Saturday, December 19, 2009

Duathlon work out

Today, to simulate a long run, I did a proper duathlon. This is nothing new as I have been averaging 10/miles/day on foot and 31/miles/day on the bike, but never had I done the two together, in one work out.

First off, I started with a nice and easy 10k (seriously slow and relaxed). For the run, I wound my way around time, ultimately ending up at the gym at the end of 10k. I hopped on the bike and threw down. My intention was to put in about 30k at an easy pace, but I was feeling so solid and strong I pushed it at a hard effort for 50k. After the 50k ride I hopped back on the road to complete the work out with a couple of easy running miles back to my house. All told, a great work out. It was like running 18-20, with the impact of 8-10 running miles.

Work out: 10k/run, 50k/tempo bike ride, 4k/run

Friday, December 18, 2009

This week in training...

It is Friday night, which means,that another week of training is in the books. What a great week. I hit all of my work outs, as planned, and am feeling strong and smooth. Yesterday, proved a bit of a bear. My morning run ruined me - I was a complete wreck after it, but pushed through my afternoon work out anyways and felt better for it. I am fairly certain that yesterday's run was a wash because I ran tense and somewhat irritated,annoyed and angry. This morning, I ran with joy and a smile on face and completed a nice and easy 12 miler without blinking. What a difference attitude makes. Mind over matter is no joke. Be positive. Think yourself strong and you will be strong. Think yourself smooth and you will move gracefully.

Here is what the week looked liked (in miles):

SA: 33/bike, 8.25/run
SU: 33/bike/core/lift
M: 30/bike, 8.25/run (tempo ride and tempo run)
TU: 30/bike/lift, 10/run
W: 34/bike
TH: 30/bike/lift,9.5/run
F: 31/bike, 13/run

Totals: 49/run (5 runs), 221/bike (7 rides)

Thursday, December 17, 2009

When it rains it pours, new shoes galore

In the last two weeks, both Saucony and New Balance have sent me sample shoes to wear-test. What a blessing. After burning through a pair of shoes every two weeks last year, my appetite for shoe shopping has been somewhat curbed. Free? Not a problem. I will take what I can get and what I have gotten recently has been plenty.

The Sauconys are great, a pair of Triump 7s. They are a very stiff, well supported and cusioned neutral trainer. A bit too stiff for my liking, but I can see the value in such a rigid sole as it guides the stride. After week of training in them my feelings are mixed. Mostly, I am pleased. The shoe has provided just the sort of stiffness and support I have been needing to get my strike and stride back on track, while supporting my healing foot.

I went out for my first run in the New Balances this morning. Apparently, New Balance is testing out a new material for the outsole. I don't know the details of the material, but I do know how I feel about these shoes. Awesome. They have significantly more flexion than the Sauconys. They too, are a neutral trainer, but with an impressive amount of response and control. The upper-body breaths easy and hugs the foot much more lovingly than the Sauconys (by this I mean they are comfortably conforming. The tread on these bad boys is meaty. They have a high, raised-heel, with gnarly trail treads on the front. They performed splendidly on the roads, ice, snow and trails this morning (I think rubber, as in treadmill, is the only surface I did not interact with on my morning run). Too, they are noticably lighter than the Saucony. All told, they are a great multi-terrain, well-cushioned neutral trainer. Can't wait to put some more miles on them.

Updates on Copper Canyon training, as well as more info on travel arrangements and fundraising coming soon...

Friday, December 11, 2009

Week recap

I am feeling great. Sort of a similar report to last week. This a good thing. Consistency is what I am shooting for in this training cycle leading up to CCUM. My phantom foot pain is becoming evermore phantomful, which is to say is fading from my subconcious, which, consequently, has pretty well vanquished my worry bones of marrow. Good stuff. Foot feels great (and new shoes from Saucony, currently, wear-testing the Triumph 7s).

I had my first official "long-run" this week (10 miles). This, of course, is relative - last year, at this time, my short runs were 11-12 miles. Slow and steady she goes. But it is a scheduled time, each week, where I run my farthest. I will be adding 2-3 miles to this run each week.

I solidified my travel plans from El Paso to Urique and back this week. Now, all that is needed, is a plane ticket to get to El Paso and I am set. I am working on a letter of support, which I intend to send out sometime next week to my closest family and friends, making a plea on behalf of myself for support in travels and donations for the Tarahumara.

This week in training:

SA: 8/run, 30/bike, core
SU: 33/bike, core/lift
M: 7.5/run, 31/bike, core
T: 7.5/run, 31/bike, core/lift
W: 33/bike (tempo ride), core
TH: 10/run, 31/bike, core
F: 8/run, 30-31/bike, core

Totals: 41/run, 219-220/bike

Saturday, December 5, 2009

Week recap

A total turn around week. At the end of last week, I wasn't sure what to think of the sort of responses my legs were giving me - pain in my left leg, a phantom twinge in my left foot, a case of lingering soreness (post run) in my right knee. Not one of these problems proved severe - they have all been slight - but they have been no less discouraging. Instead of brashly slogging through the pains, or ceasing and desisting completely, I took action. Continuing with my planned training, I added some form work into my running sessions, SIRIE (stretching, ibuprofen, rest, ice and elevation) to the troubled spots, some spot massaging and a positive outlook on all of it. The change has been dramatic. I am feeling great. My legs are feeling strong. I am already noticing increased power and strength from the lifting that I have been doing every other day for several weeks now. Good stuff. I am feeling positive about where things are going. I have a plan! For once! It is nice to work within this newly defined framework. Here is what the last week of training looked like:

221/biking miles (key workout - 32 mile tempo)
30/running miles (key workout - 8 mile tempo)
4/lifting days, 7/core days

15.5 training/hours

Combined (biking/running) effort mileage: 118.4 miles

Feeling like a million bucks.

Wednesday, December 2, 2009

Full-moon run, take two

So, yesterday morning (Dec. 1st) around 1AM I rolled out of bed eager as a beaver to enjoy the otherworldliness of a moonlit trail run. I dressed myself for the weather, snapped open the front door, and... snow. It was snowing. No moon to speak of. I was up and pumped to run, so headed out the door with a renewed sense of outcome: Dec. 1st, 2009 was going to be the host of a snowy 1AMer, not a full-moon run as originally planned.

This morning, at 1AM, I rolled out of bed. Take two. Today, anyways, was the actual full-moon. I cracked open the door, holding my breath, hoping for a clear, cold, blast of lunar light. Sucess! A clear night. I headed out blissfully. One of the more peaceful runs of my life. I took her nice, easy and steady. My headlamp proved unncessary, even in the woods, this morning; the moon was that reflective. Yeehaw. It was one of the more lovely 7-8 milers I can remember. Short, but I am getting there. Slow and steady wins the race.

The point of this post is this: if at first you don't succeed make the most of what has been dealt and try again. You will not be disappointed.

Tuesday, December 1, 2009

November by the numbers

Another month training log down in the books. November has come and gone. What a difference in training approaches from November 2008 to November 2009. My shape is coming slowly, but surely, as I continue to say, as my legs get used to running again.

I am overcoming a bout of hamstring tendinitis in my left leg, as a result of an usual gait acquired while sporting 'the boot'. Stretching, specialized strength training, ibuprofen and ice should see me through the recovery without significantly altering my training regimen. All is well though. I am taking each day as it comes and training sensibly.

November 2009 by the numbers:

967/miles - bike (32.2/miles/day)
70/miles - run
29/days - core work
7/ days - strength training

A fair amount of biking miles in the last 30 days. The bike has been my saving grace during my return to running, post stress-fracture. By contrast, November 2008 saw 526/miles (18/miles/day) of running and 20 some days of core work, with no strength training or biking.

I am on the road to Copper Canyon and feeling fine. I am hopeful that my left leg will continue to strengthen and that overall, my body will continue to grow stronger day-by-day, as to put me in a good and healthy shape for the Copper Canyon Ultra Marathon.

(Just for kicks I did some calculations on the costs of each of those stationary miles: at 26 dollars a month gym membership and 967 miles/stationary riding for November, each mile came at a cost of $0.026. Pretty reasonable, really. Each minute on the bike (roughly 2417.5 minutes, or 40hrs 19.5mins for November) ends up $0.01075. A real bang for the buck. And, the cheapest thrills are often the most rewarding.)