Music to my Ears – Week 10 Review

Since moving to Tejas I haven’t been much for running with music. The original motivation was because I had no idea where I was going and didn’t want to make a wrong turn, leaving me stranded somewhere across the Mexican border with only my wits and running shoes to get me home while single-footedly handedly taking down a major drug cartel and saving an entire village from a natural disaster (calling Hollywood, I smell a blockbuster! What do

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you mean “no”? Need I remind you of the gem Volcano? I could be played by Jet Li or Samuel L Jackson. Get back to me.).

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Big or Small – Week 9 Review

We’re more than halfway through Week 10, but last week (9) was a week of no middle-ground.  It came down to “do you want to run 6 miles, or do a long run?” Well, looking back, my answer is most certainly “6 miles”.  The long runs were rough; each time I was just counting down the time until I could stop.  At least the shorter 6 mile runs (three of them last week) were short enough that I could deal.

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Rebound – Week 8 Review

Bouncing back from an injury is always a tough process. On the one hand you want to get back as soon as possible. On the other hand you don’t want to start too soon and set yourself back. And in some freakish odd cases, on the third hand you don’t want to get back to it at all because you like sleeping in. Fortunately I only have two hands, so that alien third option didn’t apply to me this time.

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Son of a…

Ok, I’ve been trying to get this post out the door for almost a week, so bear with me if it gets a little concise towards the end…

As I alluded to in my Week 7 Recap, things haven’t been going according to plan.  If you’ll remember, I shifted my schedule by a day to accommodate life getting in the way.  Because I had to work Saturday morning (fail), my long run found itself set for Sunday.  Well, Saturday morning I woke up early, slid out of bed, and nearly fell over.  Son of a fish… My left foot sent a piercing stab of pain screaming from the floor up to my brain as if I stepped on a bolt of lightning.

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Pain – Week 7 Review

Last week, the seventh to be exact, was a bit of a roller coaster, eventually ending in a derailment and horrible crash. Through six weeks I was pleased with my progress. Holding a streak of 28 straight scheduled runs had my spirits up and I was making solid progress. Week 7 offered my first real “long” run of 18 miles. Overall the week was shaping up nicely and set to be my first 50 miler in awhile.

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Cutback – Week 6 Review

In the world of marathon training, there are a few common practices: run progressively ridiculous-er distances, eat exceedingly cornucopia-er amounts of food, and (ideally) dreamier hours of sleep. But with all this excess there is some moderation to be found. Week 6 is what I call a cutback week: after weeks of incremental increments, weekly mileage is decremented to offer some refuge from the battery of fatigue-inducing pavement pounding.

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Flawless – Week 4 Recap

Ah, perfection.  It comes pretty naturally to me.  Through 4 weeks, I haven’t missed a single training run!   I owe most of that to you, my dear reader, for holding me accountable.  On more than one occasion I found myself on the “skip today’s run” side of the fence, but knowing you would heckle me to no end, I hopped the fence (with only a few minor injuries, mind you) and got myself out there.

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Week 3 Recap

Now we’re really getting into this training thing. It’s week 3 and I’ve upgraded to 5 days per week. The 40 39.93-miles-per-week boat has also set sail.

I see a theme developing with the Monday runs: uneventful, middle-distance, snooze-fest.  I have a feeling the updates for these are going to be brief and uninspiring.  Or nonexistent.

Tuesday: more boring, lack-of-update update.  It’s early in this Weekly Recap thing, but I definitely think it’ll evolve into brief, heart-warming snippets, rather than forced, lackluster summaries.  Like this one.  Sigh.

We ran to work again on Wednesday.  This time I held my own a little better.  I felt like I was running with the group instead of just trying to keep up.  It turned out to be Tim’s last run to work before he relocates to Malaysia.  The skeptic in me thinks I was brought in as a replacement, but I’m ok with that.

Friday showed me exactly how close I can get to skipping a run but still pull myself out of bed.  So close, in fact, that while I was taking the dog on her pre-run walk, I was scheming how I could go back to bed and run later in the day.  To be honest, this very post is what gave me the final kick out from under the covers.  I didn’t want to have to explain why I didn’t run to you all …you.

And finally Saturday.  Oh Saturday, you hurt me good.  Tempo run?  Hill workout?  Long run?  Check. Check. Check.  Running with this group of guys is proving intense!  We headed out for 14 miles (per my request) and, as most of the routes done with the group, I was unfamiliar with where we were going.  I should have known Mount Bonnell wasn’t going to be a party, unless your idea of a party is running up a steep hill, followed by a steeper hill, followed by stairs to the moon… all after having already run 8 miles.  Woo.  Needless to say, I was spent after that.  Good stuff.

Actual Stairs

As you know, a founding principle of this blog is to innovate.  That actually doesn’t sound right, but let’s go with it.  I’ve linked each day of the week in the table to provide an onslaught of data at your disposal.  It will even show a map of where I went, though none will be as amazing as this one.  Just click the day of the week and hold on with all you got.  Week 4 here I come!

Distance Time Pace Heart Rate
Monday 8.17 Miles 1:07:55 8:17 min/mi 155 bpm
Tuesday 4.00 Miles 38:51 9:42 min/mi 137 bpm
Wednesday 9.70 Miles 1:17:01 7:56 min/mi 158 bpm
Friday 4.03 Miles 38:31 9:34 min/mi 141 bpm
Saturday 14.03 Miles 1:48:20 7:43 min/mi 164 bpm
Total 39.93 Miles 5:30:38 8:16 min/mi 155 bpm

As the Saying Goes – Week 2 Recap

It’s that time again.  Keeping with the theme of summarizing “Mike’s Week in Running” I present to you Week 2 of the San Antonio training plan.  Since two is greater than one, week two was better than week one, and it brought some new trials and tribulations*.

Monday started out in much of the same fashion as the first Monday, but without all of the difficulty.  A little sluggish at first, I was able to gradually speed up throughout the run and finished comfortably.  Boring, I know.

New tribulation #1 was on Wednesday when I met up with some coworkers way before sunrise and we ran to work.  It took some planning ahead to leave clothes and other necessities at work the day before, and meeting between 5:42am and 5:43am was not part of the original plan.  Chris, Tim, and I met at a central point, all arriving within 3 seconds of each other and not needing to break stride.  Pretty impressive if you ask me anyone.  Along the way we picked up Erik at his house and meandered our way (“meander” may not be the right word considering the pace that these guys hold.  More on this later.) through neighborhoods and across busy streets until we arrived at work.  My total distance was a half mile shy of the training plan, a fact that wasn’t lost on me, more on that later, too.  Overall it was great to run with the group, but they sure are fleet of foot**.

Friday didn’t have much in the way of excitement.  I did go at a glacial pace for my recovery, so that deserves a big thumbs up.  The schedule said 5 miles, so what did I do?  5.4.  Clearly I needed to do something about that missing half mile from Wednesday, so why not add it to the recovery run, am I right?  And… breathe, all is right in the world again.

Saturday offered the second trial by fire that pushed me to the limit.  From last week’s late start-related heat issue, I sucked it up to get up very early on very Saturday to run with the group at 6:30.  Seven of us launched onto a pretty technical trail at an insane speed.  Immediately I was at the back of the pack and losing ground fast, and I couldn’t help but think of getting lost in the forest and being found by a group of shoeless hippies… so I turned around after a couple miles and finished up the run at my own pace on my own path.  The rest of the run was the bee’s knees***.

All in all it was a good second week of training.  Next week is the first 5-days-a-week week, so we’ll see how the cookie crumbles****.

Distance Time Pace Heart Rate
Monday 8.11 Miles 1:09:02 8:31 min/mi 158 bpm
Wednesday 9.51 Miles 1:16:42 8:04 min/mi 163bpm
Friday 5.42 Miles 52:46 9:43 min/mi 146 bpm
Saturday 13.15 Miles 1:47:10 8:09 min/mi 160 bpm
Total 36.19 Miles 5:05:40 8:27 min/mi 158 bpm

*Trials and Tribulations is, in fact, a real idiom, for any skeptics out there that think I’m making stuff up again.
**So is Fleet of Foot
***Just threw this one in here for good measure
****And this one too 😛