Thursday, December 31, 2009


7.5 miles - 62 minutes +/-900'.
Did not feel well today, hips and legs had an achiness to them. Just kind of went at what was comfortable and realised I was a minute faster at the turnaround than when I did this same run Monday. Just hoping it's a bad day and I'll feel better by Saturday. I've had this achiness a number of times before; it happens when I cut back on my running after getting a good couple of months in - Weird, but I guess the body needs to adjust to less just as it needs to adjust to more.

Tuesday, December 29, 2009


5 miles easy on a beautiful cold day. Fellin' good!

Monday, December 28, 2009

7.5 miles - 63 minutes +/-900'
Did a nice out(up)/back(down) on the closed Blue Ridge parkway this morning. Hip is feeling alot better and expect it to be good enough to finish the Tsali 50k on Saturday w/o any risk for MMC.
GZ sent this link from Inov-8 this morning about the Mt. Mitchell Challenge that includes some great video of the course. Indeed the elements are going to play a big part in this race. I do have a time goal in mind for ideal conditions, but more importantly a place goal since the chances of ideal conditions are probably less than 50/50.

Sunday, December 27, 2009

On the Mend

5 miles.
I am dying to go here, I felt like taking off on a Tempo or Uphill TT today, but the hip still needs a little more recovery. I did notice today that the hip felt best going uphill and at it's worst going downhill. Thought of a few reasons as to why this might be; I'm thinking I may be OK for the Tsali 50k next weekend.

Friday, December 25, 2009


10 minutes.
Hip pain was worse this morning and didn't go away after 10 minue w/u. The pain feels deep inside the ball joint. I think this is a good day to take a step back and see how it feels tomorrow. The kids and I have some toys to play with!

Thursday, December 24, 2009

Progression turned Fartlek Run

The below was written from a friend of ours in response to our invitation to her for Christmas dinner...

howdi.. hmmm... volunteering at animal shelter..and then...i tend to be very quiet for holiday.. i walk the streets of a cityalone and think is a very quiet and peaceful time for me..and i will probably get a basket for my neighbor and sit with her fora while.. she is really poor. thank you for the offer though..

1:35 - about 12 miles.
Couldn't take another day on the mill so I headed out to the Blue Ridge Parkway that has been closed for almost a week now. Aside from the ice in the tracks it wasn't too bad for training. Wanted this to be a nice progression, but due to the arbitrary changes in effort needed to stay injury free this turned into a very enjoyable Fartlek. I was feeling very well and then at the very end, with about 5 minutes left I just bonked. I think I actually hit a really bad sugar low. This came out of no where; I had been sipping garorade the whole way. I could hardly run, got very warm with the sweats and legs felt very shaky. Met Maureen at the car and stopped at the closest store where I got a Ginger Ale. Felt better and am feeling normal now. I have some tightness and a little soreness in my hips when I'm NOT running. Everything else feels good.

Wednesday, December 23, 2009

Belgian Christmas

I ate very well tonight, and am drinking even better!

A few short, steep hill reps.

Due to icy roads and especially my favorite steep road, I was back on the mill this morning. Took a little more planning to do these reps, but I think it was done as well or better than on the road. W/u for about 4 miles then the mill was set at 12% and 12mph for the reps with some walking/jogging between. Felt great. Cooled down for about 10 minutes at 4 mph and 12%.

Tuesday, December 22, 2009

More Recovery

45 minutes - very easy.
Legs are feeling good, better than yesterday. Recovery is going well.
Ran through some nice snow today and through some not so nice snow.
Felt good to be off the treadmaill or pavement.

Monday, December 21, 2009

Recovery Run

30 minutes - very easy.
Felt good for the most part. Just some tightness and fitigue in the hips.
Felt good to run outside, even if it was just in/out of a bunch of parking lots.

Sunday, December 20, 2009

MAF - Fartlek - Fatigue Run

19 miles. 10 MAF(1:24:30), 9 Fartlek(1:15:00) = 2:40
The first 10 miles just sucked. HR stayed in the low-mid 130's. I couldn't wait for this to be over with, just to do something different. At the end of the first 10 miles this morning I had put in 30 miles on the treadmill since Friday all at 0% grade. My legs were just very tired of the same muscles and same impact. I felt pretty fatigued, but was really looking forward to the simulated treadmill fartlek. Within the first minute of the first climb I could tell this is what I needed; legs felt better right away. I decided to make a little game out of this to get me through it mentally. I went 5 minutes at 4% at 7.3 mph, and 2 minutes 0% at 7 mph. The cap for max HR is 155. I decided to follow this pattern until I hit 155, then I would drop it down to 7.2 mph and then do the same. All along the 2 minutes flat would stay at 7 mph. HR maxed at 155 going at 7.3 mph/4% at 48:30 minutes, 4:30 into the 7th climb. Then maxed out again going 7.2 mph at 4% at the 70 minute mark, the end of the 11th climb. Average HR for the 9 mile fartlek was 144.
Ended this workout at 9:15 this morning. By 9:30 I was in the car for a 5 hour drive. Recovery wil be tough. Did what I could eating/drinking on the ride, but the sitting was tough. I'm home now and trying to do as much as I can to help with the recovery. The kids are with the grandparents this week so I will have the opportunity to put a little more effort into my recovery.

Saturday, December 19, 2009

Magic Dust?

AM - 13 miles - 1:46
I expected this to be a tough run to get through and it turned into me holding back, even though I kept speeding up. The first 2 miles I was sluggish, then started to feel good on #3 and after 4 miles I felt like new. Stayed cautious, but kept creeping up the pace. The real story on this run begins at mile 8.
8 - 8:06 / 133
9 - 8:00 / 132
10 - 7:54 / 133
11 - 7:47 / 134
12 - 7:40 / 137
13 - 7:34 / 139
When I look at miles 8 and 11 I'm just lovin' it. I know I'm going to have a bad day at some point, maybe even tomorrow, but what I've done this week after a 31 miler last Saturday is ridiculous. I would have kicked back most of this past week and then tried to hammer out another long run this weekend. Instead, I've had some help...
Maureen gave me an early present last Saturday that will last through February, just in time for Mt. Mitchell Challenge. Every run I've done since last Sunday and every run I will do until race day Feb 27th is prescibed by a very farmilar coach. I think the HR stuff I saw for the last 6 miles today is just the tip of what Brett was seeing during his 10 weeks training for the Charlotte Marathon - 22 minute PR.

PM - 30 minutes very easy.

Friday, December 18, 2009

Yoga Lessson / Storm Update - 17"

Riley&Kayle were schooling Maaureen and I in the art of yoga. Riley, on his own, put his hands behind his back to prove he wasn't holding his feet to his head; he was just rubbing it in at that point. Kayle was just watching and doing everything Riley did like it was too easy. I thought some wine would loosen me up, perhaps that loosen up has anothre meaning; I need to stretch more...
I should not have mocked Mother Nature earlier about the NC snow days; we are at about 8" now with 4-6 more on the way. Our power has gone out a few times and we are enjoying a great day with the kids, snowmen, sledding and a roaring fire. (Written Friday evening)
Just heard on the news that Asheville was hit with 17" - looking out the window this morning, I'd say that's about right. Won't be driving anywhere today; the mill will have to do. (Written Sat. Morning)

Recovery Run

4 miles - 35:00 - Nice and easy.
Legs are sluggish today, but other than that everything seems to be working well.

This is what a snow day in Asheville looks like. The snow's not the problem, though. All that slush is freezing and perhaps these should be called ice days.
I'm hoping the roads and the trails are ok tomorrow so I can get my weekend runs in on the trail. If not, the mill will have to do.

Thursday, December 17, 2009

Hill Intervals

:30, :45, :60 x 3, with a quick controlled downhill on about a 12% grade. HR down to 125 before starting next interval.
Legs felt pretty good for back/back speed days. Total climb for all the intervals was about 650'.

Wednesday, December 16, 2009

4 Mile Tempo by HR

6 miles - 45 min
I'm in Raliegh-Durham - found a backroad behind the hotel that has almost no traffic and very little lighting - just some new buildings being built back there. Measured out 1 mile w/ my car last night and now I have a nice course for this mornings tempo run. The road has a gradual grade with an elevation change of 68 feet. Odd# miles are down, even are up.
Warm up = 116 (8:57), 135 (8:27)
Tempo = 1 -149 (6:48)
2 -159 (7:00)
3 -160 (6:40)
4 -164 (6:56) Max HR 166.

Tuesday, December 15, 2009


5 miles - 42:00 - Ave HR 133.
Very little soreness this morning, felt good on the run.

Monday, December 14, 2009

More Recovery

40 minutes - 4.7 miles. Ave. HR 135.
Felt pretty good. Legs a little sore this morning only in the spots that cramped Sat., but as soon as I started running the pain was gone. Got into a nice rythem last 20 min. where HR hardly budged from 138.

Sunday, December 13, 2009

Recovery Run

5 Miles - 46:00 - Ave hr 119. Legs had same soreness this morning, no more, no less than last night. During run almost no soreness, little soreness now that it's done.

10:00 - 105
9:37 - 116
9:00 - 122
8:36 - 127
8:45 - 127

Saturday, December 12, 2009

50k's today

31 miles - 4:31:03 - +/-4,ooo' - Ave. HR 144
3 out/backs 11.5/11.5/8
50:02 - 138
49:02 - 136 (1:39:04 - 8:37)
50:05 - 144
49:37 - 149 (1:39:42 - 8:40)
34:56 - 151
37:19 - 148 (1:12:15 - 9:02)

Wanted to do 50 minutes for each of the first 4 legs - mission accomplished - then keep pace for the last 8 - not quite.
I certainly did not feel like I did last Sunday. After 23 miles I knew I was in for some heart and mind training on the last 8. Ran the last 4 with cramps in the same pace on both legs, they weren't bad and didn't interfer too much with running, just a little painful and annoying.

There's a part of me that wishes I had done this run last week, but there was no way of knowing. Then I looked at my log and realized I should have known - the past 6 weekends I've run 30 miles 3 times and 20+ 3 times. I'm sure this is a good time to take a step back from these longer runs and let a recovery process start. I'd like to feel really good for the 50k . I got a good taste of some pain today that should help for the next 2 races. Just glad Pesci&DiNero weren't out on the trail today.

Sunday, December 6, 2009

I'm funny how? Am I here to amuse you?

23 miles - 3:14 - 2,600'

Out/back x 2 - 50:34/49:08/47:50/46:25 - (1:39:42/1:34:15)

This is the same out/back I did yesterday, but there's no way it's 6 miles one way - I don't believe that I did an 8:05 pace on this today considering the effort on the first out/back so I'm going to call it 23 miles. If it's 24, great, I just don't want any bad suprises when I do the Tsali 50k in 4 weeks. If this IS a 6 mile trail I'll know right away after the first 10-12 miles at the 50k.

The first out/back was very comfortable, so I decided to pick it up a bit - couldn't believe I took almost 3 minutes off the first out - my effort didn't seem to me that I'd take off that much. About 5 minutes into the final leg I decided I'd like to see how I'd feel going at a tempo effort the rest of the way, so with about 30 minutes left I picked it up to tempo effort and finished with a strong/controlled effort. I was really fired up on the last leg, sort of aggressive, like I wish I was playing soccer. At one point I was hoping that Joe Pesci's character from Goodfella's would come out on the trail with a bat so I could straigten him out! Forget about it. This is how I feel when I'm running well, a little crazy, I have to try extra hard not to go too hard or I'm done. I held the fiery well and finished strong. If I can feel like this on my next 2 race days I'll be very happy. Now I just need to learn how to control and time that so I can feel that well on race day.

For the past month I've felt very strong after the 2 hour mark. During the first 2 hours of these runs I find myself questioning if I can make it 4-5 hours, then after the 2 hour mark I start to feel like I just started, time starts flying by and I fall into a nice groove. It's almost like I'm lacking some confidence at the start, then I settle in and I'm ready. Even today I didn't feel like the first half was anything; my run didn't even start until Maureen and the kids came to pick up Tima and I was off on the 2nd out/back. I take all this as I'm getting closer to "Mastering the Distance."

Saturday, December 5, 2009


12 Miles - 1:33 - 1,300'
Did an out/back in 49:00/44:00.
This past week was a crazy one with minimal running. I felt springy this morning so went with it. Went at a cozy pace out and picked it up a little on the way back. Temps were in the 30's w/ a mix of snow/rain. Took this as a good opportunity to do some foul weather training; something that could very well be needed at the end of Feb. on Mt. Mitchell.
I thought that MMC was going to be my first ultra, but I have decided to do the Tsali 50k Jan. 2nd. This will be a perfect w/u for MMC and I'll know exactly what 31 miles feels like. The RD said the course has about 4,000' of up/down, but a friend of mine who ran it last year said it was no more than 3,000'. Either way the 31 miles will be a great test and intro into the ultra distance. One more thing I'd like to get out of this race is an idea of what I may be able to do MMC in. Last years winner for Tsali 50k as well as MMC was Mark Lundblad. I think I can get a general idea of where I'm at comparing his times, 3:46/about 5 hours, to my 50k time. I'm looking to hold 8:30 pace for this 50K. My plan tomorrow is to do 24 miles at 8:30 pace on the same out back that I did today.