Saturday, May 28, 2011

Longest Run in 20 Years for Me - 12 Miler

I didn't really warmup this morning and I didn't run with my group.  When running with our group, there is usually water and Gatorade in different places on the route.  On my route this morning, there was water.  Once every 4 miles there was water and that didn't seem to bother me too much until the last 2-3 miles when I really started dragging.

Not warming up a little wasn't a good idea.  I got right into it and my right hamstring was tight for the first 2 miles.  I stopped for a couple minutes and stretched it out, but my pace seemed to be trained into me already.  I ran the first 2 at 10 minute pace.  I pretty much kept that up the entire run, too.  As of last night, I planned on running my normal 10 miles, but since I started off so slow, I decided that I would make up for it by running a couple more miles.  Those last 2 miles were brutal for me.  I had no energy and it was really hard just to keep my legs going.

When I got home, I drank a Gatorade and a couple slices of deep dish pizza from my favorite place Pizzeria Uno's.  They're called Unos Chicago Grill or something like that now, but whatever.  I'm not showing up for anything but the pizza.  I sat down with my laptop and was about to start typing away on my blog, but I was literally delirious and couldn't type more than 3 letters without making typos.  I felt like I was going to pass out sitting up.  It took a good 30 minutes before the Gatorade and pizza really kicked in and started to give me some energy back.

The most I've run recently has been 10 miles.  I've done that distance plenty of times, but I haven't run 12 miles since high school when I did the the Citrus Bowl Half Marathon a couple of times.  I'm debating in my mind whether I want to try running 12 again next weekend or just settle back into 10 considering how depleted I felt this morning.

Just for a note on Thursday's workout.

Coach had us run 4.25 miles from the track around Lake Baldwin and back.  Our instructions were to run 5 minutes pretty hard, but just a little slower than 5k pace.  Then run slowly as a recovery for 2 minutes.  He said to do this 3 times since it was hot.  If we had a 4th one in us, then do it.  For good or bad, I ran a 5th hard portion plus another 25 seconds to bring it all the way home to the track.  I thought it was bad, because it took me that long to run 4.25 miles, but my coach thought it was good that I gave the effort of running a 5th portion.

Thursday, May 26, 2011

Slightly Tweaked Ladder Workout

Tuesday's track workout was a ladder.  Normally when you run a ladder workout, it is something like 400, 800, 1200, 800, 400.  The distances can vary.  Here's the tweak.  We ran 11 x 400m.  The first 400 was to be run at 5k goal race pace.  I made my goal 1:40.  We had to run each lane of the track working our way out to Lane 6 while maintaining the same time.  For each lane you add, you are tacking on about 7 meters.  Here's the breakdown of actual distances by lane.

Lane 1 = 400m
Lane 2 = 407m
Lane 3 = 413m
Lane 4 = 420m
Lane 5 = 427m
Lane 6 = 434m

Then, we laddered our way back to Lane 1, but this time we had to try to run negatives.  I was close.  I only missed running a negative split twice, but all of my reps were below my goal time of 1:40.  The rest between reps was 1:15.

RepLaneDistanceTimeMile Pace
5k Pace

It was hot, but I felt really good for almost all of the workout.  I didn't feel like I was even warmed up until the 3rd rep.  I started to feel sluggish on rep 8 which was lane 4 on the way back down the ladder.  With these kinds of times, I should be running better 5k's.  Period.  I know it will come.

Saturday, May 21, 2011

New 5K PR - 2nd Place in My Age Group

I ran the Lake Mary Community 5K Run & Walk this morning.  I got up a little later than I planned and had to cut my breakfast short.  I only ate half a whole wheat bagel and didn't feel like I had enough energy leading up to the race.  I did drink plenty of water, though.

I started at a good clip and felt like I could have just eased into a nice, comfortable pace.  Around half mile, I just felt like pushing more and wanted to start passing people.  I guess I had more in the tank than I originally thought.  I didn't go crazy getting into oxygen debt.  Just a little burst here and there.  The course had a lot of turns, so I would give a burst usually from 100 yards up through each turn.

I reached the first mile marker in 6:27, which seemed way too fast for me.  Usually when I run around that speed, I start feeling tingly in my hands and feet.  This time I did not, so I kept it up.  I hit the second mile marker at 13:01, so that's a 6:34.  I knew I was going to die or blow my PR out of the water.

Unfortunately, I felt like my chest was going to explode from the heat shortly after the 2 mile mark.  I slowed down to get some water and couldn't get the hand off and just splashed the water cup all over the place.  Didn't get any on me, though.  So I slowed down and that ruined my pace and then I didn't get any water to boot.

Shortly thereafter, I had to take my shirt off for a little ventilation.  I stopped and walked for 30 seconds while I removed my shirt and tucked it into the back of my shorts.  That helped immediately.  I remembered to leave the number facing outward, so they could read it.  There was someone reading the bib numbers on the far side of the track heading towards the finish.  Someone else sitting in the announcer booth read our names as we sprinted the last 100.  That was definitely a nice touch on the part of the race organizers.

I didn't catch my 3 mile split, but my finish time was 21:53.  What's crazy is that I was on pace to run a low 20 minute 5k.  I walked for 30 seconds and obviously slowed considerably otherwise on the 3rd mile.  I ran the final 1.1 miles in 8:52, so that's about an 8:04.  My average pace for the entire 5k was 7:03.

I definitely finished strong for the final 300 yards.  Coming into the final straightaway on the track, there was a guy about 10 yards ahead of me.  I went after him, he went into his sprint to challenge me and I put the afterburners on and held him off.

So not only did I get a new PR by 24 seconds, but I also took home a 2nd place medal for 35-39 Age Group.

This was a great day for me!  PR and some hardware!

Monday, May 16, 2011

Signed Up for the Lake Mary 4th Annual Community 5K Run and Walk

I signed up for Lake Mary 4th Annual Community 5K Run and Walk this Saturday, May 21st.  It benefits the athletics department at Lake Mary High School.  The money is supposed to go to a new artificial turf field and track.

It starts at the school, winds through the nearby neighborhoods and then finishes back on the track.  That should be interesting since it has three quarters of a lap on the track.  It could make for a good finish.

Here's a link for Central Floridians interested in entering this week.

Here's a link to the event on Daily Mile that I created.

As a note, my right leg around the knee is still very painful.  I can't tell if it is inside the knee joint or the top part of my soleus.  Just did some basic research and I learned something that I probably should have already known. I never knew the difference between a sprain and a strain.  Now I do and so do you.

Sprains and Strains

A sprain is an injury to a ligament.  Ligaments connect bone to bone.

A strain is an injury to a muscle or tendon.  Tendons connect muscle to bone.

It's time for bed.  I have watched too many ACL and Achilles Tendon Repair surgery videos.  Try these.

Achilles Surgery

ACL Surgery
Part 1

ACL Surgery
Part 2

Yeah, don't worry about it.  You're welcome!

Saturday, May 14, 2011

Twinkie and Luther Fueled My 10 Mile Run This Morning

Let's see.  Three things to talk about today.  I did a 10 miler this morning.  Felt pretty good, although, I forgot to start my watch timer.  I know when I started and when I finished, but I don't know how long my water pit stops were.  I felt strong through 4 miles, just kept plodding one foot in front of the other through 8 miles and then got a second wind and felt strong again for the last 2 miles.  Overall, it took me 1 hour 29 minutes which includes 2 water breaks.  Maybe that's 4 minutes, so I ran somewhere between 8:30 and 9:00 minute miles.  Not great by any means, but I got it done.  Around the 7-8 mile mark, I started feeling slight pain and tightness in my left hip again like 2 weeks ago.  This time, I tried to push off a little harder, increase my turnover rate and by getting a little more toe off, I raised my center of gravity a little and ended up not pounding the pavement so hard.  That seemed to help.  I timed the last 3 miles and that was 24:30, so 8:10 per mile.  The first 3 miles was probably about the same or slightly faster, which means the middle 4 was considerably slower.

It has been a little over 2 hours since I finished my long run.  My lower right thigh, knee, and upper calf are killing me right now.  I am probably going to take a nap shortly and see if it feels any better this afternoon.  I may need to talk to my little friend Aleve.  We'll see.

Second thing... Thursday's workout was the first hill workout since November and the hour change.  We don't run the hills in the winter, because it is too dark and the whole thing is on brick.  That would lead to some twisted ankles and probably some spills.  We ran the long 2.5 mile hill loop twice.  It was nice to run the hills, because it is half shaded by lots of Oak trees.  When it's 90 plus degrees, the shade makes it feel like 80 something and that is highly welcomed.  We ran the entire loop like a fartlek.  3 minutes hard followed by 1 minute easy and keep doing that until 5 miles is covered.  It was good, but a hard workout.  Over the course of the 2.5 miles, there are 5 hill segments.

Lastly, I have to mention what I ate last night.  I ate part of a deep fried Twinkie.  I have to start by saying that I have never liked Twinkies.  Now, if you take that Twinkie, dip it in batter a few times and dunk it down in a fryer, I likes me some Twinkie all of a sudden.  This was made by the Tree House Truck, which is a food truck in the Orlando area.  You can follow them on Twitter at @TreeHouseTruck.  It was raining, so I thought it best to stay under their awning.  Just let me lie to myself for a second, ok?  I started looking over their menu and they have a few burgers on it.  One of them is called the BearGrr... AKA "The Luther".  I grabbed this picture from another blog and it shows what a Luther is.

The Luther
This is a bacon cheeseburger between 2 Krispy Kreme donuts.  This is something like no other.  I loved it.  Sweet on a greasy burger and throw in a bacon accent.  Forget about it.  If you are in Orlando, follow the Tree House Truck on Twitter and track them down.  They even took my order on an iPad and then paid them with my debit card on their iPhone.  It's like the future is now payment method.

I did share the burger with 2 other people, so I diffused the caloric intake just a wee bit.  I also have to admit that I wanted to try a chicken and waffle sandwich with gravy, but decided I would have to wait for another time.  It was hard, but I did prioritize my long run this morning.  I will find Melissa's Chicken n Waffles food truck another day and another place, but I will find it.  Maybe that can be my next Friday night dinner leading into my next 10 miler.

Saturday, May 7, 2011

I-Drive 5K Run - Race Report

It was cool this morning and there was a very light breeze.  Perfect conditions for a race.  It did start to get a little warm on the course, but nothing major.  The drive down to the tourist corridor on I-4 was easy, but traffic was snarled once we got onto International Drive.  My girlfriend drove us, so I hopped out of the car about half a mile from the race area.  It was a nice warmup.  I got to take my time jogging by the new Peabody Hotel.  I didn't have time to look at during the race for obvious reasons.  That hotel turned out really nice.

I lined up about 3 people back from the start, so I got off at my own pace.  The first half mile was completely in the shade of buildings, so that was perfect.  I hit the first mile at 6:39.  I knew that I had to be around 6:45 to have a decent 5k, so I started well.  I slowed a little on the second mile.  It wasn't getting too hot, but the sun was in your face for most of it.  I hit the 2 mile clock at 14:04, so that was a split of 7:25.

The last mile was a straight stretch and at least the sun was at your back.  I felt like I was struggling to keep up and I started getting passed by a few people.  Every time someone went by, I used them as motivation to push a little more and keep my pace.  I also kept reminding myself of my speed work and tried to break the mile up into stretches that were like laps on the track in my mind.  I hit the 3 mile marker at 21:48.  My goal was to be there at 21:30 assuming that I continued at the same pace through the finish.  That would hit my goal around 22:15.  Of course, I was a little after my goal, but you also don't finish the last tenth of a mile at the same speed.  That last mile split was 7:44, so I dropped off again.  I finished in 22:25 and they actually announced my name as I was coming across the finish line!!!  That was fun to hear my name on the PA system.

Overall, there weren't too many turns.  It was a very flat course and the temperature was cool to moderate for central Florida.  The finish area was a little cramped, but everything was in the shade of the building at Pointe Orlando.  I liked it.  I will definitely run this race again.

Thursday, May 5, 2011

Happy Cinco de Mayo! Run, Burrito, and Beers!

Happy Cinco de Mayo!  Got my run done, ate a delicious chicken burrito, and I am now enjoying beer.  It's English Brown Ale, but close enough.

The new shoes are still doing me right.  I love the smell of new shoes and they still have that scent.  Who knows how long it will last, but you have to enjoy it while you can.

Today's workout was pretty quick.  6 to 8 reps of 600 meters run at 5k goal pace.  I definitely ran them too fast.  The shorter the distance, the faster I run.  Some people like to run long and smooth.  I like to run quick.  Sometimes I run slow; sometimes I run quick... quick... quick.

I did the first 2 reps at 2:15.  That's exactly 6 minute mile pace or 18:45 for a 5k.  That is way faster than my goal pace.  I felt good and strong on the next 2, but my right calf started tightening up towards the end of rep number 4.  I started feeling pain during 5 and I made number 6 my last since I didn't want to pull anything.

I did extra stretching on my calves for good measure and I am now wearing my handy dandy Recovery Socks to make sure everything is back to normal for the I Drive 5K Run on Saturday morning.

That's the roundup for today.  Happy Cinco Day!  I'm ready for another Newcastle and then it's time to hit the sack.  It's Ride Your Bike To Work Day tomorrow and there should be a good turnout riding with the Orlando Mayor in the morning.

Sunday, May 1, 2011

Long Run with a New Pair of Shoes

I just bought a new pair of running shoes yesterday.  I already like my Asics Gel Cumulus 12's.  As named, they made me feel like I was running on clouds.  My warmup was just a hair over 1 mile and immediately I could feel the difference.  I was stiff, but there was no joint pain "like normal."  What a feeling it is to have no pain.

This was a group run and I stayed with my group for 3 miles.  We had 7:47, 15:11, and a low 23 range time for splits.  It was a little faster than I wanted to go, but it was good to push it and be able to stay with my group.  There is normally a water stop at that point and I was getting thirsty after the 2nd mile.  I stopped for 30 seconds and then got back on pace.  I watched the group go around a corner and checked my time when I went around the same corner to gauge how far off pace I was dropping.  After another mile, I was behind by 1 minute and 5 seconds, so if I didn't stop, I would have dropped back only 35 seconds.  Not too bad.

At one point during the run (around 5 miles), the group went straight and I ran off to the right.  I knew there was a water fountain at Cady Way Park.  That was the 6 mile mark and I stopped for water.  Maybe 2 minutes to catch my breath a little.  My core/chest was starting to get hot, so I took my tech shirt off and wore it around my waist.  What a difference that makes for cooling your core area.

About half a mile later, I misjudged a slight incline and pushed my right foot into the ground a little too hard.  This caused some pain in my patellar tendon where it attaches to the quads.  I had to slow down a little and take some short strides for about 200 meters until the pain subsided.

Once that went away, I got a sharp pain in my left hip.  Changing my stride didn't help much with that and I didn't want to start walking.  I had been running on the left side of the road for some time and it was angled which most road are.  I went over to the right side of the road and the pain went away.  I usually don't like running on the right side for obvious safety reasons (can't see cars coming from behind), but also because that usually makes my left ankle hurt.

Overall, the new shoes are fantastic.

I don't remember where I found this recipe, but it tastes decent and you get some of your vegetables and fruit in at the beginning of your day.  It's a green smoothie.

Blend 1 cup of water and 1 cup of kale leaves (get rid of thick stems) until the kale is broken into very small particles and it looks like green sludge. Add 1 cup of raw spinach and continue blending.  Add 1 banana and to make the smoothie cooler, I add frozen mixed fruit.  Usually this is blueberries, strawberries, and raspberries.  That's the normal smoothie.  This morning, I added half cup of broccoli after the spinach.  I don't know how much fiber I just took in, but it should undo any damage that happens tonight from eating at the Daily City Food Truck Bazaar.