Thursday, June 30, 2016

Time to put the speedwork on the self for a few weeks.

Tuesday morning, Sarah and I hit the PDS track for 5 x 800s with a 400 recovery between each one.  Today, I followed it up with 12 x 60 second hill repeats.

Even thou, I am not racing this weekend; I decided it was time to put a done stamp on my speedwork for a while The time has come to give myself a few weeks off and shakeout a bunch of easy runs before putting pen to paper and organizing my plan for the rest of the year.

Why idle back the speedwork?

Far too often, I keep pushing and pushing because my workouts seem to be going well. More often than not, I push to far and end up stringing together either a bunch of subpar workouts or races. There is no real reason for it.

Scaling back allows both my mind and body to rebound for the next round.

Tomorrow when the sun comes up, I will be out cruising along for a nice easy run.
How about you?

Tuesday, June 21, 2016

English Ladder

Last week, Meg and I ran the Metric Ladder of 3000, 1500, 800, 400 etc. This week, I joined Paul, Laurie, and Billy for the English version of the same ladder 3200, 1600, 800, and 400.

Just having someone else to chase made my workout faster. Even thou, I was about a straightway behind at the finish of the 3200, I still ran 11:31.

After what seemed like a fast 600 recovery, we headed off on the 1600. Again, I ran it faster than last week with a 5:40. Down the ladder to 800, I ran 2:45 or 5:30 pace. Billy and Paul went out way too hard for me in the 400. They were 70 to 71. I felt pretty good finishing in 80 or 5:20 pace.

All in all, it was another good workout and another Max VO building. I cannot have enough of those workouts.

Huge thanks to Paul, Laurie, and Billy for giving me motivation.


The Cool Down Runner

Tuesday, June 14, 2016

Metric Intervals

Another Tuesday has come to pass, and speed work was the order of day at 5:15 this morning. If I were truly being honest with myself, I wasn’t looking forward to it. After my race on Saturday, I felt like my legs were down for the count. Never should I expect them to rise again.

Toss in a warm, muggy morning where sweat ran off my body rather than dripped off. What can I say, I am glutton for punishment.

While Megan and Mary Kate headed off some morning miles, Paul, Aaron, Steve, and Billy went for 4 x 1 mile. Meg decided to join me for some metric magic this morning: 3000, 1500, 800, 400, 200, and 100 backwards.

For the 3000, I went through the mile in 5:47 finished just over 11 minutes for the entire 3000. After an 800 recovery, we were off on the 1500 which I covered in 5:17. After a 400 recovery, off we went again on the 800. This one we covered in 2:45. Steve joined Meg and me for the 400 in 75 seconds. Big shout out to Steve for dropping the hammer and inviting us to chase him. We, then, finished it off with 200 in 36 seconds.

On the docket was my backwards 100 which was more for a strength exercise than an interval. I picked this up from another excellent runner and started using it. The quads get some ecentric work while the hamstring got some much needed love.
Meg, appreciate your assistance today.  

The Cool Down Runner




Sunday, June 12, 2016

Exercisers vs. Marathoners

Yesterday, I had just finished my run and was enjoying a rather leisurely stroll up the street to my house. To my left was a lady walking her dog. We exchange our morning greetings, and I was pleasantly continuing on my way.

This is when I hear from behind – “Do you run for exercise or do you do marathons? “. At first, I am not sure who this is being directed, so I look back to see that she was talking to me. At the same time, several responses rolled through my head, but I landed on the following response – “Yes, running is great exercise, and I enjoy it. I have, however, run a few marathons over the years”.

This seemed to satisfy her on some level because she turned and continued on her way. I watched her as she headed further up the street before turning to continue my own journey home – shaking my head along the way.

Did I miss an educating moment here? Could I have shared that there more types of runners than just people who exercise solely vs. those who run marathons. Probably.

But I doubt she was looking for a long answer. She got the answer that she thought sounded right and with that, she was happy to move on.

The Cool Down Runner

Saturday, June 11, 2016

China Groove “Main Street” 5k Recap

If it is the second week of June on a Friday night, then the runners of Charlotte must be headed to China Groove for the “Main Street” 5k.

Hard as it is to believe, several years have passed since my last nighttime “Main Street” experience. Needless to say, I was looking forward to it.

Rather than go through all of the prerace stuff, let’s jump right into the race recap. Sarah and I talked briefly about working together. Both of us were shooting for a sub 18 minute efforts. Once the horn sounded, I “willed” my legs to surge forward. The start is about a quarter mile back from the finish so we run through the finish on our way out to the turn around. Out of the corner of my eye, I looked to see if Sarah had joined up with me. I thought I saw her jersey. However, it was getting dark so I couldn’t be sure.

A half mile in to the race, the runners were breaking to smaller packs. My pack consisted of me, another guy, and the lead woman.  ¾ of mile into the race, I guess the fire department thought the runners might want to run through a shower. They had rigged up one of their hoses to spray water. Guess, they didn’t realize it but there were two problems with their efforts. First, it was not a light spray but a torrential down pour. Runners wouldn’t be just wet they would be soaked. Everyone I saw looked to be avoiding it. The second problem had to do with where the water was going. The road slanted from right to left. The meant that the right lane of the road was being showered with water while the left had a 2 to 3 inch deep run off of water from the shower.  There was no option but to go through it not only going out but coming back. I hate getting my race flats wet for no good reason so I wasn’t happy with this part.

Ok, moving on, by the mile, the lead woman and I dropped the other guy. We kept going back and forth. She would surge in front, and then I would.

We did this all way to the turn around. As we were coming to the barrel, I veered slight right so I could make an arc around the barrel. She was probably 2 steps in front of me. We got the barrel, and she simple ran right past it. The coarse monitors were yelling for her to turn. I made my turn, and within 50 yards, she came right up beside me.

I gave Billy a shout out as he passed me on his way back. Then, I yelled for Sarah, as we passed. She was well back of me.

Over the next half mile, the lead woman and I shared pushing the pace through 2 miles. On a slight incline just after 2 miles, she looked to be opening up a small lead on me. However, once over the hill, I charged back to her.

I could already see how this was going to play out, and I hoped I could do something to change it. With a ½ mile to go, I surged past her, but my surge was short lived. She seem to easily match my pace, and pushed back in front.

We turned the final corner, and with the finish line in sight, she sprinted away from me. She beat me by about 3 seconds. All of it came in the last 200 meters of the race.

My goal going into the race was to run a sub 18 minute. This I did with a 17:58. However, I felt that I didn’t give my best effort. After the first mile in 5:39, I ran 5:49 and 5:50. My legs wouldn’t turn over any faster even with my breathing not being all that labored. They just felt tired.

My time garnered me a second place in the Grand Masters Division behind Jim M. He ran an awesome time of 17:28. I never even saw him. Of course, it was dark, and he was way too fast for me.

Over all, this was an awesome race. Much of the credit goes to David F for making this event one of the best in the area. Race Directors, if you want to see a well run race, run one of David’s races. He sets the bar high, and because he does, runners tend to come back year after year.

The Cool Down Runner






Tuesday, June 7, 2016

Once again, the Speedy PDS crew helped me get more out of myself than I would have gotten solo. With 4 sets of (400, 800) with ½ recovery between it each, it would have been far too easy for me to just slow down and cruise through it. Not with this bunch, they are constantly after me to keep pushing. It was exactly what I needed to keep going whenever I hit a tough spot.

Here’s a big shout out to Bobby, Sarah, Jinnie, Paul, and Megan. Super big shout out goes to Aaron and Stacy for dragging me through the last 400 of my last 800 meter repeat.

Your help is much appreciated.


The Cool Down Runner