April 2005 Archives

Finally Running

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Hills just didn't happen yesterday. I worked late, through a near-constant rain, then went home. I did leave my running gear in the car, though, as today was forecasted to be much nicer.

I was up to 7 hill repeats today. The weather was decent, but unspectacular. I was drizzled on for about 2 minutes at one point, and the wind was from the west, meaning I was running into it up the hill.

The first two repeats were very comfortable. I was pleased with how easy they felt, and how quickly I recovered from them. The next two were still easy, but took longer to recover from. On 5 and 6, I had to drop from 2-and-2 breathing (2 steps in, 2 steps out) to 2-and-1. On the last, I either couldn't find 2-and-1 or it wasn't helping enough, so I ended up 1-and-1-ing (aka panting/dying).

Overall, the run felt very good. I felt light on my feet, and strong.

Off My Usual Schedule

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The swim Tuesday morning was unremarkable. Of course, it's nice to be able to say that 2+km in 75 minutes is unremarkable, because eight months ago I would never have believed it was even possible!

Yesterday my wife had rather a rather stressful dentist appointment, which left me short on time. I'm going to try to do my hills run this afternoon, if the rain ever lets up, and skip the half-marathon clinic tonight. That way, I'll leave Friday or Saturday open for a possible bike ride, while still leaving time for intervals.

This morning's swim included 4 full effort 50m swims, with a dive start, and lots of active recovery between them. We had 4 lanes going, and did a race type start. While it wasn't a race, the format gave me a chance to peek beside me to benchmark myself against some of the stronger swimmers (in the novice side of the pool, anyways).

Physiotherapy 10k Race

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The first things I heard this morning were the windows rattling from the wind, and the rain. Oh boy!

I got up, had my oatmeal and a large water. Checked the weather. 6-8 degrees, high of 16, wind, light showers in the morning, thunderstorms in the afternoon. I decide on tights, jacket and a short sleeve shirt. The marathon shirt gets picked, for good luck I guess. I leave a quiet house behind - everyone else is sleeping in. (Hmph!)

Date Run

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I wasn't going to run Friday or Saturday, but my wife emailed me on Friday, asking if I would be interested in doing a short run at the track together. The idea was that the kids would play in the field while we did our loops.

Since she's been battling ankle pain, we kept the run to 2k. It wasn't the most romantic evening I've ever had, especially the part where I sprinted off to chase the youngest. We both got a run in, though, and we got some time to chat without the kids underfoot. Nice.

Tough Thursday

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My alarm went off Thursday morning, and I thought long and hard about sleeping in. I'd stayed up a bit late (guilty!), but had taken at least 90 minutes to fall asleep, which had compounded the issue. For two minutes, I was convinced I would blow off another swim. Then I decided that I was already awake, so I got up.

Anything Can Happen

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The weather network this morning said current temperature 11, high of 10. It wasn't predicting rain, but apparently had been predicting nothing but rain 6 hours earlier.

Of course, I didn't know that, so I packed shorts and a tee. I kept an eye outside, though; it was overcast, with the type of cloud that can produce rain, but usually doesn't. As the morning went by, the ground stayed dry.

Boston Marathon

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Good luck to everyone running today.

Alas, OLN Canada doesn't seem to want to show the race. =(

Running Weekend

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Was up early late Saturday, and hit the track for my long-awaited track work. I managed 4 800 metre intervals, with a generous 90 seconds between, before deciding that I was done. I wasn't as fast as I'd hoped I'd be, 3:00 to 3:10 per 800, but I didn't feel too destroyed by it.

Heroic

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Ran 7km last night, at sub-5:00/km pace. I wished it had been a bit faster, but towards the end some muscle in my butt was starting to burn a bit, so I guess it was enough.

After the run, there was a special guest speaker at the Running Room store - Lisa Bentley. Lisa was a gracious and engaging speaker, who spoke for over an hour about her personal experiences in Ironman, then answered every single question that the audience had.

Motoring Along

I did 5 hills at work yesterday, on my lunch hour. I probably could have done more, but killing myself is not the point of hills. I planned for 5, I was gasping for breath on the 5th, so 5 it was.

Swim today focused on freestyle body roll again. I felt neither particularly good nor bad, until we did 300m IM near the end, where I was inexplicably flying. Inexplicably because I pulled away from people on the front 150, which is wrong. Neither butterfly (aka drowning) nor backstroke (aka watching the clouds roll gently by) are terribly strong or fast, but I seemed to hold it together not too badly today. Weird. But good.

Tough Swim

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Different swim coach this morning. Had us working on rolling, and on arm and hand position during the pull. Definitely some of my weaker points, as she rightly pointed out. I have a tendency to outsweep my arms, especially when I'm tired. Still, she was generally complimentary, which was encouraging. I am still fairly new to all of this.

Halfway through, Passan asked me how I was doing, and remarked that I seemed a little off. I had to concede that I probably was. I don't know if it's that I was focusing on my form, or if it was something else, but today was not my best day.

Pushing Myself?

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From a strictly running perspective, I can't help but wonder if I should have pushed myself harder this weekend. Maybe I've been reading too much Chris Brogan, but I can't help but wonder if my state of exhaustion on Friday wasn't a good and proper thing. Sooner or later, to put in a strong race, I'm going to have to get a little uncomfortable.

Of course, part of my problem mentally is that I feel as though I'm running out of time. The calendar doesn't lie, though; there are still 7 weeks to go until the half marathon. This is no time to panic.

One final word: apparently, Marc Herremans has written a book. If only someone would translate it into English.

Recap

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I felt pretty beat on Friday. Not sick, but like my body was crying out for rest. Decided that intervals were out of the question.

Saturday, I felt better, but traded in intervals for a couple of walks with the family, and some down time. Was it the right decision? Who knows. Going from no hills and no intervals one week to both the next might have been too much, but I think I was up to something, at least.

Today I did 16km. Not as fast as the 14 last week, and no add on. It felt comfortably easy at the end, though the first and last thirds were challenging.

The next two Sundays are pretty busy, so I doubt I'll have time to add on. I'm going to need to bear down and increase my speed/strength work over the next month, to get to even my realistic (much less idealistic) goal time.

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Tuesday's swim didn't seem too hard, but I ended up being pretty sore afterwards. Granted, we did freestyle pulling, but I didn't think it was all THAT much.

Yesterday, I did 4 hills at work on my lunch hour. There's a pretty good hill about a mile away from work. I might have been able to do more, but I didn't want to overdo it. Good thing, as on the way back I noticed my right tricep was pretty sore. (I have a tendency to tighten up my arms and over-exert them in speed/hill work. I really need to work on relaxing in these disciplines.)

Today, there was a lot of choice strokes, and I chose freestyle. Not my favorite, but I need to start thinking like a triathlete (which I hope to one day be). Again, there was some pulling involved. Yes, I'm going to be sore today.

Overall, though, I'm very pleased with my consistency recently. I haven't really felt like skipping a workout, or dropping back on my intensity, for a week or two now. That has to be a good thing.

Aficionado

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It's a great time to be a fan of running events, which I certainly am. Canada's own Ed Whitlock is running the Rotterdam Marathon this weekend against another speedy septegenarian. Canada's Lisa Bentley won Ironman Australia this past weekend, using her amazing running leg. She ran the marathon over 17 minutes faster than any other woman in the field; her sub-3:06 marathon was 7th fastest overall on the day.

(It's easy to be a fan of both of these athletes, as they're so laid-back, humble, and positive. They're real inspirations, and exemplify why sports traditionally produce heroes.)

Closer to home, my swim coach is scheduled to compete in Ironman Arizona this weekend. I respect anyone who even tries an Ironman, and I'll be glued to the internet, looking for updates, I'm sure.

Finally, one of our half marathon group leaders (and at least one RBFer!) will be running Boston in a couple of weeks. Boston is such a prestigious event, that I'm excited just by this tenuous association.

Good luck to everyone racing this month!

Add-On

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The weather this morning was rainy, windy, and 5 degrees celcius. It was a curious mix; early in the run, with the wind howling and the rain falling, it was uncomfortably cold. Once the rain subsided, the sheltered parts of the run were very warm.

The goal was 14km today, doing the usual bridges route. I'd been asked if I wanted to extend the run last week, but I'd still been recovering from Around the Bay. Part of the reason I skipped my run yesterday was to leave open the option of adding on at the end.

Jen set a comfortable pace at first. André took off ahead pretty quickly, I guess signalling that we were dawdling. Somehow Jeffrey and I ended up at the front, and we ended up breaking away, too.

Of Mice And Men

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I didn't end up getting a Whopper, but the fates were smiling on me nonetheless. More on that later.

The guest speaker at Thursday's half-marathon clinic was a med student who had run 3 marathons, including qualifying for Boston in his first ever marathon. He wasn't a gifted orator, but his message was a powerful mix of frankness, sincerety, and personal truth.

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This page is an archive of entries from April 2005 listed from newest to oldest.

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