch 58
with breaks AHR144/MHR184

Monday, April 27, 2009

4.27.09 Dogwood Mile Race Report

Dogwood Mile
I signed up for this mile race mostly on a whim and partially just to see how well I could do. It was in downtown Knoxville along gay street and I signed up the day of the race down there. I brought along my running gear and we also invited April's sis and her boyfriend to come along. They had a good time because they brought their 3 month old puppies, although they are already bigger than most dogs.

I wasn't nervous at all before this race. Why should I have been? I had absolutely no expectations and only hopes of beating my high school self. So I basically went into this race as I would go into some speedwork, a little warm up (jogged to the car to change shoes and jogged back) some form drills, a few pickups and I was ready as ever. The other races were going on before mine in the different age groups. It wasn't all run at once. The kids race was first then various age groups, mine being the last one and the elites went after all age groups had run. They also did a sort of staggered start where after 8 minutes or something they started the next "wave" A wave consisted of mavbe 15-20 people. The road was pretty narrow so I'm glad there weren't more than that actually.

So I was ready to run this, well as ready as you can be after months of slow running training for a marathon. I had only done maybe 2 or 3 speed session in the last few weeks tops, because I wanted to give myself some rest after the marathon. Not a whole lot of change can happen in that time, but I felt like I had a good chance of coming close to 5. From my last workout which i ran 77's or so I pretty much knew it wasn't going to be possible, because even those were difficult. Regardless I had it my mind to run fast despite how I felt.

So the announcer says "one minute till start" and I get up to the line. Right in the front, I wasn't playin'. I put my toe on the line, hand on ipod to click the start button and wait for the gun. Before I know it bam, we are flying up a somewhat short incline about 150 meters to the first right turn (from there it's a straight out and back). A guy takes off in front of me and I think "Dang he's gonna run a 4:30!"

He wasn't far ahead, but the fact that he was ahead kind of worried me. There was a guy to my left, but I wasn't to worried about him. I just focused on the leader. As we turn right for about 100 meters onto Gay Street, which is lined with various buildings and business there is an Arbies. I decided that's where I would start my kick from, just to have a landmark to look for. We pass arbies on the out route and are going at a pretty good clip for another 10-20 seconds, then I find myself gaining on the leader and within another few seconds I pass him.

Holy crap I'm in the lead! This was kind of scary. I wanted the lead, but when I got there I sort of wanted out, haha. So it was all me from there, there was no looking back. I focused on the end of the road where the turnaround was. I could really see it because it was dark, so I just ran. Eventually I made it to the turnaround and did a HUGE friggin half loop to go back the other way, think of doing a 180 in an indy car going top speed - that is what it felt like.

I took a quick glance to the right as I ran the other way, sizing up my competition. Didnt' really give me that much info, but I saw that I had a small lead, but since it was dark everything was just a blur and anyone could have been just behind me and I would have missed them. Right at the half I noticed my throat became incredibly dry. It felt like I just drank a cup of sand. My breathing already was heavy, but not uncontrolled. I tried to keep my pace, but I felt it slagging and here I relaxed about the 600 meter point through the race. I was hurting a bit breathing wise, but legs were still moving and turning over for me. I could see Arbies ahead. Since I had nobody to run with, I tried catching stragglers from the previous race and actually nabbed a few.

As I ran by Arbies I yelled at all the people sitting there eating outside "go Arbies!!!" then I just took off like crazy. I started my kick, and yay it was actually there! As I turned the corner to head toward the finish line I heard a guy yelling "You got this!" and another " Go catch that girl!" (the previous race was still finishing) and so I did. I just took off and caught them.

I didn't hear the announcer calling times or anything, and at no point in the race were there markers or anyone giving times, so this was a blind run. Still it wouldn't have mattered, I simply am not in track shape, or even close to it at this point, but I'm getting there. I was so happy when I crossed the line. It was so fun to just run a mile. I knew I won, but I really didn't care too much about that, I just wanted to know what my time was and get some WATER.

Unfortunately there was only warm vitamin water, and that didn't do me very well. I felt like I just ran 200 miles through the Sahara. It's funny, this race almost felt worse than the marathon in terms of breathing. I could breathe fine during the marathon, but this was just dryness. I guess you can be dehydrated for a mile race, who knew? Anyway I had a great time. I don't know if I got some kind of award. Someone said there were gift certifactes or something, but I never got one. I would be happier with a medal or something like that. I like to have a little keepsake showing the feat, instead of like a free water bottle or something. So there it is 5:17 mile is my current pace. There is another mile race after my 10k. I'm not sure if I'll run it though. I want to be a little better trained for faster paces going into the next one.

today's afternoon run:

Really hot and I struggled just to get two loops in the neighborhood finished without dying. So if there were any doubts about weather affecting a run, they are gone now. It's real and don't underestimate the heat. Fortunately I was wise enough to realize this before the run and wanted to use these miles as a sort of primer to tonights workout. Which I may or may not be able to do. We have to our car out of the towing lot and it could take a little longer since I have to try to jump the battery, and possibly leave, buy a new one, come back, take the old one out and put the new one in and even then who knows. Worst case scenario is it has to be towed back which is yet another 50$ on top of the 135 to get it out. Ugh. So I'm not really planning on having a workout tonight, but I really want to. Most of that is because tomorrow there is a chance of thunderstorms and I'd rather just do the workout a day early than miss it altogether.

12:29pm. home. 83º 32%H 13 mph wind from SSW (hot)
42:58, (6.25) gm 1002

pm workout:

Fortunately I was able to jump the car after charging it for about 25 minutes, so didn't have to have it towed back from the towing company. Unfortunately it wasn't possible to get another run in because the whole ordeal took so much time (just to have the car moved from our Community lot 50 feet to our house)

Sunday, April 26, 2009


The run today was cut a bit short due to the heat. I had plenty of water, but still had to take a break at the Walgreens so I could continue running properly. My HR was up around 175, and when I went up the hills it got up to 180 and I was running as easy as I could other than jogging. After running in this I'm kind of glad the Knoxville Marathon weather was a little cooler. The run started off well enough, but right away I could tell the heat was making a big difference. I felt myself slowing around a half hour and by forty minutes I was really wanting to stop and take a breather. I had wanted to run for about an hour and half, but just based on how I was feeling I decided it was best to just turn around and head back to the park.

So I stopped for a few minutes in air-conditioned Walgreens, let my HR drop a bit, got a good drink of water and headed out. After this break I felt good again and it was no problem to run normally. It also helped that after a little incline there was a bit of downhill leading down to the park. I ran a few laps around the soccer field where there was a game going on. I like when there is something happening at the park, it gives me something to look at and makes the run a little less lonely. I decided to just run my normal 9 miles and call it because I had already started feeling the pace fall off a bit.

So I guess the lesson for today was that I may have to start taking breaks for these next few weeks, especially on longer runs. Or maybe I'll go back to split runs in the morning/afternoon again. The thing about running in the heat is that I really like it. It's harder to push and I really feel like I'm getting a good workout in. I mean if I can run well in the heat, then I know that at cooler temps I'm going to be just that much better. We'll see what happens in this next month. Last year the temps were in the 60's for the 10k, so I'm expecting the same (although thinking back I remember that felt really hot). We'll see what happens, it's just interesting to me how much weather can effect running. Actually I really think climate has a lot to do with the African success in running (that combined with altitude, running 12 miles a day to school, training attitude, and the fact that if they win they provide for their entire family for years, haha)

final note is that i kept my HR monitor going through my water/walk breaks, otherwise the average would have probably been much higher.

The CARICATURE CONTEST was won by @disneyrunner on twitter. Gordon has a podcast called "Run to Disney" where he talks about his running and well, all things Disney. He lives in Florida and is a good guy. I already sort of "owe" him an art video that I'm getting around to making, and now I'm going to draw a nice caricature for him. I'm actually excited to do the caricature, I love not having to worry about things and just have fun with my drawing. So congrats to Gordon, good guessing! He actually won by .4 seconds :) If you want to check his blog and podcast, I have a link to his site in the running blogs area.

3:16pm. home.
87°Sunny 27%H 10mph wind from S (Hot and stifling)
1:12:20(10.98), bf 1319

Saturday, April 25, 2009


Easy run today. Found that my car had been towed from our community lot. It's actually my old car that I don't drive because the turn signals were broken. We hadn't renewed the plates on it because we never drove it, and apparently it is against the law? I dunno we couldn't drive it so I didn't see the point in paying something for nothing. The lot is for community parking which we are obviously a part of, because we live in the community. Also I should note we aren't allowed to park the car in our yard, or along the road as it will be towed, so it was the only place to park and actually was there for over a year and a half, why now? Anyway we are yet again contacting the homeowners association because not only does it have to be gotten out of the Lot, but towed back to the exact same place it came from, the community lot, because in addition to the turn signals the battery has gone dead from not driving it, and we couldn't drive it without new tags anyway. haha, didn't see that situation coming.

So that kind of abruptly ended my run, as I run right by that lot everyday and see my old car there everyday. But after a few phone calls I was right back out there running.

It was very WARM today, basically hot and windy. Kind of nice to have the wind, but it did make things go a lot slower than needed. So the effort was more medium than easy, but I kind of like that. I really need to start pushing things so it was good. Nice to have warmth again, I like running in the heat, I'm just not quite used to it yet. Hopefully this weather sticks around so I can do that.

The CONTEST I made is basically still going. I didn't find the results until I got home from the cookout I went to last night. So I couldn't announce a winner until I knew the results myself. Next time I'll have another contest with better rules and just have a link here to the blog with all the details. I'll also be sure to give a few more days before the race to entry, maybe like a week or something I dunno. I wanted to with this one, but I wasn't sure if people would be interested, then at the last minute just decided to go for it. So I think I know who won, but there is sort of a tie. I said closest, but if you play by "The Price is Right" rules, you can't go over. I never really liked that rule, so I'm going for closest above or below and will stick with that rule.

4:30pm. home. Sunny 85° 31%H 16mph wind from SSW (very warm)
42:24(6.2), gf 674

Friday, April 24, 2009


So for those of you who read this blog and follow me on twitter, this is for you! I'm going to draw a quick black and white caricature of whoever guesses (not finds) my finish time from last nights race. If there is a tie I will take whoever posted it first in an @ reply in twitter. Please don't leave your guess in the blog because I want to easily compare the times and posting here it could get confusing. So guess away. You've got till 12 noon Saturday April 24th, sorry if you are finding out about this later than that.

Oh if you would like me to draw someone else instead that is fine, either way please give me a GOOD quality photo to work with. I'm not sure exactly how far I will take the exaggeration, it depends on the face, muhahaha..err hehe.

So I will save the race report for tomorrow and not give any clues away. Good luck :)

Thursday, April 23, 2009


I probably should have just stayed home for the run today. I sort of forgot how hilly the soccer complex really was as I hadn't been there for a while, I suppose undulating is the best term. So this run was a little harder than I wanted it to be, but I guess getting the heart rate up a little higher ain't going to hurt anything. It went by slow at first, then a light rain came down for a few minutes, just a few sprinkles really and after that the run went by real fast and was over before I knew it. I did a few accelerations the last mile at about 80-85% and they felt okay, but as I said I was little tired from the hills and didn't really feel like pushing too hard the day before a race.

So in other news imagine you are running a race. You've been training for years just running on your own and just run for fun. It's a pretty big race and there are quite a few people in it. You run your heart out and see as you come to the finish that you not only ran a HUGE pr, but you
far exceeded your expectations. Then find out that not only did you run an incredible race, but you WON the race. Then imagine you didn't win because you started later than those who are slower than you.

Yup, this really happened. I apologize if it's old news, but I just came across the article today and thought I would include it in my post. I can't believe that an organization would do this simply because someone
underestimated themselves. I think it's a crock. The woman who "won" this race wasn't given her proper credit although she ran much faster than the "elites", bureaucracy at it's best. I mean if I was running a major marathon, or heck any race, and ran faster than someone else and wasn't given credit, that would piss me off. It's just not right and to do it to a woman at a race supporting the empowerment of women only race adds insult to injury.

In the defense of the race directors and such, I can see how they would make that mistake. The time honestly was not "elite", but it was faster than I've ever ran. They really should have brought in talent, or realized that there were going to be a lot of average women running when they realized no actual elites were in the race. I'm
not saying average is bad or they are horrible runners, I'm just saying that most of the "real" elites out there will be running at least 15-20 minutes faster than this winning time. But to go and punish someone for something that isn't their fault to begin with, just seems a little too stubborn. She should have been given first place, and whatever reward or recognition that came along with it.

link to the article

actually there is a follow up included in the article, it was in a weird place so I didn't see it right away. She ended up being rewarded in the end, but still to have this happen in the first place is kind of silly. I'm glad they did work it out after all (although it does say she was "a" winner, not "the" winner, lol)

6:00pm. soccer complex. 75º 39%H 9mph wind from SSE
1:15:05 (10.81), gf 668

Wednesday, April 22, 2009


These past few weeks have really been up and down for me. Sometimes I get my runs with good motivation and other times I just seem to wimp out. Today I was slacking.

No excuse for this missed day of opportunity. It was nice outside today, but I was really tired from last night. Although I love April for buying me a starbucks, since I had it later on when I got back from my run it ended up keeping me awake well into the morning hours. Not her fault, I should have tried to go to sleep but I chose to watch all the DVR'd tv I missed while I was running instead. So that wore me out and I got a late start in the morning, spent the day working on my painting which is so close to being done I can taste it. Then of course we ate dinner and I just couldn't get myself in the mood to run on a full stomach again. So anyway there's the justification, legs feel good and fresh today though :)

So what to talk about that is still motivating. Oh yeah - the rumor that Kara Goucher would run London (which is this weekend) right after her great performance on Monday. Well that seems a little silly to me when I saw the rumor floating around twitterland leading to article that said she was "petitioning" her coach to let her run. Well I'm not the biggest guy on taking 1 rest day for each mile raced, but still this is a little too close for comfort. I'm sure she isn't worried about the negative publicity she would receive (for the very reason I just stated, recovery period) but she should be worried about how it would look if for some reason she had a bad race. All the media would be on her and it would bring a lot of negativity to her as well as our sport. Not a risk worth taking in my honest opinion, although I admit she is in such great shape that I wouldn't put a great performance past her.

I've ran beside a guy who Won a marathon Saturday, then the following day came down here to Knoxville and placed 3rd. So I'm not surprised when I see Kara wanting to get back out there. She is elite and I believe elite bodies are so well trained to run, that recovery time is exponentially less than typical runners, they are simply adapted to running hard.

Now also consider she wants to take time off right now. I understand she's getting "older" and wants to start a family, but if it were me I would choose to run at least few more races. I mean she's SO close to winning a major marathon, just seconds away. Why not train for another marathon and see if she can take it while she is in excellent shape? The whole theory of "why wait?" really seems appropriate. But I suppose the same goes for the whole family making goal as well.
Let's face it, being pregnant isn't exactly the ideal training conditions, at least not near the third trimester. I'm not saying definitely she should wait. I mean Paula Radcliffe won New York months after having a baby and that's amazing, but Paula had won marathons before that and had already established herself as a world record breaking marathoner. She also suffered an stress fracture due to the pregnancy most likely the result of depleted calcium. I'm not saying it's a terrible thing, but just knowing how close she came, I think Kara should give it at least one more shot.

Image by Mark Shearman

Turning things to my side I've been thinking about my own goals and wondering what will be next for me. I was considering some ultra's as I think I could do really well in one, but that sort of goes against my whole focus on speed and requires a ton of mileage, so I pretty much threw that idea on the backburner real quick. Right now my goals are more abstract, get faster, more flexible, and improve at shorter distances. Those aren't very objective goals, but they are measurable so I think it's a good thing. Longer term I'm thinking half-marathon in the fall. I need a race to look forward to, races motivate me. Although the half would be my goal race, I would use 3 or 4 5ks as time trials and indicators of fitness leading up to it.

Even longer term I'll probably follow that race with the Knoxville Marathon again in the spring with a 10miler or 10k inbetween. It's a good race to train for because I know the course personally now, I know the people, the training schedule through a tough winter, and I learned a lot from just trying to race that distance. So coming back next year at the very least I'll know what's coming and definitely be able to focus my training better, i.e. hills like everyday and more runs at/below marathon pace. That's really as far as I want to think ahead. It's good to have goals, but you also have to be flexible as things change, so for now that's the plan.

Tuesday, April 21, 2009


A little track workout tonight. Nothing major a 2 mile warmup, form drills, 400 meter sprints with 400m recovery, then another two and a half miles with accelerations on the backstretch for the last 5 laps. So this workout was kind of wierd because it was so late. I normally workout before dinner, but tonight was kind of pushing it as I ate before. So that mean't getting to the track around 8:30, when it was nearly dark. Actually most of this workout was in the dark, and there are just a few lights they keep on nearby at the parking lots. It was still easy to see the lines so no big deal, just different. Another good reason to run later is that my race Friday will be at 9:30, so it was a good test of running later on.

Laps were going to be difficult to time because I couldn't use a stopwatch - it has no glow in the dark and I probably wouldn't have been able to find it to turn it on because it is black, so there was no point in bringing it. I just had to use my ipod and try to remember what the seconds were when I crossed the line. But anyway the first lap was 77, not anything special, but honestly I wasn't pushing my hardest, I was going fast, but still had another gear. It was also windy for 200 meters as the wind was coming at angle to the track, a good 12-13 mph or so and that took a few seconds off I'm sure. One good thing about going a tad slower was that I only needed a lap recovery before doing the next one. I really wanted to limit recovery tonight and it worked nicely. The next two laps were 77 as well, I guess it was just my night for 77's. My last lap I pushed a little harder into the wind the last 200m and got it down to 75, but nothing to write home about.

The 400's felt good and I really tried to get a feel for what the mile should be like on Friday. It will hurt, just as these did. But the funny thing is that after you take 20-30 seconds you are fine again, it's crazy how that works. I try to keep that in mind when things start hurting at the end. So I ran another mile and then did 100 meter sprints on the backstretch for the next mile. These I really worked on getting up to near top speed. I still feel a little clumsy getting up that fast and my feet just feel like they are pounding. That's to be expected from all my slow running I guess, I'll get there soon enough, plenty of time to work on speed this summer.

So I'm guessing Friday's mile is kind of going to be a toss-up judging from this workout. I'm going to run the first 800 hard and try to get with someone and run with them(assuming I'm not in the lead somehow) hold on for the third 400 and do a gradual kick the last 400. Sounds as good as a strategy as I'll get. No reason to overthink it as I'm really not in shape to run it haha. We'll see what happens, I'm sure there will at least be some high schoolers running good times so I think I'll just try to hang with them and outkick them at the end. The fortunate thing about marathon training is that for a short distance like this I'm pretty confident my kick will be there at the end, so not to worried about that. It's exciting just thinking about it, reminds me of high school glory days. Only, then I had friends yelling out "Ric Flair" at the end so I could yell "Woooo" and kick it home. I really didn't like Ric Flair, but I liked abandoning all sanity and sprinting no matter how much it hurt. Fun times, in shape times.

8:28pm. track. 54º 40%H 13mph wind from WNW (cool)
4x400 @77, 77, 77, 75 w/400m recovery
4x100m accels

50:18(7.75) fasttwitch 54

Monday, April 20, 2009


Great racing today in Boston. I was looking forward to it all last week and over the weekend. After a angry shouts at the mac (quicktime not working) apparently my OS needs upgraded as it's 2 years old, I finally got the thing going so I could watch in the living room. Fortunately I found the right plugin as the standard quicktime player didn't play I only got a Q symbol with a question mark on it, then blank. So once I got that working I set up shop on the couch. I also could have watched it on my PC, which is much more powerful and has a bigger screen - and works, but I didn't feel like sitting in my desk chair the whole race.

So I set up shop and just enjoyed it all. The race started off well enough with Ryan Hall and Kara Goucher in the front of their packs with the leaders. The Kenyans and Ethiopians were right there too of course. Ryan took an early lead - which the commentators kept remarking about - "He's going to regret it" basically. I think it was a good move, if he is more fit and prepared for the Newton hills, it's an AWESOME move, because everyone else will surely die. But it's a marathon and a race isn't won over a single move or burst or strategy, it just depends on whose day it is in the final 6 miles. Today it was Merga's and once he grabbed the lead, he never looked back (well not literally, he looked back a lot).

Unfortunately Kara did not do the same, she just couldn't seem to shake loose from the pack, and with less than a mile left the woman I foresaw giving Kara a run for her money (Tune) took the lead along with Kosgei running right behind her. They both got about 10 meters on Kara, and I thought for a second she was going to put on a kick, but it wasn't there and she couldn't reel them back in. Tune ended up finishing second, falling down after she crossed the line. Kosgei outran her by a single second on the clock after Tune jostled and tried to "cut her off" by running in front of her a few times. Kara came in 9 seconds later finishing 3rd, a great second marathon performance if you ask me. The womens times suffered because of the slow early pace, although the last 5k was around 16 minutes.

Ryan Hall also finished third, although not as dramatic he was quite far back and gained momentum toward the end passing a few Kenyans and Ethiopians and nearly closed on Rono who came in second. Hall was a mere 8 seconds behind, coming back from 18 seconds at 40k. All in all it was a good day for American distance running. We got on the podium in both the mens and womens race, and really I feel like it's just the start. We have other great runners in our country, I just wish we would show them off more. I mean watching online is one thing, but dedicating a slot to it during the day - even a replay during the weekend on a major network would be at minimum a humble attempt to show non-athletic or rather non-knowledgeable Americans what we can do and what running is all about.

My run was great today other than a goofy dog who kept wanting to follow me. I don't think he meant any harm, but it took a while walking and stopping before he finally gave up. Legs were snappy and other than a little left hip soreness before/after the run I was feeling awesome. The rain actually skipped out just as I went outside, although the wind didn't, but I didn't care. It was just good to get out there and run. I actually went a little faster for an easy run, but oh well. I figure the faster I run the better, even if it is an easy day. One thing I've noticed is that since I've been running less miles it's either much easier to run fast, or I'm just getting in better shape/mechanically faster. I'm not sure which, but I really feel like it's the cutback in miles that has provided the majority of it.

I'm looking forward to Friday, it will be a fun race. I think a few of our friends may even do it as well, so that is really cool! It's downtown as most races here are, and goes across a bridge so it will probably be lit up and everything. My race doesn't start till 9:30pm so it'll be a late one! I have no real goal in mind, but I just want to run as hard as I can without dying. Three speed workouts ain't much so I'm not expecting any miracles, although it would be nice :)

Lastly I just wanted to go back to the whole running out front thing and explain it a bit better. Today we had opposite spectrum of racing for the men's and women's. The women started out at a 6:30 pace - basically that means even I could have kept up with them... not fast. The men went out fast, but nowhere near suicidal, it was a more respectable 4:48 I believe. The thing about going out fast/slow is that you have think about your competition. If you go out like Goucher did and hang back, you have to be faster over shorter distances near the end. She tried to make it up by leading, but nobody would take it back from her, nor did she create a gap. I think she really wasted a lot of energy leading around mile 20 into the wind, when she could have conserved by letting someone else do the work.

The smaller the distance it is to the finish, and the fresher the racers legs are (by going out slow) the faster you have to be to beat them. We all know about Prefontaine, he got caught in the same game, horribly slow first two miles, and he had to run a 4:04 final mile in the 5k just to get fourth - insane! If he had pushed the pace early, all those "kickers" would have had nothing left and he'd have beat them by 150 meters or at least been able to out-kick their kicks. I know a lot of that is theoretical but it's also a fact, the slower the pace, the faster you have to be to take down others at the end.

ILet's say there is a mile left in the race, and you can run a 4:20, but if someone else can run 4:10, chances are they are going to beat you in a slower race. BUT if you push the pace a two or three miles out, you string them out much farther than 10 seconds away over time, they don't have enough raw speed to run you down at the end even with the freshest of legs. I really thought Ryan was going to kick it into gear in those last few miles and he did, but the leader simply had gained too much on him, even Rono had gone out just far enough where Ryans near 4 minute max speed couldn't touch him.

So know your competition and play to their weaknesses. Goucher should have strung those girls out if she had a lot left, and if not, she should have sat on their backs and kicked at the end (just as Kosgei did to Tune) Hindsight is always 20/20 and I'm by no means saying Kara or Ryan ran bad races, they did excellent and ran amazingly well. I just thought I'd share my humble observations and thoughts.

Congrats to everyone who ran Boston, I can't imagine what's it's like to take part in it, but I have a feeling one day I might just make my way over to Boston to find out for myself.

3:22pm. home. Cloudy 61º 62%H 16mph from WSW (cool n windy)

1:13:25, bf 1310

Sunday, April 19, 2009


Would have liked to run today, but there was lightning and what not. Wasn't feeling the treadmill either, so no excuses really, just a bit of laziness on another gloomy day. Hmm me lazy? Yeah it happens to everyone from time to time :)

On the good note BOSTON is tomorrow. I will be watching on universal sports. I wish it were on tv. Why don't they broadcast big races on the standard channels??? I mean wouldn't it draw more people to the sport? I guess it's being aired locally, but I mean come on, it's Boston. So that is kind of disappointing, but at least it's being aired online too. Hopefully they have their stuff together as last time I watched a marathon we were stuck with a single angle, no commentary, and very little if any actual racing. So if all goes well I'll be able to actually see this one :)

Saturday, April 18, 2009


Stair workout at the track. Two mile warmup, form drills, 2 sets of 3 stairs, one mile steady, repeat 2x. About the second set of stairs I really started getting the timing down and on the third set I was working pretty hard to get to the top. The stairs aren't quite as long as I would like because the bleachers are divided in half on top and bottom, but it's good for recovery and so you can do more reps. Once I got a rhythm down the workout really came together. Inbetween miles were around 6:30 or so from what I could tell just glancing at my ipod at the beginning of each mile. In addition to the sets there is also a cement stairway leading from the stands back down to the track which I also did reps on that as well. I alternated skipping steps and hitting every step on those. I liked skipping steps because you really had to be explosive, but it also wore me out pretty good too :)

Fun workout I really liked doing it this way. I regret not doing them earlier on. I had always planned to but just never made it happen. It's a good change up from hill repeats so I think mixing it into my schedule once a week or every other week would be good. April went with me, but her workout was done after 20 or 30 minutes. I felt bad she had to sit around, so i cut a mile or two off my post-workout run.

6:30pm. track. 72º 36%H wind from SSW 9mph (warm and sunny)
57:34 (8.76) bf 1301

Friday, April 17, 2009


A moderate effort easy run in the heat today. It was nice and sunny I got a good sweat worked up. Kinda difficult to run in the heat, but I like it better than the cold to be honest. I am much more motivated to get outside when the sun is shining and I don't have to layer on a ton of clothes. It just feels good to sweat I suppose. Kind of had to push myself through this one at times but it wasn't a hard effort by any means just focused on staying smooth and getting a good push-off.

Tomorrow I had planned to do a stair workout and as far as right now I think I'll still try it. It depends on what April wants to do. I like for her to go workout with me at different places, but it's hard to get on the same schedule. She went out and walked a loop around the neighborhood tonight and has been really trying to get out there when I go, so that is awesome. For now I'm just being positive and encouraging her to keep at it.

5:56pm. home. 75º 31%H wind from SSE 8mph (warm and sunny)
1:13:20 (10.97), bf 1294

Thursday, April 16, 2009


Got some great work done today on the huge hill by my house. I didn't sprint or really even go fast, just really worked on push off and driving up it with high knees. I probably could have done more, but it was over ten minutes and I had done six back to backs with just the jog down for recovery so I figured that was good. I also knew I wanted to do a little tempo stuff at what I felt like was around or below a six minute pace. So basically the workout was 20 minutes steady, then 6 hills repeats for a little over 10, about 10-15 steady, then I did my tempo for another 10-11 and the rest of the run was basically just a cooldown at normal pace.

Today felt really great. The tibia pain I had in my right leg has shifted to the left. I would be worried, but it's barely noticeable and went away after I got warmed up. The right hip joint was a little achy after the workout as well. Not anything to complain about, as always more of just a note in case they do happen to turn into something later down the road, I'll know when it started. But as far as the workout went it felt good the entire time. I liked doing hills and then some speed as my usual runs are all just slow or relatively easy. The hills were awesome. I like recovering and going back at it again. My HR got way up there but only on the tempo, for the hills I noticed it only got up to around 175 or less, which was good. For the temp I tried to keep it above 170, although I was focused more on just running at a moderately hard pace (perceived sub 6:00 effort).

Quality work today, and it's really pushing me into a new mindset as far as "overdoing" it. I always take it easy on runs, it's time to start pushing more, even if just for ten minutes like today. I'm kind of torn as to what to do Saturday. I would ideally like to some kind of speedwork, but I also want to have enough left to do something Monday. Maybe I'll do a longer temp run, or possibly stairs. Actually now that I just wrote that I think stairs will be a good balance so I'll plan on doing that with some accelerations and of course my usually 4-5 miles of steady running. I find that if I don't get more than 6 miles in on workout days I just don't feel like I've ran. I guess that's a good thing. Anyway that's the plan for now.

After the workout we went downtown which was quite an adventure. We are just now getting back after eating dinner at 10pm (waited 1 hour in traffic), went to the meeting till 9:30 and then to eat at 10pm AH! and stopped by walmart after that, so just now getting home at 11:15. UGH I'm utterly exhausted....don't think a core workout is on the menu :(

4:45pm. home.
69°F 39% wind from NNE 7mph (warm with cool wind)
1:13:21(10.83), gm 996

Wednesday, April 15, 2009


Kind of sore from the workout yesterday, but a comfortable soreness. Still working on painting so took another day off of running. Should help with recovery and I may be able to do another less intense workout tomorrow because of it, so it's a good thing. That's really all there is to report for now, more tomorrow.

Tuesday, April 14, 2009


Finally got some speedwork in. Boy was this workout a wakeup call. I think my last speed session was like a month ago, and the one before that was a month before as well. Not too great fitness wise, but time wise I actually surprised myself a bit. After a 3 mile warmup around 7 minute pace I switched to my road racing shoes and did my form drills. My left tendon (just behind the knee) was doing it's normal thing. Sort of a "click" happens when I pull my foot up toward my hamstring. It doesn't really affect anything, but I've come to the conclusion that is from the last 10 years of not stretching, and the last two basically just spent tightening up the hams.

It was kind of colder today, but a relatively comfortable cold. The sun wasn't out so that helped with staying cool. Shorts and a cotton t-shirt seemed to be the right fit today, other runners at the track had sweat suits/jackets on, but I usually like it on the colder side. So I had no real plans other than 4x400 and maybe more depending on how I felt. So I run the first one. This is tricky because I have an ipod, a HR monitor, and a stopwatch but mostly I just have to be sure that the stopwatch has activated otherwise I'm pretty much screwed, I could really care less about the ipod data. The other tricky part is having to throw the stopwatch down right at the start, so I don't have to hold on to it while running, it's hard enough to run, but then you've got a big watch with a shoelace swinging around it makes it kind of difficult.

So I toe the line, press the start on the stopwatch and I take off flying. I was breathing pretty good by the end and was pretty much amazed by seeing a 67 on the watch as I ran by! Holy crap I really wasn't expecting that. My goal was 72-74. Yeah, I really am in no mans land when it comes to the "faster" stuff. I just haven't done enough of it yet to know what the difference in pace feels like. It all just feels hard to me. So I took two minutes rest, walking around for recovery. Normally for these you want to minimize rest, but considering this was my first fast stuff since like high school, i figured more is better for now.

Lap 2 was tough. There was a pretty good wind on the homestretch about 12mph and I was struggling to get to the line with my form in tact and this time I was breathing hard at 300. Lap two was 71. That one hurt so I realized I needed a lot more rest. I relied on my HR monitor and waited till it got back down to 112-115 which took a good five minutes (with jogging a lap and walking). So after a pretty good break I was ready for number three. For these type of workouts you just have to go do it, no complaining or moseying around, just put your toe on the line, click the thing and take off. I definitely felt the first two on this one and again I was breathing hard and the last 100 was pretty tough. Lap three was 70. I took another long break after this one, but knowing I had only one left was good and I pretty much ruled out doing any more after that.

So this time I got off to a great start, my knees haven't been that high in ten years and I was real smooth at first, but I felt myself slow down before hitting 200 and basically just pushed from there the rest of the way, pretty much dying at the end. Last lap was a 69. For all the times they are give or take a second because for one I have to find the stopwatch on the ground, and like for the last one, I had to turn it over to see what the time was. I did a mile or so after that and switched back to my free's again. They felt like flip flops it was a weird feeling to switch them. Ran another mile or two in those.

So it was very interesting just to go fast. My little left tendon thing went away as soon as I started running fast, which is kind of wierd I guess it just needs loosening up. I really killed the first lap and that took a lot out of me for the rest of the workout. I need to run 74's to break five, so this workout was a fairly decent indicator of my pace. I will get these times down a ton just by getting on the track more, it feels night and day compared to pavement. Because of the "cushion" it sort of feels like I'm sinking and is a little hard to run on because of that. It's something I will have to get used to again, this summer I plan on pretty much living there. The other nice thing about the track is instant feedback on pace every lap. I know exactly how many miles I've ran and what pace I'm doing it at without really needing a pedometer or anything else, just a watch. Unfortunately my HR monitor watch doesn't have a "second hand" readout, so it just shows full minutes. That is so dumb how hard would have it been to add a tiny little display of the seconds? But it was a gift, so I am happy to use it.

I left this workout feeling comfortably tired. I could have done maybe one or two more, but like I said, I'm just getting started no reason to overdo things. I mean I've been training to run a marathon, not a single mile for heaven's sake! Thursday I'd like to do something either hills or speed, maybe a combo fartlek would work I dunno. Then Saturday do some more speedwork, maybe repeat today's workout, and monday do another. So one day of rest and then another workout and repeat? ...I'll probably take a few of those workouts easy and make Monday's a tempo with decreasing pace for the last four miles. Then it'll be three days of rest and time to race a mile :)

I took a break from the internet today to focus on my painting. It's coming along, maybe three more days to go, but it's taking more time than I anticipated. I'll leave note for my twitter peeps tonight.

6:20pm. track. Cloudy 57° F 59%H From WNW 12 mph(chilly)
50:01(7.63), gf 659, fasttwitch 47
4x400m @ 67,71,70,69 w/full recovery
36.44 warmup AHR116 MHR171
13.55 workout w/recovery AHR137 MHR178
23.28 cooldown AHR160 MHR174
sleep AHR54/MHR88

Monday, April 13, 2009


Not sure why I lost motivation today, but it usually tends to coincide with doing artwork. So the trend continues. I have to work on that. Just doing core work and stretching tonight. It was cloudy all day, but never rained, tomorrow I don't think I'll be as lucky. Only about a week and a half left until the one mile race, so I'll try to get in at least 3 speed workouts between now and then.

Sunday, April 12, 2009


Nice n' easy run and ipod/HR data reflected it. About 15-20 seconds slower than yesterday, although effort wise it felt very close. Somehow the heart rate just stayed low today, where yesterday HR was 160 minimum, today was 149 at times. On the weather side it was warm, but the sun was blocked by clouds, and it was getting cooler as the run progressed. Also there wasn't much wind to contend with, but just enough to keep a nice cool breeze flowing. Needless to say it was just textbook feel-good easy run. Had fun at church this morning and at April's fam' just hanging out and doing the easter egg hunt deal. It was a good day.

8 pm. home.
65° F Cloudy 38%H wind from ENE 9 mph (cool)
1:14:04 (10.53), gf 654 +100m accel

Saturday, April 11, 2009


Perfect day for a run. Started off kinda cloudy, but cleared up wonderfully in the afternoon. Today the HR was lower on the run without trying to keep it low, just felt nice and easy out there running. It was a tad windy, but nothing compared to what we've been having. Beautiful sun and a cool breeze made this run just keep going. In fact my playlist ran out because i thought I would only be out for 1:12, but again I went an extra ten minutes, so that is great!

I'm feeling AMAZING right now. Legs feel better than ever and I think my new routine is just what I've been missing. I'm actually kind of regretting not starting it earlier. Tonight everything felt better soreness wise. The calves have a little bit left, but the hip was fine, so all systems were go for the accelerations I've been wanting to work in. I did them on the straight cul-de-sac by my house and it just felt wonderful to open it up. I have so been missing that. I let my HR return to 112 before starting another which basically mean't a walk back to the start line and just a few seconds standing. I did six and afterwards my legs just felt awesome. So in case you didn't know, everything is feeling amazing and awesome and good.

Really feeling confident about this mile race coming up, and I'm sort of so-so about the 10k. I know I will PR or whatever, but really it's more of a stepping block into the summer for me. I haven't raced or even trained during the summer so I know it will be different, but things are really looking good right now and I know that consistency and my new focus on speed are going to bring about some major advances in my running. After 3 years I finally feel in shape like I was in high school, haha, only took three years. I suppose that's not bad considering I was next to a couch potato for 8. Lots of training for the 10k - basically I'm thinking a mixture of hills and speed, but more of a focus on the speed.

here is some video I had April shoot of me running tonight. Constructive criticism appreciated :)

Find more videos like this on RuncastTV

6pm. home. sunny 61 degrees 50% H wind from NNE 11mph (warm/coolbreeze)
1:25:44(12.65), gf 645
sleep AHR57 MHR89

Friday, April 10, 2009


Thought I was going to have to resort to the treadmill this morning. There was huge thunder this morning that shook the entire house and woke me up. I was planning on running this morning before the storms came in, but they were already here and it was raining really good with some occasional lighting. Fortunately it cleared up around 10:30 and I quickly strapped on my heart rate monitor and shoes and got out the door.

The sun was bright and there really wasn't much wind to contend with, well at least for the first part of the run. The roads were nice and wet and all the kiddies were outside playing - must have been a day off of school for Easter weekend. One kid recognized my "run for the schools" shirt. I stopped and said hi and he asked if there were any more races. I directed him to the knoxville track club website and told him it listed all the races coming up, said have a good one, and off I went. Maybe he'll check it out, probably not, he looked like he was maybe a freshman or middle schooler. So the run went on and I noticed my HR was a little higher than normal, but just by a few beats. Who knows how accurate it is, but it's probably right. I didn't really feel like I was working too hard for an easy run, but I just couldn't get it down like yesterday. I'm not going to go theoretical, but it could have even been the humidity or even just running in the morning, no telling.

Either way the run was relaxed and felt good. My left calf is still pretty sore from the calf raises, and the left hip was the same as yesterday. If it doesn't improve I'll continue holding off on speedwork, even though I don't really want to. I also decided to skip the accels again because of it. My main goal is the 10k in May, so I've still got time to get in speedwork, no worries. The mile race I have coming up I just need to go into it without any pressure, so sub-5 isn't really the main goal anymore. Granted it would be great, and I hope I do get it, but I'm not putting any pressure on the race. Don't get me wrong, I'm going to run it hard, and maybe even whip out the scissors, but I'm not going to expect or worry about the time. It'll be a fun race, I just want to enjoy it.

10:41am. home. 63 degrees 74% H SSW 15mph
1:13:14 (10.96), bf 1285
AHR 164/ MHR 173

Thursday, April 9, 2009


Warm today, and a perfect easy run. Yesterday I decided to do some calf raises as I used to do them all the time in jr-high and high school, but man I have been slacking. I remembering doing two sets of a hundred, plus jumping exercises (over boxes, onto tall boxes, quick jumps) and never felt a thing. I did two sets of 20 last night and my calves haven't been this sore since I can't remember when. I thought it would affect the run today, but it really didn't.

So there is a lot of work to be done in the strength area, and it's mostly my fault. I want to find a nice long stairwell or stadium steps to run, and there are a few schools around I just never make the trip. Hills are great, but with stairs you have to be much more accurate and that would help a lot with my coordination. So that is on the agenda now too.

I wore my HR monitor today and I guess it was good. I tried to keep it as low as I could without feeling like I was jogging, which was actually kind of hard to do - mostly because of the hills/terrain. I also skipped the HH today since I just did 2 yesterday and the calves were sore so didn't want to really mess with them anymore. In addition to the calves being sore, my left hip joint was a little achy too (probably from the downhills) but is pretty normal so no worries. It was a little warmer today so my HR was probably a tad higher than normal too.

Tonight I will do my core workout, consisting of a variety of different exercises. Accelerations were on the list for today, but because of the calves and hip I will just do them tomorrow. I'm thinking that I will start off at a good clip, then increase it to 90% for the last half of the accels (proabably do 100-200 meters).

Sunday if things look good I'm going to the track. Now I know the common "rule" of thumb is to rest the same amount of days as you race, but when I saw the two top runners in our area running 15 low in the 5k LAST weekend I realized the truth. If they can do it, so can I. Plus it's not like I feel beat up or anything. I've been taking it really easy on my runs and my legs feel more than fine, heck they feel better than Before the marathon. It would be different if I felt fatigued or if something just didn't feel right, but that just isn't that case. I'm not going to go on justifying my reasoning, it just seems like I would be a target for those who stick only to a single plan blindly, and follow rules without understanding them, and never push beyond their perceived limits - it's just not me.

5:58pm. home. sunny 70 degrees 34% H, WSSW 10mph.
1:13:01 (10.98), bf 1276

Wednesday, April 8, 2009


Good run, let me tell you about it. The agenda was for one hour and twelve minutes today, which is 9 miles at 8 minute pace. I still use 8 minute pace for my miles just out of habit I suppose, as I'm probably running low 7's maybe even 6 minute miles. Either way I just run for time, so the longer the better. I recently advised someone on twitter to increase their daily run by 5 minutes a day every week. Starting in September, that is exactly what I did. Well sometimes I increased it more, but the theory is solid. Looking back I was only running 40-50 miles and averaged about 40 minutes on my daily runs. I went from that to being able to run 1 hour and 30 minutes for my daily runs months later. The key was simple consistency.

Now that I have that base under me, I'm shifting focus. I'm no longer worried about time, it's important to get those medium runs in (close to 2 hours) but because I no longer have a marathon to prepare for, my focus is on speed. So I'm kind of having to shift gears a bit and here is what I'm thinking... Speedwork at least once a week, when feeling good add shorter session two or three days from the first consisting of 400's or shorter - building raw speed. My main workouts will be ladders or repeats, but the focus will be on speed endurance, pushing the lungs and heart to the maximum. On speed days I also will have a core routine, and repeat it once on the weekend. In addition to core I will also be doing form drills/accelerations.

That is a lot to adjust to, considering for the past six months my main goal has been "run longer each week". A lot more complex now, and a lot more "extra" time in addition to running, but I know it is what I need to do.

So I wore my heart monitor to sleep last night just out of curiosity. My average HR was 57 as I slept, although I did wake up to yell at the meowing cat around 5 AM and noticed it shot up to like 88. It's kind of cool to sleep with it on because it records the hours as well, so I knew exactly how long I had slept. Since the cat woke me up, I just stopped it then at 5 hours 53 minutes. So almost 6 hours, which is horrible for me. I need 7.5 to function perfectly, but honestly today I felt really good and was only tired a bit before noon.

During the run I noticed a pretty solid low 160-165 range, 170 into the wind, and ~175 on the HugeHill. I'm not really sure how good that is or whatever because like I said, I've not worn it much since I got it so I haven't a lot of data to compare to. But that's all gonna change. I like wearing it a lot, but I really do look at the HR on the watch readout too much. I know how people with garmins must feel now. It wasn't really a bad thing, because I was really curious to know what the HR was. The bad part is that you can't "upload" the data to a computer, and the only data stored is max HR, and average. That's all fine and well, but really a graphed out chart of HR data would be ideal. Well I got it for Christmas and it works, so it will have to do for now. I'm very happy to have it, so don't take that as complaining, I'm just stating it as fact.

I felt really good on the run today. Comfortable, yet giving good effort. It never felt too hard or too easy, pushing just enough. It was nice outside which helped, and a little windy too, so I was cooled off for the most part. I had wanted to go for 1hr 12 as I said, but I just felt so good I kept on going. I kind of wanted to keep going even more, but the effort was there and I saw no need to really do a whole lot else and ended the run on a good note. Runs like that are great, because you are enjoying it and not trying to just punch the card, like a timeclock at work. Really great run. I felt really strong, I think the core work and exercises I've been doing are ALREADY paying off, which is amazing. I just started with my core circuit, although I've been working on sittups/leglifts for about a month now. It's starting to pay off, and when I start dropping my pace next week I really think it's gonna support that.

Wow I didn't mean to ramble on there, I was just in the zone I guess. Tomorrow looks like another day of 1h12, with form work and accelerations. Until then, have fun on the run :)

4:30pm. home. mostly sunny 62 degrees 32%H WSW 14 mph.
1:22:24 (12.54), bf 1267
AHR 163/ MHR 179
sleep AHR 57

Tuesday, April 7, 2009


Wasn't feeling right today. Not really sure why because I had plenty of sleep last night. I was just sort of tired and sluggish most of the day, even after doing some sittups and things like that. We did run out of gatorade the other day, maybe I'm having withdrawal as it's practically all i drink. I dunno still didn't feel good most of the day, should have just went ahead and tried to run anyway probably. Good to have a day off of running though, I still got my core work in so that is good too. Sorry this was kind of boring, but it's pretty much how I feel so I guess I captured the day... Tomorrow will be better.

Monday, April 6, 2009


Normal steady run on the treadmill. It's amazing how a treadmill can show you improvement in a very objective way. I remember when I first got the treadmill 7.0 seemed like I was flying, and 7.5 may as well have been a sprint. Today I started off nice and easy around 7.5, then moved to 8.0 and then 8.2 for a while. Not sure exactly as I was just kind of playing around trying to pass the time by. Eventually I worked up to 8.4 and 8.6 which didn't feel that bad. For a good sustained increase I went on up to 8.8 for a few minutes, then settled back down at 8.5 for the rest of the run. Basically around 8.5 was my steady state, which is even better than it was a few months ago in December when I felt good around 8.0-8.2 or so.

Running is kind of funny that way. Improvements are hard to see on the daily, but every so often you'll notice something and are like Whoa I really am getting faster/stronger/better. The run did go fine and actually at times it felt like the treadmill was too slow for my stride. That's the other thing, you can have the TM at 8.0 and burn yourself out turning over, or you can take really long strides and seem like you are going slower, but basically the pace remains the same. Finding proper turnover rate is kind of subjective, and that is why I prefer to just run on the Earth's surface - it doesn't lie.

Marathon recovery has gone well. I actually feel really close to 100% and I think my idea of waiting two weeks before I try any sort of tempo is a good idea. Considering I'll be running a one mile race soon, I'm not too worried about mileage, but rather core work, running drills, and just getting my coordination and footspeed up. I really want to break 5 minutes. Most of the running calculators I've seen don't really rate me too well. I usually go for McMillan(beware loud video) over any other one as it has probably been the most accurate/realistic out of the ones I've tried. For my recent race the estimate is 5:18. I was running 5:22-24 last time April timed me at the track (with spikes) so I'm pretty positive I can beat that, especially considering I ran about 3 of those that day. I ran 5:32-36 x3 in my most recent speed session (no spike), but that was right after injury/time off, and I've bounced back since then.

So lots of work to do in a very short time frame. I'm not stressing or pushing things, because it's not a goal race, but I'd still like to do well and check that sub-5 off the list for this year as it's been hanging over me since I started running. There are a few other mile races in June, so if I don't have my "A" game, I'll have a chance to improve on the time then. Alright that's it for today's post, later.

8:59am. treadmill.
1:05:19 (9.60), bf 1257

Sunday, April 5, 2009


Hot today almost 80 degrees with 20 mph wind. Had to make a water stop around 40 minutes in as I was totally parched, fortunately decided to get back out there and at least get an hour in. I had kind of wanted to do a longer run today, but I was breathing hard due to the heat, not like really bad, but heavy enough. Tennessee weather is great, tomorrow a high of 42 degrees is going to feel like an arctic freeze. I'm not too worried about it, but it's just disappointing because you just start to get acclimated to this heat, then a three or four day cold streak comes along. I like running in the warm weather, but haven't really had a chance to be in it consistently. The past two summers I first lacked motivation then I was hurt the next year. I'm putting a lot of my hopes on this summer for improvement. Next fall I want to be in great shape and I really have to build off of my current training pyramid to make some big increases in my fitness. That is my main goal right now, training and racing through the summer, not a time goal or anything, just consistency.

Once again forgot my heart monitor, need to come up with some sort of punishment system for forgetfulness I suppose. I never remember having saltiness when I ran in HS, but then again I was running a little less miles in cooler weather. But down here in TN land it seems that salty skin just comes as part of the territory. I remember when I first saw the little white crystals flaking off, I thought I had some kind of skin problem. I was like "what in the world did I run through" or "how many fries did I have last night?". Now it's just a common thing that I don't really notice anymore.

Salty mustache
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Some pics from the marathon last weekend

Entering Neyland Stadium
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I almost fell over because my legs were so shaky.
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3:15pm. home. 79 degrees 34%H SSW 20mph

1:06:19 (9.69), gf 635

Saturday, April 4, 2009


I volunteered at the Race for the Schools this morning. It was fun to go to a race and just help out because there wasn't any pressure to have to run. I wish I could have run, my legs felt great today, but there was still a twinge in my right ham so I guess it was a good thing not to test it. Was a normal morning, a little chilly but not cold, and the sky was beautiful and clear not a cloud to be seen. A bus dropped me and the other volunteers who were assigned to the course off at different intersections. Because the course is USATF certified it is the same course almost every 5k race uses downtown, so I know it well. Eventually we dropped everyone off - I kind of wanted to do the water station, but they already enough people there when we dropped, so I ended up at about the 3 mile marker or so, just before the last stretch which is about a quarter mile downhill into World's Fair Park, where the Sunsphere is.

It was kind of boring at first, and for a while I was wondering if the race started at 9 am, because it was already 8:45, but soon enough I looked down the street and saw a few bobbing heads. What would you know, but none other than Andy Baksa and Stew Ellington (2nd in half last week, and 1st two years in a row in the Marathon, respectively) running with each other, Baksa only about 10 yards ahead. It was crazy to see them running that fast, they weren't sprinting or anything, but just looked really focused and smooth. I think their times were in the 15:20's range.

There were quite a few people running considering this was the first year of the race. I cheered them all on. Even the 70 year old guy, whom when I yelled at him "Great Stride" he replied "You're Lying!". There were a lot of people who called me a liar this morning. When I said it was "all downhill" I guess they figured that was impossible (or likely someone else told them that a mile back...) So I started telling runners, "all the other volunteers were lying when they said you were almost done, but I'm not!". I also challenged people to race each other, and sure enough a few of them just put down the hammer. It was a good time and at least I made a couple laugh.

So my running today was after a nap. I guess being out in the morning took a bit out of me and so I went ahead and had a sleep. I got up ready to hit the pavement and it was an amazing run. Nice and smooth, I felt fast. As I said the right ham had a little twinge, but nothing major. Also my left tendon, behind the knee is acting kind of funny. When i pull my foot up to my butt it kind of pulls, not sure what that is about, but it's not really supposed to do that I don't think. Just something to keep an eye on. So yeah, the run went great, especially once the sun started to set because it cooled way down. Did a little acceleration for 2 minutes at the end. I usually do a certain distance, but if I start using time instead I think that will help me more. I can build a kick instead of being 200 meters, it can be a gradual increase of pace for 2-3 minutes which will probably provide a better result.

Did some form drills afterwards, and as I said before beneath the left knee one of the tendons was kind of tight. Good run, legs are back under me and hope to do a medium long distance tomorrow - and hour and a half should be good. Oh the other thing I forgot about was to wear my heart monitor. I have one and always forget to use it, so i'm going to make sure to set that out so I don't keep forgetting.

6:40pm. home. 64º Sunny, 40%H, SSE 7mph
1:13:01, (10.76), gm 987

Friday, April 3, 2009


Spent the day on artwork, didn't find time to run during the day. Then I found out we were going out to dinner, so I didn't have enough time to get it in. Oh well - it'll be good to get some extra rest. Legs feel great though, next week I should be back on my normal schedule.

Thursday, April 2, 2009


Easy run cut short one mile. Hams are still kinda sore and today it wasn't just the right one. Not sure if that is a good or bad thing, but definitely need some more recovery time. So I just took it easy and since I already felt like I got a good workout in I cut about fifteen minutes off the run. Was warmer today, but not too bad. I ran around lunch time because there were supposed to be thunderstorms later on, but I still haven't seen any.

2:30pm. home.
Mostly Cloudy 53%H Wind SSE 15 mph
50:00 (7.09) gm 978

Wednesday, April 1, 2009


Easy run to feed the neighbors cat. They were out of town so we are taking care of Pheobe, who is a boy. They live up on the HH, so I started the run by trekking up there, then did another 2.5 loops around the hood. It was a great run despite some pretty bad soreness on my right ham, and moderate to light soreness in the quads and left ham. It was so nice out today, not windy at all and not too warm. I worked up a good sweat, but it wasn't stifling so I was a happy runner today. I even ran by the pug who just watched me today, which was nice. Maybe it's decided to turn over a new leaf.

Joined the RRT tonight and it was good. One of the participants reminded me of the 26 days of rest after a marathon, well not rest, but easy running. I think that's a good rule and I don't plan on doing any speedwork in that time frame, but do hills count?? Not sprinting hills, just workout kind of hills. I don't think they do. Either way I recover relatively quickly so I think in a few weeks I'll try to run some hills and see how it goes. That's what always works best, just going out there and feeling it out. Until then I'm continuing with my easy runs round seven minute pace. I did an hour today and it felt really short. I wish I could have been out there longer, but with the soreness and hammy there is no need to overdo anything. Probably will stay consistent with 8 milers until legs feels happy again.

5:30pm. home. 71º 30%H SE 5mph
1:06:52 (9.48), gm 971

Training Schedule for April

  • daily runs with heart monitor
  • core work and stretch daily
  • speed and hill work 2x a week
  • +accelerations
  • speedwork/long run alternate Sundays
  • m/w/f/s-easy
  • t/r/su - speedwork/hills/long+accels