Monday, July 25, 2011

Good Week

I managed to accomplish my running goals this week, thanks in no small part to Kirsten, Chelsea and Reann, who ran with me during my long run Saturday and again for a shorter run yesterday. Both runs were at Sweetwater Creek State Park and involved the white and blue trails, jack's hill and the stairway to Heaven.
Friendships are amazing things and can enable us to achieve so much more than we could otherwise. I'm usually running alone because of my pace, and I've gotten no small amount of practice doing so, but there is always something to be said for company on the trail.
We all have to carry our own water, so to speak, but we should never use that as an excuse to live a solitary life. Some time away by ourselves for reflection, meditation, regeneration? Absolutely. But not to the continued exclusion of others. They do, and should, play an important role in our lives.
Here's to good friends, one and all..

Thursday, July 21, 2011

Do you remember when.....?

Do you remember when you had that awesome run? That run which seemed so effortless, so fast, so smooth? Maybe it was cruising down a trail somewhere or dodging cars and traffic through town but it was that run, the one run you think about, remember, try to recapture. What joy that is! What a wonderful gift! What a blessing!

Here's to that awesome run, and to the hope that it will be repeated for you over and over during your long running career!

Wednesday, July 20, 2011

Low Mileage Training..

I find this whole idea of low mileage ultra marathon training to be quite intriguing. Does it really work? Without digging too deeply into the science of the thing, I can see how my body might appreciate this type of approach. You could never accuse me of being a "high mileage runner" to begin with, so why not swing to the other extreme? Why settle being in the middle of the pack as far as weekly running mileage goes?
I have been running slowly for the past couple of weeks, trying to build my aerobic endurance by keeping my HR down. My next race isn't until November, so it's not like I need to jump straight into peak training or anything. I have time to work on building base endurance and minimize my potential for injury. And speaking of injury, my PF is still lurking about in both feet, apparently jostled out of hibernation by my semi consistent running program. Another reason to look at this low mileage training idear? huhmmmmm?
In a nutshell, the plan, or overall concept, I'm looking at goes something like this. Since I'm training for my first 50K in November, and wanting to run another 50K two weeks later followed by an 8 hr run in December, my weekly long runs are most important. My prime directive, if you will, is to run long every week. These runs are long, slow runs, designed to put time on my feet and to build aerobic endurance. Time to completion is a secondary concern and doesn't drive my effort during the run. Any other weekday run is mostly superfluous and can be cut without any real loss to my conditioning (so they say). These weekday runs should be kept short, though, to maximize my recovery time between long runs.
I'm reading through some material from Eric Robinson who runs between 2-4 ultras every month and is a firm believer in the less is more training strategy. Seems to make sense to me, and again, knowing my old, fat, broken down and prone to injury body the way I do, it seems to make sense that I give this approach to running a try. What have I got to lose? Qualifying for Boston? yeah, like that's ever gonna happen.
What I should see, though, is more time to spend at home with my family during the week! But less time during the weekends. A trade off to be sure, but something I think we can all live with.
So how exciting! A direction for my training!
I hope you'll come along for the ride, share parts of your own journey with me, and we all learn a bit more about ourselves in the process.
Now, where's the ice for my feet?

Tuesday, July 19, 2011


...I managed to run after work yesterday, YES!, and it was nice. Managed to keep my HR at 140 avg (75% max) for the 4.1 miles and enjoyed the somewhat cooler weather. The temps will be creeping back up to middle to high 90's for the rest of the week so we all know how that's going to feel at 4 pm!
I have also realized that I am impatient and it's impacting my training. I have a renewed focus on patience and persistence in regards to my running right now. I need to hit my daily workouts (persistence) at a slow, lower HR (patience) as I build my base endurance and prepare for both my Chicky/Darkside double and the Bartram Woods 50k in November..I just want to run so far and so fast like those ultra-running monsters I read about!!!! We all walk our own path, carry our own water, right? Just got to remember that and be thankful I have the ability to move my body down the trail.
My PF tries to rear its ugly head as I increase my mileage. Gotta keep my eyes on that.

oh yeah, before I forget- I MUST LOSE WEIGHT!!!

Yeah, come on!

Monday, July 18, 2011

Mojo, my mojo, wherefore art thou my mojo?

Just haven't had it lately and this blog certainly shows it..problems here, problems there, problems everywhere..
I have spent the last 2 1/2 days inside my house, either sitting on the floor, the couch or my recliner doing nothing.. Not pretty..
I am actually hoping to go for a run after work today, fingers crossed!
There is a reward for the safe return of my running mojo.

Friday, July 8, 2011

Heart Rate Training

I've decided to give this a try, and i can already tell it's going to be tough. Tough in the sense that an already slow runner is going to have to start running even slower!. Let's take yesterday's run for an example. Figuring a max heart rate of 184, and my workout goal being a slow, easy run, my target HR should have been between 119 bpm and 138 bpm. My average was more like 152! And that was going about 2 min /mile slower than i could have managed without too much difficulty!

i kept an eye on my HR, walking when it climbed to 159 and running again (slowly) when it dropped to 153. this shows how much trouble i was having with the whole deal yesterday- i was already way too high for my stated goal of enjoying an easy run. an avg HR of 152 equates to a tempo run, not an easy run. if i were to think this through, then, based on HR data, ALL MY RUNS ARE TEMPO RUNS! what happened to my long, slow, easy recovery runs?

i can see how this has been a problem for me, this always running too fast, at too high a HR just because i'm slow and i'm trying to run a set pace no matter what my body wants to do. i can only imagine that my aerobic tank is empty and i am trying to convince myself to trust this system, to run based on my HR zones which will build my aerobic capacity which will, eventually, result in a faster pace at the same HR.

this will undoubtedly mean i will be running alone. i don't know anyone who runs as slowly as i will be running for the next several months. this will be ego crushing work. i hope i have the courage to stick with it.

i will be posting more about this in the future with links to the studies i've come across..this blog is pretty low tech, though, because you all know how to work google, right?
as john bingham says, "Waddle on, Friends!"

Wednesday, July 6, 2011

Dude, get off my trail!

Why are you even here? Your cut off corduroy shorts and slip on loafers aren't typical hiking apparel but your burning cigarette stinks up the whole forest! Really? Are you out for a nature walk? Are you studying the birds and trees? Are you a student of history? Where's your books, pens, papers, notebooks? Where's your tablet, your field glasses, your reference books?
Put out your cigarette and get the hell out of my woods!

Tuesday, July 5, 2011

Blutetooth running..Really?

I don't understand the need for cell phones in the woods. On a run, or a hike. I'm not talking about the "Hike Across America" hikes, or the "Run Across America" runs. But your typical power walk through your local National Forest.

And I don't understand the use of blue-tooth technology while on said power walk.

Someone tell me what the attraction is? I don't understand it.