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January 31, 2008

change up

One of the things l really like about this tinman training is that I'm no longer constrained by the Holy Order of Things (long run Sunday, short fast stuff Tuesday, longer fast stuff Thursday, etc). I'm racing a half-marathon next Sunday, so today found me doing a long run. Long should be in quotes, since it wasn't quite 15 miles, but it's the longest I've run since the marathon so I guess that means long right now.

Today's plan was 2 hours, going slow-->ez-->moderate, with 6x30s pickups at CV pace (argh) during the last half-hour. Even though this morning was kind of warm, this was kind of delightful, at least for a while. Slow felt too slow, and most of ez felt too slow. After about an hour, it started feeling more like it was supposed to feel. Still, "moderate" pace was very achievable, and after a mile-and-some of that I started on those pickups. To avoid getting totally anal about it, I just ran hard(er) while counting to about 30s, then somewhat less hard while counting to about a minute. The tricky part was holding to that "moderate" pace between CV pickups. Not only am I accustomed to running pickups all-out, but I'm apparently programmed to jog recoveries :-) Anyway, I did what I was supposed to do, and I was very happy to find out I still have legs after 90 minutes. This will come in handy in the half-marathon.

Posted by joe positive at 5:51 PM | Comments (6) | TrackBack

January 29, 2008

riddle me this, batman

This morning's workout was 90 minutes including 16x[1min@CV pace, 1min jog]. This mythical CV pace is supposed to be a bit under 10k pace. It was a beautiful still morning, around 50F, a little humid but bright and sunny. After a 6-mile warmup, I felt good and ready to go, so off I went - shit, 5k pace. Ok, try it again: shit, too slow. And on, and on, too fast, too slow. After the 6th item, I stopped a minute and set the gps to alert me when I went under 6:30 pace (setting the alert was very hard without glasses on, btw), but I don't know how much that really helped, given the very very short repeats. The thing dutifully beeped at me about 25s into every item, and I would slow down, and 15s later it would beep again, and I'd slow down, and then whoops, time to stop. I averaged 6:26 pace for the whole thing, but my splits were all over the damn place, ranging from 6min pace to 6:50.

So my question is this: how the hell am I supposed to run 10k pace for one and only one minute at a time, when I haven't run a 10k in over a year, and it wasn't even a very good 10k, and I am used to running short repeats all-out anyway?

Posted by joe positive at 9:18 AM | Comments (5) | TrackBack

January 27, 2008

helloooooo, Cleveland

first and foremost:

M: 80min (8:27)
T: 60min (8:42)
W: 70min (8:11)
R: 9.5mi incl 4 tempo , 4x[150m hill @80%]
F: 60min (8:39)
Sa: 70min (8:21)
Su: 13mi (7:43), solo

total: 62.8 miles running, plus core-strength and leg-strength stuff, between 5-25 min/day.

Thursday's tinman tempo portion went 7:06, 03, 6:59, 7:08. I was trying for 7:07, so I guess this wasn't too far off. The hill repeats were done around 6:17 pace. My very-fast club friend has a broken sesamoid, so she bailed on today's run and I just ran alone in the neighborhood. The plan was to run a few miles easy, then the rest around 7:50, so I was very pleased to end up with 7:43 pace for the whole thing. And with no company, even.

For most of the week I battled (and stretched, and massaged, and iced, and denied) shin splints which I attribute in retrospect to a certain pair of shoes, which I have now put away for a while. I also got a shinsplint-specific massage, which helped no end. Apart from the shin splints, my legs are starting to feel pretty good. I am relieved.

The big news - if you can call it that - is I've decided to run the Rite Aid Cleveland marathon instead of Bayshore. The decision was part whimsical (a brochure arrived, unsolicited, in Tuesday's mail, and I thought "hmmm....") and part practical - it will cost less to get to Cleveland and stay there than it would to run a race in Traverse City. I checked with some people familiar with Cleveland and the race, and got descriptions ranging from "no hills to speak of, and it's awesome" to "well, there are a couple of hills, and it could be windy in spots, but it's fun." Coach seemed to like it, so that settled it for me. It's only a week before Bayshore, so my training will be about the same.


I just watched the ESPN coverage of the Reebok Indoor Games and it just blew me away, "it" meaning Mottram and Defar and Kim Smith. Just blew me completely away.

Posted by joe positive at 3:57 PM | Comments (4) | TrackBack

January 20, 2008

winning is just a matter of who shows up

First, some running:

M: 7.16mi (9:05)
T: 8.39mi incl 10x[1min @5k pace, 2min jog]. avg 6:08 pace for the "hard" minutes
W: 7.18mi (9:04)
R: 7.84mi (8:18)
F: 5.12mi incl 4x[15s @5k pace, 45s jog]
Sa: AM 7.2mi incl 5k race (19:36damnit, 1F, 15OA); PM 2mi untimed very slow
Su: 7.32mi (8:12) plus a half-mile untimed warmup

total: 52.2 miles running, 5-15min of core-strength stuff every day

Despite my measly mileage these past few weeks, my legs still didn't feel great. I asked my coach about it and he thinks it takes longer to recover from a marathon than we realize, and I am still recovering. Let's hope so.

Saturday's race was nice in that I won, and I beat a very fast woman whom I never thought I'd beat, ever. It was also the first race I've won where I *didn't* lead wire-to-wire; this time I trailed the lead woman and passed her around the 2-mile mark. She's a great racer and I thought she'd come back on me, but she didn't. Not long after I passed her I started to fade; there was now no one in front of me that I could see (the next guy was about 20s ahead) and I probably lost some motivation. I heard footsteps behind me, put on the ol' "good job!" smile at the inevitable, and turned to see my friend and training partner Aaron coming. He proceeded to drag me the entire last mile, trying to get me to run faster and saying nice cheery things while I gasped and whimpered and whined. He is my new hero.

Saturday's race was not so nice in that I didn't PR. I honestly didn't know what to expect, and had no indication I could run under 19:30 other than the fact that I did it one time a few months ago. After 2 weeks of taper, after more than 6 months of hard training. Still, I'd kinda hoped to run faster yesterday.

Yesterday tinman came up with a bunch of training paces based on yesterday's 5k time. Most of the paces look reasonable, but some of the easier paces are a bit faster than my usual puttery easy/recovery paces, mainly because the first mile is *always* glacial, something between 9:30 and (gasp) 11:00 depending on how I feel. So starting today I will include an untimed 1/2-mile (or more) warmup just to get the legs moving. I must be the only one in the world who has to warm up for an easy-paced run :-)

not-running: I won't be rejoining the IT workforce anytime soon, it looks like; my old boss discovered that he didn't have any part-time work for me after all. I'm glad it only took a week to determine that. On the other hand, I took a sports massage workshop this week and it totally rocked! I'm really not the kind of person to say things like "this is it; I am home; this is what I want to do," but this is it. Really. Our class worked the race Saturday, so immediately after my cooldown I worked the massage tent for a couple of hours. It was great, and the other therapists in the class really know their stuff. Some day, one day, I want to be like them.

Posted by joe positive at 6:35 PM | Comments (5) | TrackBack

January 14, 2008

I suppose I oughta

all right, here's last week:

M: 6.69mi (8:59)
T: 7.71mi incl 11x[1min @5k pace, 2min jog]
W: 4.94mi (9:07)
R: 9mi incl miles 3-5 @ 5k pace + 1min, 5x150m hill @80%
F: 4.93mi (9:08)
Sa: 6.87mi (8:45)
Su: 13mi (7:39) with that very-fast woman from the running club

between 5 and 20 min strength conditioning each day

total: 53.1 miles, still hard for me to believe

What's even harder for me to believe is that I don't feel absolutely teeeRiffic, given the low mileage and glacial paces of the easy days. Not that I feel horrible, but the chronic PF in my right foot has flared for the first time in a few months, and this morning my legs were still tingling from yesterday's 13. And I have a 5k on Saturday I'm supposed to try to do well in (since I no longer have marathon training as an excuse). Yikes.


Yesterday one of tinman's trainees ran 1:07-something in the pf chang half. 1:07!!! That's so very awesome, and I feel so very unworthy of having tinman as my coach, especially when I whine about 53 miles and little chunks at 6:15 pace. Then again, it's a huge honor that he'd coach me. It makes me want to work harder.

Posted by joe positive at 6:28 PM | Comments (2) | TrackBack

January 11, 2008

I am cranky


I broke the spring on the lid of our kitchen trashcan - the nifty aluminum bulletshaped one I spied at a yard sale and had to have, for $20, and whose lid snapped at my fingers every time I threw something away. First thing out of bed this morning I broke the spring, and the lid don't snap no more.

The plantar fasciitis in my right foot has flared up for the first time in months, probably due to the nontorrid tinman tempo workout I ran yesterday - 3 miles @ 5k pace + 1min, followed by 5 times up a hill @ 80%, sandwiched in between warmup and cooldown. The tempo miles weren't as easy-feeling as last week's, and it took 3 tries pretty much daydreaming up the hill before I remembered to focus on 80% and what that might feel like. Anyway, it wasn't terribly hard but it wasn't terribly easy, and now my foot is sore.

A guy pulled up next to me on the interstate this morning and blew kisses at me. I think he was in love with my car.

Crappy day at work - 1-countem-1 appointment in 4 hours, which means the other 3 hours are unpaid. The other therapists are complaining that they're soooo busy and they wish some of their clients would cancel. My one client wants only a fluffy relaxation massage (I like to fix things). As soon as I get near her head, my stomach starts growling like a maniac, drowning out versions #17 and #18 of Pachebel's Canon in D and certainly detracting from the fluffy relaxing massage. I apologize for my growling stomach and we laugh, but I wonder what the hell I'm doing here. The room is dark, with drawings and little statues of fairies (and faeries) that belong to the wildly successful therapist who owns the room. I do not believe in fairies, or faeries. Maybe I should.

In the midst of this personal (and financial) self-doubt, my old IT boss emailed me yesterday about some part-time work, about 60 or 90 or 120 days' worth. I really wanted to leave IT for real and for true, but I could use the ego-stroking of doing something I'm good at, and I could use the money. So we're talking about it.


On the other hand, I would like to wish a big Happy McMarathon Day and Lots Of Luck to Ray and Albert, my two friends who are going to run McMarathon on Sunday morning. Recent events have made getting there half the battle. Weather's supposed to be low 60s, very humid but with almost no wind. Not ideal, but better than a lot of raceday mornings I've woken to this year.

Posted by joe positive at 6:37 PM | Comments (4) | TrackBack

January 3, 2008

last night everything broke

Last night we had the first freeze in 2 years, and everything blew up. My big fat dog insisted on getting into bed with us, and she lay there like a manatee taking up half the bed while Mike and I grew stiff from immobility in our little confined bedspace. At some point I awoke to a horrible grinding sound, which turned out to be one of the computers struggling to boot after the power came back on. Apparently it had been out over an hour, because the thermostat read 55F. This morning we found that the surge-before-the-outage had fried the cable modem and caused the poor little computer to go into an endless cycle of bluescreen-on-boot.

Luckily we live in a world where all kinds of problems can be easily solved. Brighthouse replaced the cable modem without a hassle, and the computer responded to an OS "reinstall" by reviving completely with all its previous apps intact (huh?). I guess the reinstall recopied some important OS files that had gotten corrupted. Who knows? I don't deal with that stuff anymore.

After all that and a dentist appointment, I finally went out for tinman workout #2, a combination of hills and tempo. For now, he defines tempo as 5k pace + 1min, which for me would be 7:15, or that marathon pace I keep not running in marathons :-) The workout itself was:

2mi wu
4x[50-60m hill, 80% effort]
2mi cd

This was fun. The "tempo" pace felt too easy and I didn't quite maintain it (6:59/7:06/7:06), even though I really tried. By the time I got to the hill repeats I was nice and warmed up and was able to take them hard and with good form. It turns out the hill I'd chosen wasn't 60m but more like 150m, oops. I'll use a shorter hill next time.

Posted by joe positive at 7:28 PM | Comments (2) | TrackBack

January 1, 2008


first, housekeeping:

3563.1 miles
2 PRs: 12k (first race at that distance, so it almost doesn't count), and 5k (legit)
second-best 10k, half-marathon, marathon

It was not the year I wanted. But enough of that. This week I started the new tinman January training schedule. He's pretty conservative with mileage this month, which is unnerving to me - if I'm damn slow at 85 mpw, won't I be damn slower at 50? But my only running resolution this year is to trust in this training, so trust I will. Yikes.

This morning's little speedwork was 60 minutes, including 8x[1min @ 5k pace, 2min jog]. Up until now, I'd been in the habit of going as fast as I could for repeats this short, since my previous coach's goal times often seemed to be pulled out of thin air, or even darker places. But today it was time to follow, not question. It's hard for me to judge 5k pace, and even harder when I'm only doing it for 60s at a time, so I decided to go for 6:15 pace, which would be .16mi in one minute. Unfortunately, these presbyopic eyes couldn't really read the distance display on the garmin (and the display isn't really accurate at such short distances anyway - it jumps from feet to miles too quickly), so I ended up going by feel anyway. It ended up as

19:35 wu (a bit over 2 miles)

item pace/rest pace

about 18min cd: 8:44, 37, 9:03p (480')

I guess this was ok. I hope it was ok. The 1st, 6th and 7th items were a little fast, but most of it was close enough to (fairly) recent 5K pace. I must admit that it felt almost too hard to hold for a whole 5k, though.

Tomorrow I'll run slowly for 45min, and Thursday I get to do hills and tempo. We've got a major cold snap coming through tonight; it's actually gonna freeze for the first time in 2 years. I'm looking forward to the next couple of days running.

Posted by joe positive at 3:55 PM | Comments (5) | TrackBack