Wednesday, April 28, 2010

4/28 - Injury blues...

One would think that I'd have learned by now not to try and "run through" another injury but alas, history repeats itself. This time it resulted in my entire calf--achilles up to the insertion behind my knee--becoming swollen and super painful to walk on.

I tried taking my dad's advice and hiked Monadnock Saturday after the race, but I found upon finishing that maybe hiking had actually made it worse. My achilles began feeling tendonitis-y and behind my knee was feeling worse as well.

Since then, I've been eating ibuprofen like skittles and icing semi-regularly. It's hard to really prevent walking on it since I live on a campus which covers about a square mile. I'm trying to find the silver lining to all of this; maybe focusing on wrapping up the semester's final papers is it.

Anyway, I was signed up for the Children's Museum 5k this weekend and I was really looking forward to it, but I doubt it's going to happen. Going for my first jog since Friday's race this afternoon... 1-2 miles.

Monday, April 26, 2010

4/23 - NHTI-Delta Dental 5k Road Race

Today was a beautiful Friday and although I was feeling a bit down and out after going out for my friend's birthday last night, I was determined to do some sort of workout. Originally I was thinking 6xMile at 10k pace or something to that effect. I called up Sam Wood on my way to Keene to see if he wanted to take part and he invited me over to Concord with him and Abbey Gossling for the NHTI-Delta Dental 5k.

Soon upon arrival I noticed several of the usual suspects in the Concord road racing scene - Scott Clark, Chris Mahony, Tim Cox, Mackenzie Kilpatrick - to name a few. Beginning the warm-up I could already feel my calf and it was giving me shooting pain just where the calf muscle inserts behind the knee. For a few days I've been dealing with this problem. It seems like I have some serious muscle imbalances in my right leg causing me to limp and compensate. The problem is made worse by a slow-healing wound in my achilles tendon from a new pair of asics I bought which were a full size too big. I can't pinpoint the source of the issue. All I know is it HURTS.

I warmed up more casually than usual, threw on some flats and did a few strides. The pain in my calf subsided, albeit temporarily, and I jogged to the start line. The course was really cool - it had a fun cross country element but also spent about a mile on the roads. The race went out quick but comfortably (4:56) but the timer at the mile mark scared me when he called 4:46. I knew the mile markers had to be off when we hit 2 miles at 10:20. No matter how slow I've run 5k, I don't believe I've ever run a middle mile in 5:34! I was mostly dueling with a young looking guy whom I didn't recognize. It turned out he's a talent hailing from Saint Paul's School and he definitely was the home-town favorite. In the last half-mile I turned it on and took the win decidedly in 15:48. Results.

Overall, this was a good race for me. I felt nearly effortless for a majority of the race and was surprised to have so few runners challenging up front. I was impressed by the second runner's efforts to shake up the pace, using surges and accelerating into turns. Focusing on the competitive strategy of a race is something I hadn't had the fitness to do in some time, and it felt good to focus on the race with that lens.

4/20 - 3.75 Mile Tempo

My calf has been bugging me for a couple of days and today it was feeling pretty uncomfortable during the warm-up. Steve and I ran about 6 miles and then headed down Hayes road in Lee for a hilly 3 and 3/4.

I felt good and we ran composed, took turns working the hills and finished with a few barefoot strides. Total on the day was 12.5, but I'm looking at the status of my calf as questionable, at best... Pace was 5:32/mile.

Friday, April 16, 2010

Week 4/12 - 4/18

Monday - 9.8
Tuesday - 11.5 (7m tempo)
Wednesday - 10
Thursday - 16 (7.5 am & 8.5 pm)
Friday - 10 (6x800)
Saturday - 10 (70 min)
Sunday - 15.2 (1:33)

Total: 82.5

4/16 6x800

Originally I was hoping to get on the outdoor track and get in around 6k-7k worth of work, but with yet another rain storm in our midst I resigned myself to the indoor track.

The 160m Paul Sweet Oval is a godsend in the winter, but come Spring you really don't want to be trying to run fast in there. A lot of the guys have had IT, ankle and other issues from multiple reps on it. 10 laps to the mile? Ouch!

Anyway, I warmed up for 17 minutes, stretched, did one hard stride and headed into the workout. My legs were feeling really off in the beginning (probably from the 16 double yesterday) but I was able to work into it. I hit 2:27, 2:22, 2:23, 2:22, 2:22, 2:20 on 2:15 rest. I found it surprising how strong I felt aerobically and my legs actually felt better for the cooldown than on the warmup. Overall, a pretty easy workout. In the near(ish) future I'd like to be running k's and 1200s around this pace.

Tuesday, April 13, 2010

4/13 7-Mile Tempo

Today was an absolutely beautiful day for running, and although my head was a bit in the clouds I was determined to get a workout in before my afternoon class. The plan was to run a mile on the track and head straight into the 6 mile homecoming loop for a total of 7. Goal pace was to repeat last week's 5:30/mile effort and extend for an extra mile.

I warmed up for 22 minutes (3.3) and stretched briefly at the track while chatting with Wes Moseman and some ladies on the track team. I looked at my watch and realized it was going to be a tight squeeze to get to class, so without a stride I went into a mile on the track (5:20) and swung out right into homecoming. The first mile was faster than intended but I was feeling good so I put it out of mind and went to work on the hills on Mill Road. Four miles was hit in 21:25 and I was still running pretty comfortably. Right around 5.5 I was faced with a really strong headwind and I began pushing hard to maintain pace... bad idea, as I quickly developed a cramp in my side which brought me to jogging pace for about 20 seconds as I pushed and stretched my stomach to relieve it. Luckily, the pain mostly subsided and I finished the 7 miler in 37:50, a PR for that distance. Unlike last week, I was happy to be finished in light of the harsh headwind I faced all the way down 155A and onto main street.

5:24 pace for 7 sounds like borderline race effort when you compare my previous two races (4 miler at 5:14 pace and 5k at 5:08), but I was breathing far more comfortably than a race effort and was solo in trainers. I guess I ran a tad harder than my definition of "tempo", but I wouldn't be surprised if I could run 5:15 pace for 7 in a race at this point. That 4 miler was run less than 3 weeks after getting my wisdom teeth out, and the 5k a week later after two mid-week workouts. Dead legs probably explains my inability to run 5 minute pace at Todd's trot and fresh legs probably explains why I was able to rip today.

Overall, super happy with the effort today. Tomorrow and Thursday will be slow and easy. Friday will probably be a workout of a faster nature.

Monday, April 12, 2010

Week 4/5 - 4/11

Monday - 10 (66:10)
Tuesday - 12 (6 mile tempo 32:50)
Wednesday - 7.5 am 4.5 pm
Thursday - 10.5 (6x800)
Friday - 5.5 (34:40)
Saturday - 14.5 (5k rr 15:58)
Sunday - 14 (1:32:20)

Total: 78.5

Saturday, April 10, 2010

4/10 Todd's Trot 5k

The 5k today went according to plan for the most part. I wanted to dip under 16:00 after a long week of workouts, homework, "real" work, and little sleep. Since the start line was a half mile from the apartment, Steve and I warmed up from home and had first class water, food and bathroom just prior to the race.

Unfortunely, no amenities were going to change how my legs were feeling. I just wasn't feeling sharp for such a (relatively) short distance. I was psyched to see eventual winner Justin Fyffe showed up along with several UNH Cross alumni including Matt Russell, Pete Mallett, and Mackenzie Kilpatrick.

The gun went off and Fyffe immediately took charge at the front and the rest of us followed behind. By mile 1 it was clear who the eventual winner would be, but Mallett, Russell, Kilpatrick and I made up a foursome and just worked away at the course. Mile 1 was reached in about 5:05 and mile 2 a bit slower, although I didn't actually look at my watch. At the time I was too busy thinking about how awful my stomach was feeling and whether a pit stop at my apartment or in the woods would soon be in order.

Kilpatrick dropped back ever so slightly behind us and soon I joined him. With about a half mile to go I began regaining lost ground on Mallett and Russell, but with $100 and $50 on the line, they began duking it out and I was left to take 4th, 9 seconds back from Russell and 5 from Mallett. Overall time was 15:58. Results here

Steve finished well in 7th with 17:01. I think we were both pretty happy with our races considering the workload we put in over the past week. I hit 76 miles this week without a long run (that comes tomorrow) and I have had 4 hard days in 8. I'm looking forward to increasing the length of my runs and quality of my workouts in the next couple of weeks. With no races on the weekends, I intend to follow a Wednesday-Saturday workout schedule. 7 mile tempo on Wednesday plus some 200s.

Thursday, April 8, 2010

4/8 6x800 Tune-up

I was really tired today but I made up my mind to be true to my two workout a week commitment (to myself). Also, I'm tired not because of my training but because of my failure to make sure I got a good night's sleep. No more excuses; I'll make up the rest over the next couple of days.

I didn't feel too bad during the workout. I warmed up for 22 minutes and after a 4 minute stretch I began the workout. I started on the track and moved out onto the trails and roads to change up the terrain and get some hills. I therefore ran on time. My first 800 inside was 2:29 and felt like a breeze, so I worked off a 2:30 on/2:00 rest cycle. I finished up with a couple of 200s in 31 and jogged home to stretch.

This workout felt easy, but I know it still can have tired out my legs for Saturday's race. I'll be taking things very easy tomorrow out of caution.

Race Schedule

4/10 - Todd's Trot 5k Durham, NH
5/1 - Childrens Museum 5k Dover, NH
5/22 - Bedford Rotary 12k Bedford, NH
5/30 - Runner's Alley/Redhook 5k Portsmouth, NH
6/5 - Rhody 5k, RI

More to follow...