Grouchy Tempo

I got my replacement Garmin Wednesday in the mail. Charged her up and let her load sattelites Thursday morning while we cheered on the masters 5k women at the USATF masters track championship at Baldwin Wallace in a torrential rain storm. Our friend Barb ran an amazing 5k placing first in her age group (60-65) and running 30 seconds faster than her lifetime personal best. She ran 20:37.54. Of note I only ran faster than that time twice while in high school and thought I was pretty hot stuff. Barb is amazing and just so inspiring! I can't imagine how fast she would have been if women's distance running had been the standard when she was in high school and college. Barb hates running in the rain so for her to do so well in conditions she really hates was really impressive, though not unexpected, Barb never ceases to amaze!

With all that track action you would think I would have been fired up for my tempo. I took the morning off work to go watch Barb race and get the tempo in with NC and Salty. I had a new Garmin I could (hopefully) trust to work and not go all crazy on me. What could be better right?

Well unfortunately my legs just felt like tree trunks, and when we started into the tempo I glanced at the watch early fully expecting it to say I was going too fast only to see a pace 30 seconds slower than the goal. Uggh! So I upped the effort and got it down to target range, but man it just didn't feel smooth. Not sure if it was the new locale, the humidity, or just my lack of mental fortitude, but I was not feeling it yesterday. I forced the first two miles to get them in range running ahead of NC and Salty and then just basically had an internal war with myself the next four miles to keep going clinging close to NC.

I hit the paces, but it just wasn't much fun. Oh well. Next time I will come to the workout with a better attitude and remember to keep it light and motivational, rather than a grouchy negative berate myself atmosphere. Good news is despite not feeling it and being a big grouch I still got the workout done. Much better than in the past where I would have thrown in the towel when feeling so sluggish.

Goal was 6 @ 6:25 and I think subconsciously I just really want to be at a better place right now. I want yesterdays effort to be resulting in 6 to 6:05 pace, and reality is it just isn't there yet. But hopefully a little more patience and it will be soon!



I've liked this song by The Bravery for a long time. Though the video creeps me out a bit, not sure why.

Camille Heron and Magdalena-Lewy-Boulet both just posted some inspiring blogs about perseverance in the sport. You can tell that both ladies despite previous setbacks fully believe in what they are doing in the sport and in the consistent long term efforts they have put forth. Very inspiring!


Marathon training started this week so it was on to longer repeats on the track this week, short rests, but slower (10K) pace. I was on my own this week as Salty is helping out at XC camp and NC's paces were a hair too quick for me to do without working too hard or risking a blow up.

So it would be 6*1200 with goal of 4:27 (89 per quarter) and 90 second rests. Good news about running by myself is I could take the inside lane every repeat, and I had no one to blame but myself if I was off pace.

For the first time this year, and possibly ever, I went through the first 200 right on pace in 44. Amazing! We have been in the habit of running the front 200 of most laps fast so it was nice to actually start a repeat with the right effort for once. Of course that meant I actually had to nail the effort the whole way, no slacking off on the back half. The workout went fine. Nothing special to report. It wasn't easy, but it was all very controlled effort wise. I did have to force myself to focus a few times in the early repeats as I was day dreaming a bit since the pace wasn't that difficult and I was by myself.

The right knee is still doing it's weird stiff thing when it is not warmed up. Stiff to start the warm up, and stiff on the cool down, but loosens up pretty quickly. I should probably make an effort to ice it and baby it a bit more to try and nip it before it becomes an issue.

The weather was a little cooler last night, but still hot enough that I used the ice and was feeling a bit warm after the first few repeats. Despite that we have really been getting a good crowd at the track. It has been exciting to watch everyone work hard and see the pay off at their races!


Transition Week

Like last year we have been gifted a down week to recover a bit from speed training before going into marathon training for the fall. Unlike last year mileage was a bit higher this year. Still my legs have responded pretty well to the reduced mileage. Had a fun running week despite the crazy temperatures, hitting the trails a bit, and even got in a night race Friday night for fun.

Goals for the week:

Total Mileage: 55 miles

Track session on Tuesday.
No tempo on Thursday.
Sunday: 12 miles @ 7:10
Every other day easy miles 7:25 or slower

How it played out:

55 miles
6 runs, 1 rest day
1 5k race
14 mile long run due to poor memory of water location

Did an awful job of time management this week and never managed to drag myself out of bed for a morning swim. But this was my last week to indulge for awhile so I took recovery and relaxing very seriously with plenty of social outings, some desserts, some drinks, and some total slacking on all fronts. Back to reality this week!

What is your garmin worth to you?

It's a transition week, so we have no tempo today which is good because my Garmin has officially bit the dust. I have the Garmin 310 XT and it has been "touchy" on and off since about 9 months after I bought it. This following trying the Garmin 410, the first of which the wrist band broke (the band wasn't really designed for freaky small wrists like mine), and the second of which I killed with a few too many sweaty workouts. The 310XT has definitely outlived my previous 410s by a long shot and for the most part it has been awesome. I got it because I didn't want to worry about the sweat factor and it is supposedly a more triathlon oriented watch aka waterproof. But at some point it got "glitchy." Every three months or so the screen gets scrambled and starts scrolling randomly, the GPS still works but the read out is crazy. Hard resets have always fixed it, but the glitchy moments are coming more often now, and lately it has seemed awfully generous with the paces, it was time to put it out to pasture.

Having had it for two years it is not under warranty anymore. It cost me $350 and to replace it Garmin requests $99. My husband thinks this is absolutely nuts, and is shocked I am not more upset about it. But when I consider that I have used this watch pretty much every day for the past two years for an hour+ a day, I think I have gotten my money's worth out of it.

Do I agree that I would prefer for something I paid $350 for to work like a charm indefinitely, yes of course, but given how much I personally use it, I think the watch performed pretty well.

Anyways just wondering what everyone's experience with their garmin has been and if you think the price and replacement prices are reasonable?

Look At Me Now

To some extent my recent Johnnycake race invigorated me a bit. I felt like I was getting my "mojo" or "swagger" back after the race. It felt good to run solidly and be a few steps closer to 2nd place this year than last.

I am certainly the last person to intentionally brag about myself or my running, but I think for some reason I have let this go too far in the direction of humility, not publicly, but internally. (I've touched on this a bit here) I have worked so hard to not take my results for granted, and to credit others for what they do better than me, that I have forgotten to give myself the proverbial pat on the back when it is deserved. It's something I struggle with and I need to find a way to work through it in a positive manner that also sits well with my personal feelings about it. Because the truth is how I portray myself to others regardless of what I really feel will become my personal reflection on myself. And if put out there often enough, it becomes my own reality.

I think to an extent this is a female thing, it goes along with self image issues and being our own worst critics. But it is also a personal issue of mine as I want to credit others for what they've done well, and I want to excel, and I struggle to marry the two. I often forget that no opinion other than mine really matters when it comes down to my work ethic and my resulting performances. And unfortunately sometimes that opinion is really far from reality. I need to give myself credit where it is due and I need to see myself in a more realistic light.

Coincidentally my ultra buddy Sir Walks-a-Lot's must be thinking along the same lines and posted briefly and succinctly a summary of what I am struggling with:
"...about the negative characteristics of arrogance, and pride, and obsession as they relate to the positive characteristics of commitment, and patience, and persistence. They all are, I think, a similar breed of cat and somehow symbiotic and yet in conflict with each other..."

I do not think of myself as arrogant, and people who come off as arrogant frequently annoy me. But somewhere there is a fine line between arrogance and confidence, and I want to get myself to the brink of confidence without going over the line into arrogance. I also struggle with the fine line between persistence and obsession. I am working very hard to keep things light while making sure to put in the work day after day to hopefully be ready come go time. (Patience (or my lack of) is a whole 'nother post!)

So for those whose musical tastes, like mine, vary widely, something a little different today. I don't want to go quite so far as to be crowing all my victories like a rapper, but it wouldn't hurt to feel a bit more confident about myself and have a little more swagger in my steps :) If I want to see my goals reached, I need to really believe in myself and my ability to step up when it is warranted.

Note that I do not approve of Chris Brown's personal behavior whatsoever, but I am a Busta Rhymes and Lil Wayne fan. And I have to give Brown credit, his dance moves are sick.

Quarter Pacing (Or Lack thereof)

For the life of me I cannot pace 400s on the track. We have gotten in the (bad) habit of running fast on the front 200 of almost all our intervals the past few years and I just cannot get a feel for the proposed pace to really nail it every time.

Since we raced Sunday and it was (once again) unbearably hot at the track last night we had 12 quarters followed by an 800 last night. Nothing too fast, just a workout to focus on pacing.

Goal was 3 sets of 89 (10k pace), 86 (5k pace), 86, 82 (3k pace) with 1:00 rests between each quarter. Followed up by 90 seconds rest and an 800 at 5k pace (2:52)

I didn't hit a single quarter or the 800 at the correct pace and I never ran the first 200 slower than 43 on the 89s, or 41 on the 86s, or 39 on the 82s. I knew the point of the workout was pace and to feel it, but I just could not settle in on the front 200 and would have to jog the last few steps of the 400 to even come close to the desired goal. I never felt like I was straining, I just couldn't run the right paces, my "feel" for the pace just wasn't there.

88.55, 82.83, 84.87, 79.46, 87.99, 83,32, 85.09, 80.49, 88.41, 84.10, 83.98, 78.28, 2:46.90

I am not sure why I struggle with this. Clearly I can run evenly paced miles in longer repeats and events, why I can't nail a pace for 400 meters is beyond me.

Johnnycake Jog 2011

Well somehow summer snuck up on me quickly and before I knew it I was toeing the line for one of my less desirable (but necessary since working with the coach) races and tests of my current fitness. The Johnnycake Jog is a staple of the Cleveland racing scene and throughout the years has brought out the best of the best year after year despite incredibly hot temperatures, no shade on the back half of the course, and a killer mile 2 hill. It's one of the only local races to still offer a bit of prize money and so I always assume it will draw out the "big dogs" from the area and near surrounding areas. Many years a van full of Russians or Kenyans from midwest training camps will show up, and usually you can count on any local studs to be there.

But the reality now is that there are just a lot of races and for some reason the past decade or so the womens field at Johnnycake has been a bit diluted. There are still local studs that run some amazing times, but the depth of the field is not like it was in the past. As I have increased my speed the past few years I have noticed a trend in the local "money races" that typically a year with slow times is followed by a year with fast ones. Knowing that last year I placed 3rd here with a 30:16 and that top 5 win money I assumed this year the field would have more depth and I was gearing myself up for a tough fight and hopefully a fast time by using others to pull myself faster. Placing was on the back-burner in my mind dependent on who showed up to race.

I had it in my head that I had two options for this race depending on the field.

1) Go nuts and stick to the big dogs until I died hoping for a huge PR (Goal sub 29) and a breakthrough. After Tuesday's track workout I really was fired up and thinking this might be a possibility.
2) Run a smarter race this year, go out a bit more conservative and have something left to really hammer the last two miles. With the desire that the resulting time would at a minimum be faster than last years Johnnycake (30:16), and in an ideal world a PR (29:31).

I knew three gals that were for sure running that are faster than me on paper. My mental plan was to try and stay as close as I could to them and pull myself to a better time. When I arrived to the race NC announced a van full of Kenyans was here so I quickly put placing out of my mind and decided I was running my race and would let the field play out however it played out. Being aggressive also seemed silly knowing it was 88 degrees at the start.

Warm up felt good but it was sweaty. I ditched the singlet and went with a sports bra for the race. We used ice in our bras before the start just like on the track, my legs felt good, but the heat was making my mouth feel dry and a bit parched despite hydrating very well that morning. I really was not sure how I was going to feel once we started.

I went sans Garmin and purely ran by feel. We started and I went out smooth and relaxed. I counted the girls ahead of me and was surprised to note only 4. NC, BO, and JK who I knew would be up there and then only one Kenyan female. I watched NC and the Kenyan girl go together but noted that BO and JK seemed to be holding back a bit from them before we made the first turn. I felt really smooth and was surprised to see a few men who are usually further ahead of me before we hit the mile marker. I was closing on JK but I didn't feel like I was straining so I went with it. We hit the mile in 5:52 which was exactly my conservative plan. (Last year I ran 5:42 this mile trying to keep up with NC) NC was long gone by this point, but I could see the Kenyan and BO not too far ahead.

The second mile heads uphill right away and I kept my effort the same running side by side with JK. We made a right hand turn and we pulled even with the Kenyan somewhere around the 2 mile mark which we hit at 12:00 even and a 6:11 mile. This was the same time I ran for this mile last year and now I was getting nervous. While my effort was still relaxed and controlled I knew I needed to step it up if I wanted to close better than last year. As I passed the Kenyan I encouraged her to come with me as I upped my effort to stay with a small pack of guys. My friend TJ was out cheering and informed me I was in 3rd place for women. I gave a wave, and incoherently held up 3 fingers. I guess I was starting to feel the heat a bit as I have no idea why holding up 3 fingers made any sort of sense.

Starting to get a bit uncomfortable here as we head out of the shade and I upped my effort. I focused on relaxing my arms and gliding. I had some random song in my head and a few times I repeated the mantra "I achieve when I believe" to myself. But for the most part I really didn't have to amp myself up or talk myself into anything. I just ran and did my best to tune out the heat. Every water stop I grabbed a water and dumped half on my back and drank half. By mile 3 (5:55) my shoes were soaked. I heard the timer call out around 17:57 here and knew I needed to step it up if I wanted to stay under 30.

Shortly after three you make your last right hand turn and head straight to the finish. No shade, just the hot sun beating down and the clock ticking away. I really tried to focus on keeping my effort up. I knew JK has a sick fast kick and I was sure the Kenyan would as well. 2nd place was far ahead at this point so it was a race for 3rd and a race for a good time for me. I closed on some guys here and was encouraged by my friend TJ who informed me I had 3rd locked down with no close chasers. Mile 4 came in 5:56 and it was time to decide how much I had in the tank.

Normally they have markers out for 1200, 800, and 400 to go. This year I did not see the 1200 or 800 but glanced at the watch at some point to ensure I had less than a few minutes to go. Unlike past years nobody passed me during these two miles and I think I passed three guys. 440 to go coach is yelling for me to get on my toes but I couldn't find that extra gear to really "sprint" though I upped my effort and hammered in for a 5:50 last mile and a 29:43 3rd place finish.

I ran a perfectly paced race for this course. My energy management was ideal and I got lucky that the field allowed me to get away with running my own race and still bringing home some money. I'm happy to be faster than last year at this point, and I am happy my racing instincts were solid on Sunday. But somewhere in the back my head I am wondering if I am limiting myself by being conservative and if there isn't a faster racer in me just waiting for my confidence to come back. I'm a bit torn between being realistic based on my current training, and being "scared" of really going for it. While I felt good Sunday I never was able to find that extra gear to really get after it.

So I guess what this race boiled down to for me is that I ran what I deep down felt was a realistic time for me at this point based on training. But this is not the time I want to be capable of at this point in time. I want to be faster. Keeping in mind that the real goal is Columbus Marathon this fall, what this race was for me was a test of my racing instincts and a benchmark of where I am. So I will be working on getting faster and stronger the next few weeks and I will allow myself to dream a little bigger at my next race and really get after it. Now that I have a solid race under my belt I can take a few more risks as a blow up would be worth the risk of a big breakthrough.

Per usual my SERC and Second Sole teammates all kicked butt. NC ran another 5 mile PR winning the race. BB ran a PR and placed 1st overall master despite being 60 years young. JK and BO went 2 and 4 sealing a second sole sweep of the top 4 places. And all the SERC ladies including Salty (PR) placed 1st in their age groups!

Last Speed Week Rundown!

Goal for the week:

Total Mileage 65 - 70.

Monday: Easy.
Tuesday: Track.
Wednesday and Friday: easy miles @ 7:20 or slower. 6 x 30 sec @ 5:40 pace on Friday
Thursday: Tempo run: 6 miles @ 6:30 pace
Saturday: Easy 5 miles.
Sunday: Johnny Cake 5 mile

How it played out:

67 miles
7 runs
one semi tweaked knee, but despite that a solid race this morning
Need to make sure I am getting in pool time! Totally neglected it this week.

Generous Garmin Tempo

Met up with Salty for last nights tempo. Since we are racing Sunday the pace was a bit slower this week. Just 6 at 6:30. I wasn't feeling particularly perky, but knew it would get done one way or another :)

Though I was a bit worried about my right knee. I did something to it Wednesday, but it seemed to loosen up for the run, and just a bit tender so far today. I changed a flat Wednesday night and think that jumping up and down on the lug wrench may have tweaked it. That or the single leg squats I did Tuesday night overloaded the quad a bit...regardless it was fine during the tempo. Though my right ankle had some issues. It felt like perhaps a minor sprain or like it was out of alignment, but by focusing in on my footstrike I was able to make the pain go away after a half mile or so. I've run more trails the past week than I have been and some of the Jay Johnson exercises definitely require balance so I think it may just be a little tender still from the tendonitis. That and I may have turned it a bit on the warm up. So keeping an eye on both the knee and ankle in addition to my left foot plantar fasciitis and slightly still tweaked left hamstring. What I wouldn't give to be 100%, but glad that for the most part everything seems good given I am finally getting back up to mileage and quality. Just need to be careful not to overdo it in my excitement.

Last week my garmin decided it would be the "slow" one for the first few miles, but this week it was back to feeling generous, and Salty's would go off 3.5 seconds after mine each mile. Not a real big deal, but a bit annoying as by 6 miles that's another 23 seconds. Not such a big deal on a workout (Though I am thinking it might not be a bad idea to create a few set tempo courses soon with marked miles and rely less on the garmin and more on feel.), but in a race I would be pretty miffed if I thought I was 23 seconds faster than I really was :) Either way 6 miles somewhere between 6:24 and 6:28 average with two quick stops in the 4th mile for water and a shoelace. Much better than how I was feeling last year at this point.

Hoping the knee and ankle feel good after tomorrows easy run as I am really looking forward to racing Sunday!

I Feel It All

Feist comes up on my Pandora channel relatively frequently and I really like this tune. I Love the care free feel of the video too. And clearly a few lyrics stick out for my running right now regardless of the real subject matter.
"I know more than I knew before, I didn't Rest, I didn't Stop"
"Ooh I'll be the one who'll break my heart, I'll be the one to hold the gun"
"No one likes to take a test, Sometimes you know more is less"

Short and Sweet Track Workout

Coach must have been feeling generous tonight as we have a race Sunday and this is our last speed week. Workout was only a total of 3.5 miles tonight, and plenty of rest. 3 sets of 800, 600, 200 followed by one 800. Goal was 800s in 2:49, 600s in 2:02, and 200s in 38-39. Last 800 all you've got. Rest was 2:00 after the 800s and 200s, and 90 seconds after the 600s. Hot night but for some reason I did not suffer quite as much as I have been in previous weeks. I am continuing to make use of ice in my top and drinking water each rest to really try and keep my core temp as low as I can. Workout didn't sound too intimidating, but the 600s worried me a bit. 82s is creeping awfully close to my max speed so I was a bit worried. Turns out I had no need to worry. First 800 was a little labored, but after that I just did my best to stay as close to NC as I could to ensure I hit all my splits, and it all worked out just fine.

2:48.93, 2:00.12, 37.83
2:46.65, 2:00.05, 38.40
2:44.20, 1:59.22, 37.10

Finished the night out with a long cool down to get in 13 miles and then did the Jay Johnson LC#1, 40 second pedestals, and the Myrtl cool down. Really felt fantastic, like I could have run all night. Hoping this is a good sign!

Week 7 of the Speed Phase

Goals for the week:

Total Mileage 75.

Monday: Easy.
Tuesday: Track.
Wednesday and Friday: easy miles @ 7:20 or slower. 6 x 30 sec @ 5:40 pace on Friday
Thursday: Tempo run: 2 x (2 miles @ 6:20, 1 mile @ 6:15)
12 miles @ 7:00
16 miles @ 7:25

How it played out:

78 miles
2 doubles
1 rest day
2 swims totaling 3200 meters
1 deep tissue massage

Saturdays 16 miler came bright and early. We tackled some hills and my quads were definitely sore, but really felt ok on both long runs despite upping the mileage and having to get in some doubles to make up for a Monday off. Sundays 12 miler we jumped in a small local 5 mile race for part of the 12 and finished 1-2-3 holding hands and being cheesy. Most of the race was actually shaded, and despite some trail miles we got in the 12 on pace with no real issues. Feeling a lot better than I did this time last year, clearly because last year I pretty much trained right through Boston up until Johnnycake, before a down week and jumping into marathon training. This year it feels like I am just starting to get into a groove after some unplanned rest, and some time to re-build fitness.

Johnnycake is coming up on Sunday and it will be the first real comparison of fitness versus last year. So hopefully this week continues to go well, and hopefully I'll have a good race on Sunday to boost the confidence before closing out this speed phase and moving into marathon mode!

Core and Strengthening

I met some great runners in the great state to my near north (My home state Michigan) during my lead up to Boston and they recently directed me to these Jay Johnson Core and Strengthening workouts. I am on week 3 of incorporating these into my hard days (Tempo and Track) and going to start doing a minimum of the 20 second pedestals on my easy days too. And I think they are making a difference. It seems counter-intuitive to do a semi-hard cool down after a hard workout, but I actually think it is promoting recovery while strengthening some of my weaknesses in my core and hips!

Check them out and see if you can find time to squeeze them in!

Let's try that again Tempo

Sometimes I don't always go about things in the smartest way :) I took Monday off this week because I was home visiting family, we were having fun, and I assumed mileage would be 65-70 or at least the option of 70-75 this week and that I could easily get that in with one double while taking a rest day Monday. Wake up Tuesday morning to find out it is 75 for the week. Oops! So that leaves me with some mileage to squeak into the schedule this week and I decided I would add a mile or two extra to the track and tempo days and do doubles Wednesday and Thursday since I run early AM I could get in some easy evening miles without staying up too too late.

It has been a bit of a struggle doing the Tuesday track night workouts and getting downtown by 6:30 am for my morning easy miles. I barely get in 7-8 hours of sleep and I am pretty groggy and still pretty toasted from the track effort. I thought an easy evening run would be all right, and it felt pretty good to get out for some easy trail miles. But I think it was just a bit too much to expect to be able to recover from a hard Tuesday evening session, double on Wednesday, and be up and ready for a tempo effort by 6 am this morning. (Which is a bit of a bummer because I was kind of hoping to start doing easy trail runs Wednesday nights when mileage gets higher, might have to switch that to Thursdays post tempo if I want to continue with morning tempos)

I struggled on the warm up and just could not keep up on the first two tempo miles this morning. Goal was 6 miles with the 3rd and 6th mile at 6:15 and the rest at 6:20. After a 6:21 and a 6:27 followed by .25 miles at over 6:30 I bagged it. For whatever reason it just wasn't happening this morning. My legs didn't feel bad, I just didn't have any power, and no mental prowess to power through. I knew Salty and NC were tempo-ing this evening so I asked coach if I should just bag it or if I should try again. I needed to get in more miles anyways and he agreed I should try again.

Apparently I needed to be relaxed, but not quite as relaxed as I was this morning to get things done. I think I have been a little nonchalant about these tempos lately because in my head the paces aren't that fast, but the truth is they are still hard and I should know better. After a hard track effort Tuesday I should have known I needed to gear up properly for this workout rather than thinking I could skate through.

Throughout the day I reminded myself that I wanted to do the workout well, and though it wasn't the end of the world if my body said no, I knew my body could do better if I provided it with the proper tools to get it done. Pandora aptly played one of my favorite jazzy tunes "I'm Feeling Good" as performed by Michael Buble, and it reminded me that for the most part I have been feeling pretty good lately so I should just suck it up and get it done tonight :)

So I did my best to rally by eating better today and focusing on getting in more calories and hydration. Took two salt pills to make sure my electrolytes were up, took a quick cold shower to freshen up the legs, put up the legs for a few minutes and did some relaxation breathing and visualized a successful tempo. Worked up a mantra for the run of "I achieve when I believe," put on my fast twitch shoes instead of my clunkers I wore this morning, took a roctane gu for a little caffeine boost before starting our warm up, and listened to some pump me up music before getting started.

Armed with my mental soundtrack of my mantra for the first three miles mixed in with Rhianna's Breakin' Dishes the last three miles, and joined by my trusty sidekicks NC and Salty I managed to get the workout done tonight, and felt worlds better than this morning. Still can't keep up with NC, but I hit the goal paces, and really felt pretty smooth other than the last mile. Not sure where that fourth mile came from, I was relaxed but it just wanted to be a fast one I guess :)


Wednesday Blues

If you haven't checked out the Black Keys yet you are seriously missing out. From Akron Ohio, they are definitely, in my personal opinion, one of the best bands out this year.

No official video for this first tune, but it is worth a listen!

And because it is pretty funny a second video.

Toasted Track Workout

Got to the track early last night to get in an extra mile and just felt off. My legs felt good, foot pain was minimal, but something just didn't feel "right." Likely a combination of eating a little bit too much/too late at lunch, recovering from some adult beverages from the weekend, and temps being above 80.

Workout didn't sound too awful. Ladder 400, 800, 1200, 1600, 1200, 800, 400. All at 86 per quarter with half the rest.

Well it didn't feel easy and my focus was definitely not where it should have been. I was using a detached approach last night for whatever reason, and I am actually impressed I finished the workout. Towards the end it was everything I could do to keep my eyes open, let alone hammer. Thank goodness for the boys, salty, and coach being there to keep me honest or I would have wimped out of this one for sure.

It is hard to say where I am at relative to last year right now, last time we did this workout it was a little faster and definitely felt smoother, but it was also late fall and the weather was much better. So I think I am getting there.

Splits from last night:


I asked for more rest after the mile, but didn't get it, somehow I managed to keep from falling apart and was only slow on the 1200. Each rest I was downing water but was still parched by one lap in. I really have no idea how I finished that last lap. I was toast!

Quick Speed Phase Week 6 Rundown

Total Mileage 65 - 70.

Monday: Easy.
Tuesday: Track.
Wednesday and Friday: easy miles @ 7:20 or slower. 6 x 30 sec @ 5:30 pace on Friday
Thursday: Tempo run:5 miles @ 6:25, 1 mile @ 6:15
12 miles @ 7:05
14 miles @ 7:25

How it played out:
70 miles
7 runs
3 swims = 3600 meters

Legs felt good and runs all went well despite lots of festivities Fri-Sunday.

My garmin is misbehaving and being awfully generous (to the tune of 2-3 seconds faster per mile than my running partners watches) and the screen keeps getting scrambled. Debating if I can survive a few weeks of training without it and send it in for repairs. I have been really spoiled by the instant feedback. Though I am sure a few weeks of effort based running wouldn't kill me.

Power Walking?

Sometimes I wonder how fast I could be if I had running form more like an elite runner and less like a power walker...I swear I don't remember heel striking during this race!
A wee bit better :)