PM: Easy 4mi, :31+ - Springview
Nice to have a short day, ready to take on this week.
Mon, Feb 13
PM: 6mi Tempo - Springview Track
Warming up, I could sense my body was back to it's old self and ready to go again. After a 10min warmup, I settled into tempo pace, not really knowing what that was for where I'm at now, so I let my body find the ideal pace. Came through the first mile in 5:58 and that seemed just about right. The following miles ticked off at 5:51, 5:52, 5:49, 5:51, 5:52 (35:15 for 6mi's). Fatigue started setting in at 4mi's but I kept focus, which was not easy to do being solo, on a muddy dirt track with puddles scattered throughout lane 1. Really quality run. 14+min cd, 8.5mi's total in ~1:00.
Tue, Feb 14
PM: 6mi, :45 - Whitney HS
Jogged easily around the inside of the track while the athletes did their workout. Pre-workout, did some fast-feet/neuromuscular training drills with them. Legs felt good.
Wed, Feb 15
PM: 7.5mi, 1:32 (2,700'/2,700') - Auburn Canyons
2xk2 in 11:58, 11:46! First time I've ever consecutively gone sub-12 and surprisingly, felt the strongest on the 2nd repeat. Good strength/aerobic fitness indicator. Still had some juice in the tank so for the "cherry on top" finished with the beast. The canyons were pitch black as I ran through the confluence which made for some interesting unintentional dance moves going up & down. It was fun though and was glad to have gotten a quality climbing day in. Ran in a fresh pair of MT110's. In the past, they've caused some weird minor pronation which irritated my ankle. Took a knife to this pair (for the first time ever with a pair of shoes) and shaved some of the lugs down to create a more flat, even platform on the forefoot. No ankle pain today which was very good news as I truly believe in this shoe and what it does out on the trails; it is a thing of beauty how this shoe superbly functions.
Late PM: Great evening with Sara on V-Day. Even though we're not the biggest fans of this holiday, we both figure it's a good excuse to have a simpe date night. Dinner + Movie (essential "healthy-relationship-training" lol).
Thur, Feb 16
PM: Easy 4mi, :30 - Whitney HS
Fast-feet drills + 4mi barefoot. Could feel some dormant muscles in the calves being awoken so I was glad to get some strengthening in there from some barefoot running on the football field.
Late PM: Easy 2.5mi, :30 (1,320') - Treadmill @ 10%
A little sludge in the legs, kept it relaxed.
Fri, Feb 17
PM: 13mi, 2:20 (2,300'/2,300') - WS Trail
Met up with Thomas Reiss and Heeva at Placer HS for an easy cruise to Hwy 49 and back. Great time running with these guys.
Sat, Feb 18 - Official WS Training Run
AM: 22mi, 3:22 (3,000'/3,800') - Green Gate to Placer HS
Starting a few mi's out from GG, Brett Rivers, Thomas, Heeva, and I all hung together at a "Yog" (a tad quicker than a "Jog") along the horizontals, lower quarry, hwy 49, no hands, Robie, and finished at Placer (I lost the 300m kick to the finish to Thomas, he's got some wheels in those 40yr old legs!). Legs were a little tired heading in and felt some fatigue at times, but was able to cruise ok. Again, awesome group of guys to share the trail with.
PM: Massage. Finally used a gift card Sara got me a while back. Cracked up when the masseuse said, "Wow, you're a mess! I'm literally shocked you've never been injured!" ha ha
Sun, Feb 19
AM: 24.5mi, 4:30 (4000'/5,600') - Michigan Bluff to Drivers Flat
A good group of Thomas, Brett, Heeva, Lorissa, Jeff, and I all took off from chilly MB (30 degrees) and kept the pace as "race-like" as possible. There were a few snow patches along the WS trail just outside of MB, but extremely minor compared to last years continual blanketing. I thought the climb out of the canyon up toward Drivers Flat Rd. would feel more uncomfortable than it actual did which was positive. Maybe the increased form and core work as of late is helping the stride and stabilizer muscles keep intact even when tired? Good stuff today.
As many of us already know and have experienced, Brett Rivers takes fantastic photos. A few snapped along Cal Street:
|Approaching Cal-2 (Peachstone)|
|Just past Cal-3 (Ford's Bar)|
Miles - 92
Time - 16hrs
Vert/Desc - 13,320'/14,400'
In terms of quality + quantity, one of the best weeks of 2012 so far. I'm reminded of a conversation I had with Jim Hunt in Pt. Reyes in which he asked me, "Do you focus on higher mileage in your training?" And my reply was, "Yes and no, I focus not so much on the mileage per se, but for me, its the quality I put into those miles which I think makes the difference." In other words, on average, if I can get in a 80-90 mile week with enough quality climbing and speed, and that gives me the bang-for-my-buck of, say, a 110-120mi week then I'm satisfied with that. My mind sometimes operates in a "what is most efficient" state and I try to mimic that in my training (and find my "sweet spot" in training) so as to not overdue it and risk burnout or injury. But with that said, I also desire to test my limits and find, possibly, a "higher sweet spot" if that's going to help me get stronger and take me to the next level. Furthermore, heading into each week, my brain sort of sees my potential training as a chess board and I try to "make each move" with the consideration of "how is this going to affect the present and future simultaneously?" I think the mistake we sometimes make as runners is being too immediate-gratification-focused in our training (and racing) without the notion of "setting ourselves up for the next move." I've been trying to learn this lesson in running long ultra's; this idea of "what I do now, how will it affect me later?" So far to me, in an ultra (as with life), each minor (or major) decision you make affects the future. And one thing I want to work on in my running and racing (as with life) is mastering the seemingly small, intermediate decisions so that I'm set up down the road for a strong, successful finish. Ok, stepping down off my soap box now......
Lastly, this weekend was really a treat running with Thomas, Heeva, Brett, Jeff, and Lorissa. Solid folks, great runners, and they had much wisdom to share about training and racing. Thankful to have picked up some good nuggets this weekend from them and to spend hours talking about Western States. 4+ months away, and it's gonna be off the hook again this year.