Saturday, July 31, 2010

McMullen Cutdown Workout

Time: 57:22
Distance: 9 miles

W/u: 22:43 for 3.01 miles
W/o: 5 mile cut down - 5:20, 5:10, 5:00, 4:50, 4:40.
C/d: 9:09 for 1.01 miles

Today was no joke. I had a big workout for this evening and luckily had Mother Nature cooperating. The temps were much cooler, the rain held off and the humidity didn't seem unbearable. I wanted this workout to go well. I haven't nailed a tempo run, threshold type workout in quite some time.

I knew starting at 5:20 would feel relaxed and the trick was going to stay comfortable until mile 3. I was going to run out three miles, turn and hammer it home. I was willing to go to the well this afternoon to see where I was at in terms of fitness. I realized that if I completed the workout in full, I would have run the last 4 miles in 19:40 which is about 40 seconds faster than I raced at the RFYL 4 Miler.

5:21.10, 5:10.49, 5:03.97
(6 seconds on the turn around)
4:58.60, 5:05.83 for roughly 25:30 total.

I was close. I ran the first 4 miles in 20:33 which is a little slower than the 4 Miler and the final 4 miles came out to 20:18. I was having a great run until the final mile. I was pretty much right on through 3 miles, was slow on the 4th mile, but still under 5 mins and then fell apart. I was itching to take off after about 8 minutes of running, but knew the tough section was ahead of me. Between the distance and the increase in body temperature I would be fighting a big battle over the final 2.5 miles. It was a bit of a waiting game.

In the end, I tired and couldn't get the legs to turn over the final 5 minutes of the workout. I'm happy with the effort because I was solo and trying to get a lot out of my body at the end of a long week. However, it would have been really encouraging to split something in the 4:40s at the end of this workout. I was gassed at the conclusion of this workout and didn't have much left in the tank.

24 Hours of Booty Loop Shakeout

Time: 35:01
Distance: 4.40 miles
Pace: 7:57

I could not wake up this morning. I was drowsy despite getting proper rest last night. The workout was not going to go well even with the cups of coffee consumed being increased. I decided to hold off considering the temps were much lower than any other day in recent memory. It was a shame because I kept reading status updates all morning about how good people were feeling out on the trails and greenways.

I opted for a slow, short run from the house to Queens University where 24 Hours of Booty was being held. I wanted to see what the buzz was all about. There were quite a few bikers out on Queens Road at 9:30 am, but it wasn't packed. Booty Village also seemed pretty tame at that hour. I would imagine that it gets pretty ragey on Friday night if alcohol is allowed, but I could see them outlawing beverages of choice. I chatted it up with Jason "High Rise" Fish of Pura Vida Fitness fame, who had already completed 119 miles on three separate stints out on the course. His goal was to reach 200 miles in those 24 hours. Intense!

There really wasn't much going on that was going to keep me at the event so I moseyed on home. I would return later in the afternoon to watch George start the Re-Boot which is a shorter 2:00 to 7:00 pm shift. He was hoping to get in 100 miles in those 5 hours.

Friday, July 30, 2010

US National White Water Center

Time: 50:30
Distance: 5.80 miles
Pace: 8:42

I put in a few too many miles with Meagan and Caitlin than I felt comfortable with knowing I was meeting George out at the White Water Center. A couple of weeks ago when I was in Durham, I agreed to run with George on the trails just outside of Charlotte. I'm embarrassed to acknowledge that I had never checked out the facility before this evening. I arrived a little early which allowed me to scope out the zip line, climbing wall, rapids and bar. Very impressive setting and relatively close to Charlotte.

George took me on some trails that he was familiar with. The pace was quite relaxed given the terrain and hour in the day. We didn't start until a little after 7:00 pm and I think both of us were a little tired. We warmed up nicely and locked into a comfortable rhythm. Martin Smith at the University of Oklahoma used to refer to such runs as "massaging trail runs" because there was no point in fighting the rocks, roots, and hills. You are forced to run slow and allow the body to recover much in the way a massage can be a painful beneficial despite the nagging discomfort.

The 50 minutes flew by and soon we were out of the woods and near the entrance where the run began. I was glad to have made the trip out to the WWC and it's something I will have to do more of. The $5 fee is a bit of a pain, but considering George told me that it takes something like $25k a day to run the facility, it doesn't seem unreasonable.

Suckered Again

Time: 67:46
Distance: 9.01 miles
Pace: 7:31

I got suckered into running with Meagan and Caitlin this morning. We both left our respective houses at 6:30 am and joined up in Freedom Park. We took a tour of the Booty Loop before departing ways. Good early morning run that will probably require a nap this afternoon.

Will Update Soon.

It seems that every time I get caught up (or close to it) my schedule gets really busy and all hope for staying on top of blogging goes to crap. I might get to post a few runs later this evening. If not, look for some additional runs this weekend.

Thursday, July 29, 2010

Booty Loop Workout

Time: 79:54
Distance: 11.54 miles

W/u: 24:09 for 2.98 miles
W/o: 2 x 3 miles at Caitlin's pace w/ 4 mins rest
C/d: 19:12 for 2.56 miles

Scott Schilter and I had to be in Greensboro for an appointment with Omega at 10 which meant fitting in a run had to be early. Meagan and I were out the door at 5:40 am on our warm up to the tennis courts of Freedom Park. We were meeting Caitlin, Justin, Mike Beigay, Brian McMahon, Paul and Lat Purser for some Booty loops. It was one of Caitlin's first marathon specific workouts and it called for 3 x 3 miles at 6:20 pace. It turns out that my schedule said 10 miles steady with some hill sprints. I failed to look at the schedule prior to running as I was just happy to be out the door. I ended up doing the first two sets of Caitlin's workout with Meagan and the others mentioned.

6:14, 6:13, 6:03 for 18:30
(4 mins)
6:03, 6:07, 5:53 for 18:03

I was thoroughly impressed with Caitlin's workout given the hour, the effort and the placement in her training cycle. She nailed the splits and truly crushed the goal pace. It was also great having the group atmosphere with some pretty solid runners pounding the pavement. I was given the duty of leading the second set which is why the pace was a bit quick. The course we ran started uphill, leveled off and then ended with a long downhill. I have only run 3 x 3 miles once before and it didn't turn out so well. I wanted to stick around for the final 3 miles, but Meagan reminded me that I had to be at Scott's hotel at 8 am and it was already 7:00. I opted to return back home so that we would get a late start to the day.

The Nuun showing to Omega went well. Really well.

Wednesday, July 28, 2010

Not a Good One

Time: 36:12
Distance: 5.36 miles
Pace: 6:45

I felt terrible on my double run today. I was tired and breathing heavy from the start. I couldn't find the right rhythm at any point during the run. The splits at the end of the run were respectable and finally matched the effort that I was putting out.

Scott and I had a busy day visiting RFYL (Dilworth and Piper Glen), Charlotte Running Co. (north and south), and most importantly Boy Scouts of America. Who knew, but BSA are huge fans of Nuun. It makes sense because Nuun is portable, easily stored, lightweight and replaces the electrolytes lost on a hike. Nobody at Nuun had ever made contact with a Boy Scout and I was there just to see how the operation works. BSA operates 160 scout stores across the country that sell everything from rain jackets and badges to cast iron skillets and Nuun. It was an interesting business visit but very worth while.

Nuun Medium Loop

Time: 65:25
Distance: 8.72 miles
Pace: 7:30

Last night I gave a hydration clinic to the Running 202 group in Albemarle. Peter of Vac & Dash fame let me come out and chat with one of his training groups. I would have love to stayed for their run because it was the first evening in who knows how long that was actually a little chilly. However, I had to get back to Charlotte because the national sales director of Nuun was in town. He arrived while I was in Albemarel, but Meagan was kind enough to pick him up from the airport and drop him off at his hotel. Luckily they hit it off immediately as they share several of the same friends. The rest of the night was spent at Brazwell's on Montford where Scott Schilter and I enjoyed a few pints and talked about the NC/SC territory.

This morning's run was another good story telling session. We all chatted about running, the Northwest, the Carolinas, humidity, Nuun, shoes, etc. Scott fit right in to our morning routine. He even ran tough despite not being acclimated to the temps. We finished up and then got along with our day. Meagan was off to RFYL while Scott and I dropped in a few local accounts to lock up orders.

Tuesday, July 27, 2010

Cutting Shapes at UNCC

Time: ~64:45
Distance: 9.46 miles

W/u: 24:09 for 3.11 miles
W/o: 16 x 400. First set: 8 x 400 in 71-72 w/ 30 sec. rest; (3 min. between) Second set: 8 x 400 in 66-67 w/ 1 min. rest
C/d: 19:10 for 2.10 miles

This morning I had some stuff to drop off at a bike shop across the street from UNCC, but I also needed to put in a workout. I decided that I would try using the track for my session of cutting shapes. It look to be a tough workout on paper but I was mentally prepared for it. I knew the first set was designed to tire out the legs while the second set was the heart of the effort. It turned out really well.

71.98 (31), 70.60 (30), 72.17 (31), 69.40 (31);
70.88 (30), 70.68 (31), 70.05 (31), 70.72


67.31 (60), 65.02 (61), 66.90 (61), 67.08 (60);
66.27 (61), 66.43 (61), 68.43 (60), 61.82

When I arrived to the track, two former/current UNCC athletes were getting started to run some mile repeats. The one guy still in school specialized in the 800 so his splits weren't too taxing for the summer schedule. I asked for permission to use the track and they were all for it. They even liked my Karhu racing flats.

The first set had a comfortable pace with limited rest. I had just enough time to finish the repeat, turn around, catch a deep breath and start running again. I felt good, but not great. In between sets I took a lap recovery and drank water to rehydrate. I toweled off quickly before starting set two.

The second set was much tougher because the wind started to swirl on the backstretch. I stopped looking at my 200m splits and was just running hard. It was good to close the final 400m a bit quicker with something still in the tank. My second to last interval was soft because I yelled at the UNCC athletes to take one of my cards and didn't get off the line very well.

Overall, a good solid track session. I think I can run more relaxed, but for being solo I'll take it.

Monday, July 26, 2010

Red Box Run

Time: 38:55
Distance: 5.69 miles
Pace: 6:50

I got in a pretty good number of miles this morning and almost didn't go out for an evening run. However, I realized around 5:00 pm that we had a Red Box to return. Last night Meagan and I watched Shutter Island. Good actors, good plot, lamely orchestrated twist. If I had a bike, I probably would have pedaled my way over to Harris Teeter. Instead I ran over to the HT, first stopping at Omega Sports to chat with the manager, to return the DVD. I started to feel pretty good around 15 minutes into the run. In the end I was glad to have laced up the shoes and gotten out the door. After this morning's run, I needed the lift.

Easy Run with Meagan and Caitlin

Time: 80:51
Distance: 10.65 miles
Pace: 7:35

I was out the door at a little after 6:10 am for a run over to Freedom Park to meet up with Caitlin. Meagan and Caitlin scheduled this run at the unfortunate hour and then suckered me into attending. I felt absolutely miserable the entire time. It didn't help that I had a hefty dinner last night and was still in the process of digesting. My legs felt heavy, my eyes were droopy and my breathing was too fast.

Sunday, July 25, 2010

Week in Review

Time: 576:16
Distance: 80.93 miles

This wasn't necessarily a down week, but it certainly wasn't a big week in terms of fitness. I ran tough at the 4 Miler where everyone saw a bit of a disappointment coming across the finish line. Times were slower due to the dew point and temps on the morning. I was gearing up for a big race so I didn't put much energy into any workouts this week. I had a short pre-race effort on Thursday, but other than that it was just easy runs. I hadn't totaled my miles until just now and discovered I was just over the 80 mile threshold. The race on Saturday didn't allow me to hit mid-80s but hopefully it will all pay off come September when the weather starts to cooperate.

My new training plan is out and next week is going to be tough.

Mallard Creek Long Run

Time: 107:35
Distance: 15.40 miles
Pace: 6:59

I was out the door and up to the University area of Charlotte for a long run with a few other fellow Charlotte Running Club members. Billy Shue was playing host at the Mallard Creek Greenway. Others in attendance included Mike Beigay, Ben and Megan Hovis, Caitlin, Jay Holder and Michelle. When the run started, of course, I was several strides off the back even at the 8:00 minute clip the group was holding. About 600m the group turned around and returned to the parking lot because they had forgotten Justin Breland. Leave no man behind.

I had to play catch up early on after a quick pit stop which is why my second split was so fast. It was my first time exploring Mallard Creek and I conclude that it would be a great spot for marathon workouts. The bike path is well shaded, flat and provides enough distance to get in a proper run. The pace for most of the run was quite pedestrian. No one was complaining about it because it was hot and sticky out and most of us were tired from the 4 Miler the previous day. However, I had a hard time finding the right stride. The pace wasn't slow enough to have the "800 meter shuffle" (you know what I'm talking about if you've ever watched 800m runners on a long run. They have beautiful strides in workouts and crap strides during longer distances), but it wasn't fast enough to feel smooth. I was sort of bounding and wasting a lot of energy to slow down.

The pace started to pick up at the turn around and most of use became a bit more fluid. Since it was hot out I needed to get this run over with and so I started to pick up the pace. Billy came with me initially when the splits started seeing sub-7:00. I ultimately dropped him with a 6:27 split around mile 11. The final few miles all saw sub-6:00 because I was trying to get my total average down to 7:00 which I barely accomplished.

8:07, 6:42, 7:54, 7:54, 7:55, 7:50, 7:28, 7:16,
6:58, 6:50, 6:27, 5:55, 5:59, 5:58, 5:45

I'm not sure how often I will make it up to Mallard Creek, but it will definitely be a consideration when I get back into marathon training.

Saturday, July 24, 2010

Dilworth Four Miler Recap

Time: 57:11
Distance: 8.26 miles
Race: 20:26, 1st (5:06 avg.)

W/u #1: 11:16 for 1.43 miles
W/u #2: 10:04 for 1.23 miles
C/d: 15:25 for 1.60 miles

Rough race.

The morning started with an early wake up and a quick preparation of some Starbuck's Via instant coffee. It's much better than the instant crap we used to drink in college. I milled around the house checking my RSS feed for anything of value. I came across a post from Tim Budic's blog about dew point and the effect it has on the body's ability to sweat. Tim makes the point that it might be in a runner's best interest to move a long run or workout from a day when the dew point is above 64 degrees. However, Tim was still running a track workout, and I was still going to have to run the Dilworth Four Miler. By the way, after reading I checked Charlotte's dew point which was 75 degrees. Awesome.

Meagan and I got to the RFYL parking lot fairly early because I wanted to do a mini-warm up prior to the hydration clinic I was giving. We ran the first 1,000 meters of the course before turning back. The clinic went well for the 6:30 am hour. I think people were more interested in getting to the start line than hear about how to keep one's body from being over/under hydrated.

After the clinic, I got in another 10 minutes of easy running a few strides. I spotted that Bert Rodriguez was in attendance for the first time since the first GPx race. We have raced three times before, each time he has kicked my ass. The first was at the Runway 5k, the second at the Shamrock 4 Miler and the third was up in DC at Cherry Blossom 10 miler. I come from a background where I believe if someone has beaten you three times, he/she, simply put, owns you. I was 0 for 3 versus Bert and I needed a victory against him. I had a feeling that he was coming off an injury because he hasn't raced down in Charlotte for a few months and today might just be my day.

My plan was to go out hard. Before previewing the course I wanted to be through the mile in 4:40. However, I backed off that time because of the hill and I should have adjusted it even more with consideration for the weather.

5:01, 5:05, 5:19, 5:00

I got out relatively hard, but not all that fast. I attack the hill like I wanted. Burt was right on my shoulder for the first 800m before taking over the lead. I was impressed with his ability to run hills as I could tell he's strong on the incline. I battled back from a 2 step disadvantage on the downhill along Lyndhurst and we made the turn onto East just about stride for stride. I was running just off his shoulder for most of the way down East. The pace felt honest but not too ridiculous. I also wasn't feeling fantastic and never really forced the issue because it was early. About 200m from the turn onto Charlotte, I found myself with a few steps of a lead. The pace hadn't changed and Bert was starting to slow.

Frustrated after just missing the water cups.

The advantage grew heading back into the heart of Dilworth and I started pressing a little more to lengthen the advantage. I tried to grab water at the aid station but missed with the lady turned away from me and the guy didn't let go of the cup. It was a little discouraging as I could have really used that cold water on my head. I found Worthington to be cruelly long. Every intersection was a tease and the slight incline made my third mile the slowest of the day.

Nice downhill end to the race.

Getting back on Lyndhurst was a bit of a relief, but the hill up to McDonald wasn't kind. It wasn't very long or steep, rather it came at just the right time to make the body hurt. I took a few glances behind to see how hard I was going to have to push down and couldn't see anyone in sight. It was now a race against the clock knowing I had messed things up during the third mile. I finished well within myself and was a little hesitant to fly downhill. Again, I need to do something to open my stride up more.

Approaching the finish. Only a police officer in sight.

I crossed the line a few clicks under 20:30 which was about a minute slower than I wanted to run. I think most people ran slower today than they would have liked for various reason, number one being the dew point (not the heat and humidity). Ben Hovis was out snapping some photos of the Charlotte Running Club (see pics). He also said that I just missed his PR on the course by a couple of seconds. Next year.

Friday, July 23, 2010

Dilworth Four Miler Recon

Time: 35:04
Distance: 5.00 miles
Pace: 7:00

I did a little recon this afternoon over the Dilworth 4 Miler course. I had heard the first mile was all up hill so I wanted to check it out for myself. The study of the race map must not have been good enough as right out of the gate I made a wrong turn. Take a look at the map to see how I turned left onto Ideal Way instead of running through the first intersection. Thus, my 4 mile recon mission turned into a 5 mile sweatfest.

The first mile was predominantly uphill like everyone had told me. It's not steep, just long. There is also a decent downhill and uphill on Lyndhurst which is a slight detour from year's prior. The construction on Euclid forced the alteration to the course. I found the stretch along East to be ridiculously long. It kept going forever before hooking a right on Charlotte. The good news is once back in the neighborhood it's shaded. However, it's also a slight uphill on Worthington and another fight up the hill on Lyndhurst before racing to the finish. I haven't been running downhill portions too well this summer and I hope to get back some time the final 1,000m of the race which is essentially all downhill. I think my left hamstring is a little tight which keeps me from really opening up during the descent.

I ran some strides near the start/finish line with flats on to wake up the legs and get them ready to run hard in the morning. I had dreams of running close to 19:00 on the course before previewing it. Now I'll back off to a goal of 19:30. I know the fitness is there to run 4:52 pace, now I just have to go out and do it.

Post Conference Call

Time: 36:45
Distance: 5.31 miles
Pace: 6:55

I didn't have the energy to get out for a run prior to the weekly TGA conference call this morning. Luckily, the call was short and sweet so I was out the door before 10 am for a few sweaty miles through Freedom Park. I made it home in time to beat the plumber who is going to be taking a look at the water heater which decided to start leaking while Meagan and I were in Cali. Our roommate was able to save everything from the closet so hopefully we minimized the damage.

Thursday, July 22, 2010

Good Day in Sport

I should be updating my workouts, but I wanted to put this out there... Who saw the Schleck vs. Contador stage today? It was incredible in case you missed it. I won't post the result or recap it in detail so that you can visit Versus later on this evening, however, it made me appreciate Le Tour that much more. The two went at it from over 10km out and had an absolute epic day. I haven't been able to watch the Tour for a few days, but I was thrilled to be able to watch the last hour today.

Also, check out what Andrew Wheating just threw down in Moncao. Again, I won't spoil the results if you want to watch a Universal Sports recap. Let's just say it makes this blog seem pointless when guys like Wheating, Schleck and Contador are tearing up the tracks and mountains of Europe.

Pre-Race Workout

Time: 43:38
Distance: 5.98 miles

W/u: 20:22 for 2.59 miles
W/o: 2 x 400m w/ 200m jog, 2 x 300m w/ 100m jog, 2 x 200 w/ 200m jog
C/d: 13:20 for 1.64 miles

This evening Meagan and I headed out for a few extra miles. I needed to do something to get my legs ready for the Dilworth 4 Miler this Saturday. She had already done a pre-race effort and tonight was my turn. The purpose was to run hard and get some speed in the legs without tiring them out. This was a fairly simple workout that I came up with on the run over to the AG track.

68.58 (63), 66.68 (1:28),
50.78 (30), 49.60 (61),
31.15 (56), 29.01 for 9:56 total and 2,800 meters (~5:30 pace)

The pace felt alright considering I was in trainers and not flats. I didn't feel like running over to the track with an extra pair of shoes. It was hot, but the distances weren't long enough to have the heat take that much of a toll. I am content with the workout, but it's really nothing that impressive. The final 200s felt comfortable.

Starting Back with What's Familiar

Time: 56:32
Distance: 8.54 miles
Pace: 6:37

I hit up the standard loop through Freedom Park and took a spin of Booty. It's my traditional morning run route that I know well and don't have to think about where to turn. I didn't think the heat and humidity was that bad this morning, but I'm sure that will change after another 36 hours in it. It's not so bad at first and then it slowly drains all your energy and enthusiasm for running. I can't wait.

Wednesday, July 21, 2010

Final Summer Run in SD

Time: 56:29
Distance: 7.51 miles
Pace: 7:31

This morning's run was the last in San Diego for at least a couple of months. It was an "Oompa Loompa Loop" according to Meagan because we ran up Upas. That bastard of a hill doesn't get any easier. Take the hill at McAlpine and multiply it in grade by 4 and length by 3 and you have Upas. The real focus for the morning was getting packed and off to the airport in time to make our respective flights.

Unfortunately, Meagan and I weren't on the same flights. Meagan was flying on miles and I had booked a flight with multi-cities. For whatever reason, we couldn't link up for the trip back to the Queen City. I had a stop in Atlanta while Meagan had stops in LA, DC and eventually CLT.

Tuesday, July 20, 2010

Double Run to Trader Joe's

Time: 29:44
Distance: 3.82 miles
Pace: 7:47

Somehow I got suckered into cooking dinner tonight which means I was also responsible for shopping for ingredients. Meagan wanted some extra miles this evening so we took a quick spin through Balboa Park before ending the run at Trader Joe's. A quick pass through all the aisles and we were out with a couple of bags of groceries. We made the quick walk home through Hillcrest and I got started on dinner. I made a take on The Flying Biscuit's "Pasta, Sausage and Eggs" which I've done once in the past. Good run, decent meal.

Balboa Park Pre-Race

Time: 65:37
Distance: 9.22 miles

W/u: 23:20 for 3.01 miles
W/o: 2 x 5 mins, 2 x 3 mins, 2 x 1 min (all with 3 mins rest)
C/d: 9:58 for 1.27 miles

This morning Meagan wanted to do a workout while she was in the ideal temps of San Diego. I didn't feel in the mood so I opted to help her out. We are both gearing up for the Dilworth 4 Miler this weekend. I will probably do something later in the week to get ready for the pace, today was just not the day.

I came up with a simple pre-race workout that is similar to 2 x mile, 2 x 800m, 2 x 300m all with 3 min. jogging rest. We selected to use a combination of the roads and grass fields available in Balboa Park. The workout was fine but nothing to write home about.

5:01 @ 5:32 pace (3:01 @ 8:01 pace)
5:01 @ 5:34 (3:01 @ 8:33)
3:00 @ 6:01 (3:00 @ 8:11)
3:01 @ 5:32 (3:02 @ 8:32)
62 @ 5:11 (2:01 @ 9:30)
62 @ 4:59 for 32:19 total and 4.94 miles; 6:33 average.

I could tell that Meagan was working harder than she should be. The first 3 min interval was run slightly uphill and after the two longer opening efforts, she was pretty gassed. Her form looked good and despite the labored breathing, I tried to press the pace a little. This definitely wasn't her best workout and based on look, I'm sure she didn't feel all that well. We took an easy cool down home and called it a morning.

We were in a bit of a rush because of the need to get to breakfast. Last night we told my dad that breakfast would be consumed at 10 am. If we said a specific time, then that means my dad will hold us to it. During my time at Brown it was always, "early is on time, on time is late, and late is early for tomorrow." So true in the Kinley household. We rushed to get out of the door at 9:50 so that we could be arriving at the steps of Hash House at 10 am for breakfast.

Breakfast didn't disappoint. Check out Meagan's blog for some pictures of our meal. Note that the plates were actually serving platters so proportions may not actually seem that big. They were!

Later in the family went to Coronado Island for a couple of hours. The main attraction was the Hotel Del Coronado which is a must see when visiting San Diego. We took a quick tour of the beach and dipped our toes in the Pacific Ocean. Not warm.


Where has the time gone? I need to really update my blog. Cali has been both relaxing and stressful, but the training hasn't suffered too much. I'm over a week and a half behind and there are some good workouts that need to be written about. First up is from a couple Friday's ago on the AG track.

Stay tuned...

Monday, July 19, 2010

Easy Balboa Double

Time: 32:42
Distance: 4.30 miles
Pace: 7:37

Meagan and I put in some easy miles through Balboa Park this evening. Nothing too much to report about the run other than simple time on the feet. For whatever reason the Garmin program didn't read the workout.

Balboa Park Miles

Time: 54:59
Distance: 7.59 miles
Pace: 7:14

Meagan and I put in an few miles this morning through Balboa Park in San Diego. It is a run that we've done a few times in the past. When we go to the far side of the park where the velodrome is located, I was surprised to see that someone was actually rounding it. He was going really slow and we were in a time crunch for some reason that I can't remember which is why we couldn't stick around to watch. I didn't feel great for whatever reason, probably because I thrashed my legs running hard on the downhills yesterday during the long run. If Meagan was ever going to beat me up Oompa Loompa, today was the day. She didn't and now she never will.

Sunday, July 18, 2010

Week in Review

Time: 602:53
Distance: 87.61 miles

I had a pretty good week that started with a solid workout with Compton at Providence Day School. I felt relaxed running a little under 5 minute pace and finishing with a fast final 1k. The time in Cali mid week was acceptable and the workout on Friday went well. I didn't set any world records in the cooler temps, but I kept things relaxed. I was most pleased with the surges during the long run because I felt confident running hard. I have a couple of more days here in San Diego before returning to the swamp of Charlotte. I don't plan on doing another workout as I feel a little beat up from some of the recent runs.

The best part of the week was discovering Donut Haven in Hillcrest. I've seen it many times before and threatened Meagan to go in, but never pulled the trigger. On Saturday morning I finally committed and took a spin through the shop. I couldn't help myself and decided to roll with the fritter. I was an infrequent member of the OU Friday Morning Fritter Crew at Donut King (open 24 hours!) when I lived in Norman. Scotty D and associates have an affinity for fritters and the one at Donut Haven was definitely one of the best. No lie. The problem with most donut shops' apple fritters is that there is no apple. Donut Haven had the right combo of crispy fried dough to apple filling. It wasn't the best move in terms of eating right, but I wish I had one right now.

I have few dreams in this world: (1) be a slumlord, (2) own a donut shop, (3) make the world's best fritter.

Ladies, it's bigger than it looks. So delicious too.

Mission Beach Long Run

Time: 96:50
Distance: 14.16 miles
Pace: 6:50

Meagan and I were out the door relatively early and off to find a parking spot at Mission Beach. I figured we would beat the beach crowd and take a run straight north along the bike path. I took a peak at Google Maps and found a general route that seemed to be good for a long run. Once the boardwalk, Meagan and I found ourselves in some pretty sweet neighborhoods with some legit houses. The houses right on the water were nice, but mostly rentals. These were on hills overlooking the water and much more classy.

My training schedule called for some pickups over the last half. I needed to do 5 x 90 sec hard with 5 min recovery. My coach Jeff recently wrote a pretty good article explaining the benefits of pickups/surges during a long run. I was impressed with the article for a couple of reasons. First, Jeff's writing style is much better than it's been in the past. I'm not knocking his prose of former blog posts or articles (you'd have to ask Prof. Raaflaub about that), but this post just stuck out.

Second, and more importantly, I found the article to actually add something different to one's training routine. Magazine training/running articles are on a 36 month (re)cycle which gets old when you've been in the sport for longer than 3 years. It's also my belief that coaches have run out of ways to create new stimuli. Essentially, new training philosophies are becoming less frequent. Training philosophies are becoming exhausted and I suppose one could argue that after Jack Daniels, there is little a coach can add to the breadth of knowledge. All of a sudden it becomes more of how well a coach can manage his athletes individually rather than coming up with new ways to train the body's systems. I'm trying to point out that Jeff might be finding his differentiating training principle. I just made that term up, but I think it applies to what coaches are most well known for. Scott Simmons - hammer intervals; Jack Daniels - vDot and threshold training; Alberto Salazar - being secretive; Terrance Mahon - getting the best athletes available; Jeff Gaudette - long run surges?

I don't know if Jeff would agree with me and I realize he still borrows ideas from many of the coaches I've just mentioned. Further, one coach that also incorporates surges into long run is Renato Canova who is known for training elite Kenyan athletes who are predominantly marathoners (his athletes just did extremely well at the Kenyan Championships). It also comes back to putting trust in whoever is designing your training and knowing that it's individually tailored to making you the best possible runner. Point being, read the post.

7:50, 7:20, 7:17, 6:59, 7:02, 6:55, 6:56, 2:42 for .39 miles
92 sec @ 4:58 pace (5:00 @ 7:11)
92 sec @ 4:50 pace (5:00 @ 7:12)
92 sec @ 4:22 pace (5:00 @ 7:18)
91 sec @ 4:40 pace (5:00 @ 7:02)
92 sec @ 4:31 pace (5:00 @ 7:12)
6:49, 2:02 for .33 miles

My surges were hard. Luckily, it just so happened that the 90 seconds started on or near a downhill section. Today my focus wasn't to tax the cardio system. Instead I wanted to train the legs to wake up in the middle of a long effort with a touch of speed. I pushed hard because I knew it was only 90 seconds of speed and 5:00 of rest. The 4:22 pace split occurred on a section that flew down a hill and I was trying to catch a pair of cyclists. No such luck. I was pretty thrashed afterward, but maintained on the final two.

The final 10 minutes of the run was rough. Meagan wasn't feeling great either, but we managed. It was a good way to start the end of the weekend.

Saturday, July 17, 2010

Clipping Along

Time: 33:12
Distance: 5.04 miles
Pace: 6:35

I'm not sure why I chose to run a little more up tempo. I guess I was trying to take advantage of the perfect training temperatures out west. I felt good from the outset and decided to keep it rolling. Meagan and I attended the Pride Parade in Hillcrest as the route was just up the road from my dad's place. There are some pretty wild photos on her Facebook page. Hopefully she's kind enough to have accepted your friend request. The parade route ended in Balboa Park which meant there was lots of activity going on. I ran through the park and over the Prado before turning around and coming home. Maybe I ran a bit quicker as to stay ahead of all the whistlers.

San Diego Harbor and Balboa Park

Time: 64:57
Distance: 9.27 miles
Pace: 7:00

Last night I flew from SFO to SAN which means I'll be getting in some more run in So Cal. San Diego is a pretty solid training venue mainly because of the weather. It's generally foggy in the morning, sunny in the afternoon and the temps are ideal. Meagan and I replicated a run from a few months ago this morning. We ran down to near the airport, ran along the harbor, up through the Gaslamp District and into Balboa Park. It was a fun run and cool to take in San Diego with Meagan. We don't have any big plans other than meeting up with the legendary Mike Rouse of Mizuno, Zoot and now K-Swiss fame.

Friday, July 16, 2010

Santa Rosa Tempo Run

Time: 75:35
Distance: 11.88 miles

W/u: 24:11 for 3.08 miles
W/o: 5 mile tempo at 5:10-5:20 pace, 5 min. rest, 5 x 1 min hard w/ 1 min rest
C/d: 11:07 for 1.47 miles

It was a great morning for a tempo run in Santa Rosa. I jogged from the friend's house that I stayed at last night over to the start line on Channel Drive. I was using a popular section of road that is close to Annadel and Spring Lake. It's frequented because of little traffic, relatively flat surface and quarter markers. My high school team used to run workouts along this section all the time.

The goal for the morning was to run a relatively controlled 5 miles and then attack the "minuters." I had a pretty big range in pace that gave me some flexibility to push if I felt good (5:10) or back off it I didn't (5:20). I figured a 5:15 average (26:15 total) would be a good measure going into the minute efforts.

Tempo Splits:
5:18, 5:10, 5:14, 5:08, 5:15 for 26:05 total

(5:00 rest for .64 miles or 7:47 pace)

Hard Minuters:
4:30 pace (7:11 pace)
4:22 (8:01)
4:14 (7:51)
4:26 (8:04)
4:36 (uphill finish)

The total time for my tempo and minuters was 40:17 and I covered 7.33 miles (5:29 pace)

I wouldn't have been happy with this workout had it not been for the hard minute efforts. I didn't all that great during the tempo run which is why the pace varied a little bit form mile to mile. I was sluggish off the line and struggled to get rolling with that 5:10 split. I remained relatively relaxed, but never really fell into a rhythm. The minuters were a different story. I wanted to lash the body with some hard, steady, efficient running. I think I did just that as I was able to have some pretty solid minute averages. My turnover was nice and quick and I could tell that my arm carry was good.

Thursday, July 15, 2010

Spring Lake and Annadel Memories

Time: 54:55
Distance: 7.74 miles
Pace: 7:05

Strides: 6 x 130m
C/d: 7:29 for 1.03 miles

My double run this evening brought back some fond memories of running from my mom's house, to Howarth Park, through Spring Lake and on to the trails of Annadel. I was supposed to run steady this afternoon and do some strides, but I just wasn't feeling the steady portion for various reasons. Instead, I let my mind and body wander on the soft dirt trails that introduced me to the sport of running. I ran into Coach Louis Rosales who is now at Piner High School and is in the process of building a solid program. When I was in high school, Piner could barely field a cross-country team and now they are challenging for the league title.

My run brought me up Spring Creek to the hairpin turn where I opted to turn around and forgo the climb up to Lake Ilsanjo. Once I returned to Howarth Park I got to chat with one of Coach Rosales athletes who will be a stud in the coming years. Eventually I made my way over to a dam and ran 6 x ~130m at a good tempo. I was able to open up the stride and work on quickening the turnover.

I should mention that it was hot out there today, especially for Santa Rosa. My guess is low 90s but it felt comfortable due to the lack of humidity. My shorts were dry by the time I started the cool down back to my mom's.

One Way Trip to Enterprise

Time: 35:20
Distance: 5.16 miles
Pace: 6:51

The reason for being in San Francisco.

Badass Chrome bags.

My run this morning took me from the Castro (rainbow flags), through the Tenderloin (heroin needles), into the Financial District ($$$), and down to the Ferry Terminal (boats and water). I ran straight down Market St. and took in all the sights and smells that is San Francisco. It was good being back in the city (in my mind, "the city" will always be San Francisco) along a route I used to run when I returned for summer during my days at Brown. Once I hit the Presidio, I hooked a right which took me to the SF Giants stadium (who knows what it's called these days) and back in toward the Metreon where I picked up a rental car from Enterprise. Apparently it's a shit ton more expensive to rent a car in San Francisco than anywhere else in the world, at least Charlotte that is.

Looks like AT& T has naming rights these days.

Pimped out pad that I wish we still called home.

Once I was behind a wheel and drove back over to the hotel, showered and loaded up my stuff. My final destination on the day was Santa Rosa (hometown), but first I wanted to drop in to visit the Orthaheel USA headquarters just north of the Golden Gate Bridge. It was great meeting some of the people that I speak to on the phone and send orders to weekly. I wanted to put a name to the face and email which was the sole purpose of the visit. I don't think it hurt that I got to meet the chief operating officer either.

Glad I'm driving down and not running up.

I arrived in Santa Rosa (also the hometown of Julia Stamps, Sara Hall, Levi Leipheimer and Charles Schultz) late in the morning and had the opportunity to visit with my mom and family friends. It was weird being back in a city that is so big (population ~165,000), yet is so small (relatively little to do). I miss the runs in Annadel State Park where you can find trial after trail of hills, soft surface and gorgeous views. However, I'm glad that I don't live there currently, and like knowing I can always visit.

Wednesday, July 14, 2010

Los Gatos Rock Star

Time: 46:01
Distance: 6.26 miles
Pace: 7:21

I have to be careful with this post (might boss might be reading).

Despite the fact that I'm posting from long in the future, let me catch up the busy day that took place. After the big 2k workout yesterday I returned home to grab a quick shower. I was all packed and ready to leave for the Charlotte airport. I put on my compression/body control socks for the flight and prepared for my flight across the country.

It ended up being an action packed afternoon/evening as I was held up in the Minneapolis airport and I almost missed my flight. Good thing that I'm somewhat fast and was able to race across the entire MSP airport and make the flight with a few moments to spare. I was on the flight with our rep from Nashville who also had a couple of challenges getting to our destination of San Francisco.

Upon landing, Kela and I were picked up and shuttled to Los Gatos along with the newest TGA rep, Jeff Sheldon. The three of us and our driver Kenny, made a quick stop at the hotel before meeting everyone at the California Café. It was a fun little spot with great food and drinks for all to enjoy. All the reps go started with some key business presentations, beer/wine drinking and all around fun. The night ended back at the Los Gatos Inn bar with all the reps from the various groups talking business about the direction of the brand.

I met a lot of key contacts and had a fun time seeing how Chrome plans to grow over the next couple of years and where the big opportunities are. It was a long day starting with a workout in Charlotte, flights across the US, dinner in Los Gatos and drinks at the bar. I didn't get to bed until around 1:00 am west coast time which is 4:00 am EST. That means I had been up for nearly 22 hours straight, not great for training.

Why do I share all of this? Simply because I was described as a "rock star" for being out the door at 6:30 am the following morning (west coast time) for a run through the hills of Los Gatos. My boss was still in bed as I pounded the pavement looking for a route up to the trails that had to exist in Nor Cal. However, I just couldn't find them. It was a little frustrating as I climbed in the hilly neighborhoods looking for a trailhead only to find more million dollar homes and magnificent views. I wish I had brought my phone so that I could share the views with my followers, however I didn't think ahead.

The meetings flew by in the morning and it was off to San Francisco to hang out for a few hours in the Castro. Ever been to San Fran? Ever been to the Castro? Stay tuned...

Live From Cali

I need to update on some recent workouts and long runs, but I wanted to give a quick update from Los Gatos. I'm out here for Chrome's sales meeting and I had the chance to run in the hilly neighborhoods surrounding the town. The million dollar homes and Maseratis were in abundance, but the humidity was not.

I'll be looking to test out how fit I really am when the temps aren't sky high. My tempo run in Santa Rosa this week should be a good indicator workout.

Tuesday, July 13, 2010

Hottest Teacher in Charlotte

Time: 61:27
Distance: ~9.5 miles

W/u: 23:04 for 3.04 miles
W/o: 3 x 2k @ 5:00 pace w/ 3 mins rest, 1k @ fast!
C/d: 16:48 for 2.03 miles

I can't remember the last time I worked out in the morning. It was probably the last time I raced in the morning which wasn't up to my potential. I've run 15:05 at night and 14:59 on the track at night which means I'm clearly more prepared later in the day than at 7:30 am when most races are held. Anyway, this morning I had the opportunity to run with the hottest teacher in Charlotte or maybe I should limit it to Providence Day School. Either way I was happy to have someone to keep me honest during this workout.

The single John Compton.

The goal was to run 3 x 2k at a relatively relaxed pace before getting after it on one last interval. I believe that at this point in my cycle 5:00 mile pace is relatively easy, however, the weather plays a major role in how easy it actually feels. Aw the joys of living in Charlotte.

He can even protect you if you find yourself on the mountain trails of NC with no food or shelter.

Pre-workout John Compton (he's single ladies, was that mentioned?) was hoping to hop in and out of the workout depending on how he felt. It turned out that after 800m he would be running 6 x 800 (basically the first and last 800m of my 2k repeat).

6:06.16 (3:00), 6:09.50 (2:59), 6:08.78 (3:22), 2:42.01

Enough about John, let's put some attention back on me. I had a hard time slowing down to 5:00 pace which would be 6:15 for 2k. I felt comfortable running my splits, pressed, but comfortable. It was more that I couldn't lock into 72 sec. pace and I was rolling through 400m in 70-71 and 800m in 2:22 which just told me that I should roll with the pace. John was a help as he sat off my shoulder and provided the motivation to keep the pace going the final 800m. I won't even give him a hard time for not being able to hang for longer despite being capable of pushing me in the Skyline 5k and Great Harvest 5k. I fully appreciated him being out there this morning at the school he teaches at (ladies he's smart too).

When the final interval came up I slipped into spikes. Why? I'm not sure, but I felt that since I wasn't doubling I really wanted to wreck myself before my trip out to Cali. I took a few extra seconds of rest before starting the final effort. I came through 400m around 65 seconds and tried to increase the tempo. I really wanted to run in the 2:3x range but only managed 2:42. That's still 65 seconds per 400m, but I was hoping for more. It was taxing, but truly not everything I had. I think I closed the final 200m around 32 seconds which means my middle section was a little poor.

All in all, I'm pleased with the workout. John helped me out and kept me honest throughout the track session. He also came up huge time in giving me a ride to the airport. Today I'm flying from Charlotte to San Francisco for a sales meeting for Chrome Bags. It's a brand that The Genesis Agency just picked up within the past few months. The brand has very little presence in the Southeast which is something I'm going to be responsible for changing. Check out their products and keep an eye out.

Monday, July 12, 2010

Recovery Run with Queens, WF & SUNY Oswego

Time: 65:10
Distance: 9.01 miles
Pace: 7:14

Meagan and I drove over to Caitlin and John's (fastest roommates in Charlotte) for a run from 7th St. Mr. Holder who was fresh off his trip to New York joined us as well. It was a good crew of has been collegiate athlete's still living in the glory days of road racing. We didn't have a particular route selected and just roamed around the Elizabeth area for a few miles. Eventually we made our way to Dilworth, but couldn't run along the creek path due to the massive rain storm this afternoon. Massive rain storms mean a ridiculous amount of humidity, but at this point we should be used to it.

John and Meagan turned back around 2.5 miles because they are sissies and can't handle a day above 15 miles. Jay, Caitlin and I decided to venture on through Freedom Park before finishing up with a few miles near the starting point. The conversation was great this afternoon, but you'll have to ask Jay about his run in with the bare runner.

This was a good last run with Caitlin, Meagan and Jay before heading to Cali. I hope John gets suckered into working out with me in the morning and taking me to the airport afterward.

MFPL with Ms. Meagan

Time: 60:57
Distance: 8.56 miles
Pace: 7:07

Meagan and I put in a few miles over the familiar Medium Freedom Park Loop this morning. She apparently thinks the air is thick and hasn't gotten used to the humid weather here in North Carolina. One would think that a Texan would be able to handle everything the US weather tossed at her. I guess not. It was a nice relaxing run after closing out the week with 17 miles yesterday.

Sunday, July 11, 2010

Week in Review

Time: 624:38
Distance: 87.78 miles

The week turned out pretty solid in terms of mileage. I had some great workouts too. The 600s that I ran on Tuesday helped with my toughness in the hot weather, however it left me pretty drained for a couple of days. I felt like absolute rubbish the next morning at McAlpine. I was glad I got in some speed development and was content with the 300/100 workout on Friday. I think running fast and relaxed is starting to take shape and I should be ready to run a fast race next time out. The long run on Sunday brought the much needed endurance that I might be lacking in the summer phase of increased intensity.

Next week will be a bit chaotic and I'm not sure where the workouts will fit in, but at least I'll be in some cooler Cali temps.

Reliving the Thunder Road Marathon

Time: 110:56
Distance: 17.01
Pace: 6:31

I met up with a great crew this morning for a long run through the streets of Charlotte. The CRC die hards were at the Dowd YMCA about 7:30 am for a run over the second half of the Thunder Road Course. I started near the back of the pack, but was able to catch the likes of Caitlin, Meagan, Paul, Billy, Aaron, Justin and others by the 10 minute mark. I really don't know the course that well despite having run the TRM course. The second half of the race last December was a bit of a blur and I had the luxury of following the lead vehicle.

Today the pace was comfortable early on and I had second thoughts about doing the second half quicker. My coach, Jeff, had me down for running the second half of a 14 miler in under 5:30 pace. I just didn't think the legs were going to move that quick this morning. I was content to run with the group for about 6 miles and then I hit the front to see if I could wake myself up. I couldn't manage much better than 6:30s as the run took me to NoDa. I decided to back off and run with the group some more as it started to string out. Justin was game to push things along with Billy, Chris (from TrySports), and Paul. Around 11 miles Aaron came screaming up The Plaza and I think he said he dropped a 5:26 mile to do so.

I finally started feeling good around 12 miles and Chris was right on my shoulder. I picked up the pace going up McDowell and he tagged along. It wasn't until crossing Morehead that he fell off or decided to loop back for the others. I found myself on a tempo loop that I used this winter. It's hilly but a useful route and it allowed me to focus on running two rounds versus the 4 miles I had to complete. See the splits for how I finished up.

7:58, 7:15, 7:09, 6:54, 6:51, 6:42, 6:36, 6:41,
6:43, 6:31, 6:12, 5:52, 5:45, 5:42, 5:28, 5:25, 7:05

I didn't average under 5:30 for the last half, however the effort was there.

The morning got even better when I showed up to Caitlin's and she was busy cooking a pancake feast. We had blueberry and chocolate chip options. John also splurged and bought a $10 bottle of syrup, but decided to return it. Damn that Trader Joe.

Saturday, July 10, 2010

Karhu Explorer Day

Time: 39:35
Distance: 5.29 miles
Pace: 7:28

I only managed a short loop on the day because I was out the door at 4:23 am. However, I had a great event at Bull City Running Company in Durham, NC. The day kicked off with a mini hydration station of Nuun and Fuel Belt products. I answered questions and got to mingle with the huge group of Galloway participants. For whatever reason, the Galloway program is ginormous in the Research Triangle. This particular group had close to 400 members.

A table cloth would help my display in the future. Oh well. It's Nuun and Fuel Belt.

You drink that Nuun Ms. Fuel Belt.

The rest of the day was spent inside BCRC where we were having a promotion of Karhu shoes. It was try on a pair of Karhu shoes and get entered to win a free entry to one of the 13.1 Marathon Series events (preferable Atlanta on October 3rd). Also, the first three purchasers of Karhu shoes won automatic entry to one of the races. It was fun to chat with some of BCRC most loyal customers and familiarize them with the Finnish heritage brand.

Not too shabby. In case you didn't know, Karhu means "bear" in Finnish.

I was exhausted by the time the day was over. In fact I had to pull off the highway about 45 minutes into the drive home so that I could sleep. After getting back to Charlotte all I wanted to do was go to bed. However, I had a girlfriend and friends begging me to come out. I grabbed some food and put on my party pants before heading over to Tyler and Denise's house for a few pints. I made it a challenge to stay out until Meagan asked to go home. She used to be fun.

Friday, July 9, 2010

AG Track 3 Hundos and Captain's Time Trial

Time: 49:23
Distance: 7.11 miles

W/u: 16:50 for 2.04 miles
W/o: 12 x 300m w/ 100m jog. 300s in 54 sec, 100s in 30s
C/d: 16:43 for 2.07 miles

This afternoon I got an email from the Captain who was looking to take to the track for his bi-weekly 400m throw down. He knows that I sometimes workout at the AG track on the evenings at the end of the week and it just so happened that I was planning on doing some 300s. Over on Tim Budic's blog, there is a running list of a 400m challenge that Paul is trying to inch up. I believe this was Paul's third attempt at the distance and first time running the 400m effort in the afternoon. I can't imagine trying to hammer a 400m time trial at 5:30 in the morning like Paul has been doing. It's also no wonder that he had not managed to break 60 seconds.

We met up in the parking lot and went on a short warm up around the island that is Alexander Graham Middle School, Selwyn Elementary and Myers Park High School. It was pretty warm out and we didn't need much time on the feet to get ready for our respective workouts. Once we got back to the track, I prepped my legs for my workout while Paul ran a few strides. I had run a big long in the morning and I wasn't sure how the body was going to respond to the speed. On paper, the workout shouldn't be that tough with the goal being 54 seconds (~4:50 pace). It's the 100m brisk jog in 30 seconds that takes its toll later in the laps. I used to get crushed by Owen Washburn (I'd link to his blog if it were still legit) who was an absolute stud at this specific workout. I remember hearing how he once took it to Leo Manzano on a workout similar down in Texas. It wasn't that Owen would crush you on the 300s, rather he would press the pace on the recovery so that you were only getting 22-25 seconds rest each lap. Today's goal was to just run fast and comfortable with some pace changes, nothing too taxing. If done correctly I would run 3 miles in 16:48.

First up was Captain who got off the line well and pressed down the backstretch. Before his time trial I told him about Michael Johnson's 4 P's of the 400. Each 100m he would focus on these four concepts: power, pace, position, pray. It didn't look like Captain was praying the last 100m, but he was fighting to the line and clicked the watch to see a "5" for the first time in a few years. He had cracked a minute and I would refer you back to the 400m challenge link to see the official time.

I was up next and prepared to hit my splits. As I mentioned during the warm up, it was pretty hot, but luckily I would be getting a bit of a break after less than a minute of hard running. I kept clicking off my splits and running the 100m section faster than necessary. I was recovery in 25-27 seconds and just kept the 3 miles constant. I started with 100m easy so that my last 300m would be the end of the day.

(23.60), 51.56, (26.61), 53.67, (26.42), 53.77, (26.93), 52.17,
(26.40), 53.48, (27.62), 53.33, (25.97), 52.93, (26.07), 52.75,
(27.10), 53.23, (27.39), 53.84, (26.62), 53.73, (26.32), 45.91 for 15:47 total and 3 miles

I was very pleased when going back through my splits. I managed to average right around 5:15 pace for the 3 miles. How many of us in Charlotte could run 3 miles in under 16:00 without the pace change? Maybe I'll race the next 5k in such a way. I finished up with two more miles around the tri school island and called it a day.

Medium Loop as a Shakeout

Time: 64:43
Distance: 8.64 miles
Pace: 7:29

I have a workout this evening, but it doesn't scare me. It's 12 x 300m in 54 seconds w/ 100m jog in 30 seconds. That's basically 3 miles constant, switching gears between 4:48 mile pace and 8:00 mile pace. If done well the total time would equal about 16:48 total. The workout isn't designed to be taxing, but as a way to feel comfortable changing pace and recovery quickly.

Despite the workout on the schedule, I ran with Meagan for a pretty good morning jog of 8+ miles. It was our standard medium loop that took us through Freedom Park and around the Booty Loop. The pace was comfortable and will set me up nice for a good workout.

Thursday, July 8, 2010

Freedom Park Speed Development

Time: 48:54
Distance: 6.40 miles

Long W/u: 30:28 for 4.07 miles
Speed Development: Drills, 4 x 50m, 4 x 100m
C/d: 18:26 for 2.33 miles

I decided to do my speed development session in Freedom Park this evening. I had relatively fresh legs later on in the day because I didn't get out the door to run this morning. My mileage will be plenty high without an extra 5 mile run. When the temps had dropped a little, Meagan and I got out to Freedom Park and looped around to put us at the soccer fields around 4 miles.

I went through my drills and continued to notice that my right leg isn't nearly as explosive as my left. I know that I usually have a leg discrepancy where my right leg is a few centimeters short than my left. It results in stress fractures and fun stuff like that. However, I've come to decide recently that my right leg can't push off nearly as well when doing bounding exercises. I find myself struggling to get more than a couple inches off the ground when I try to launch off my right foot. The left leg doesn't show Spud Webb-esque hops, but it has potential. Maybe it's just because I'm left handed and left side dominate which leaves my right side begging for power. I would love to correct this issue over the next few months, but am unsure about how to do so. Any ideas?

Anyway, after the drills I ran 4 x 50m quick, but not as fast as last speed session. Last time I over did it at the AG track and was tight for a couple of days. The 4 x 100m were also hard, but not overzealous. I was certain to strain the muscles, but not damage them. I forgot that there was supposed to be a few more 50m bursts at the end of the workout until I saw the schedule at home. Oh well.

My Best Workout Ever

I was reading through an old log, an activity that I do rarely, and I found my best workout. Ever. I started this blog in the fall of 2007 and have kept it pretty updated through the highs (marathon wins) and lows (injuries) that come with training. Back in the spring of 2006, when I was a senior at Brown, I kept a hand written running journal. I was fairly consistent with my recording through a successful season of training and racing indoors and outdoors.

I wanted to share my best workout that took place on April 18, 2006 at the Brown track in Providence, Rhode Island. It was a workout that told me I was ready to run with any miler in the Ivy League. The workout that I did was 5 sets of 500m (300 jog), 300m (200 jog), 200m (200 jog). However, I was supposed to have much more jogging rest than I actually took. I misunderstood the workout because of the various interval differences and rest distances. I think I it was supposed to be equal jog to the interval, but I'm still not sure. All I know is that off shorter rest, I still killed it.

The splits were:
Set #1 - 75.4 (98), 44.0 (66), 31.4 (72)
Set #2 - 77.9 (102), 45.6 (70), 30.9 (75)
Set #3 - 77.5 (110), 45.7 (70), 29.9 (77)
Set #4 - 78.4 (108), 46.1 (70), 30.7 (73)
Set #5 - 77.8 (114), 45.4 (71), 30.2

On the 500m, I would come through 400m in 61 or 62. The 300m and 200m were run at 60 to 61 pace. I remember feeling tired, but fast on each interval. In my log I wrote "Managed the workout but didn't feel too sharp." At the time most of Brown's team was injured so the workout was done alone. I only realized that I had "messed up" the workout when a group of 5kers (Neely, Burke and ??) were doing the same workout, but were taking much more rest. I doubt I'll ever touch this workout again.

Wednesday, July 7, 2010

Heart Attack?

Time: 32:13
Distance: 4.29 miles
Pace: 7:44

I think I had a heart attack this afternoon. Perhaps it was due to dehydration. Maybe it was a coffee related incident. Just hear me out.

Meagan's best friend Brooke came to town this afternoon on business and we all went to Panera for lunch. I cooked some giant flapjacks for breakfast and didn't feel hungry so I just drank coffee. As most of Charlotte's residents would know, today's temps hit triple digits. I was probably dehydrated from last night's workout and this morning's run. I've done my best to drink constantly throughout the day the 100s makes hydrating difficult. Team TGA has started repping NUUN Active Hydration which means I have a fun new product to help keep the southeast properly topped off.

Regardless, on the drive home from Panera I started to sweat. Heavily. Meagan spotted drops of sweat on my forehead that soon turned to streams pouring off my face. My arms formed beads of moisture. My heart started to beat hard, not fast, just with force. Soon my shirt was soaked through and Meagan and Brooke were having a good laugh at my expense. When I got out of the car it looked like I had just finished a run. My white shirt was suctioned to my chest, my ass had sweat through my shorts and my arms were sweating. It wasn't the best experience. As soon as I got up stairs I grabbed some water, orange juice and a bunch of snacks. I think it was a combination of dehydration, low blood sugar and an infusion of caffeine. The three factors caused a perfect storm that wreaked havoc on my clothes. I felt perfectly fine 20 minutes later and didn't find it a big issue to double with Caitlin in the evening.

We ran from the house to Freedom Park, around the pond and back. No problems during the run or afterward. I know it wasn't a heart attack, but my episode wasn't the funnest experience. Stay hydrated out there Charlotte and Oklahoma.

Feeling Miserable

Time: 90:01
Distance: 11.61 miles
Pace: 7:45

I'm not sure why I agreed to it, but I did. I was up at 5 am and out the door 40 minutes later with Meagan in order to run at McAlpine. Meagan, Caitlin, Billy, Spada, Thomas and Justin were all doing a workout on the last mile of the Footlocker Course. I was just getting in some miles since I worked out last night. My calves were pretty sore from being on the track and up on the toes. I was content to run with Paul as the big group did 6 x 1200m.

I never felt good on the run despite the great conversation with Paul about the World Cup. We are both excited to watch the final match this Sunday. I ran farther than I should have because when I got back to the Old Bell parking lot and sent Paul on his way home, I realized that I couldn't get into Meagan's car. I opted to turn back and find the workout crew which meant more shuffling. I was glad to get in the miles, but wish it felt better.

Tuesday, July 6, 2010

Hot 600s at the AG

Time: ~54:02
Distance: ~8.20 miles

W/u: 17:25 for 2.17 miles
W/o: 10 x 600m in 1:40 w/ 2 mins rest
C/d: 9:57 for 1.01 miles

What a day for a workout. It was hot, hot, hot. Meagan and I drove over to the AG because I needed my supplies. I brought a towel and two bottles of water knowing that halfway through the workout my body temperature would be sky high. We warmed up on the streets around the track. It was a slow shuffle to start, but by the end I was feeling ready to throw down.

Once back up to the track a small group of Charlotte Running Club members were finishing up their workouts. I overheard Emily Barrett mention her new role as CRC Social Director to some guys that I've met before but couldn't recall their names. I also spotted Dr. Greenapple jogging around the track in a pair of Newtons he was testing out. I'll refrain from calling out Newton at this time. I didn't do much in the way of strides and sorta just launched into my workout. The goal was to come through 400m in 66-67 secs. and then maintain the final 200m.

For some weird reason I couldn't work Mr. Garmin. I'm usually pretty sound at pushing the right buttons (start/stop vs. lap/split) at the right time. However, today was a different story. I was all over the place on the first 3 intervals. Thus, the timing is a bit off during the first third of my outing.

1:40.xx (?), 1:39.77 (2:00), 1:39.xx (?), 1:40.01 (2:00), 1:40.55 (2:01),
1:40.40 (2:00), 1:40.69 (2:00), 1:40.95 (2:00), 1:41.33 (2:01), 1:37.72

The workout turned out well. I jogged 200m after each interval and then stood around for about a minute. I was right on minus the 9th interval when I lost focus during second 200m and came through a little slow. Meagan was key in yelling out my splits at 400m each time. I was pretty consistent in passing by at 66 to 67 seconds. It was pretty hot after five and I made sure to start drinking and pouring water on my head. My stride felt fairly in control and I was able to pick up the pace the final 200m if necessary.

My average looks to be about 1:40.3 or so which is roughly 4:26 mile pace. The goal for the next race is to come through the mile fast.

The most recent 600m workout and perhaps only true 600m that I've done was about 6 weeks ago:

7 x 600m in 1:46 w/ 2 min rest - This workout was pretty easy and came at the end of the week.

Other workouts have contained a 600m interval, but it was usually run pretty fast.

Freedom Park Loop

Time: 38:55
Distance: 5.32 miles
Pace: 7:18

I have a workout this evening so the goal was just to get in some easy miles. I need to think about doing morning workouts, but it's easier on the mind and body for me to just get up and run easy. Once I'm fully awake, I like to get out the door to really tax the body. I kept the pace easy this morning knowing the real work was taking place on the track later this evening.

Meagan and I ran together for the first 3.5 miles and then she looped back through the park for more distance.

Monday, July 5, 2010

Run and Pick Ups

Time: 35:47
Distance: 5.34 miles
Pace: 6:41

I needed to get in some additional miles this evening so I went back out through Freedom Park. As I was leaving the park it was time to start with 5 x 20 sec. strides through the neighborhood and bike path. I've had these bursts of speed in my training for the past couple of months and enjoy how they break up a run and introduce a new stimulus. I'm supposed to do them at the end of my run, but I elect to put them in during the last 1.5 miles. I only take 40 seconds rest between them so in 5 minutes the effort is over.

Meagan's Record

Time: 60:09
Distance: 8.57 miles
Pace: 7:01

I'm not sure why the run ended up being so fast, but it was. The first mile out the gate was rather pedestrian, perhaps a timing error by Garmin. Meagan was feeling good and the final time showed it because we usually run this loop a minute or two slower on average. It was successful run to start the week and hopefully a sign that the legs will be up to the challenge of these week's workouts.

8:18, 7:01, 7:07, 7:05, 6:56, 6:47, 6:45, 6:38

Sunday, July 4, 2010

Week in Review

Time: 609:06
Distance: 85.43 miles

This week wasn't too big in terms of intensity and was almost a bit of an off week. Granted I still ran 85 miles, but the only "workout" was the mile and 5k races on Tuesday night. It might have been a little ambitious to run both efforts in spikes which left my calves sore. However, I spent the rest of the week doing recovery runs when possible. I visited a ton of stores this week and made much progress for The Genesis Agency. Next week's training is going to be what I was planned to do this week. Make sense? Stay tuned.

Meagan's Long Run

Time: 78:10
Distance: 10.79 miles
Pace: 7:14

Meagan missed out on yesterday's long run because she was working at RFYL. We got a late start on the morning, but it wasn't all that warm out at McAlpine. We found a little over 10 miles of soft surfaced and shaded running. I felt pretty good and don't have too much soreness left in the calves. I'll be ready to hit a couple good workouts next week when the temps climb back up to the 90s.

After the run Tyler and Denise came over for some quality breakfast burritos. The idea was first to make pancakes, but once we heard Denise was bringing a guacamole mix, the switch was made. The time at the pool was pleasant, as was the trip to Yoforia! The weekend capped off with a trip up to Lake Norman for a holiday celebration of brats and beers. I'm not a big lake fan, but I couldn't pass up the opportunity to chill with Andy and Melinda Knorr.

Saturday, July 3, 2010

Saturday Long Run & A Day of Sport

Time: 122:43
Distance: 17.23 miles
Pace: 7:07

I was invited to run out at McAlpine with a group of Charlotte Running Club members. Originally I had planned to start from the Old Bell entrance, but as I was driving over I made a last minute decision to start at the Main entrance. I try to avoid the Main parking lot as much as possible since Meagan's car was broken into this winter.

When I arrived I was delighted to see about a dozen other cars, half of which belonged to the CRC group. Caitlin was leading this excursion as part of her marathon training program. I was content to sit well off the back of the pack for the first mile simply allowing the bod to warm up. The 6:30 am start time is much earlier than I'm used to and I had to start with a shuffle. Ten minutes into the run I was happy to join the group up front that contained Paul, Spada, Compton, Beigay and a couple others. It was great fun chatting with Spada about track legends like Daniel Komen, Noah Ngeny, El G and Bob Kennedy.

Later in the run Beigay took us on some single track near the Boyce parking lot that I didn't know existed. The trail might have lasted for 1k, but it was cool while it lasted. When we hit the start of the Footlocker course around 11 miles a few people called it quits while the rest of us ventured on. We spotted a fit looking old dude named Tom that Spada knew and tried to close the gap over several miles. The pace kept getting quicker until we took a left and he went right. With about 5 miles to run the pace had dipped into the mid-6:30s and Ms. Chrisman was pushing the effort. I started feeling really smooth just before heading up the hill and decided to open things up. I split 6:10, 5:52 and 5:43 for the final miles. It was a good way to close out the run.

8:04, 7:11, 7:33, 7:37, 7:43, 7:18, 7:12, 8:27, 7:45, 7:05, 7:05, 6:59, 6:49, 6:39, 6:10, 5:52, 5:43

Afterward, a group of us decided to have brunch at Zada Jane's which is always a treat. However, it couldn't compare to the rest of my day that included watching Germany blow out Argentina, the Prologue of Le Tour, Spain inch past Paraguay and finally the Pre Classic. It was a great day for sport! The coverage of the Pre Classic was miserable at best because the commentators didn't tell a story and missed the real highlights of the day which had Phoebe Wright running 1:58 and Andrew Wheating dropping a 3:51 mile. Ryan Fenton of Flotrack has a pretty good rant about NBC's shit coverage of the meet.

The day only continued to get better over at Nick and Jenn Frank's house where they had a cookout celebrating the construction of their deck. Meagan and I got to hang out with some pretty cool people who are some of Charlotte's most committed runners and triathletes.

Friday, July 2, 2010

Recovery Miles

Time: 60:32
Distance: 8.66 miles
Pace: 6:59

I took another spin on the legs this evening with Mike Crouch and Meagan. It wasn't quite as hot as it's been in recent weeks which made for a much more enjoyable outing. Mike is getting ready to race at Peachtree and the NACAC meet in Florida. The first 4 miles of the run were pretty slow and the pace gradually picked up the final half. By the time we finished I was feeling fresh again. My calves have been a little tight since running 4 miles in spikes during Tuesday night's racing.

Familiar Run

Time: 39:35
Distance: 5.46
Pace: 7:15

I'm back in Charlotte and hit up my morning loop run prior to jumping on a conference call. It was a fairly productive morning of running, business and relaxing that kicked off a great holiday weekend.

Thursday, July 1, 2010

Newport News & The Nolan Trail

Time: 81:53
Distance: 12.01 miles
Pace: 6:49

I was wide awake at 5:55 am so I got up and went in search of coffee. I was out of luck until 6:30 am because the Econo Lodge (really cheap) that I opted to stay in didn't start breakfast service until that hour. Instead I checked the intertubes for interesting material and made a few quick updates to the blog. Last night while I was eating myself into a coma at Sonic, I asked a man who was wearing a pair of worn running shoes where the good spots are to put in some miles. He directed me to the Nolan Trail right by the Mariners Museum Park. I found a route by foot and decided that's where I needed to be.

It was about 2.5 miles to the trail and the trail was 5 miles long. I knew that a double run was unlikely with the busy schedule I had planned for myself. The target was 12 miles this morning and I found them easily. The Nolan Trail was a pretty cool spot that I'd come back to on future trips. A sandy, crushed gravel course that crossed a least a dozen wooden bridges. It forced me to run easy around a lake and under tree cover. The run didn't fly by, but I enjoyed being out there with several other morning joggers.

I did one full loop of the trail and then I wandered around Christopher Newport University. I had never heard of CNU before and found the campus to be incredibly nice. The buildings all had a consistent theme and looked to be new. There was a lot of new construction taking place and the athletic facilities were quality. I ran a lap of the track before heading back to the Econo Lodge.

I enjoyed the miles this morning in large part to the cool temps and lower humidity. I don't think I'd like to live in Newport News or Virginia Beach, but I can see why it's a popular vacation spot.