Sunday, February 28, 2010

5.82 Miles Easy

Mile 1 7:47
Mile 2 6:53
Mile 3 7:01
Mile 4 6:51
Mile 5 6:53
Mile 6 6:46
Total Average Pace: 7:03

The good news is I didn’t injure anything yesterday. I don’t think. I believe my legs are stable and strong enough to be able to push it a bit. Lord knows, that’s what I did yesterday!

Saturday, February 27, 2010

Conoco Phillips Rodeo Run – 33:44 – Crash and Burn Baby – 9 Miles Total

2 Mile Warm Up

Mile 1 4:57
Mile 2 5:14
Mile 3 5:38
Mile 4 5:44
Mile 5 5:33
Mile 6 5:30
Last .21 5:14
Totals 33:44 (5:26 Pace)

1 Mile Cool Down

Let me start out by saying that this is not the prescribed way to run a 10k. Before the race, I knew I had no shot at winning. After all, I had missed a week of training the week before, had been doing only 6 miles a day since, and had done no workouts. I had no idea what my fitness was. So I decided to just have fun and blast out the first mile and then see how long I could hang on. That should give me an idea right? I told Sean my idea and he poo pooed all over my idea and told me I would have some 5:40’s in there if I did that. I laughed. Sure enough if you look above you can see a 5:38 and a 5:44. I thought for sure I would have a shot at beating my 10k PR. If I would have gone out a lot more conservative and ran the race correctly I think I could have run about a minute faster (I had absolutely no desire to do this, done it a million times before). So I will just file this race away as experimental and take a mulligan on this effort.

All that being said and with all of the wrong things I did, I now know more than ever that I’m just not a long distance guy. Sean convinced me to not run the marathon next year since I am still feeling it’s effects. Tempos and slow twitching it for 6 miles just isn’t my thing. I mean I could work really hard at it and become somewhat competent at it but I’ll never just crush guys like Sean at it. That’s their bread and butter. With me, the longer the race, the more likely something is going to go wrong. I also find myself somewhat jogging 5ks and never even coming close to utilizing my speed until maybe the last .1. And that just kind of seems somewhat unsatisfying at times. Oh yeah I like to win and such, but I also like to feel like I’m racing up to my abilities as well. I find in races like 10k and up and 5k less so, the things I do well just don’t matter as much. I’ll go back to the drawing board, work myself into shape again, but this time I’m going to focus on 5k and lower. This summer, expect me to be doing some 400, 800, 1500, mile races on the track.

Friday, February 26, 2010

Easy 5.81 Miles

Mile 1 7:31
Mile 2 6:57
Mile 3 7:38
Mile 4 7:10
Mile 5 7:31
Mile 6 7:16
Total Average Pace: 7:21

I had the worst stomach issues I have experienced on a run during mile 3 so I had to be very creative in getting it to go away. I'll let you take that any which way you want. Once it went away everything was gravy.

I'm running in the Conoco Rodeo Run tomorrow. How I'll do and what kind of shape I'm in is a total mystery to me. I'll consider it a success if I don't hurt myself too bad.

Thursday, February 25, 2010

5.8 Mile Easy

I ran with Sean and Luis and we averaged 4:08 pace miles for 9 miles or at least that's what my Garmin said. I somewhat doubt that was the case. More likely we were doing 6:20-6:30 pace miles for the 2 loops I ran with them. No issues with the foot. I'll have to see how it feels during the day.

Wednesday, February 24, 2010

5.82 Miles Easy

Mile 1 7:25
Mile 2 7:00
Mile 3 6:59
Mile 4 6:59
Mile 5 6:56
Mile 6 6:54
Total Average Pace: 7:03

Nothing major to report. No issues.

Tuesday, February 23, 2010

5.8 Miles Easy – Not Broken Not Fixed

Mile 1 7:24
Mile 2 6:30
Mile 3 6:45
Mile 4 6:35
Mile 5 6:40
Mile 6 7:23
Total Average Pace: 6:52

I had no issues with my foot during the run. The legs felt really strong this morning. The last mile I jogged it in with Sean and Luis during their cool down. Later on in the evening before bed my foot was feeling a bit strained. Something is definitely wrong with it but I don’t know what to make of it or how minor or major it is. Let’s just hope it subsides and goes away or else I might have to take up swimming :-(

I have the Conoco Rodeo Run this weekend so I may have to test the foot out a little to see if I’m ready to go.

Monday, February 22, 2010

5.84 Miles Easy – Am I Broken?

Mile 1 7:38
Mile 2 7:09
Mile 3 7:06
Mile 4 6:54
Mile 5 6:58
Mile 6 7:02
Total Average Pace: 7:09

The run started out relatively uneventful until about 1.5 miles in. I felt a gradual pain in my left foot that I thought would subside and go away. But it kept increasing until I felt a sharp and sudden pain so I stopped running. Initially I thought the pain would just go away and then I could start running again. But after 3 minutes it still wasn’t getting any better and I was having problems putting any pressure on it at all. I was thinking to myself that it would be a long 1.5 mile walk back to the 0 mile marker. I was a bit discouraged. Then I decided to try a few practice jogs and on the 3rd one the pain was manageable. So after a 5 minute hiatus I continued my run. The pain went away pretty quickly and I decided to complete my 2 loop run. Strange.

Sunday, February 21, 2010

5.79 Easy

Mile 1 7:16
Mile 2 6:46
Mile 3 7:08
Mile 4 7:19
Mile 5 6:56
Mile 6 6:53
Total Average Pace: 7:04

I’m back in the saddle again. I ran into Vaughn Gibbs at the end of mile 3 and went ahead and finished the last 3 miles with him. It’s good to be back.

Saturday, February 20, 2010

Day Off

I can’t wait to get back to the daily business of running. The first 3 days of rest was pretty good but by day 4 I had the itch to get back on the trail again. I held myself back because I wanted all the aches and pains in my legs and foot to be dealt with once and for all. Because when I go back to training there won’t be any extended breaks for a long long time. During the break I was able to experience a few things that I really had not had a chance to experience in quite a few years. What it’s like to lead a sedentary life. One of the things I noticed was that I was able to catch up on a lot of sleep. No matter how much sleep I had I always felt like I could use a little bit more. Even though I was getting 8 hours or more of sleep I didn’t wake up feeling refreshed. During days 1-3 I enjoyed the rest  and pretty much felt the same physically. But on day 4 I felt  a change. It felt as if my body was slowly shutting some things down. Nothing major, but noticeable when you are a really fit guy like myself. Not to make a big deal out of this or anything, but I can’t imagine another week of being sedentary. This leads me to the simple answer or truth that relates to me and my running. In the future when someone asks me why I run or train the way I do. All I have to give them is one simple answer. It keeps me feeling young. That’s it. There doesn’t need to be any other reasons or explanations. You can keep your creams, pills, surgeries, magic diets, etc, etc and I’ll just keep my running and I think I’ll be just fine :-)

Friday, February 19, 2010

Thursday, February 18, 2010

Day Off

I almost ran today but I had to take care of personal obligations and didn't have time. I'm getting an itch to run again but I may wait till after this Saturday just to get a full weeks rest in. I'm thinking I'll probably try to get another full weeks rest again right before marathon training later this year.

Wednesday, February 17, 2010

Tuesday, February 16, 2010

Day Off

I’m surprised at how easy it is to sleep late. I have to admit I’m enjoying the extra sleep and I don’t miss the cold weather! The main thing to worry about is gaining weight during this time off. I’m still eating pretty well and I’m doing calisthenics but my wife keeps trying to fatten me up!

Monday, February 15, 2010

Sunday, February 14, 2010

Day Off

Happy Valentines Day.

Saturday, February 13, 2010

Long Run 11.6 Miles

Mile 17:22
Mile 26:50
Mile 36:56
Mile 46:59
Mile 57:05
Mile 66:51
Mile 76:33
Mile 86:39
Mile 96:38
Mile 107:04
Mile 117:26
Mile 127:05
Total Average Pace:6:58

It's time. It's time to start recharging my batteries. It has become clear to me after this run that I need to take some time off. Between the hamstrings and more importantly the foot issues, my legs need the rest. I might have to take a hit at the Conoco Rodeo Run though. I already purchased the entry, for fear of it selling out. So I'll probably have take a hit in the near future in hopes of making some gains down line. I'm due for some rest anyway. After all, I've done a marathon, a 5k, and before that I had been training hard core for the marathon. So once again, it may not necessarily be a bad thing.

Friday, February 12, 2010

8.72 Miles Easy

7:26 Pace

The only thing worse than running in this cold weather is not running. That's the only thing that keeps me going. 

Thursday, February 11, 2010

5.8 Miles Easy

I started the run feeling miserable. It's hard to be out there these days, with the long winter and all. It didn't help that it was wet and rainy. I intended to do 3 loops around the trail but cut it to just 2 loops. As I began doing my stretching a photographer from the Houston Chronicle approached me and asked if he could take some shots of me stretching. I was a little hesitant since I looked pretty bad but whatever, I agreed. So if you are interested to see how I look when I'm miserable and wet then you may get your chance in the Chronicle tomorrow.

Wednesday, February 10, 2010

8.64 Miles Recovery

8.64 Miles @ 7:30 Pace

Ran with Sean and Curt. Today my hamstrings were tender on both legs. I swear if it isn't one thing it's something else these days. Curt told me you got to get old some time. Let's hope I don't have to worry about that for a while.

Tuesday, February 9, 2010

8x.5 Mile With 2 Minutes Rest – 9.19 Miles Total

2.91 Miles Warm Up

5 x 10 Second Strides

8x.5 Mile With 2 Minutes Rest, Goal 2:35-2:40 (5:10-5:20 Pace)

2:38 5:17
2:36 5:13
2:34 5:09
2:34 5:09
2:40 5:22
2:36 5:12
2:31 5:03
2:38 5:18
Total Average Pace 5:13

2.28 Miles Cool Down w/ Sean 

Originally Sean wanted me to run these at 5 minute pace but the weather proved too tough so he altered it to 5:10-5:20 pace. This turned out to be just right. The display I had my Garmin on didn’t have the current lap pace so I just winged it and ran by feel. This turned out to be the right thing to do as I tried something different during the workout. At the start of each rep I would burst out for the first 250-300 meters at probably 4:30 to 4:40 pace and then I would slow down to gather myself. Then I would fall into a relaxed pace and then finish strong. This strategy seemed to prove effective. I used a similar strategy in my recent races and it seems to work for me. The only way you can get away with this is if you are pretty fit because if you aren’t then your legs will turn to jello and you will collapse at the end. There was a quite a bit of variation of splits during the workout. This can be explained away by 2 reasons. 1) At times I was running into the wind or with the wind and 2) I had no idea what pace I was running!

I’m going to have to try this strategy in my future workouts since recently it’s seemed easier to blast out of the gate at a quick pace and then relax as opposed to getting out at a comfortable and relaxed pace and then trying to speed up. Sort of like going from uncomfortable to comfortable rather than comfortable to uncomfortable. I must warn you though, it kind of goes against conventional wisdom.

Monday, February 8, 2010

8.75 Miles Easy

Mile 1


Mile 2


Mile 3


Mile 4


Mile 5


Mile 6


Mile 7


Mile 8


Mile 9


Total Average Pace:


I switched shoes and my foot felt a bit better. I believe it's a callus that is causing the problems. I'm going to try to use some cream to soften it up. The callus is hard and deep and if I don't take care of it then it could turn into something worse.

Sunday, February 7, 2010

Day Off

I need to take it easy on the left foot today.

Saturday, February 6, 2010

Long Run 14.56 Miles

Mile 1 7:29
Mile 2 6:55
Mile 3 6:47
Mile 4 6:49
Mile 5 6:36
Mile 6 6:54
Mile 7 6:47
Mile 8 6:47
Mile 9 6:51
Mile 10 6:51
Mile 11 6:57
Mile 12 6:56
Mile 13 6:53
Mile 14 7:00
Mile 15 7:17
Total Average Pace: 6:55

I originally set out to do an even 15 miles but the left foot started hurting a bit at the end so I cut the run short.

Friday, February 5, 2010

Attempted 6 Mile Tempo – 10 Miles Total

3 Mile Warmup 6:47 Pace

10 Second Strides (60 Seconds Rest)

  1. 5:28
  2. 5:14
  3. 5:20
  4. 5:13
  5. 5:27

Total Average Pace: 5:20

45 Second Stride

  1. 5:52

5 Mile Tempo (6 Mile Tempo Abandoned)

  1. 5:33
  2. 5:32
  3. 5:31
  4. 5:34
  5. 5:46

Total Average Pace: 5:35

90 Second Recovery Then Hard 1 Mile

  1. 5:23

The intention was to do a 6 mile tempo. I knew going in that my legs weren’t 100%. My right calf and left foot were banged up in particular. But I’ve trained through aches and pains before and they eventually went away. When I started the tempo I wasn’t able to push off very well using my right calf. I also was not able to push off really well using my left foot. Over the last 2 days my left foot has increasingly become worse. I sort of muddled through the tempo run until I could not maintain pace without putting undue pressure on my left foot and right calf. So I took a 90 second break on the 5th rep and decided to go hard for 1 mile. Unfortunately this turned out to be 5:23 pace. I’ll just have to file this workout away and forget about it since I know I was not 100%.

Thursday, February 4, 2010

8.78 Miles Easy

Mile 1 7:20
Mile 2 6:28
Mile 3 6:32
Mile 4 6:25
Mile 5 6:37
Mile 6 6:29
Mile 7 6:28
Mile 8 6:26
Mile 9 6:30
Total Average Pace: 6:36

I ran solo and the legs felt strong. I still have a bum leg but it seems to be healing rapidly, especially with the ice baths and heat pad.

Wednesday, February 3, 2010

8.73 Miles Easy

Mile 1 7:05
Mile 2 6:51
Mile 3 6:40
Mile 4 6:36
Mile 5 6:35
Mile 6 6:43
Mile 7 6:34
Mile 8 6:43
Mile 9 6:48
Total Average Pace: 6:44

I ran with Sean and Luis. I was hesitant because of the bum leg but I actually hung with the pace, no problem. So the leg is definitely coming along. Last night I had it in some ice and then put a heat pack on it and I believed that helped a lot as well. I'm hoping it's fine by this weekend because I wanted to do a tempo run.

On a side not EZToRegister straightened out the results to the Houston Rockets Run 5k. Props to them for making the corrections promptly. It has me down for a 15:32 which qualifies as a 5k PR!

Tuesday, February 2, 2010

Pearl of Wisdom From A Great Man

It is not the critic who counts; not the man who points out how the strong man stumbles, or where the doer of deeds could have done them better. The credit belongs to the man who is actually in the arena, whose face is marred by dust and sweat and blood; who strives valiantly; who errs, who comes short again and again, because there is no effort without error and shortcoming; but who does actually strive to do the deeds; who knows great enthusiasms, the great devotions; who spends himself in a worthy cause; who at the best knows in the end the triumph of high achievement, and who at the worst, if he fails, at least fails while daring greatly, so that his place shall never be with those cold and timid souls who neither know victory nor defeat.
--- Theodore Roosevelt

7.72 Miles Easy and Learning About My Body

8.72 Miles total at 7:23 pace but 1 mile didn’t count because Sean said any mileage over 7:30 doesn’t count toward weekly mileage. I did the first mile at 9 minute pace. The Garmin was all over the place for most of the run. It had me going sub 5 pace, and then 5:30 pace, and then 6 minute pace. At a couple of points in time I probably was going sub 7 pace but not as fast as the times above. I found out that the Garmin was giving me about .3 miles, thereby making my total pace seem to be 7:10 pace. I readjusted the results and came back with 7:23 pace. The legs are still trashed but less so than yesterday.

After talking with Sean today we decided that comparing tempo run results between he, Luis, and I isn’t a good indicator of fitness for me. At least not for the 5k and 10k distances. So there has to be a handicap factored in. My body goes about a different way to produce the results in races, so tempo runs are always going to short change my fitness level. Most of my strength comes from speed and power (high rate of turnover, power). This is a real advantage at the shorter distances, but it starts to break down when you try to efficiently use it for longer distances. So the idea is to keep getting the tempo work in and make my body as efficient as it can be. This is why I believe training for marathon’s are great for me but not necessarily for others since I naturally already have the speed, but I don’t have the strength endurance. The results of the marathon training allow me to maintain my speed over longer distances every year, thereby consistently allowing me to improve.  

Granted, I’m no physiologist, but these are the things that I have noticed over the years.

Monday, February 1, 2010

8.73 Miles Easy

Mile 1 8:19
Mile 2 7:34
Mile 3 7:36
Mile 4 7:41
Mile 5 7:38
Mile 6 7:34
Mile 7 7:33
Mile 8 7:26
Mile 9 7:30
Total Average Pace: 7:40

The legs were trashed especially the right leg (calf and area under the calf). It’s going to be slow going the rest of the week. I’ll have to see how I am on Friday or Saturday. I have every intention of getting a 6 mile tempo in.

Parable of Wisdom

I often hear many of my fellow runners tell me that they are going to move up to 100 miles per week. Often times they are logging quite a few miles per week, but nothing more than 50-70 miles. Many of them believe that this will speed up their improvement process. More often than not I see many get injured and their running is stalled for a while. Today while perusing on the Let’s Run forums I found and interesting parable that a poster related to running patience.

Have you ever heard of the Legend of Milo - the only undefeated Gladiator in ancient Rome.
Milo was the greatest of the Roman Gladiators and retired undefeated and was treated as a semi-god in Rome. The key to Milo's success in the coliseum was his legendary strength. He was simply stronger than everyone he competed against.
Here is how Milo developed that strength. He grew up as a kid in a rural area of Italy and his family was poor. They spent most of the money they had on a baby calf so that they would have a supply of milk to drink. But the area they lived in was very rocky and with few grassy areas for grazing. The best grassy field was at the top of a near by hill. Well, Milo's job as the eldest son was to take the calf to the grassy field at the top of the hill to graze each day, but the path there was rocky and Milo worried about the calf getting hurt and his family losing its investment. So each day Milo carried the calf to the field and then back down again. Day, after day, after day. As the days and weeks went by the calf grew and so did Milo's muscles from carrying it. So after just a few years of doing this, neighbors watched in amazement as Milo carried a full cow (the calf had grown up) up and down a hill to the pasture. He was able to do this because he was consistent and did it each day and the calf only grew a matter of ounces per day.

So there you have it. Be patient and build up your mileage over the course of years and not months or weeks.