Sunday, November 28, 2010

Week in Review: November 22- 28

Monday November 22, 2010: Gym session. Boring but necessary. No running. Took the day off as planned. The inclination was there but I resisted.

Tuesday November 23, 2010: 1mile W/U + 8miles (1:10). Out in the PM for what I had hoped to be a good workout. Turned out to be extremely unsatisfying and notably frustrating. I warmed up for a 1+mile then hooked up with Meredith for a steady loop with a couple good climbs. From the get-go my stomach was extremely unsettled- I have dealt with this in the past but just could not shake it tonight. Numerous stops in the bushes but nothing really helped. I was in a heaved-over mess a couple of times and felt terrible. This is probably one of the most frustrating things to deal with because it completely inhibits a workout while at the same time I feel like I have no control over it. Needless to say, I bagged the planned hard hills to finish.

Wednesday November 24, 2010: AM: 6miles (45xx). Hit the rat-wheel this morning at the Y. It was about 10 below to start the morning and I honestly just did not want to bother putting on the layers. Did 1.5mile warm-up on the mill at 8min/mile then dropped it down doing the next 4 in 7:30, 7:30, 7:15, and 6:58 respectively. Felt pretty good. Took a while to find a bit of a tempo. Kept the HR below LT for the entirety of the effort. Wanted to keep going but at this point I was already going to be late for work so had to hustle. PM: Back at the Y for a weight session.

Thursday November 25, 2010: PM: 7miles (1:02). We got about 10-15cm of snow throughout the day. By the time Meredith and I headed out in the PM for a run it had become intermittent bouts of rain. Always nice. Either way, it was an enjoyable snow-run. I wore my Saucony Razors that I normally reserve for snowshoe-running but they were ideal for tonight. It was a tough run in the snow, I am always amazed at the activation of the stabilizing muscles when running in the slush.

Friday November 26, 2010: AM: 6.5miles (50xx). On the mill again early this morning before work. Nasty conditions outside from the rain/snow over the last 24hrs; as a result, I kept it indoors; simply could not be bothered to deal with the weather conditions before having to head to work. Another tempo session: 1.5mile w/u at 8:10's followed up with 4 mile tempo at 7:30, 6:58, 6:58, 6:58. Solid for me. PM: 4miles (32min) Easy on the mill again after work. Finished it off with another quick weight session as I was waiting for Meredith to finish up her workout.

Saturday November 27, 2010: AM: 7.5miles (1:09). Out at Port Moody leading a group run with IMPULSE. Turned out to be just Meredith and I for this run as a few others were heading out a little later. We did the usual Powerline climb. I was dragging my ass this morning and Meredith certainly took me to school. Heartrate was spiking and I could not get it under control. Finally slogged my way to the top, we had also picked up a runner along the way who joined us for the climb. We then parted ways after a quick chat. Meredith and I kept exploring and found another climb up a dirt/gravel path. Once we hit the top we found ourselves above the fog and looking down on a blanketed city. It was a spectacular view on a beautiful morning from up high. The high-rises were just poking their way through the layer of clouds. Loved it. At the top, we tried to work our way West and find some sort of loop back down. We ended up behind some newer property development and inevitably had to hop a fence to get back to where we needed to be heading. A car slowed down to checkout what the hell we were doing. I am sure we looked like a couple hooligans rummaging about with our toques etc. But as soon as they saw the spandex we were no longer deemed a threat. At this point I couldn't help but stare and form a certain degree of animosity towards the developers and how the property has essentially been cut into the mountain slope with a complete disregard for the natural landscape. Higher and higher they reach; massive homes, I am talking three-car garages, etc, perched up on this slope. They are lined up like military soldiers in front of their general, erect and identical. Weird feeling. Anyways, I digress. From there, we basically just worked our way downhill finishing off where we started. Great run and fun to get up high even if we could barely stretch beyond civilization.

Sunday November 28, 2010: AM: 20miles (2:50). I did the first 12 miles with Meredith and then continued on to finish up by myself. We ended up climbing a little more than I would have liked but it was good practice. I was dragging my ass the last few miles but no water and half a cliff bar for nearly three hours of running might have had something to do with that. But... breaking the body down and building it back up...adaption. Overall, a decent long road run for me and good way to finish off the week.

Weekly Mileage: 61+ (9hours)+ 2.5 gym sessions- two tempo runs (although shorter), one hill session, and a long run.

Sunday, November 21, 2010

Week in Review: November 15-21

Monday November 15, 2010: AM: At the gym early for the usual routine. Felt tired this morning and unmotivated but got things rolling part way through. Had to fight off some of the regulars who were hogging some of the areas/ equipment (ie. all elderly people- apparently the only other demographic willing to get up at 4:00am and get their workout in before the sun has even pondered rising for the morning- great to see this and the commitment on their part to get at it every morning).

Tuesday November 16, 2010: PM: 10+ miles (1:20) Did one mile of warm/up with a dynamic lunge routine. Then did 6.5 miles in 54min with Meredith. Comfortable pace. I then finished the session off with hill repeats. 5 times a section of hill that is just outside my apartment that stretches 0.2miles. Splits for the session were good with perfect positive progression (1:18, 16, 15, 14, 13). Gasping by the top on each repeat and then I would recharge with easy trots to the start. Decent kick in the legs. Pedestal and Medicine ball routine to finish. Good workout that spanned approximately 2hours plus at the end of it all.

Wednesday November 17, 2010: AM: 6.5miles (55min) It was cold and wet this morning. Hard to get out of bed at 4:00am to fit it in but was glad that I did. My legs felt surprisingly good after last nights session. Just cruised around one of my usual loops. Was hungry and a little light headed by the end. But I didn't eat anything before this one so it was to be expected. Unfortunatley, had to pull out the full tights for the first time this year. PM: 5miles (40min) Shitty day at work and had to get outside to let it out. Easy trot around on a beautiful night that was completely juxtaposed to the mornings run. Clear skies and a full moon.

Thursday November 18, 2010: AM: Gym/ Weights- my right knee was a little sore- classic anterior knee pain I suspect. Loosened up alright and never got worse during squats etc. PM: 10+miles (1:20) Tights again. Damn. Winter is here. Cold and misting on this run. Did the first 6.55miles with Meredith in 57min flat with a number of climbs, including a finishing grunt up Keith road. I then did 4times half-mile repeats with standing rests of 20seconds between sets. Lots of saliva/snot flying around tonight. Good session. GS routine to finish. Another 2+ hour workout.

Friday November 19, 2010: PM: 5miles (45min) Super easy run. Shakeout of sorts. Nice night. Ran over to my parents to pick up the car. I then met Meredith at our second home, WholeFoods, for some groceries and grub. Massive mixed salad with tons of grilled veg and marinated tofu. Hit the spot.

(The view from the start of the climb up the powerlines)

Saturday November 20, 2010: AM: 10miles (1:30) Group run with IMPULSE out at Port Moody. I was expecting a better showing this week through email correspondence that I was having with a few people interested in coming out. Unfortunately, we got a couple inches of snow on Friday night which I think may have scared some folks off. Anyways, ran with Aaron, one of the chiropractors from the clinic. I was out there early and ran 4 miles by myself and then he and I ran a great little 6mile loop up the Powerlines. It was an absolutely spectacular morning for a run. The paths were mostly clear of snow but the white stuff had blanketed almost everything else. The sun was creeping out and the mountains looked spectacular. Two good climbs for me this morning. Not what I necessarily wanted with a long one planned for the next day but I was OK with it. Finished up hanging out in the clinic, rolling out and using the medicine balls to do my usual routine. Chocolate milk and cookies for recovery. Excellent.

(The type of slope and terrain typical of the climb)

Sunday November 21, 2010: AM: 14miles (1:48) Headed out to Burnaby Lake with Meredith. We both had not been out there for some time and thought it would be a nice change of scenery and a great way to get in some flatter/ rolling miles on more forgiving terrain. It was just straight up cold this morning (for a West Coast body anyways). No sun and we started off the run with the temps below zero. We did the first 8 miles in a comfortable 1:05. I felt meteocre to shitty for most of these miles. My legs were fine but I just felt like I could not get any sort of rythm to my breathing (cold air perhaps??). Anyways, I attempted to tempo the next 4 miles- I knocked them off in a rough and dragging 28:43- starting off sub 7min/per mile for the first couple then slowly creeping back up. Not a great effort but just did not have much in the system today. 2miles more tacked on. Wanted to go longer today but Meredith was done after 12miles and honestly, I would have mostly been just dragging my ass for whatever I would have added on.

(Pre-Sunday's run out at Burnaby Lake; looking much more bad-ass than I actually felt for the run. You can see the healthy dosage of white-stuff on the ground in the background)

Weekly mileage: 60+ (9hours)/ 2 gym sessions and lots of GS work

Pretty typical week right now and where I want to be about. I will be looking to continue the quality sessions during the week and upp their anti, so to speak, over the next several weeks. This is my third week of "training" and have managed to keep it consistent each week, which is definately a positive. Hopefully the weather will cooperate for the next while as well. I may bump up the mileage a tad but no real concern on this front. Qulaity over quantity as it is. Holding the mileage at 60-70miles seems to leave me with enough energy to continue to get to the gym twice a week for a weights and have some kick for the quality workouts.

Articles for the week:
Just one this week over at Science of Running on the philosophical approach to training and the necessity of balancing our ever-dependence on "science" with practical and feel-based training. Enjoy

Saturday, November 13, 2010

Week in Review: November 8-14

Monday November 8, 2010: No running today. Took the day off as planned. I hit the gym early in the AM before work to fit in my basic weight-lifting/ strengthening routine. Felt good but I was definitely a little sore from Sunday's run and feeling tight through my left hammy and calf. In the afternoon I did my Pedestal and Medicine ball routine. I have been really enjoying the addition of these exercises as I can thrown them in after most of my easy runs and fit them in as I please (which is usually 5-6 times a week). Thank you Jay Johnson and team for these.

Tuesday November 9, 2010: PM: Out in the evening after work for what I was hoping would be a solid workout. Turned out to be pretty disappointing. It was cold, wet, and dark by the time I headed out the door. 3+ miles of warmup as I made my way over to the track. I did 800m tempoes with 400m active rests. I had originally planned on doing 5 but ended up bagging it after just 3 (3:23, 3:20, 3:23) because my right calf was tightening up. I was able to keep my PE and heartrate reasonably low but felt as though I could not find another gear; there was a lapse between what my mind was telling my body to do and what it was willing (trained??) to do. Lots of work to be done. 3+ mile cool down. 7.5 miles total.

Wednesday November 10, 2010: AM: 5.5 miles (46min) Out the door by 4:45am for an easy shakeout/test of the legs. I felt much better then last night which was encouraging. PM: 4.5 miles (40min) Grocery run. Easy. Legs felt better once again. Pedestal and Medicine ball routine post-run.

Thursday November 11,21010: AM: 10.5 miles (1:30) No work today so headed out with Meredith for some easy miles and a few climbs after a leisurely morning. My energy was good today and my right calf was significantly better. Nice run.

(The type of trail surrounding Rice Lake)

Friday November 12, 2010: AM: Off work again today. 12miles (1:30). From my apartment I headed up to Lynn Headwaters, working, but generally just sort of cruising my way up. I was then surprised when I hit the gate in 29:30 (anything under 30 is solid for me) and the fountain in 36:30. Perhaps I was buoyed by the absolutely beautiful morning I was treated to. From there I headed over to Rice Lake for a couple mile repeats. The loop can be made a perfect mile and is constantly rolling with numerous sharp corners; it is a hard repeat for sure. First lap was 7:26 (HRA 156); Second lap 7:24 (HRA 157). My HR indicated to me that these were easy miles but I sure felt like I was working a lot harder. Legs just felt generally heavy by this point in the run. I ran the last miles home with an avg pace of 7:10 (HRA 153), however, these were downhill. Overall, a good run and the type of workout I need to be doing.

(The bridge at the entrance to Lynn Headwaters Regional Park; just after the fountain)

Saturday November 13, 2010: AM: 7+miles (1:06) Out in Port Moody doing a run clinic with IMPULSE. Easy run with lots of vertical. Fun morning exploring new areas. Each week I am amazed at the new trails we are able to find that just keep on climbing throughout the area. Core routine in the afternoon and pedestals after the run.

Sunday November 14, 2010: AM: 17miles (2:11) Another long run on the roads. I started off with Meredith for the first 10 miles. We basically just kept it tame, but honest completing the loop in 1:25. She was calling it quits after this. I quickly grabbed a glass of water and a gel from our apartment and was back at it. The goal was to tempo the next 5 miles. The first mile was uphill and just generally slow (7:47), however, the next 4 miles I found a bit of a second gear and finished them in a satisfactory 26:59 (6:45 avg pace). This was a full 1:43 quicker than I ran the same type of 4-mile tempo as I did last weekend. They were controlled but I was definitely working. 2+ miles of cooldown to finish. Followed this up with the usual Pedestal, Medicine ball and Myrtle routine for another 45+ minutes of work. Overall an encouraging workout and a good way to finish off the week.

Weekly miles: 64 (8+ hours) + lots of ancillary work
On the scale of things this was a decent week. It started off crappy but finished well. At this point I will take what I can get and what my body is willing to give. There is plenty of work to be done but I feel as though I am gaining a level of comfort with the faster miles. Just rolling with it. On a separate note I have included below a series of articles I came across this week via my usual computer time/ bus time on the iphone. Enjoy.

Articles worthy of a read: (good discussion in the October 25-31 on rest and recovery) (another interesting article on rest and recovery. More specifically, how many of the fueling tactics and post-run "recovery" methods that are constantly being touted as beneficial may in actuality hinder the proper process of adaptation that our bodies need to go through to improve. Really enjoyed this article as it reaffirmed many of my beliefs) (68 miles in one effort, solo! Shit, need I say anymore) (A good article on stride length and cadence. Interesting results from the study. Worth a read)

Sunday, November 7, 2010

Week in Review: November 1- 7

Monday, November 1, 2010: AM: Gym session; heavy weights at max effort. Usual routine that takes me about an hour to complete at the end of it all. Off to work after. No running today. Scheduled day off.

Tuesday, November 2, 2010: PM: 7.5 miles (1:05) Evening run with Meredith. Generally just took it fairly conservatively the entire time. My stomach was not cooperating the entire run; felt like I had a bowling ball in my stomach that was working its way out the other end (your welcome for the visual). Managed one steady climb over the run where I paced off a biker; love the motivation that bikers often provide. I don't think they like it when a runner is able to pace them. Finished with a serious of squats (single leg and double), weighted lunges, and a quick medicine ball routine (Russian twists, squats, lifts).

Wednesday, November 3, 2010: AM: 9miles (1:10) Up and out the door by 4:45am. Wanted to fit in a solid run before work. Unfortunately, my stomach gave me issues once again on this run. Thankfully, McDonalds was open for the quick pit stop (its only good use I swear!). Energy levels were up and down throughout. Average pace: 7:55
PM: 4.5 miles Casual run to Queensdale market to pick up some groceries for dinner. Wore my beat down MT 100's.

Thursday, November 4, 2010: AM: Gym session. Same as Monday morning. Starting to feel the benefits of these workouts. Power and strength??... not quite, but working my way in that direction. PM: 5.5 miles (50min). Easy with Meredith. Finished with short, intense hill sprints. 4 times 10 seconds on, with 5 second moving-rest; the whole effort progressing up a steep hill. Felt good, gasping by the top. These types of repeats are also beneficial for power and strength- with a running specific focus.

Friday, November 5, 2010: PM: 9miles (1:15). Awesome evening run. Headed out after work. There was an unbelievable rainbow encompassing most of Lynn Valley when I started my run. A light shower was falling but the sun was shining; I just love that. I headed up to Lynn Headwaters and by the time I reached Rice Lake it was dark. I strapped on my head lamp and tempoed a lap around the lake and eventually worked my way down to Twin Bridges, careful not to take an unnecessary tumble. I was certainly running scared the entire time. I was by myself and it was one of the first times I have run in that type of darkness through trails. Forced tempo effort for the last 4 miles as I was just hoping not to see any flickering eyes when I moved my light towards the surrounding bush.

Saturday, November 6, 2010: 7miles (1:04) Easy run with Meredith out at Port Moody on the Shoreline trail. We were doing some promo for IMPULSE in the surrounding community. Enjoyable run on some different terrain and in a unique setting.

Sunday, November 7, 2010: 18miles (2:29)
This was my first longer road run in some time. It was an absolutely beautiful morning; could not have asked for anything better in Vancouver for November. The foliage was in full force throughout Stanley Park. I did the first 9.11 miles with Meredith at a fairly conservative pace in 1:19. She then headed over to the Y for a workout and I continued on. I tried to MP tempo the next 4 miles running them in a decent 28:43 (7:10pace). I wasn't working too hard but was certainly getting the juices flowing. It was good training throw these miles square into the middle of a longer run. I then dropped it back down and ran the last 5 miles home in an easy 8:10sh pace. I definitely bonked the last 2 miles; especially heading up Keith road (god I hate that hill sometimes). I decided to take no water with me for the run and only managed to find one fountain along the way. I took one pack of Stingers... clearly not enough. Besides this little glitch I have to say I was overall pleased with the run given I have not run this length on the roads for probably close to a full year. Look forward to many more of these efforts over the impending weeks.

Weekly mileage: 60.57 (9+hours)
Gym Sessions: 2