Monday, December 22, 2008

Hawaii Here I come

After having a great week of training I had to get this week started on a positive note. The plan called for a recovery run of 6 miles. For me to absorb the training from last week and get my run in today I had to take it real slow. I also decided to do the run on my treadmill. I figured it would be the last time on the mille for awhile since I leave for Hawaii this afternoon. The run went well as I started at 7:30pace and never went much faster. But once I warmed up a little I felt great.

I'm going to do my best to keep the blog rolling when I'm in Hawaii. I'm bringing my laptop, but it all depends on my internet service at our hotel. I don't want to pay a bunch of money to hook it up. I gotta go and get to the airport now. Hawaii, Here I come!

Sunday, December 21, 2008

The Long Run

Today was the first Long Run of my Road to Boston 2009 Training program. It was a perfect winter run in Anchorage. The temperature was only 5 degrees above at the start, but it you wear the right kind of gear it is really no big deal. We took off from Skinny Raven around 10 am just when it turns light in Anchorage (today is the shortest day of the year) and it was pretty cool to run in all the low laying fog. The running conditions were great. We did the twilight 12K loop up by Government Hill and then did the rest of the workout on the Chester Creek trails which were nice and hard snowpack. I ran with Jerry Ross and John Clark and we were cruising pretty good around 7 min. pace for the run.

The Long run is a very important ingredient for the Marathon. A long run is any run 17 miles or longer. The intention of long runs is (obviously) to improve your endurance in preparation for the marathon. They should be run 10 to 20 percent slower than your goal marathon pace. If you do long runs slower than this you risk being unprepared for the marathon. If you do long runs to fast you risk being too tired for other key workouts during the week. I have learned from runners here in anchorage and through books/magazines that it is good to start off slow in your long runs but by mile 5 you should at least be within 20 percent of your marathon pace. Gradually pick up the pace so at the end of the run you are around 10 percent or faster of marathon pace.

These long runs do take a toll on the body, so its a good idea to take a recovery day the following day.

Saturday, December 20, 2008

In the zone!

Have you ever been on a run and it felt effortlessly? That is exactly how I felt today. I did an easy easy 6 mile recovery run today and it was suppose to be real easy. I brought my watch, but I didn't pay close attention to it. Sometimes I can get so caught up trying to hit a decent mile split that I work to hard on the easy days. I just read a good article in the new JanuaryFebruary 2009 Running Times magazine. The article was called "Running on the Shoulders of Giants". It discussed how some of Kenya's great runners take it real easy on their easy runs. Some runs were 2-3 minutes slower than their tempo pace. The main concept I learned from the article is that you should go easy on the easy days, so you can go hard on the hard days. Since I'll be increasing my mileage to 80-90 miles a week in this training session, I'll definetly need to take these easy days real easy.

Today's run also gave me a big appreciation for being fit. I was running around 7:00- 7:15 pace and trying to run slower. I felt real aware of my body and I was in a pleasent zone. Maybe it was the endorphins kicking in. I definetly had a runners buzz going on. I felt like taking off and droping the pace down too sub 6 pace, but I was smart and kept it easy. It felt so good that I wanted to keep running for a couple hours, but I forced myself to stop after 6 miles.

Day's like today make me glad that I'm a runner.

I didn't have time to blog yesterday, but I did get my 10 mile run in outside. Pretty good effort.

Thursday, December 18, 2008

Recovery Runs

Today was the last day of school for students before they go on christmas break. It will be a much needed break for students and myself. It'll be nice to be able to train and not have to worry work for a couple weeks. Plus, I'll be going to Hawaii for 10 days. Running outside in shorts will be nice.

Today's workout was an easy 6 mile recovery run. I ran it outside from my house to Huffman and back. To do a recovery run correctly you gotta make sure you take it somewhat easy. A lot of time you can get caught up in running fast because you feel good, but you really aren't giving your body the rest it may need. I usually have to remind myself a couple times during the run to take it easy and slow down. I really like my recovery days. I still get a run in, but it's at an easy pace.

I bought a recovery drink for the first time in my life from the Power Bar Company. I've seen my friend Jerry Ross drink it after a long run. I'm going to give it a try during this training session for boston. With my mileage going up I will try to do everything I can to make sure I'm recoverd for the next workout.

Wednesday, December 17, 2008

Medium Long Runs

The 18 week marathon plan that I'm following has several types of runs but follows somewhat the same plan every week.

Monday- recovery runs
Tuesday- General Aerobic
Wednesday- Medium Long run
Thursday- Recovery run
Friday- Medium Long run
Saturday- recovery run
Sunday- LongRun

I followed this plan last year and I really liked it. The recovery runs gave me a chance to really absorb the training (as long as I took them real slow). I usually only wear my heart rate monitor on the recovery runs to make sure I'm doing them real easy. I try not to let my heart rate get past 140 bpm.

Today I did a 12 mile medium long run. Medium long runs are usually from 11-16 miles long. 17+ is considered a long run. The temperature today was 9 above. I did the first 8 miles outside and the last 4 on the treadmill. When it's cold out I like to split the medium-long and long runs up and do some outside and the remaining miles on the treadmill. For one, it gets me out of the cold. It also gives me something to look forward too. Plus, I really like it. I change my clothes and get on some shorts (I try to change in less than 3 min.) Running on the treadmill gives me an idea of what my pace is at and plus I have my water right their too. I felt pretty good today. My legs felt a little tired. I think it was from the striders yesterday. Overall another quality workout.

I did some Christmas shopping tonight and bought my son an ipod touch. They are sweet. I think I may buy one myself.

Tuesday, December 16, 2008

Can I please just get my run done today?

Today was Day #2 on my way to Boston. The plan was to do a General Aerobic 8 mile run with 10X100 strides. I was excited because the sun was out today (even though it was only 12 above). I really wanted to do this run outside because I feel it is important to get just as many days outside as inside in the winter. But, life got in the way. Our furnace stopped working last night and our house was freezing. So, after I picked the kids up after school I had to wait for the heating company to come over and fix the furnace. He didn't get here until 4:15 and it was 5pm and dark by the time he left. I was hungry and in a bad mood having to postpone my workout. Plus, I didn't feel like running in the dark. I ended up just jumping on the treadmill and did the workout. I had a good run but could tell I was a little tired and not in the groove. I did the striders on the treadmill too, which I find kind of difficult because of having to push the buttons to speed up and slow back down.
I had every reason to just take a day off, but I'm in Boston training mode.
When I set my mind to stick to a plan I am pretty good at following through with it. There are no excuses for not getting it done.

One of my favoriet bands is Coldplay. I'm going to leave you with a live version of Lost.

Monday, December 15, 2008

Road to Boston 2009 Begins today!

Well, here i go. I'm officially training for the 2009 Boston Marathon. I'm going to follow the same 18 week program as I did last year, but up the mileage just a little bit. I am really excited to begin. Wrestling finished this weekend and my team had a very successful season. It's always nice to put in a lot of hard work and finish the season on a positive note. We had another individual state champion in Luke Shelley.
It was the 5th individual state championship for South. We also had seven kids place in the top six in state. I am really excited for the potential our team has in years to come.

Now that the season is over I transform myself from being a coach to an athlete myself. It may sound selfish, but if I going to continue to coach wrestling I need this off-season time to focus on myself as an athlete and to focus on my personal health.

So, my first workout of the Road to Boston 2009 was an easy 5 miler on the treadmill. It wasn't that cold outside and I really wanted to do this workout outside, but I was running out of time and it was just easier to jump on the treadmill. I kept the run real easy, but I was very excited at the same time. I was constantly visualizing myself running the Boston Marathon. My goal this year is to run a sub 2:40:00 marathon and to not falter from my training program. If I do this I should stay injury free and get in the best cardiovascular shape of my life. I'm Ready!