Sunday, March 28, 2010

Turning it Around

Hi, all. Running went much better this week, which made it easier to stomach how crappy school, student teaching, and work is going. I don't have anything to say, really, so I guess I'll just include the log and leave it at that.

Oh, I did witness a hit and run accident walking home from work. The guy who got hit drove after the dude who hit him, screaming murder. I'm not sure if I hope chased got away or got brought to justice for hitting and running.

Anyway, here's the log:

Monday- 12PM- 7mi moderate, felt good after ten minutes and just starting squeezing down the pace. Ended up at about ~5:30 for the last 8min or so, then added on a 2:30 half on the outdoor track (78.x/71.x) for the heck of it. 8:30PM- 4mi easy on the river, felt good.

Tuesday- AM- 29' easy indoors, downpour out- I was going to do a hill workout in the morning but decided to put it off til the afternoon in case the rain tapered off a little. PM- Rain tapered off just barely, did 3+ warmup, then did 6x80 seconds up Summit Ave in Brookline (which is a ridiculous hill!) and would have died of bootylock but for a small booty. Ran steady back to the indoor track (about 8min the way I went) then did 6x200 cutdowns with a 200 jog, starting at 33 and cutting down to 30 (200 rest jogs in 50-55). Pretty solid day, short c/d.

Wednesday- 3:30PM- 9mi easy after a day of student teaching and napping through the start of my afternoon class (whoops!). Felt pretty good after the nap, felt like trash covered in crap before the nap. Ran to Jamaica Pond with a nice big group, averaged about 6:40s.

Thursday- AM- 4 easy, very stiff first 10min but good thereafter. PM- West on the Charles with a big group, was very surprised to run 6:40s and have it feel so slow. Had just enough time to rinse off and hightail it to work.

Friday- 3:30PM- Bruce took a page right out of his own book (Speed With Endurance, which he co-wrote with Bill Squires) and assigned me a "Long Run with Movements" which is Squires' way of saying a long ass fartlek. 20min easy, 15min moderate, then 2-4-6-6-4-2 hard with equal steady rest. I ran laps around Fresh Pond (~2.45mi) and ran the one I looked at in 13:20 including rest. The trail was soft and muddy with all the rain, so I'll conservatively say 5min pace on the ons and 6min pace for the rests. All in all the fartlek took 48min, or something just over 8.5mi. Ran an 11min steady cool down for a 15+ mile run in 94 min, tired but too hungry to run slower. Felt pretty good about this workout- my weak little aerobic capacity is slowly getting better.

Saturday- AM- 4 mi very slow, some with the guys as they warmed up for their interval work. Heavy, heavy legs. PM- 51min very slow, most cooling down with Peter and Eric after their workout. Heavy legs, especially quads.

Sunday- 1mi easy, then met up with Eric for ~9mi easy with Eric around Fresh Pond (17:40) legs pretty heavy still. Eric stopped once he had done 9, I pressed on and built the pace the last 4mi, ending at 6:03 for the last mile and running harder than I thought 6min pace required. Last 4mi in ~25:30. Very, very tired after this, despite a great night's sleep on Friday. Ate and ate and ate then went to work and ate and ate some more.

Tot- 88mi
11 runs
Two very solid workouts
0 core/strength sessions
0 drill sessions

Goal for next week: Maintain volume/quality but be more diligent about doing some drills, strides, and finishing two 30min core/strength circuits.

Monday, March 22, 2010

A Busy Week

Hello, readers. It seems to happen that college happens in bursts. By that, I mean work across classes tends to bunch together, employment weeks go in cycles of nothing followed by extreme business, etc. I had one of those weeks last week (hence the late blog). Last week, I had 1) work most every day, 2) two papers 3) a group project 4) an educational policy seminar and 5) re-implemented quality running back into my training.

None of those things are particularly bad, but in conjunction and combined with some really crappy sleep, last week really kicked my ass. This week should be marginally better and hopefully as a result I'll start feeling better on runs and maybe even get some decent sleeping done.


Monday- 5mi easy in between classes. I could have run later in the evening but chose dinner and studying instead.

Tuesday- AM- 4mi easy, solo- didn't wake up quite early enough to get my tempo in before lecture. Felt pretty good, though- the weather turned from cold and rainy to warm and sunny, so I was happy. PM- 3mi up with some of the guys, then a solo 4mi tempo at the Brookline Reservoir, a 1500m dirt path. I ran 20:05 for 6k (starting at 5:05 and cutting down gradually to 4:54) then added on 90 seconds to make sure I covered 4mi. It was a pretty easy effort except for my back got increasingly sore throughout the tempo- I had slept on it funny the night before and the faster running made it act up. Stopped for a minute to stretch my left quad, which was a little tight, then ran 3mi home.

Wednesday- 12:30PM- Snuck in 9mi to Fresh Pond and back between a policy seminar and my afternoon class. Missed lunch and a meeting with my adviser, but it was 65 out and sunny! I was surprised at how sore the front of my quads were, though. 10PM- Hit up the river loop after work, 4mi easy. Quads still pretty sore.

Thursday- 3:30PM- River West loop with a pretty big group of guys. Nicest weather in a long time- about 65, sunny, slight breeze. Quads still pretty heavy, which I didn't expect, but the weather more than made up for it. Most of the guys did 7, Peter and I did the full loop.

9:30PM- River loop after work again, felt pretty good, but quads still heavier than I'd prefer.

Friday- 3:30PM- 3mi up to the BC Res, then a random fartlek- 9min @ tempo pace (split 8:15 through the lap, which is ~5:18 pace), 2min jog, 4x75sec w/1:45 jog, then a 5min run starting at tempo and building the pace until the last minute was close to all out. Covered well over 5mi in 28min- stopped for a minute to catch my breath, then jogged home very slowly. It was sunny about ~75 and I was definitely unused to that kind of heat. Not a particularly good workout, but not awful either. Probably 11mi but I logged it as 10. Killer core session with Peter afterward.

Saturday- 2pm- 10 mi easy, first 7 or so with James. Felt like timing the run today- 66:37 for the somewhat short 10mi version of the river loop. The sun was beating down a little, but I was loath to complain about the heat after being so sick of winter. 7PM- 3mi easy with some of the guys cooling down from their workout on the track.

Sunday- 9AM- Attempted a 14miler but felt so tired and awful (really bad sleep, school stress, bathroom issues) that I just called it at 9miles with everybody else. Ran with Peter, James, and special guest star Kevin Gilmore, Peter's twin.

Tot- 77 mi
11 runs
1 core session
No drills
No strides

Not a great week, but not an awful week given the outside interference. This week will be better- or so I keep telling myself!

Sunday, March 14, 2010

Yup, It Was Bronchitis

A visit my doctor back home on Monday confirmed what I suspected. Bacterial bronchitis, a pretty bad case. The doc gave me an in-office nebulizer treatment, where you put a mask and breathe this gas that makes you cough up all that crap in your lungs. Then he gave me an inhaler (which I think I used once, because I was afraid of benefiting from the steroids) and some antibiotics. It took a couple days of nice easy jogging, but I finally feel back to normal and I'm looking forward to getting back into real training this week.

Here's my log:

Monday- 8mi jog back in Derry, NH on some muddy, muddy trails. Ran a measured 8 without the watch- but it was laughingly slow.

Tuesday- Measured road 8 through some of Derry's hillier backroads. No watch again, but felt considerably better today. Going up the hills triggered some wet hacking, but, as my doctor pointed out happily, it was a "productive cough" which mean I was spitting up neon green crap from my lungs. Too much info?

Wednesday- 1PM- Back in Boston, ran the 8mi river loop solo, felt like I had progressed by leaps and bounds overnight. The beautiful weather probably helped! 7PM- 4mi river loop solo again, beautiful weather again, felt great, again!

Thursday- 8mi easy up Comm Ave to the BC Res, ran two laps (5k), ran back, added on 5min indoors. Afterward, did a strength circuit- pushups, a bunch of core, some body-weight squats (normal and one-legged), lunges, some back exercises, etc. The actual amount of exercise was so paltry that the soreness I suffered over the next two days was more embarrassing than anything.

Friday- 10am- 9mi out and back with Eric on Comm Ave. Joke as you will, but my ass and quads were DESTROYED from those circuits! 5PM- 4mi barefoot shakeout on the infield of the outdoor track, chilly and windy but not so bad. Did some drills and light strides after to try to work some range of motion back into my protesting butt and legs.

Saturday- 11AM- 9mi easy, some warming up with the guys doing a workout, some on the river with Peter.

Sunday 6PM- Total downpour in Boston! I went to the St. Patrick's Day Parade with two teammates and got soaked and miserable. James, Eric, and I decided to run inside at FitRec with the civilians. We had to choose our poison- Eric ran the whole time on the dreadmill, I ran on the 1/7th of a mile indoor track for 63' min, and James did half n' half. No one particularly enjoyed themselves :)

67 Miles
9 runs
2 Strength/Core Circuits
1 Set of Drils

Onto Outdoor track!

Sunday, March 7, 2010

Not with a Bang, but with a Fever

I guess I should apologize to T.S. Eliot for mangling some of "The Hollow Men" for the sake of a half-clever blog title. At least I didn't write a novel-length blog post replete with classical allusion, footnotes, and absolutely impenetrable meaning. On an unrelated-to-running note, I once got into huge trouble with an English teacher for suggesting that "The Waste Land" was actually intentionally impossible and actually meant nothing other than that ol' T.S. wanted to prank all the literary nerds who would spend hours and hours trying to decipher the poem. My other theory is that Eliot was secretly an engineer and wanted to punish all the worthless English majors by writing something so obtuse they would waste months on it.

Anyway. . . unfortunately, after feeling pretty damn invincible after my New England title and subsequent light workout on Tuesday, I woke up Wednesday with a pretty bad fever and what I suspect might be the beginnings of a sinus infection and/or the recurring bronchitis that has been my bane since my senior year of high school. I'll spare the bare summary of the week, mostly because it's depressing to write "off, fever" several days in a row. The long and short of it is that I ran 42 miles in 5 days this week, my fever broke about 4am on Thursday, and my cold has begun to settle into my chest, leaving me a little wheezy and short-winded even during easy runs. I'm not sure weather the wheeze is allergies or bronchitis. Since I'll be home in Derry for Monday and Tuesday, I might try to sneak in a visit to my doctor and get him to listen to my lungs. Ever since I had pneumonia my senior year of high school, my lungs have been particularly susceptible to bronchitis.

In terms of the upcoming outdoor season, I will be redshirting. Due to credit transfer from Keene and my enrollment in a dual degree program at BU, I have to stay at BU until the spring of 2012 anyway. Bruce and I figured we might as well spread my eligibility around a little. We're hoping to get this past XC season back with a medical appeal (since there was about a 3 week period where a cardiologist told me in no uncertain terms that my heart was no condition to run). Redshirting this outdoor season will allow me to save it for my 5th year of school and allow me to get back some much needed consistency and aerobic development.

One of the disadvantages to putting all this stuff out there is I run the risk of not letting my results speak for themselves. I said it many times I wanted to run 4:04 or better this season. I think, physically, I was reasonably close to that kind of shape. Unfortunately, I did not get a chance to do that- so it goes. In the end, I PR'd twice in the mile this year, by a combined total of .05 seconds. I lowered my 800 PR by .6 in a one-off relay run, which was nice. I do intend to race outdoors, just, obviously, not for the team.

Here are my goals for the upcoming season:

Process Goals:

1) Establish a consistent core/strength routine carried out 2x/week. This is an area I'm very weak in.

2) Carry out some easy range of motion type drills after my main run each day (skips, high knees, lunges, etc)

3)Stay healthy for an extended period of time by sleeping 8 hours per night and eating 2-3 helpings of vegetables every day (right now I average about 5-7 hours a night and probably 2-3 servings of vegetables every other day).

Performance Goals:

1) Work more on the aerobic side of things by increasing the quantity of my quality work (so, say 5-7 miles of aerobic quality per session instead of 3-4 miles with more intensity) while maintaining a sustainable level of volume.

2) Run a 5k that I consider to be roughly on par with my mile performances thus far.

3) Run one longer road race (8k+) at a higher competitive effort that I've managed to put out thus far.

I think that should be all for now, other than the necessary congratulations that are in order for two of my roommates. Ken Haltom ended his indoor campaign with a 4:09.93 mile in the IC4A prelims, his first sub-4:10 mile. More importantly, he ran an excellent tactical race and ran a strong third quarter- two things he has been working on lately. I think with his speed, the 1500 will hold great things for him outdoors. Second, Jeff Moreau, another resident of 15 Ashford, ran a .01 PR in the 800 in the final of IC4As with his 1:51.47. When I'm down for the count, watching my teammates and roommates excel is one of the few things that brings my spirit up. Since Ken and I were training for the same event, I got to hear all his thoughts about this race unfold over the week (well, until I got too fevery to run). I wish I had a tape recorder of Ken talking about how he wanted to run, because he excelled in every aspect he said he needed to improve. I wish things had gone according to plan for me, too- but I'm glad it worked out for SOMEONE!

I'm on spring break now, which means no student teaching this week, which means I'm going to sleep like I'm gettin' paid for it. Goodnight, internet!