Thursday, September 17, 2009

Garmin Connect - Activity Details for Speed Work Through Soccer

Garmin Connect - Activity Details for Speed Work Through Soccer

I don't profess to know a ton about Marathon training, and every day and week teaches me something new.

Though I have done very little of what is known as "speed work," I concede that it is beneficial in marathon training. Heretofore, my focus has been almost exclusively on endurance (simply logging the miles and the workouts to be able to do a marathon in a set period of time).

Speedwork is another animal entirely. It allows you to speed up / improve your times in all types of races from 5K to Ultra Marathons.

From what I am gathering, one of the best methods of doing speedwork are Yasso 800s. If you want to know more about these, then simply go to the Google.

Do to my time constraints and my decision to play soccer, I've decided to use my Wednesday night soccer games as speed work.

By running around for a little less than an hour (sometimes sprinting, sometimes resting), it would seem to me that one would be getting similar results to interval or speed training.

For an interesting view of this, view the workout on the Garmin link. It looks like the moves that I make are drawing on the field with a crayon. You can also tell the parts of the game where the Coach sent me to the bench, or when I was loafing, or when I went to my car to get a backup pair of shinguards for a teammate.

Incidentally, my team won (3-2)its first game, and, though I did not score, I did have two assists.

It's nice to come back to this sport (and be in adequate enough shape to do so) after 26 years.

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Wednesday, September 16, 2009

Garmin Connect - Activity Details for 13.1 Mile Training Run

Garmin Connect - Activity Details for The Success The Day After My Failure

Many of you know that I traveled to Asheville with great fanfare, pomp, and circumstance (not really) to attempt my first half marathon--The Asheville Times Half Marathon.

I have been training ad nauseum for Charlotte's Thunder Road Marathon, and "Long Training Run Saturday" happened to call for a 13 mile training run on my plan.

So, after going out for a nice dinner, I got back into the Hotel Room at a reasonabtle 9:30 and headed off to a wonderful night of slumber.

Small Problem: I woke up at 3:00 a.m. with a headache that was so intense I could barely move. I know what this means, as it happens about 3 to 4 times per year: YES, MIGRAINE!!!

By 5:30 a.m. and with little to no sleep since the 3:00 a.m. "wake up call," my body finally provided the "reversal of fortune" of the previous night's dinner. Regretfully, my head was still pounding.

I made the decision not to run, as I really don't think I could have made it a quarter of a mile, much less 13.1.

So, after sleeping until the maid kicked me out of the hotel room, I made the painful drive of shame back to Charlotte where I drowned my sorrows in a Royale with Cheese and Fries (probably only my fifth order of fries all year).

I committed that night to try to do a 13.1 mile training run on Sunday morning despite the fact that my beloved Georgia Bulldogs played a late (and ultimately exciting) home game against the evil USC Cocks and that my beloved Carolina Panthers were playing an "early" game on Sunday that required hours of tailgating.

So, I dutifully awoke at 6:30 and started my run at the beginning of the McMullen Greenway. I ran the entire thing, turned right on 51, then right on Johnston road until the Garmin told me I was at 6.55, and then turned around to follow my tracks.

So, after it was all said in done, I did do my half last weekend, it was just the unofficial McMullen Greenway / Highway 51 / Johnston Road Half Marathon.

I made it back in plenty of time for the tailgate only to "enjoy" my second large headache of the weekend--the Panther peformance.

I am very disappointed at not being able to complete my first half in Asheville. My pace partner DID, and did well (under two hours). I am going to try again in this weekend's Davidson (NC) half. With a little more luck, I should have a successful blog on Saturday afternoon....

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Sunday, September 13, 2009

Garmin Connect - Activity Details for USA Fit Week 11 Long Run...14 Miles

Garmin Connect - Activity Details for USA Fit Week 11 Long Run...14 Miles

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This was (and remains) my longest run to date.

The weekly USA Fit Long Run was off due to the Labor Day holiday, so one of the coaches decided to offer an alternative run, which consisted of the last half of the Thunder Road Marathon Course plus about a mile. So, we ended up doing 14 total miles.

I am blogging on this run over a week after completing it, however, I have two distinct memories: 1) this run went through and around some really cool parts of Charlotte (NoDa, Panther Stadium, Bobcat Arena, The Plaza, Central Avenue, and Trade Street). 2) I agreed to keep pace with a girl from my pace group who had not been keeping up with the mid-week training runs. This slowed her (and correspondingly me) down considerably. Due to the fact that we, as a group, were not going to drop anyone (there were about 10 of us), and I was one of the slower of the 10, I agreed to pace with her. Some parts of the course went through some sketchy neighborhoods, so I didn't want to get too far ahead of her.

As for how I felt, it was GREAT! I was very tired and sore after the run, particularly in the right hamstring, however, I worked out the sore with my brand new stick and embraced the notion of a Sunday off--even though I did end up running quite a bit on Sunday at soccer practice.

Thursday, September 3, 2009

Garmin Connect - Click Link Below for details of Week 11, Run 3

Garmin Connect - Click here to see details of the run

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A facebook friend of mine from college told me to stop complaining about my aches and pains. She said, "you're starting to sound like an old man."

My immediate response was to agree with her. However, upon further review, I think it's OK to discuss aches and pains via the blog in hopes that someone may have some advice or thoughts to help out. I will say this, however: In the same convo, I was complaining about the cost of tomatoes at the local farmer's market, and that combined with the aches and pains probably did convey an Archie Bunker type demeanor.

Though I'm no expert on the matter of running with pain, a general rule of thumb I've heard is that you should expect dull pain and fatigue and you should plow through it. However, at the onset of sharp pain, step away and figure it out. Don't risk further injury.

I think that my next running purchase will be "the stick," some kind of self-massage device (no dirty comments please) to be used after running.

We'll see.

Today's run was at McMullen Greenway, a beautiful, shaded trail designed for running and biking. The workout called for 15 easy / 20 fast / 15 easy. I followed it to a T, but added a little extra at the end to get back from where I came.

My next run will be Saturday's long training run of 13 miles (almost a 1/2 marathon). I will be working on tweeking hydration and nutrition for this run. It also means that tomorrow will be a fiber taper day. . . more on that in a future post. :)

Wednesday, September 2, 2009

Click To See Details of Today's Run

Garmin Connect - Activity Details for Week 11, Run 2

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I repeated yesterday's run today (to the exact yard), even though today's workout--per USA Fit Charlotte--called for "45 Easy Minutes." I improved on yesterday's time by about a minute over the 5 miles.

One thing that has really helped me over the past few training runs is that I have engaged in what is called active stretching. I have never been one to stretch because I feel it costs me time, however, I concede the importance of it for injury prevention, etc. So, what I do now is walk a quarter of a mile followed by a very slow run of a half mile. Then, I do a series of active stretches while running / briskly walking another half mile. So, by the time I hit the one mile mark (I don't "count" the 1/4 mile walk), I have the juices flowing and am ready for a longer / steadier run. This is why you may notice via the Garmin details that my first mile is signficantly slower than the balance.

I am wondering if I should incorporate the same active stretching routine into my longer runs and longer races. I THINK that it will be OK for the longer runs, but for a race, I think I will just do the stretches in a stationary manner prior the to the race or during the .25 warm up walk.

Once again, weather was perfect today with the exception of a slight headwind over about 20% of the course...

Tuesday, September 1, 2009

Garmin Connect - Activity Details for USA FIT Week 11 Training Run 1

Garmin Connect - Activity Details for Untitled

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Today's training run was TOUGH! Both of my ankles hurt. My left is chronically bad, and I twisted my right during soccer practice on Sunday. I think that I also tweaked my lower back at practice. I'm not sure if I should be training for a marathon AND playing soccer. At least my soccer team is in the "non-competitive league. I wonder if that means we will be taking the short bus to the away games???

Anyway, I have a question for you running and training gurus out there. Here's exactly what the training called for today:

45 Min (15e / 5 Hills / 30e)

Exactly what does this mean? Does it mean that I have to run 45 easy minutes followed by 5 hill repeats? Or does it simply mean to pick a hilly course? If you do need to be doing seperate hill repeats, how long should the hill be?

Today's run was at McAlpine, and I repeated "THE BIG HILL" (and if you've run McAlpine Greenway's X-Country Course, you know what "THE BIG HILL" is) twice. I can't imagine having to do that hill once more, much less three more times. There were a few more smallish hills on this trail, but I will need some guidance on this one.

I am looking forward to Fall Runs. Today's weather was PERFECT: low to mid-70s with a slight breeze. Though I was slow due to the aforementioned injuries, I really enjoyed the run.

Until next time...

Twelve Mile Training Run

Garmin Connect - Activity Details for Untitled

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I want to start publishing my running adventures leading up to December's Thunder Road Marathon, my first.

The above documents Saturday's "long run," which in my case also included the GreekFest 5K Race.

I started in front of my normal Saturday a.m. running group, then ran to the start of the race. By the time I got there, I had ran over 7.5 miles. The race was 3.11, so then I finished by running another 1.5 out and back.