September 29, 2013

Happy with the Half

Week of Sept. 23 ~ 29

46.9km / 29.1 mi.
Tapering for race on Sunday.

Rest (No school today, so tempo run tomorrow)

3:45 - 11.4k w/ 1.7k WU, 4 mile tempo with top girls, 350m easy, 350m hard, 1 mile tempo alone, 1k WD.
4 mile tempo in 7:27/23/20/39. 1mile extra in 7:40. Total 8k in 37:29 @4:41/km
Felt fine.
Weather: 25C/77F, 60%
Weight: 58.2kg

7:30pm. 5,000m time trial but I cruised it, pacing a woman in 22:27
4:20/31/37/37/21 Nice comfortable pace.

3:45 - 7.8k  with 400m hill x 11 (total up & down) with x-country team. 10', 8', 6' with 2' rest.
Ran very easily with the slower girls.
Weight: 56.9kg

Weight: 56.4 !! (124 lbs)

Weight: 56.8

10:15 - Watarase Half Marathon

I ran this race basically as a test of my fitness, and…I passed. Time was 1:31:30, just about exactly 4:20 per km pace, which is what I was hoping for.

It was quite hot at 26C/79F, with bright sun about 90% of the time. So I suppose that affected me, but I didn't feel uncomfortable - I handle heat pretty well.

I have run it twice before and like it, despite that fact that A) it’s usually hot, B) they do not have a 60s division and C) the damn 5k split markers are wrong (the last 5k is always too long). (I complained…again…about B and C so we’ll see if they change next year.)

Watarase is in Saitama pref., just north of Tokyo, but I have to take five trains to get there. It’s a pleasant course.  Goes around a lake/reservoir 3 times, is flat, and is on a nice wide asphalt path. And it’s a nice size race - not too big, not too small. Meaning, in Japan, about 1,500?

I ran the first 15k at a good, but comfortable pace, usually accompanied by one or more runners. I felt good at that point so picked it up and ran a very good pace the last 6.1k. Unfortunately, I don’t know what it was because my watch showed 45 seconds slower, despite the fact that 15 to 20 was much faster than the previous 5k. I got into a real good rhythm with another guy right next to me, and we caught and passed a lot of people. I then left him with a sustained spurt over the last 1.1k.

And I felt good after finishing, which is a nice change from full marathons.

I would estimate my 5k splits at 21:34, 22:15, 22:15, 21:00, but that's just a guess - very annoying!

Anyway, a very good effort, and done on no long runs! Not even any long tempo runs - I had only run 6k at 4:20 pace a few times. So that's very encouraging for the possibility of running a good sub 1:30 half in November. Like 1:26 or thereabouts, hopefully....

I also felt light and strong, so the Kenyan thinness regime seems to be paying dividends.

Weather: 26C/79F
Weight: 57.8kg upon arising, probably about that at the start of the race.

Lots of rest next week. Three years ago I worked too hard in the two weeks after this race and then tore my calf muscle.

September 22, 2013

Finally a 90K Week

Week of Sept. 16 ~ 22
90km / 56 mi.

90k is my training program goal, and I finally achieved it this week. Ran every workout the way I was supposed to, but was damn tired today.
Shifted the first two-a-day from Thursday to Friday. Realized I can't run in the morning after the wednesday night workout. And rather than 8/8, 12/12, will run 8/12, 8/12, which makes more sense.

4:00 - No school, so did a tempo run on my own.
12k with 6k very easy. Felt very stiff and sluggish, but after stretching, striders and psyching myself up, felt fine from the start of the second 6k. Which was run in 25:47 @4:18/m
Weather: 27C/81F, 65%
Weight: 57.7kg

Note: I often feel horrible warming up, then fine once I start the meat of the workout. I think this is as much or more psychological as it is physical - the mind is just primed to "go" once the real running starts. Do others have this same experience?

Rest. Gym workout.

7:30pm - track closed so ran in Yoyogi Park.
1000m x 6. 3:49/46/47/52/50/40 (2:50 jog/walk).
Felt pretty good but it seems harder to run in the park than on the track. The last one was strange - didn't feel like I picked it up, but that's what the watch said.
Weather: cool, low humidity
Weight: 57.3kg (56.9 before running)

3:30 - 1.4k then 1.6k easy with kids. Didn't do the hill workout.
3k x 3 alone in Nogawa park @ 5:39/32/20/k.
Felt so-so on 1st, ok on 2nd and good on 3rd.
Weather: 26C/79F, 30%
Weight: 57.3kg

Gym-type workout (the actual gym is closed for 3 weeks due to some sports festival).
11:00 - 8k very easy
4:00 - 12k easy at 5:57/k

3:45 - 14k with 4k warmup, 3k x 3, 1k warmdown.
3ks in 12:35 (4:03/22/10), 12:39 (4:12/15/12), 12:21 (4:05/14/02)
(4 mins walk in between)
Felt pretty good. Much faster than the last two weeks. Getting into shape, less humidity, lighter weight.
Weather: 28C/82F, 40%
Weight: 57.4

10:30 - 8k very easy.
3:45 - 12k very easy. Stiff and tired both runs, although a bit better in the afternoon. Still, I kind of had to will myself through the 12k.
Weather: 27C/81F, 40% both times.
Weight: 57.3kg

Next week: A half marathon on Sunday. This is a good race, one that I like a lot, although it has always been hot in the past. Doing it mainly as a test of fitness. My goal half is in November.
No school on Monday, so will take a much needed rest day, then do a tempo run on Tuesday and an easy 5,000m time trial on wednesday. Then easy until Sunday.
I'll carbo load on Saturday. 57kg may be too light to race a half at. Veins are popping out on my arms and legs because I have no flesh.

September 15, 2013

Getting Back Into Shape

Week of Sept. 9 ~ 15
79.8km / 49.5 mi.

3:30 - 11.2k inc. 3 mile tempo run on slightly hilly course with top varsity girl.
3 miles in 22:23 (7:31/33/18). 7:30 = 4:40/km.
Very comfortable pace. Extra 800 with 400 fast and 400 with 200 fast.
Weather: 27C/81F, 50% - coolish
Weight: 57.8kg


7:30pm - club track workout. 10.6k. 1200 x 2, 1000 x 2, 800 x 2.
4:26/20 (2:40 jog/wlk), 3:32/35 (3:10), 2:53/48 (2:20).
Felt really good. Nice to run in low 3:30s - it's been one year and 8 months since I ran that speed.
Weather: 26C/79F, 50% - nice!
Weight: 57.8kg (57.2 before running)

All-day business trip. Probably just as well not to run.
Weight: 57.1

8:30am - 8k very easy.
11:30 - gym workout
4:00 - 12k in 1:08:22 @5:42/k
Very stiff in morning, felt ok in afternoon.
Weather: 27C/81F, 30/86
Weight: 57.2

3:45 - 14k. 4k warmup, 3k x 3, 1k wd.
13:49/13:25/13:40. Planned to run 4:40-45/k but went a bit faster, without trying to. Felt ok, but ate a bit too much lunch.
Weather: 30C/86F, 60%

8:00 - 12k very easy in heavy rain (very heavy at times), deep water in places.
2:30 - 12k in 1:11:55 (6:00/k) with the sun out!
Weather: 22C/72F rain, 27/81, 90% - typhoon coming tomorrow!
Weight: 57.8
My Kenyan thinness weight goal was 58, so maintaining under that. 57 is good, but hard to stay down there. Felt good on Wednesday, though....

September 8, 2013

Ok for Quality, Not Distance

Week of Sept. 2 ~ 8
76.6km / 47.6 mi.

Not achieving my target of 90km per week. It seems that doing three hard workouts per week does not leave me enough energy to run twice a day on Thursday and Sunday. Which is ok, I suppose....

3:30 with X-country team - 11.6km. 1.6 + 1 warmup.
3 mile tempo run with two junior varsity boy runners at 7:24/mile (4:38/k) on dirt course with one hill, and one more mile in 7:16. Nice, comfortable pace on the tempo run. (This day should actually be a harder tempo run.)
Weather: 30C/86F, 60%
Weight: 58.6kg

Gym workout

17k (5 + 12)
11:30 - Despite my "no two-a-days", I did go out for an easy 5k, having rested Tuesday.
7:30 - club track workout of 1000m x 6.
3:55/50/49/50/53/51 (200m jog in 2:30, 3:50 after 4th)
Quite warm and very muggy, so this was not a bad workout. Had several guys to run with and worked hard.
Weight: 57.9kg

4:00 with X-country team - 14k.
1.5 easy, then up and down 80m hill for 4,3,2,1 minute with 1 minute rests.
1.5k easy, then 9k at about 6:00/k
Weather: 28C/82F, humid
Weight: 57.8kg

12:00 - 12k easy.

3:30 - 14k. 4k warmup, 3k x 3 in 13:51, 14:04, 14:07 (5 min walk).
Planned to run this pace (about 4:40/k) - nice "cruise interval" pace.
Weather: 28C/82F, not humid, so felt cool.
Weight: 58.4kg

11:00 - 8k at very easy pace. Strange - felt very weak after 3k and walked 3 times. Decided to walk home after 4k, but 1k from home started jogging and then felt ok, so ran 4k at a normal easy pace.
But didn't feel up to going out again in the afternoon.
Weather: 26C/79F, but 90% humidity.
Weight: 57.3kg - maybe this is too low....

September 1, 2013

Bit of a Mishap

Week of Aug 26 ~ Sept 1

52.9km / 32.8 mi.

4:00 - 6k very easy with HS cross-country team - their first practice. About 20 boys and 20 girls on the team.
Have a sore lower back. It got sore last night for some reason.
Weight: 58.4kg

4:00 - 4.2k. Was a bit more than halfway into an easy run with the kids, had just picked the pace up a bit, when...I smashed my head into the branch of a tree! Not a horizontal branch, this was sticking out straight (hidden by leaves) and had been cut off, so was sharp. It took a nice gouge out of the top of my head. It didn't hurt too much, so I thought I was ok. Had my hand over it, the kids saying, "Are you ok, Mr. Poulson?" I said, "Yes, I'm ok," and took my hand away. It was covered with blood, and blood started running down my head. The kids started yelling, "No, you're not ok, Mr. Poulson, you're not ok!"
So I walked back 20 minutes to the school, accompanied by one of the girls in case I passed out, with my shirt pressed to my head. I was fine, had no trouble getting back and went to the nurse, who put disinfectant and a bandage on it.
My wife puts disinfectant on it and changes the bandage each day, so 5 days on and it seems to be healing all right. I was going to give you a photo, but it's not very pretty.
So that was the excitement for the week.

7:30pm - 5,000m club time trial.
Head felt ok, so decided to run the 5,000. I told the club members, "If my head starts bleeding, tell me and I'll stop." They laughed, but I said, "No, I'm serious!"
Well, it was ok and I ran 19:46. Splits of 3:51/57/4:00/3:59/59. Not great, but I'm still not in very good shape. And it was hot and humid. Anyway, I wanted to run under 20:00 and did.
The strange thing was, I picked up the pace from 4,000m, went around and pulled away from two guys, and then ran hard the last 400, but those 2 ks were both 3:59. I think that shows that the heat takes more out of you than you realize.
Weather: 28C/82F, 58%
Weight: 59.1kg early am, 58.2 before running

4:00 - 10k, with 8k running with junior varsity kids at easy pace.
PS: Took my hedge clippers with me and rode out to the tree before practice and cut off that branch! Held it up in front of the kids before practice and yelled, "I got my revenge!" Good for a laugh.

11:30 - Gym workout
3:30 - 6k with 1 mile time trial with varsity girls, on part asphalt, part dirt path in a park. Myself and the top girl ran 6:20, with 5 other girls close behind us - great! This was a good pace for them in the heat.
Top two boys ran 4:47 and 4:48!
Weather: 34C/93F
Weight: 57.7kg

12:30 - 16.5k in the heat! Total 1:29:12 @5:24/k but with first and last 10 mins very easy. A very tough run.
Weather: 36C/97F ? (33 in shade, but much hotter in the sun).
Weight: 57.5kg

Rest - hard run yesterday and have a 4 mile tempo run with the varsity boys tomorrow (not with the top boys!)
Back is still sore each day, but when sitting, not when running or walking. I'm not sure what this is, hope it goes away.