Sunday, May 31, 2009

Long Run Lonesome 3

I sure miss Mike.

This morning the schedule was calling for a 2 hr 45 min workout. After having run this time length a couple of times so far this cycle, I can say it qualifies as a long run. In fact, I think my 2 hr 30 min runs qualify also. There is something about going beyond 2 hrs 15 mins that seems to put the work in workout.

Nevertheless, I was startled this morning when I opened the little pocket calendar I use as my logbook / schedule and saw 165 minutes staring up from the page. I was expecting to see 135 minutes. I don't know why, it just got into my head today was a 2 hr 15 min run. But I was feeling pretty good having slept in and when I got going a nice easy pace just flowed out of the legs.

I ran the first 10 in 1:19:30 (7:57 pace) and ran the 2nd 10 in 1:12:56 (7:18 pace). A cooldown finished out the time for a total of 21.2 miles.

This afternoon I went out with my daughters and marked the Cobscook 10k course for next Saturday's race.

Saturday, May 30, 2009

Sleep Late, Get Wet

Slept in since it was the weekend and there was no schedule. My reward: pouring rain that arrived just as I left the house. Ran an easy 1:45 for about 11.05 miles or so. Felt good. Slow and easy.

Friday, May 29, 2009

Atmospheric collision

I witnessed an interesting sight this morning at around 4:45am.  At about 3.75 miles into my run, I was crossing the first causeway when I glanced to my right and saw the sky burning red over Deer Island.  The sun was muscling its way through some thick clouds that were streaming east.  I glanced to the west and saw the rest of the weather system bearing down hard.  The wind picked up and some raindrops started to fall.  Looked to the right and red was deepening.  Looked to the left and the clouds had picked up speed.  In less than a minute there was a colossal collision and the sky exploded.


Into rainbows.


The bows shot into the sky and landed everywhere.  I was right beneath God’s laser show.  It didn’t last long.  The evil cloud cover smothered the sun.  And while it threatened to rain some more, the clouds didn’t recover and the rest of my run was dry.


Today’s run consisted of two quality hours.  I ran an even pace around 6:57 per mile. I got in 17 miles and then a short cool down.  Total ~ 17.15 miles.


Felt great.

Thursday, May 28, 2009

Peak #1

Today I hit peak #1 in the base building phase of this training cycle.  The 7 day moving average after today’s workout stands at 104.21.  It’s the 3rd time the moving average has hit triple digits in the past week – the last two on Monday (103.53) and Friday (100.97).  Now the 7 day moving average is scheduled to slide down as I have a mini-taper coming up for the 5 days prior to the Cobscook 10k and a recovery run the day after.  A quick look at the calendar indicates the next peak will be around Father’s Day.


I have now completed a 6 x 6 day cycle build to peak time.  From this point forward, the 6 day cycles will alternate between a higher and lower time cycle which will keep the weekly mileage fluctuating by about 10-15%.  Allowing for recovery days and mini-tapers embedded in the cycles, this method seems to be keeping the mileage high but without the rigidity of specific mileage targets.  This build was much easier on the body than my prior builds.  I attribute this to the alternating daily time component and that each run is run according to how I’m feeling.  On some days this caused me to run less than I thought I would and on others, quite a bit more.  I have also found that my peak weekly mileage (calculated as ending on Sundays) is about 10% less than prior builds.  Perhaps the mileage will increase as I get fitter but there isn’t a target.


I started using a 6 day cycle because it was easier to manage as my goal was to average a particular time spent running.  The odd 7th day was just too much math.  At first this method caused the build to accelerate as the average time increased quickly.  But now I have the reward of alternating the upper and lower cycles and I’m feeling pretty good.


Today I ran for 2.5 hours. ~16.4 miles.  Last hour with Eric – fresh from Long Island.

Wednesday, May 27, 2009

Rigging the average

The weather was beautiful this morning – cool in the mid 40’s.  Felt very good from yesterday’s recovery run.  The plan was to run 2 hours and I went through 7 miles right at the hour mark.  However, the pace was slowly picking up and I got to mile 10 with 36 minutes to go.  For some reason I thought an even 15 would suit me so I put a little tempo on to rig the average at 8:00 / mile.  Mile 11 in 7:04, mile 12 in 5:58, and another 3 minute ½ mile did the trick.  I then eased the pace back to hit 15 at the 2 hour mark.  Pretty close… 15.1 miles.

Tuesday, May 26, 2009

Bitten anyway

Monday’s dog didn’t bite but I thought the workout did.  Felt the effects of it this morning as I rolled out of bed and almost kept rolling on to the floor.  Bleary and dreary I made my way downstairs and decided what I needed was a recovery day.

Instead of rushing about I lazed around and had double the amount of coffee and spent double the amount of time pattering about.  By the time I got out I felt great.  I realized the real problem was 1) the time of day, 2) the allotted preparation time, and 3) the amount of sleep.  Once I cured #1 and #2, #3 didn’t seem to matter so much.

I jogged around town for 45 minutes and felt pretty good except for being really cold. It felt just like an autumn morning.  However, there wasn’t any soreness and very little fatigue.  I wanted to keep going but I was out of time.  This work thing can really cramp your style.

~4.98 miles.

Thursday, May 21, 2009

Sweet Sleep

Only 75 minutes on the schedule today.  Slept in to 4:20 and felt like a million bucks.  Still took it easy.  ~8 miles.

Wednesday, May 20, 2009

Life is getting early

Had to come in to work early this morning which means I lost an hour.  The schedule called for a two hour run which required a 3:30 start.  I was dragging.  I didn’t break a 10 minute average until the 6 mile mark and made it to 8 in 1:16:xx.  After that I had a few good miles but was still tired.  I hauled Eric off his planned course at mile 12 and made him accompany me for my finish.  Very accommodating, that soul.


I finished out with 13.3 miles for an average 9:02 pace so those final miles were at about an 8:13 pace.  Caught up on lots of Bloomberg podcasts that had been piling up.  Some good quotes were in there.  My favorite:


“The market is going to bring the government to its knees… and senses.”

 - Axel Merk on the government’s massive deficit spending



Tuesday, May 19, 2009

2:15 at 4:15


Got in 2 hours and 15 minutes this morning.  Frost advisory last night so I dressed warmly.  Overdressed as it turned out and had to change into something lighter at mile 3.  Met up with Eric at eight miles and we finished another 6.5 or more together.  ~14.5 miles.

Monday, May 18, 2009

That old hollow feeling

The miles are starting to accumulate and that old hollow feeling is coming back.  It’s been so long since I’ve trained in this manner that I’ve forgotten some of the oddities that come with it.  I am now hungry.  All the time.


The other noticeable difference is just how long it takes to get on pace.  A 15 minute warm up is now extended to an hour.  But after an hour or so, I feel pretty good.


Today was the typical Monday scenario.  1:45 on the schedule combined with an early day at work.  So sleep was less than 6 hours, my prep period less than 45 minutes with a start time of 3:45.  Everything felt rushed.  But the run got done.  I think I left my favorite water bottle in Marc’s car so I stayed close to home for hydration purposes.  The first 3 miles was in 30 minutes, the 2nd in 28 minutes.  Then finally, the body woke up and I got in another 5.88 in the remaining 47 minutes.  Felt good the entire way.


Hopefully it won’t be long before I have that old euphoric feeling.

Sunday, May 17, 2009

Soggy Sunday

The above photo is Marc and Eric on a soggy Sunday morning in Eastport. Eric was running by the house as we were preparing to drive to Pembroke.

Marc made it down for the Sunday run this weekend. His calf injury prevented him from running but he rode his bike along side as we put in 14.83 miles on the Cobscook 10k race course. The course goes along Leighton Point Road in Pembroke and then after a couple of turns, makes it way to the Reversing Falls Park. Ocean views, horses, deer, rabbits, meadows, birds, graveyards, and salt air all are present. It's a quiet, beautiful course.

The plan was to go out and back and then bleed off any remaining time on the clock. While we followed the plan, it rain so heavily that it felt like I was carrying five extra pounds of water. Soaked through in a matter of minutes, this was one soggy run. But we carried on and still enjoyed ourselves. Marc got caught up on all the jokes he missed.

It's a real treat to have someone ride their bike beside you. But it did quicken the pace up a little bit. I think we would have run a little easier if we were both on foot. Tomorrow I'll be running very slowly to make sure I get sufficient recovery. I didn't work as hard as yesterday but I still felt like today's pace was still faster than I intended.

We ran in the direction of the race, reach the end, and turned back. When we got to the car at 12.4 miles (20k) I still had to run 20 more minutes. Marc stopped at this point to warm up the car and grab a coffee for me. So when I got back, I was able to get into dry clothes and sip a hot coffee right away. What a good friend.

And finally, I see part of Mike's recovery protocol involves twitter! He's Love2RunCanada.

Saturday, May 16, 2009

Long Run Lonesome 2

Now that Mike is recovering from his surgery, I'm on my own until he is better. Not that I'd rush the poor guy into running before he was ready just so I wouldn't have to run alone. I mean, I wouldn't do that. But you'd think he'd at least drive over and hand me water when I need it. And maybe just do a few miles. Not fast, mind you. Just a jog. But if I know Mike, his feet are up and he's looking six weeks of ice cream right in the eye.

So I ran alone. It turned out ok despite the solo effort. The schedule called for 2.5 hours today. I got in 19.36 before my time ran out. Felt good the whole way. Bit of progression with the first 10 @ 8:11 pace and the last 9 @ 7:00. A short cooldown finished out the allotted time.

A treat tomorrow! Marc is going to join me. Either on foot or bike - depending on the status of his calf injury.

Friday, May 15, 2009

Enjoying those 60 minute runs

Nothing could be easier, it seems, than to run for an hour.  I toddled along listening the Bloomberg on the Economy podcast.  Saw Eric sneaking in some hill work at the 32 minute mark.  So we ran the final 28 minutes together.  Somehow he included a few more hills in the route home.  ~ 6.2 miles or so.

Thursday, May 14, 2009

Easy Run for Recovery

Did an easy 45 minutes before meeting up with Eric for another 60 minutes of easy running.  Beautiful Spring morning.  Temperature about 45 degrees, no wind and clear blue skies.


Eric was kind enough to go my slow 9:45 pace.  The legs were appreciative and by the end I felt like my old self.


~10.7 miles.

Wednesday, May 13, 2009

2 hour progression

Cool this morning with the temps at 35 degrees.  Mittens were worn for the 1st half.  Other than that, you couldn’t ask for a more pleasant morning.


Felt good this morning and was pleased to get in a decent progression run for this workout.  Two out and backs on the highway:


Miles 1-4:          7:59 pace

Miles 5-8:          7:27 pace

Miles 9-12:        6:55 pace

Miles 13-16       6:41 pace


16.3 mile total, 2 hours.

Tuesday, May 12, 2009

90 easy minutes

An easy run this morning.  Left quad was slightly sore from yesterday but cleared up for the most part by the end of the run.  Met up with Eric at 33 minutes for a run up Redoubt and a little xc to thwart the airport fence.  Again the time went by rather quickly.  Told Eric stories about my one adventure in NYC 19 years ago. 


Estimating ~ 9.25 miles.

Monday, May 11, 2009

Salvaging 9

Talk about running to how you feel…


An odd run this morning.  Mondays are my early day at work which meant waking up before 3am for today’s workout.  I was on the road at 3:45 for a scheduled 105 minutes.


I was slow.  Just didn’t have any pep and the miles were drawn out.  I felt ok and was surprised to see the high 9’s on the watch as each mile passed.  Usually 9 minutes per mile is my gentle pace.  But not today.  I was slower.  I ran the first section as an out and back on the highway and finished 7 miles at an average 9:41 pace.  A quick drink and I was out for an in-town loop to finish my time.


I was quite surprised at how I started to feel during the next mile.  I woke up and the pace started to perk.  The next thing I know I’m thinking that I can salvage an average 9 minute pace.  And sure enough, each mile passed with a faster pace and I was feeling pretty good.  Got in another 5.1 miles before the clock ended the run.  Average for the run: 8:41.  Average for the 2nd section: 7:19 with the last mile in 6:10.

Saturday, May 09, 2009

Long Run Lonesome

Had to do this one by myself. Schedule called for 2.5 hours. I was nice, then it rained, then it thundered, then it cleared. Crazy.

Ran in town for the 1st hour and then out highway for the last 90 minutes. Felt pretty good all in all but the accumulated mileage did make me fell just a little fatigued.

The faster pace near the end didn't amount to much better than 7:30's but they felt like I should be running faster. It looks like the training is staying in the legs now. Tomorrow I just run 30 minutes which will be a very nice break.

You can listen to quite a lot on a long run. I got in 3 podcasts, a couple Acts of Shakespeare, and finally some tunes to take me home.

Total ~ 17.5 miles.

Friday, May 08, 2009

The weather is not what you think.

I wouldn’t make a good weather forecaster.  As I sat drinking my coffee this morning the rain was coming down and then the fog rolled in.  I thought another wet run was in store.  Then when I went out for 90 minutes, it was perfectly calm, no fog or rain.  I don’t want to complain about staying dry but you would think that looking out the window would give one a good idea of what to expect.


~10 miles or so, easy.  Ran in town.

Thursday, May 07, 2009

Shuffling along

A very pleasant, easy hour run this morning.  Met up with Eric who was timely (thank you Charlotte) and we did a loop around the town – up and down a few streets until the time elapsed.


Felt good and it felt good to be going easy.  Weather was overcast that threatened rain.  Eric felt some drops but that’s probably because he’s half a foot taller.


Estimate ~6.5 miles.  Maybe less?

Wednesday, May 06, 2009


The air was full of water this morning.  At 41 degrees with a cold easterly breeze, I opted for mittens on the 1st half of the two hour workout.  I warmed enough to discard them for the 2nd half.  At first I thought I might avoid getting overly wet because it wasn’t technically raining.  But it wasn’t long before I realized the air was wet and I was soaked through by the time I hit 3.5 miles.


The breeze turned into wind when I made the turn back into town.  I chose the highway this morning in order to run on a smooth surface – so the workout was two out and backs.  I felt pretty good today.  At 30:15 I hit 3.5 and made the turn for the first hour.  The pace going back increased despite the wind and I was back at the house in 28:15 for an average 8:22 pace for 7 miles.  The 2nd hour was at a quicker tempo and I got in another 8.5 before my time ran out.  Average pace of 7:15 for that half.  Total = 15.5 @ 7:45.


Looking forward to an easy 60 minutes tomorrow w/Eric.

Tuesday, May 05, 2009

90 mins Shackford / Airport

Left quad slightly sore this morning.  I stretched it out a little and did a few very short striders.  It didn’t get worse or bother me during the 90 minute run this morning but I know it’s there.


Weather was cool again this morning.  Opted for mittens.  Red sky greeted the early miles along with a northeast wind.  Wonder if this bodes ill for weather later on today or tomorrow.


I got in an early 30 minutes before meeting up with sleepy head Eric.  Something is keeping him up late.  But he rolled out of bed and was only six minutes late which was ok as I spent the time getting some extra stretching in.


We ran up Shackford Head as a change and then onto the airport.  I know things are going well in the training as the time just seems to be flying by.  I looked at the watch and was surprised to see the run almost over.  That’s better than the opposite.


Mileage continues to climb at a decent rate that appears to be sustainable based on how I’m feeling.  The speed and hill work from a few weeks ago is now out of the muscles, thank goodness.  I was premature in those workouts as they sapped me of any energy to run the days in between.  The changeover to unstructured running has been a godsend in terms of consistency.  I find myself eager and anxious for the next day’s workout.  This is how it should be – at least now.


With the earlier light and warmer temperatures, things seem to be falling into place for a long sustained training cycle.  Here’s hoping.

Monday, May 04, 2009


30 very easy minutes this morning in the wonderful rays of a rising sun. Ran very slowly on purpose keeping my form in the focus. This worked very well in clearing out the kinks from yesterday. ~3.09 miles.

Sunday, May 03, 2009

Another good weekend

Yesterday, I got in a nice 75 minute progression run. Felt good.

Today, Mike and I ran in the Moosehorn National Wildlife Refuge this morning. I got there a little early and ran 25 minutes, then we ran the next 1:35 together. ~ 14 miles or so. It was nice to run on dirt roads the entire time. I only ran into a little trouble with the feet on some of the rockier parts. My flimsy shoes aren't made for that sort of thing.

The Moosehorn has everything a runner could need. There's a clean bathroom, water fountain, Dunkin' Donuts nearby for afterward, and even law enforcement protection. In fact, poor Mike almost got arrested by a gun-toting mama who strode up to us just as we finished to grill him about his new car. The car is so new that he hadn't had time to put a license plate on the car. Tsk tsk. I had to talk her down by explaining that Mike was Canadian. She relented and let him go.

Mike was still high off the Boston Marathon. Absolutely powering through the woods like a steamroller. It was a faster pace than I was prepared for and I could feel it in the various parts. I got all the dirt on Thomas and his appetite and the gritty details of the marathon. But, alas, that may have been Mike's last Boston. It sounds like his coach is putting her foot down. She wants a trip. So it might be California for Mike. Personally, I don't see how this is going to work. What with Marc and I and all the gear, there might not be room for her.

Friday, May 01, 2009

Wind Power

90 minutes in the wind and rain.  Strong gusts made some parts hard going.  Ship from Brazil was unloading huge windmill blades for new wind power projects in the Northeast.  ~ 10 miles.