As I hoist myself back onto the wagon of good training habits (off of which I am prone to tumble), I have decided to take my own advice and run the 60 minute (hard) / 90 minute (easy) routine with a weekly long run until I am re-ready to progress to the triple digits. The most demoralizing time of the year is this period of getting back into shape. It's not tragic, that's when I'm down and out (temps below 0F / sun forgets to shine). Rather it's hopeful and painfully apparent that a little work has to be done to get back to where I left off.
Experience is helpful here. I've done this toss & tumble so many times now I understand the rules. It's like quitting smoking. Nothing so easy - a person quits 6 or 7 times a year. Well, getting back on track running-wise requires some fore-knowledge that: yes, it all comes back; no, it's not easy; and yes, it comes back quicker than you think. So my plan is to get to a point where I can run my aerobic 'best' day to day using the up/down, hard/easy, short/long variation that is the cornerstone of Lydiard training. For the purists out there, hard/easy is a relative term.
Pretty steady running since last week. Since January, my weeks have been disjointed with miles as catch can. But when proper temperatures returned, not only did I hit the roads, my desire
to hit the roads skyrocketed. That, I now realize, was the key ingredient I had been missing for weeks. The natural connection between knowledge and practice: the desire to do it. Well, the desire is back and I'm having fun regaining lost ground.
My first outings were much like the past workouts during the weeks of hit and miss mileage. HR remained really low while my legs complained of the activity. But today things looked up. I ran for an hour and averaged a healthy HR of 159 which, for me, is just under marathon effort. The pace has slowed to 7:02 for 8.51 miles but the effort was where it needed to be. Also, the legs felt good after a mile or so. (The sudden reappearance of daily running has me back on ibuprofen.)
So, we are off to try to gather steam where I can maintain this HR on the hard days and 10-15 bpm less on the 'easy' days. This will depend on how much recovery I need on those easy days, which means I might need to just crawl through the 90 minutes. We shall see. Hopefully, after a few weeks (TBD) I'll be able to move the mileage/time factor up a notch.
60 minutes ~8.51 miles @ 7:02 average pace. 159 HR.
Sunday's long run was a nice wet run. Oddly, Mike and I were thrilled, at least at first, at the prospect of liquid precipitation and the fact that it was not freezing to the road. A steady drizzle accompanied the beginning miles and somewhere around mile 8 God turned on the rinse cycle. When he did, poor Mike suds up. His jacket is clean now.
I made the decision to do a strip show for our Sunday viewers at the halfway point as I traded shirts, jackets, and tore off my pants. It wasn't really shorts weather but the pants were getting rather heavy from its rain barrel imitation. I was warm for about 10 minutes until I became soaked through again. But those 10 minutes were
nice. I didn't seem to notice that my skin turned the same shade of red as my hair, but Mike
was kind of enough to point it out. Being colorblind, he could have said my legs were green, how would I know?
21 miles @ 8:04 pace (I think). 144HR
Monday's run was good in that it is over. The HR averaged low 140's and the legs were sore. But like most running maladies, the only cure is more running. This proved out today.
90 minutes ~10.75 miles @8:22 pace. 142 HR.
Wednesday: 10.34 miles 90 minutes @ 8:42 pace. Rain. Slow sluggish, actually thought I was running faster. I guess not. HR 137.