Sunday, June 28, 2009

Down Week- With A Photo Finish

That GMR really did a number on me- of course, staying up til 3am to catch the new Transformers movie the next day didn't help either. It took til Friday or so before my legs really got back under me. This week makes two entire months since I have raced in a real competition. Two months. I'm pretty sure that's just about the longest competitive hiatus I've had since getting pneumonia my senior year of high school- which was Fall of 2006. So, faced with my longest break from racing for nearly three years, I find myself getting really, really fit. I have just about a month to the Fleet 10-miler and I'm starting to get the ol' racing itch back-- something I haven't had since sometime in March.

In more important news, the first JACKALOPES UNIFORMS are made. They'll make their official debut when Geoff runs his local 5k on the 4th of July. I hope to get some pictures up soon; Geoff really did an amazing job on these. We couldn't figure out a way to get the quality we wanted without paying a shit-ton of money for each uniform (which, in turn, would make the uniforms way too expensive for we humble Jacklopes), so Geoff spent several hours HAND-MAKING the uniforms. It's not that I expected the uniforms to be crappy, but when Geoff brought the prototypes over, I was floored with how much time, effort, and care he put into the uniforms. We're not going to make a penny on these hand-crafted beauties; just get in touch with me or Geoff and we'll charge you the cost of the materials/shipping.

Here's a summary of the week's log-

Monday- OFF

Tuesday- AM- 3 easy to work, PM- 10 easy with Geoff, 67:40, flat trail, stiff calves.

Wednesday- AM- 5 easy to work + Lake Loop, PM- 9 easy, hilly, 59min 8xstrides

Thursday- 3pm- 3 up, 3.5 including 2xmile (track) in 5:00 w/1000 float in 4min (19:28 tot) 1.5 down (8 tot in 49:30), cut workout short- humid, felt shitty. 8pm- 5 easy, hilly, 33min

Friday- 2pm- 8 easy, finally feeling human again, 53min 7pm- 5 easy at work, 34:30min

Saturday- 7pm- 14 easy/moderate, 13:30 at 2, 45:53 at 7.1, 1:15:30 at 12.2, 1:26:49 at the finish. Felt pretty damn smooth, way easier than that 15miler a couple weeks ago and on a much hillier course, too. I said then it takes a very well-conditioned athlete to run steady for 90minutes- I'm getting to that point. By the time I start specific work in September, my General Fitness is going to be through the roof!

Sunday- AM- 6 easy with my brother, Doug, and Kopetz at Lake Massabesic, 40min- closer to 10k than 6 miles, but I'll be conservative. Doug pushed it down close to 6min pace at the end. PM- 8 miles easy, 55:12, hilly, rainy- I was fine with jogging through at 7:05s then my dinner came back at me hardcore and it took a 12:40 2-mile/sprint up the stairs to beat myself to the toilet.

Tot- 81 miles in 6 days, good week of more relaxed, moderate training to let my body catch up with the last month. Next week should yield a good solid tempo and a decent fartlek before the festivities of the weekend.

Have a good week, everyone, and feel free as always to drop in with questions, comments, suggestions, etc.

Sunday, June 21, 2009

Green Mountain Relay

Here's the question of the week: why would any person willingly go 40 hours without sleep and more than 8 hours without food while hallucinating vividly at 3 o'clock in the morning during a run in the backroads of Vermont?

The answer? For fun, of course.

Because this is more or less what me and 13 friends did this weekend. 12 runners and 2 van drivers competed in the Green Mountain Relay, a 200-mile competition throughout Vermont's most civilized cityscapes. Our overall time and place were not what we would have liked, but under the circumstances, we all did fantastic and it was definitely a weekend to remember.

Sure, most of the relay itself was oppressively humid and hilly- but that just made it all the more fun. Knowing your teammates were suffering the same dehydration cramps and bowel explosions you were didn't make your own issues any more bearable, but at least it prevented excessive complaints (though, of course, teenage boys will go to great lengths to describe their poop-- this phenomenon cannot be avoided). The exhausting weekend capped off a 91 mile training week for me, which was significant because it was the first training week that I have ever followed a set schedule. In this case, the schedule was written by Bruce, my new coach, and it was a cycle I really liked. In addition to my relay legs (averaging about 6min pace on brutal terrain at weird hours) I got in two quality days this week- one, on Tuesday, was 4x5min on, 4 minute off, where I averaged 5:35s for 9 miles and was running the "on" parts at an averaging of about 4:50/mile pace and the "offs" at about 5:50/mile, all of this barefoot on the grass. On Thursday I had a pretty good 12 miler, working down to just under 22 for my last 4 (rolling) miles.

All in all, it's been an exhausting, travel-filled, high-quality week. Now I'm just trying to make it to a reasonable bedtime to try to restore some semblance of normalcy to my confused body. I've got about another 3 weeks to train hard for my 10-mile fitness check at the Blessing of the Fleet and already I'm getting excited to race. Have a good week, everybody. I'm going into coma-mode and if I must reached, I recommend you bring a large brass section to help wake me up.

Sunday, June 14, 2009

Summer Training, Week 5

The lack of Jackalope ideas has saddened me :( Perhaps a very dry reposting of my week's training in the retardedly detailed style of Nate Jenkins will entice some charitable ideas from the, well. . . small handful of you who find this interesting enough to read with regularity. I promise it will be more exciting to read when I start racing (or start experimenting with psychedelic drugs, which, though unrelated to running, would at least be worth reading).

Monday- AM 3 easy, rolled out of bed and went running. I'm enjoying the extended break from doing anything but funds are running low. . . fortunately, Job 1 starts next week and Job 2 soon thereafter.
PM- 7 easy, hilly course. Was in the shower before I remembered I was going to do strides. Whoops.

Tuesday- AM- 5 hilly with Geoff and Owen in a downpour (34 min). House marathon all day after. I don't care formulaic the show is, Dr House is a G.
PM- 8 easy with Geoff (run) and Owen (bike). Just out and back on the R/R beds 54 min (27:40/26:20)

Wednesday- PM- 13 good, first 10 pretty hilly and sluggish (68 min) last 3 moderate, 17:15, barefoot on grass. Took about 8 miles to get going.

Thursday- 4 miles easy, R/R beds + core. For a guy willing to run 100 miles a week, I'm the biggest bitch about doing consistent corework and stuff. I'm trying to get better at it (and lose the small spare tire that no 4:08 miler should have). Weight is down to about 138- got about 8-10 lbs to go.
PM- 8 miles easy, ~53:30, 6x10 second steep hill sprints. I'm starting to love these hill sprints- my ailing left hip/hammy seem to have been healed by them!

Friday- AM- 10 miles easy, 69 min. 6xstrides after (3 slightly uphill grade, 3 slight downhill grade). Tried to run slow on purpose- long/steady on Saturday.

Saturday- AM- Probably should have delayed this run until Sunday. It was about 80 yesterday compared to 60 today- but whatever. 15 miles long and hard (go ahead, laugh) increasing intensity every 5 miles. First 5 (R/R beds) 32:27, 2nd 5 (R/R beds) 30:28, last 5 (hilly Town Loop) 29:41, 5:35 last mile. I've never tried to run steady for as far as 15 miles before- won't lie, it was really tough. I've only run over 15 miles a handful of times in my life; however, I'm confident that after a few months of this I'll be extremely fit. This is the kind of base-work I've been missing.

Sunday- AM- 4 easy (28:15). I expected to be wrecked after yesterday but actually I felt pretty good.
PM- 8 easy hilly course (56:21) + 4xstrides after. Again, felt pretty good.

The NCAAs were this weekend, if anybody was in a coma. Jeezum crow, was Rupp impressive or what? I thought the 1500 was boring- I expected Fernandez to have a little more trouble winning. Still, it's an exciting thing when an 18 year old freshman can win the NCAA 1500 title leading wire to wire and looking as smooth as he did. Still, though, I can't get over how far Rupp has come as a competitor in the last year. I mean, he was always fast- but now he just seems to have racing itself down. I hope his admittedly hectic racing schedule this year won't come back to bite him by the end of the summer. Hopefully after the World Champs he takes a well-earned vacation. I know Rupp is a goofy motherfucker- but he's a team player who's come a long way as an athlete this year. Some people like to whine about "unfair" it is that he has good coaching and does all the little extra things to help him recover, but hey- they're not 6-time NCAA champions, am I right?

Anyway, hope everyone's summer is going well. I'm kind of doing the Bizarro-High School Kid right now and counting down the days til school starts and I can move into my apartment and BUXC gets going. I'm not sure what to do with myself without racing twice a week!


Sunday, June 7, 2009

More Jackalope Stuff

Ok, here's what I'm thinking- since I stopped posting my training here, this blog has fizzled out a little. I'm not much of an advice giver, but I don't want to quit the blogging- I've found that I really enjoy doing it.

What I need, then, are some ideas for the Jackalopes' Big Project. I've been sitting here all week trying of something Significant with a capital S for the club to do- something that will really add to the sport. I've been in contact with flotrack and some other running sites and they're all perfectly willing to help the club get exposure in order to help out on as many levels as possible.

This is the cool part about having a blog- presumably, people out there read it, and can provide feedback. Please leave comments here or email me with your Big Project idea- the more specific the plan is, the better.

Here are some rough parameters that I'm looking for:

1) It takes place at an event relatively soon (as in before school starts up again)

2) It takes place at an event already fairly well known (like a big road race or clinic) but needs help/could use a lot of improvement

3) Located in the Northeast (I have no money to be flying around the country to coordinate stuff)

C'mon, everyone- we can piss and moan about track in America, or we can at least try to improve the situation!

PS: I think I'll start posting my training here again- I liked being able to reflect about it at the end of the week and writing it down was a nice forum to do so.