Monday, June 30, 2008

Good workout, down month

Well, I bagged my run on Saturday because by the time I got up it was already in the 80s and there's no good route that includes a place to rehydrate in the new neighborhood -- that I've found -- yet. Still hunting, though. So that means I ended June (including today's 4 miles, more on that in a second) with 65.1 miles, my second lowest month of the year. If I get registered for a fall marathon (pretty sure the slam is out at this point, I'm just not ready), then I should still hit 1000 miles for the year:

January - 60.8
February - 85.7
March - 100
April - 128.1
May - 95.3
June - 65.1

Total YTD mileage: 534.9, 96 hours, 7 minutes, 45 seconds. That's 4 non-stop days and change. :) And that also means I'm on pace, if I can repeat, for 1069.8 miles for the year. That would be cool.

Today I did an interval workout on the treadmill. 3 mile repeats with 1/4 mile warm-up and cool-down, and 1/4 mile between each mile. Total 4 miles in 38:40. That's a 9:40 average pace (including the rest periods). 2 of the 3 miles were under 9 minutes, so these were faster-than-5k-pace repeats. Felt good, on tired legs and all.

Thursday, June 26, 2008

Now that's more like it.

After last Wednesday's agonizingly slow run and Saturday's even worse debacle (11.75 in 2:21:50, a 12:05 pace!), today was more like it. It was hard. I ran with my new neighbor this morning, which was nice to have someone to run with again, and he helped me push the pace. I could tell I was slowing him down a bit, but we managed to put in 4.75 this morning in 48:27, a 10:12 pace. And the splits were even negative -

10:23 (uphill to start)
10:22 (uphill for most of this one, some downhill towards the end)
10:01 (gotta love the downhill miles)
10:05 (undulating up and down hills)
7:34 (10:07 pace - and mostly back uphill!)

My legs are a bit sore, but it was good to get in a nice tempo run with someone who's going to push me a little. We're definitely going to have to run together again -- regularly even.

Oh, and did I mention it was hot? 80 degrees at 5:30 a.m. Ugh. I'm ready for fall already.

Wednesday, June 18, 2008

Out of practice, and forgive the new theme

This blog theme isn't permanent. It's a temporary exercise in computer programming and website design, at which I know just enough to be dangerous, but not nearly enough to be wealthy.

I went out for an evening run tonight, getting out the door at about 9:20 p.m. This is the first time I've run outdoors in our new neighborhood, and let me tell you... when the sun is down and even though a full moon was rising, it's DARK out here in the sticks. You see, the new neighborhood is still up-and-comin', not at all "established" like the old neighborhood was. As a result, there's not quite the quantity of street lights out here, and the ones that are here aren't, shall we say, completely functional. Lesson learned: headlamp. Wear it.

I ended up doing 5.46 miles in 1:00:28, for an 11:05 average pace. What the ??? I haven't run anything that slowly for less than double-digit miles in I don't know how long. -- Okay, I looked it up. March 15 I ran 6 at an 11:07 pace. That was the day that I was having major back spasms and was trying to run anyway. March 1 was an 8 miler at 11:12, but that was a long run when I was trying to go slow. January 12 was the last time it wasn't a "Long Run" when I did 5.25 at an 11:15 pace.

Must be one of those days. I'll try the route again when I haven't been up all day, chasing kids all evening, and haven't just had 2 homemade beef-and-bean burritos for dinner (mmmm.... burritos...)

Tuesday, June 17, 2008


Not my own "personal" progression, but I'm talking about progression runs. I read about these in the recent issue of Runner's World, so I thought I'd give this a try. The basic idea here is finishing strong, or running negative splits. There are a lot of ways you can do this, but what I've done, so far, is started out at an "easy run" pace and increased pace every mile, until I'm finishing up at a tempo-run or interval pace.

Let me explain. I'm slow, as you know. (But I'm faster than I used to be! Quite a bit, actually!) My tempo runs are right around a 10 minute mile pace, maybe just a tad slower (10:05?). My intervals, as I've posted before, are in the low 9 minute pace. So for these runs, I've started out at easy pace (10:30) and increased speed every mile. Last Thursday I started at 10:30 and did one mile at that pace. Then I bumped it to 10:20 for a mile. And so on. I did this for 5 miles on the treadmill (so much easier to control pace on the treadmill!). My splits, so to speak, would look something like this:

10:30 (5.7 mph)
10:20 (5.8 mph)
10:10 (5.9 mph)
10:00 (6.0 mph)
9:50 (6.1 mph)

The total time for the 5 miles was 50:37, or a 10:07 average pace. About the same as a tempo run, but what I'm doing is training my legs to run fast when they're tired. Yesterday I did the same thing starting at 5.8 mph and going for four miles. The last mile I bumped up the speed again at the half mile point and again at the 3/4 mile point. Each time I also bumped up the incline on the TM, just for fun, so by the end of it all I was doing 6.4 mph (about 9:30 pace) at a 3% incline. :) Now THAT was fun! Hard, but fun!

I plan on doing something like this on my long runs, where I try and push it for the last, say, 3 miles of a 15 mile run. Since I haven't had a long run since the Ogden Marathon, I haven't been able to put this into practice yet. This Saturday, though, I will. It's my first Saturday without any plans since May 17th.

Tuesday, June 10, 2008

A Noble Purpose

I ran across this website and video thanks to Steve Runner over at Pheddipidations. Check it out.

Monday, June 9, 2008

Art City Days 5k report

So after having failed to break 5 hours at Ogden, I thought if I could break 30 minutes at the Art City 5k, I'd be a happy camper. My previous 5k PR was 31:52, set at the "Run For Red" in 2006. I had run only one 5k since -- this race that same year. Didn't train for it at all and ran it in 33:15 that year. I had, however, run a half marathon and two full marathons.

Honestly, I was going to be happy just to PR. I knew I was going to PR. However, I really really wanted to break 30 minutes. I was pretty sure I could do this. That is, until I woke up and saw that it was pouring rain and only about 40 degrees. Yikes. Less than ideal racing conditions (not to mention door-prize drawing conditions, which is the only real reason to run the Art City 5k - [not really, it's a great course and much more]).

My wife and daughter Haley, age 7, were also going to give this one a go. They agreed to let me get my PR, then I'd come back and run the rest of the way in with them. I dropped them off at the back of the pack and headed up towards the middle/front of the pack, since I knew there wasn't going to be any chip timing here. I figured I'd need every bit of help I could under the circumstances to hit that sub-30 goal.

The gun went off and I headed out, passing more than being passed in the first bit. I was pretty sure I'd headed out too fast, and my legs were a bit tight, but I figured if I did indeed go out too fast, I'd just try to hold onto that pace. After all, I ran a marathon 4 weeks ago... 3 miles shouldn't be that darn tough.

I hit the first mile split at 9:40. The person calling out the times was about 20 seconds or so behind that, but I figured I'd go by my watch, which I started when they shot off the gun. Once that first hill was out of the way, I knew it was pretty much all downhill from there. I hit the mile 2 split at 18:57 (9:16). Here the guy calling out times was saying about 15 or seconds ahead, so I figured not every volunteer started with the gun. Doing some quick math, I knew I'd have to run the last 1.1 in 11 or less, and I knew that was going to be possible but hard, as I was feeling it already at that point. The downhill after the water stop came at just the right time to give me a boost in speed with a bit of reprieve in my perceived effort. After that it was a sail to the school. I glanced at my watch when I entered the parking lot, and saw that it was at 26: something. I knew at that point I had it made in the shade.... er, that is, rainy cloudy cruddy weather. As I was heading around the last curve of the track, I glanced up at 28 minutes on the clock. I had kicked in to a pretty good sprint at that point, when I heard a faster sprint coming up beside me. It wasn't anyone I knew, but I turned on the afterburners anyway and picked off about 5 people in the last 100 yards. The last 1.1 took me 9:45.

Finish time: 28:43 according to my watch. I can't wait for the official results.

I trudged through the very crowded and slow-moving chute, came out the other side and decided I'd wait before getting a water bottle or food, and headed back out to find the family. I saw them just around the corner from the final turn, about a half mile out. I took over the running-with-the-daughter duties and my wife took off. She finished in about 39:40, and my daughter about 40:45 or so. Don't know the official times there. It was my daughter's first race. She was so excited to have a bib number and everything! She claimed to have an ear ache from the cold and wet, so next race we'll have to find her one with a little nicer weather. Like something in June in Utah instead of April in Seattle... oh, wait....

Thursday, June 5, 2008

I guess I'm it.

MissAllycat tagged anyone who wanted a break from work. I fit the bill, so here goes.

What I Was Doing 10 Years Ago Today:
1. Dating my soon-to-be fiancee
2. Finishing up my 3rd Semester at the prestigious SLCC
3. Playing a LOT of basketball pick-up games
4. Living in West Valley City, Utah
5. Working in the phone card business

Five Things On My To-Do List Today:
1. Work out. (check!)
2. Design two more Marketing Guide covers
3. Play some pick-up basketball tonight (some things never change!)
4. Hug my kids.
5. Kiss my wife.

Snacks I Enjoy:
1. Chocolate
2. Chips & salsa
3. Peanut butter shakes (Vanilla ice cream, chocolate milk, big scoop of peanut butter. Attach a beater to an electric drill and blend.)
4. Donuts. Mmmmm.....
5. Cheesecake.

Things I'd Do If I Was A Millionaire:
1. Donate enough to a charity to get me in to the Boston Marathon
2. Retire, train a lot more, and run more marathons. Maybe an ultra.
3. Buy a really nice road bike.
4. Hire a trainer to teach me how to swim properly, so I can do tri's.
5. Donate to my church, buy a lot of nice things for my good friends, and get knowonder! off the ground.

Places I've Lived (in order):
1. Orem, UT
2. Simi Valley, CA
3. Sandy, UT
4. Goerlitz, Magdeburg, Cottbus, Schwarzenberg, and Weimar, Germany
5. West Jordan, UT

There you go. If you feel so inclined, consider yourself tagged.

Wednesday, June 4, 2008

More updates

So I didn't run Saturday, as most of the day was spent hosting the mighty Jacob 2008 garage sale, unloading a bunch of junk -- er, stuff -- that we didn't want to take to the new house. Then there was a baptism we went to, then more stuff to do, etc. etc. So, no long run Saturday.

I finally got back out on Tuesday and did the City Creek Loop again. I don't think I'll ever tire of that one. 4 miles, not quite as fast as last Thursday, but I still ran it all, and ended up at about an 11:00 even pace. I don't take my garmin on that run (or any other lunchtime-from-work run), but I do time it with the stopwatch on my watch. The distance, however, may be off by a few hundredths or more.

Today I hopped on the treadmill for a speed workout. I decided I was going to do three mile repeats with quarter mile jogs in between. I decided also that I'd wear my watch and just time the miles, not the recoveries or the warm-up/cool-down, both of which were also .25 mile (do the math... that makes a 4-miler for today too, altogether). My 3 miles of speedwork were:


Total time: 38:15. Average pace: 9:34. That's a pace-record for me! What a killer run. I even managed to hold a bit of a conversation with the runner on the treadmill next to me during the hard parts. I really need a heart rate monitor to train right. I'm finally getting to that point. Yes, I'm accepting donations. :)

This Saturday is the Art City Days 5k. I'm excited. My 5k PR is 31:52, and I know I'm going to CRUSH it. I'm hoping to finish in under 30 minutes (I did today! I noticed the 3.1 mark came at 29:33!). That would almost make up for me missing the 5 hour mark at Ogden. Almost. Race report coming soon. Maybe even with pictures.