Wednesday, September 30, 2009

8.5 Miles easy

I went out for a nice run after work today. I could definitely still feel my legs after yesterday's speedwork. I didn't wear a watch and just ran easy. Sometimes I find it is easier to not wear a watch because I don't get frustrated seeing the time slowly crawl by when I am running slow and I don't feel like I need to pick up the pace or slow down because I'm not hitting the pace that I thought I would be running. I've measured the route I ran in the past and knew it was about 8.5 miles. I don't know exactly how long it took, but I think it was at least 65 minutes. Not real fast for me, but a good easy run with a hard day coming up tomorrow.

Tuesday, September 29, 2009

Tuesday - Speedwork

Since I missed the Kenyan Way mile repeats yesterday I decided to do mile repeats at lunch today. I did 4 x 1 mile with 2 minutes recovery between each one. My goal was to start at 5:20 - 5:25 pace and then drop down to near 5:00 pace at the end if I could. I did a 3 mile warmup and drills, stretched and some strides. My times were 5:26, 5:16, 5:11, 5:16. The first one was tough to get going on and I could just never get down to 5:20 pace except on the last 1/4. I probably should have done a couple more strides at the end of my warmup, but since I was running over lunch I didn't have a ton of extra time. The 2nd mile started feeling good and I was right where I wanted to be. I felt even better on the 3rd one and hit 5:11, but I was pretty wiped out at the end and I wasn't sure how the last one would feel. I started out and was at 78 seconds at the 1/4, but my legs felt dead and I knew I was in trouble. I could really feel the lactic acid starting to build and I was wondering if I should stop at 800, rest for a minute and then try to hit 2:30 on the last 800. I made up my mind that I was going to finish even if I was running 5:30 pace because I need to get past these thoughts of throwing in the towel when I start slowing down. I hit the 800 at 2:28 and I had slowed down a little that 1/4. The 3rd 1/4 was really tough and I hit 80 seconds again. At that point I knew I was almost done and thought that I would probably be able to keep it under 5:20. I picked it up at the end at hit 78 seconds for the last 1/4 and finished at 5:16. It was slower than the 3rd one, but a respectable time. I did a 1.5 mile cooldown for a total of 8.5 miles on the day.

Monday, September 28, 2009

Monday - No run

I needed some rest Monday morning after doing 33.5 miles in the past 3 days and I got home late from work and it was raining fairly hard so I lost my motivation for an evening run. If I'm feeling well, I may try to do 1 or 2 two-a-day's later in the week to make up the mileage.

Sunday, September 27, 2009

Sunday - 8 miles

I went out Sunday evening and it was hot out. I thought once fall hit the temperatures were supposed to cool down. The temperature was 92 and the heat index was 97 when I started the run. After the first mile, I got down to about 7:25 pace and pretty much stayed within a few seconds of that pace for the entire run. I finished the 8 miles in 59:50 and did 4 strides at the end of the workout.

Saturday, September 26, 2009

17.5 miles - 2:04

I almost made it to the start of the run in time this week and met up with the group about 1/4 mile into the run. Bill, Nick, Mike, John and another guy I didn't know was there. Sam caught up with us at the first water stop. The first 10 miles or so were all between 7:00 - 7:30 pace with us gradually picking up the pace. We dropped down below 7:00 pace about mile 11 and I stayed under there the rest of the run. We hit the water stop about mile 12.5 on Crestwood and most of the guys headed back towards the base. I decided to run an extra lap at the park and then head back to get to 17.5 miles because I knew it could be tough to add on miles at the end if everybody else stopped at the base. I dropped down into the low 6:40's for a couple of miles and then came back up to around 6:50 pace for the last couple of miles. The last 5 miles were definitely harder running by myself than with the group, but the last 5 were my fastest 5 miles of the run. My legs were pretty tired he rest of the day afterwards, but the workout went pretty well overall.

Friday, September 25, 2009

8 miles easy - 1 hr

I ran this afternoon with my friend Benson who was out doing an 11 miler and I ran with him for about 6.5 miles with him during my 8 mile run run. It was nice having somebody else to run and talk with. I averaged about 7:30 - 7:40 pace for the run. I'm going for 17 - 18 miles tomorrow so I want my legs to be fresh.

Thursday, September 24, 2009

7 miles easy

Another day with great running weather. Temperature was about 70 degrees and sprinkling lightly. My legs felt pretty good today despite yesterday's hard workout. My quad muscles felt a little sore like how muscles sometimes feel the day after lifting weights. I felt good and cruised the 7 miles in 50 minutes and averaged about 7:10 pace. I finished the run without a moment to spare. I was about 15 seconds away from the door of the building and I had to stop suddenly and walk as quickly as possible for the bathroom. I might have been in trouble if I were running 7.5 or 8 miles today, but fortunately I was only doing 7 and made it inside in the nick of time. I tried this new organic pecan crunch something or other cereal that i had picked up at Costco. It tasted fine, but that's all I ate this morning and I usually don't have digestive issues during my lunch runs so I'll have to be careful the next time I eat that for breakfast.

Wednesday, September 23, 2009

Where has Geoff been?

I got back yesterday from a great vacation in Hawaii. We spent a day in Honolulu to visit Pearl Harbor and Diamond Head and then spent a week in Kauai. I ran half the days I was there. I rolled my ankle at the end of a hike our first day in Kauai so I took a couple of days off after that. Fortunately I didn't injure it too badly and I was able to resume running and it seems to be ok now. After looking at all our pictures I realized that I really need to get some non-running t-shirts. Here's a few pictures from our vacation-

Sunrise in Honolulu

Diamond Head during my run in Honolulu

View from the balcony at our resort in Kauai

Golfing at Poipu Bay Golf Club

View from hike along Napali Coast

Saltwater Lagoon Pool at Resort

Overlooking Wailua Falls

Beach at Hyatt Resort


Today I got back to the hard workouts. I wasn't sure how well it would go after not doing any speedwork in a while. On the flight back I was reading an article in an old Runner's World about Jim Ryun's high school and college coach from Kansas and how he would basically push his runners to the brink of exhaustion and injury and those that could survive tended to excel. His philosophy was that there were a lot of talented runners that didn't know how to push themselves to the limit. I was thinking about that during the workout today and thinking that no matter how tired I got I needed to keep pushing hard. My interval workout goal today was 2 miles in 10:50, 5 minutes rest, 1 mile in 5:10, 3 minutes rest, 800 at 2:28. My actual times were 10:41, 5:10, 2:30. After a 3.25 mile warmup, strides, stretching and drills, I started the 2 miles and felt great. I think I probably could have done another mile right there at close to 5:20 pace. I got into a groove and hit mile 1 at 5:24 and then picked up the pace for a 5:17 second mile. I really didn't even feel like I was working that hard. I could tell I was feeling some lactic acid build up in my legs during the 5 minute rest. I started out a little quick the first couple hundred meters and then had to jump over a scared armadillo that darted across my path. After the 1st quarter I got back into a groove and cruised for the 1 mile segment. The 800 was really tough because my legs were really tired. I went through the 1/4 mile right about 76 seconds and I knew that I needed to push it hard the last 1/4. I was able to pick it up and hit the 2nd 1/4 in 74 to finish at 2:30 and then I did a 1 mile cooldown. The cooler weather today made a huge difference in my workout. The temperature was in the upper 70's which was a welcome change from running with a heat index in the mid 90's. This weekend I'm planning on trying to hit 17 or 18 miles on my long run which will be my longest run of the year to date.

Unfortunately my racing schedule this fall isn't working out quite so well. I'm going to be out of town and miss the 10 mile races in 2-1/2 weeks. I'll run the half marathon in later October, but I'm not sure what's after that. I wanted to go run the 1/2 marathon in San Antonio in mid-November, but I realized one of my friends from work is getting married that weekend and I'll be at his wedding in Austin so I'll need to find some other races instead. Last year I ran the Dallas/White Rock half marathon in December, but I didn't particularly care for the course - hilly and windy and the logistics of getting into downtown was a nightmare. I'll have to see if I can find some other good half marathons or similar races to run in November or December before the marathon in January.

Thursday, September 10, 2009

Thursday - 8.25 miles

I came down with a bit of a cold on Wednesday and felt pretty crummy all day long with a bit of a scratchy throat. I took the day off and drank lots of water and got to bed early. Thursday I was definitely starting to feel better. I ran 8.25 miles at lunch in 57:25. It was very humid out, but partly cloudy and I had some tree cover so I didn't really have to deal with the effects of the direct sunlight. I felt pretty good and wasn't planning on running quite as fast as I went, but I just felt good and was cruising after mile 1. My splits were 7:45, 7:06, 7:04, 6:54, 6:47, 6:48, 6:42, 6:37 and 1:39 for the last 1/4. My legs felt pretty good and my cold seems to be getting better.

Tuesday, September 8, 2009

Tuesday - 6.25 miles

My legs were pretty dead after the hard workout Monday. I had planned to run an easy 7 miles, but I got outside and discovered 2 of my coworkers were waiting for me. I thought they were long gone, but since they had been waiting on me I decided to run with them. It was a little quicker than I would have gone by myself, but definitely less boring than always running by myself. We did, 6.25 miles in 45:30 which is somewhere around 7:15 pace. I was too tired to add on any more miles when we got back and I was starting to feel a little under the weather.

Monday, September 7, 2009

Monday Speedwork

I wasn't going to get up at 5:30 to get to the morning workout on Labor Day so I went to the evening workout. The temperature was 94 and the heat index was 96 when I left the house. I ran a 3 mile warmup and did some drills, strides and stretching before the workout began. We ran 30 minutes of a 0.48 mile loop near the Waugh bridge on the grass with a 2 minute rest between each loop. I was wearing my regular training shoes since they don't seem to bother my foot too much. Sam was out there and I knew that it would be a tougher workout with us pushing each other. Sean told us that we needed to run each one faster than the previous one. We started out on the first lap and Sam led the entire lap and I finished in 2:50. I picked up the pace some on the next one and finished in 2:43 and then hit the 3rd in 2:37. The fourth one was pretty tough and I got through in 2:36. I was wondering if I was going to be able to pick up the pace any more on the last 3. I went through #5 at 2:33 and was working hard. I was trying to hit 2:30 on the 6th one, but came in at 2:32. Sam took off hard on the last one and built a pretty good lead on me. I thought I might be able to catch him on the back part of the loop and I was pushing it hard, but I just couldn't close the gap on him. I gave it one last effort near the end, but came up a little short, but hit 2:29.

I managed to run each lap faster than the previous one. That was one of the hardest workouts I've done this year and I know I definitely would have been running slower if Sam weren't there pushing me. I only finished one of the seven repeats ahead of him and he had a really strong workout. I ran a nice slow 3 mile cooldown back home after the workout for a total of about 9.5 miles.

Sunday, September 6, 2009

Sunday - 6.25 miles recovery

I was up in the Ft. Worth area so my recovery run was rather hilly. I ran 6.25 miles out along the I-20 frontage road out west of Ft. Worth. Fortunately there was a wide shoulder and not very much traffic out on the frontage road. My legs were pretty dead so I ran 45 minutes and that was plenty for me for the day.

Saturday, September 5, 2009

Saturday - 14 miles

I ran 14 miles with the Kenyan Way group Saturday morning. I was pretty wiped out and lt some other guys push the pace and I took it a little easy. We ran down to Rice University and through Hermann Park and around Rice and back. I survived the run, but it wasn't anything to write home about. My splits for the first 12 miles were 7:39, 7:13, 7:15, 7:24, 7:15, 7:06, 7:00, 7:12, 6:58, 6:56, 6:57, 6:58. I forgot to restart my garmin after I had stopped for water at the last stop and didn't get my finishing splits but they were probably in the upper 6:50's like the previous 2 miles.

Friday, September 4, 2009

Friday - 7.6 miles

I took Thursday off because my foot was really sore and I was hoping a day off would help it heal a little more. Friday I ran after work and I had to get my run in pretty quickly since we were going out to dinner with some friends. I ran at the park and was running about 6:40 pace my first lap and I heard footsteps behind me. I was a little surprised because it was 92 degrees out and not many people usually run up on me, especially at that pace in that weather. I'd never met the guy before but his name was Jonathon and he'd moved to Houston from Ohio a little over a year ago. He ran about 1/2 a lap with me before peeling off. I knocked out a couple 6:20 miles before finishing up the lap with a 6:26 mile. I finished the run in 49:50 and felt pretty good. After dinner we went roller skating with some friends. I probably hadn't done that since elementary school, but we roller skated for about 90 minutes which was a pretty good workout. I was dead afterwards and wasn't really looking forward to Saturday morning's run.

Wednesday, September 2, 2009

5 mile tempo run

Today was the first tempo run that I've done in quite a while. With the cool front we've had knocking the temperature and humidity down a bit, I decided to run at lunch since I'd be more awake than early in the morning. When I headed out it was 81 degrees which was a nice change from the usual upper 80's - mid 90's lunch time temperature. I ran a 2.5 mile warmup at about 7:15 pace and did some drills and strides and stretched out. My goal was to run the 5 miles at 5:40 - 5:50 pace based on a 16:30 5k time. I wasn't sure if that was too fast a goal time or not since the last couple times I had done progressive runs I had trouble dropping down below 5:40 pace, but the weather conditions were better today so I figured I'd give it a shot. My goal was to run just under 6:00 for the first mile and see how I was feeling and then pick it up from there if I was ok or keep it in the mid 5:50's if I was working too hard.

I hit mile 1 right at 5:56 and felt pretty good. Mile 2 was 5:47 and mile 3 was 5:45. I felt good, but my breathing wasn't quite as easy as I would have liked. Mile 4 was 5:44 and I was feeling it by the end of mile 4. I knew that I could keep the pace for the last mile, but I had to step my effort up some. I finished the last mile in 5:42, but I was definitely working harder than tempo pace at the end. I'm not sure if I would have been able to do another mile at that same pace which is generally where you would like to be for an anaerobic threshold run. I did a 1.25 mile cooldown for a total of 8.75 miles on the day.

I was pleased with the times I hit, but the effort was a little more than I would have liked. I didn't finish the workout feeling as good as I did at the end of Monday's workout, but overall I think it was a pretty good workout. I put a bandaid and medical tape over the raw spot on my foot and loosened the laces on my shoe, but it still was really uncomfortable the entire workout. When I took off my shoe, my sock was kind of bloody and I'm not certain if it was bleeding again and coming through the tape or if the blood soaked into the shoes from Monday's workout was just staining my sock. I think it was a little of both. My other shoes which are a little heavier don't bother my foot as much so I'll just have to wear them for all my runs until this heals up. I have noticed that since I got rid of my Nike Skylon's and replaced them with the Adidas Adizero Boston my plantar fasciitis or whatever was causing the pain in my foot seems to have gone away. I guess I've just traded it for a shoe that rubs my feet raw. I hope that when it heals up I can run in the shoes without them giving me problems because I like the weight and the feel of the shoe (other than the problem I just described) and I think it would be a good shoe to run the marathon in.

Tuesday, September 1, 2009

Tuesday - 7.6 miles easy

I ran at Memorial Park after work and it was packed. I'm glad I was only doing an easy run and not trying to do a work out because I had enough trouble trying to avoid running into people. I ran 7.6 miles in 53:08 which was about 7:00 average pace. With the weather a little cooler and it not as humid out, it was a nice evening to be out running and obviously I wasn't the only person that realized that. I got down to 6:50 pace by the end of the run and I felt really good. I could have run quicker, but 7:00 pace was fast enough for me for a recovery day with a tempo run coming up on Wednesday.