Monday, June 30, 2008

Sunday 9 miles, June totals 108 miles!

We got home last night around 10:30 after airplane, bus, and car rides. I took today off to recover again, but I did total up my mileage for June which ended up at 108 miles! Total mileage for the year is at 624 and we are right around half way through.

Andi and I got in a great 9 mile run on Sunday from my dad's house to Lake Harriet on the paved running trails. We only took one wrong turn that added about a third of a mile to the run. Total time was about 1 hour 15 minutes (average pace 8:30).

Over the next 2 months I am going to continue to work on speed and slowly start to phase in some threshold runs and marathon pace runs. I also want to increase my long runs to about 1.5 hours at least twice a month.

I hope to get to 2-3 of the cross country series races over the next 6 weeks.

The men's trials 5k final is tonight, not televised but should be streamed online somewhere. I'll post it if I can find it. Possibly on

Saturday, June 28, 2008

Minnesota trip with a few runs

Well we have one more day of vacation which includes a long day of traveling back home. I found a few minutes to update on the running portion before heading to bed.

June 21: Andi and I both got in 4 mile runs before loading up the boys and driving to LAX.

June 22: Recover day!

June 23: I ran my favorite 10 mile out and back run on the Theodore Wirth Parkway from my dad's house to Cedar Lake and back. I always have a good run when I visit and today was no different. I ran the first mile in about 6:45 and just kept on going. Total time for 10 miles was 68:30 (average pace was 6:50 which is marathon race pace). I was hitting 6:40s until mile 8 and 9 which are mostly uphill. It was a great run. It sure is humid out here. Here is a picture of the parkway from my dad's house.

June 24: Traveled to Gull Lake.

June 25: Andi and I ran 5 miles averaging 8:10 around the perimeter of Cragun's Resort where we stayed. It was almost exactly 1.5 miles around the resort.

June 26: I did a 6 mile evening run on the parkway. There is a 3 mile loop of the parkway that is a 1.5 mile straigh-away on both sides. I ran the loop twice to make 6 miles total. The first 2 miles were a warm up then I hit the next uphill half mile at vVO2max with a half mile recovery, then a hard mile at vVO2max with a mile recovery, and finally another uphill half mile hard and a cool down. I did not wear a watch so I have no idea what my splits were but the mile was almost certainly under 5:50. I finished with 4x100m accelerations in front of the house. I'm feeling pretty good right now, low 18:00 5k shape for sure.

June 27-28: Back in Minneapolis visiting friends and relatives.

25 miles total so far since my last post. Tomorrow we head back to California but Andi and I plan on running to Lake Harriet which is about 8-9 miles from the house. Well see just how far it is. The garmin has some trouble getting a signal with all the big trees around here.

The best running news since I have been on vacation:

1. High School runner German Fernandez broke the 29-year old boys 2 mile record running it in 8:34.40 at Nike Outdoor Nationals. See the race here.

2. The Olympic Trials have begun in Eugene, OR and the women's 10k finals were on the 27th. It was a great race with Shalane Flanagan and Kara Goucher both qualifying along with Amy Begley. See the results here.

The men's 5k and 10k and 1500m finals should be very exciting. Check out all the Trials news here.

Thursday, June 19, 2008

3 x 5 minute intervals, total mileage 8 miles

Today I repeated the first long interval workout that I did 3 weeks ago. The workout included 3x5 minute long intervals at vVO2max.

I started with a 2 mile warm up then did the 3x5 minute intervals with 5 min recovery in between. Then on the way home I completed 2x quarter mile repeats with 2 min recovery between. Finished with a mile cool down.

The weather was near perfect again.Total time running was 58 minutes exactly (7:15 pace).Total mileage was 8 miles.Total time at V02max was 9 minutes.My first 5 minute interval I ran .80 miles (6:10 pace).My second 5 min interval I ran .85 miles (5:55 pace).My third 5 min interval I ran .92 miles (5:30 pace).

These distances were better than 3 weeks ago, I checked.I added in 2x quarter mile repeats near the end of the run.
The first was in 1:20 the second in 1:18.

I cooled down for another mile for a total of 8 miles.

This is a good workout, next time I could add another 5 minute interval or start with 5 min intervals and do cut downs 5-4-3-2-1.

Two weeks until the July 4th 5k!

I am headed to Minnesota on Saturday with my family and hope to get in a few good runs on the parkway while I am there. I will try and update the blog if I have time.

Tuesday, June 17, 2008

8 mile easy run (59:24)

I have a new favorite 8 mile loop from my house. I go south on 45th West to L-14 up to Lane Park, then a loop around the park, and back via L-8 to 45. There is a few small hills between mile 2-3 and the rest is pretty flat.

Total time was under an hour, 59:24, for 8 miles (average pace 7:25).

The last two miles were under 7:00 pace (marathon pace).

Mile splits were 8:12, 7:41, 7:37, 7:34, 7:12, 7:08, 6:57, 6:56.
I finished with 3x150m accelerations.

Did you know that the Olympic Committee has standards to qualify for track and field events? You have to have a qualifying standard to compete in the Olympic trials and the Olympics. Well Canada has their own country standards that are higher than Olympic standards. Consequently, no one from Canada has met their qualifying standards for the marathon, thus no one (as of today) will be running the marathon in the Olympics from Canada. How ridiculous is that?

Sunday, June 15, 2008

Happy Father's Day with 7 mile progression run (51:53)

I got sick Friday morning. I was feeling well enough to work but an upset stomach and headache was enough to send me home after lunch. Consequently, I did not run on Saturday, but spent the day recovering.

Luckily, I was improved enough by Sunday to get in 7 miles. It was a nice Father's Day morning and I had a good run with each mile getting faster than the last.

Mile splits were 7:56, 7:45, 7:39, 7:25, 7:14, 7:09, 6:42.
Average pace was 7:25.

I finished with 3x150 meter accelerations in front of my house.

After that we went to Ventura to take the kids to the beach.

Thursday, June 12, 2008

Intervals 5x4 minutes, Total 7 miles (50:17)

I got out a little late this morning. I still got all five four-minute intervals in but did not have as much warm up or cool down so the total mileage was 7 instead of 8-9.

The interval speed was also a little slower but consistent at 6:00-6:10 pace.
Distance over 4 minutes was right around .65 miles each time.
Total time at vVO2max was 10 minutes.
Total running time was 50:17 for 7 miles (average pace 7:11).

Overall I felt pretty good about the workout it was just a little slower, 10-15 seconds per mile pace slower than I would like.

I ran in a new pair of Asics-Kayano 14 that I got in Boston for $40. I ran in them on Sunday and today for the first times. The pair I have been running in (Asics Kayano 13) feel a little worn out. I just went back and calculated the mileage on them, only 208 miles! They should have twice that in them. I will probably switch off for now, running longer runs in the newer shoes.

It is hard to keep an even pace doing intervals on the road. On a track you know exactly where you are. Even with the Garmin it is just hard to get a sense of speed and pacing. I go mostly on RPE (rate of perceived exertion), as I feel like I am very close to max HR, and overall I feel like a have a good sense of pacing. I haven't been doing workouts at this speed in a while which also makes it more difficult.

Having a little sharp lateral left knee pain tonight. I was fine all day until this afternoon. Hopefully just a little swelling.

Tuesday, June 10, 2008

7 mile easy run (56:30)

I can usually tell by the first mile how the run is going to go on any particular day. Today the weather was good (slight breeze) and I had planned on running 7 miles, which typically takes me about 50 minutes. I knew it wasn't going to be a good run when my watch said 8:45 for the first mile. I felt stale, tight and sluggish the whole way. Average pace was 8:04.

You can't have a great run every day, but lately Tuesdays have been a bummer for running. I think it is because I have had some great weekend runs, then I do a good strength training circuit on Monday afternoon, and Tuesday morning I am tight and tired. It makes for a good day to take it easy and just get some time in on the road. I like to end with some accelerating strides so that I end on a good note.

Today I survived 7 miles and then did 4x150m accelerations.

I am planning on 4 minute intervals on Thursday but adding an extra one for a total of 5 (mileage should total 8-9). Check back to see how it goes.

Sunday, June 8, 2008

9 mile long run with 2 miles at threshold pace

If you read my blog from yesterday you would know what I was planning for today. Well, it worked out just as I planned. The weather was perfect, all day actually. I left around 7 am, Andi got in 7 miles before I did! So together we ran 16 miles today.

My total was 9 miles in 1:05:02 (average pace 7:14), with miles 6 and 7 at threshold pace, actually a little faster.

Mile splits were 7:59, 7:39, 7:39, 7:25, 7:21, 6:14, 6:16, 7:25, 7:00.

So I basically ran a five mile warm up, two miles at threshold, and a two mile cool down.

The fast miles totaled 12:30 and I was shocked to see how fast the first mile was (6:14) and wondered if I could keep up that pace. I think I could go under 12 minutes in a two mile time trial right now, which means my interval pace has been pretty accurate (5:40-6:00).

Total weekend mileage was 15 miles.

Check out an easy to use pace calculator here.
And a cool VDOT calculator here.

I also found a page on wikipedia that lists marathon times for celebrities, see what celebs you can beat here.

The Prefontaine classic was today and I got to watch the televised version. It was pretty disappointing except for Bernard Lagat winning the 2 mile, and Brad Walker set an American record for the pole vault in 19ft 9 1/4 in.

Saturday, June 7, 2008

90 degree 10k easy run? (45:57)

It was windy in the morning so I waited until Matt's afternoon nap for my run, not realizing that it was pushing 90 degrees by the time I left the house (but it wasn't windy!).

I planned on running for about 6 miles, which turned into 10k, and it was HOT. I haven't run in 90 degree weather in about a year. Luckily 4 houses, about every mile or so, had their sprinklers on and I was able to cool off by running through them a few times.

The watch doesn't stop during these few breaks. The cooling effect of the sprinklers actually helped me pick up the pace.

Mile splits were 7:54, 7:39, 7:44, 7:19, 7:06, 6:51 (total time for 10k was 45:57 and average pace was 7:25).

The overall effort was pretty easy besides the heat factor. I was sweating pretty good by the end of the run.

Getting up early tomorrow for 9 mile long run. Possibly a few late miles at threshold pace (under 6:30). We'll see how it goes.

Finally, the new Runner's World came today with decent article on progression runs, finishing strong, and a decent 5k training program. It is worth checking out.

The 3 female Olympic marathon qualifiers ran the NY Road Racers Mini 10k today and all placed in the top 10. They finished in the same order as the Olympic trials Deena, Magdalena, and Blake, with Deena placing third in 33:14. Not bad, considering they were using it as a workout for their marathon training (a threshold run really). See the results here.

Ethiopian Tirunesh Dibaba demolished the 5,000 meters world record of compatriot Meseret Defa with a time of 14 minutes 11.15 seconds at the Bislett Games on Friday. That is 4:34 pace for those of you trying to do the math!

Thursday, June 5, 2008

Interval training on calm Thursday morning!

Pushing back my weekly interval workout was a good idea. This morning there was NO wind and I felt really fresh. It is important to be flexible with your training plan and be able to adapt to last minute changes. If you plan on a long run over the weekend and you wake up with no energy (or there is a 40 mph wind) then switch it with Sunday and just do a few easy miles to get the "kinks" out and then do a few strides/pick ups/accelerations with the wind after the run.

I switched my interval workout to Thursday and it payed off. I ran a total of 7 miles which included 2 miles warm up, then 4 minute intervals at vVO2max with equal rest, then a mile cool down.

Total time was 52:01 (average pace 7:26)
Each interval was 4 minutes at vVO2max
First interval was .64 miles
Second interval was .66 miles
Third interval was .69 miles
Fourth interval was .70 miles
Pace ranged from 6:05-5:45 during each interval

Total time at VO2max was 8 minutes
I had planned on doing 5x4 minute intervals but stopped after 4 due to time and just didn't want to push it. I felt pretty good today, I probably could have gone on 3 min rest.

Here are two articles from running times magazine on interval training. Great information. Running Times is much more informative and educating then Runner's World. I haven't read a great Runner's World article that I learned something from in a while, it has been good for the blogs only. One of the articles below is written by Greg McMillan!

I also increased my volume (number of reps) on my circuit workout this week. I have been going twice a week on the circuit training so far.

Wednesday, June 4, 2008

Interval workout pushed back (tired and windy)

It is getting pretty windy around here again, and showing no signs of letting up. My interval workout was pushed back to Thursday due to the wind (which wasn't that bad on Tuesday) and I was feeling pretty tired and had no leg turnover.

Yesterday I decided to do an easy 5 miles at 8:00 pace and when I got home did 3x100m strides up and down the street.

Hopefully I will get my interval workout in later in the week.

A great video here of what the olympic athletes are doing for strength training in preparation for Beijing, specifically 1500m runner Jon Rankin. Notice, most of the lifts are explosive in nature.

The take home is strength training will allow you to maintain faster speeds and better form for whatever distance you are running.

UPDATE: Dean Karnazes ran 3:22:54 at the San Diego rock n' roll marathon this weekend. Not impressive enough for you? He did it after 13 days of running from San Fransisco to San Diego averaging 53.8 miles per day! Awesome!

Sunday, June 1, 2008

10 mile long run (1:16:00) plus May totals

I extended the 9 mile route by 1 mile this morning. The 7:50 pace for the first 5 miles was a little bit tougher than I would like it to be, even though it is slightly up hill the whole way.

Here is the run down: Average pace 7:36, mile splits 8:24, 7:51, 7:59, 7:52, 7:56, 7:20, 7:14, 7:13, 7:06, 7:00.

My left hamstring was a little sore today, but I have determined that it is actually gracilis tightness.

Today was June 1st, so total mileage for May was only 76 miles and 516 for the year to date.

Usain Bolt set a new world record for the 100m this weekend in 9.72. With a name like "Bolt" he was born to be fast, and he ran in a baggy tank top, not a skin tight speed suit. See the race here.

San Fransisco, Long Beach, and Surf City Marathons combine to form the California Dreamin' Racing Series.

This one's for Clay: Tony Young Sets World 45-49 Age Group Mile Record Of 4:16.09. See the race video here.

Have a great week!