Monday, August 31, 2009

2 x 2

AM: 11.5 miles in 83:54
PM: core work
I had one objective for today: run hard for 2 miles twice. I did that. I went real easy on the up and down, but when I arrived at the track, I worked it.

2 miles in 11:04
400 meter recovery
2 miles in 10:55

I felt strong and in charge. Working hard but in control. After the first one, I could feel my left calf a little bit so I stopped for few seconds and rubbed and stretched lightly. I didn't feel it again until the cooldown. I'm going to be careful w/ it over the next couple of days. Don't want to jeopardize the good thing I've got going on.

The pace ended up being faster than the pace I raced for 5 miles a couple of Sundays ago. Things seem to be coming together. Great last 4 days of running. I'm wondering if Friday's long, which ended in a sub 6:00 mile, has helped propel to yesterday and today's performance. Hopefully, I'm bringing it to the next level.

Sunday, August 30, 2009

This Week in Running 8.24.09 to 8.30.09

Another good week of training. Some fast stuff and some longer stuff. Here's how the week wrapped:

Friday 8.28.09
AM: 24.75 miles in 3:01.46
Real happy w/ this one. Got up at 0500 to beat the heat. Turned out to be a nice, cool day. Did the first 20 or so at Rocky Woods. Had water w/ me and that helped. Felt good but not awesome (that would come later). On my way to the Woods I clocked a pedestrian 7:15. I probably kept that pace throughout the trails. On my way back I hit a 7:09 on an uphill mile. From there the pace quickened. Sub 7:00s the rest of the way. I took a gel at about 17. It took a little bit to click in but when it did I felt positive effects. Now I had to hurry home b/c Jen had to leave for work and I had to watch KJ. That might've made me go faster too. When I got home, the baby was napping and I jumped on the treadmill. Wanted to get a solid two in. I wanted the pace to be strong b/c on my long runs I sometimes drag it home. The treadmill revitalized my effort. The last three miles were 6:25, 6:10, and 5:50.

5:50! I was excited about that. When I hit 6:10, I said to myself, "let's see if I can go one more sub 6:00." I was feeling good and I did it. The ending of this run was a real confidence booster. I now know I can finish a long run w/ a respectable split.

Saturday 8.29.09
AM: core and 8.25 miles in 61:57
My easy day. Went a mile farther than normal b/c I feared Sunday would be a bit of an abnormal day, but it turned out not to be. Body felt good after yesterday's long.

Sunday 8.30.09
AM: core and 12.75 miles in 83:36
This run was what I wanted it to be. I took about 2 miles to wakeup and get going. By fifteen minutes I was in an up-tempo marathon like pace. I held this pace for the rest of the way. If anything, I got quicker as the run continued. Last mile was a 6:04. I was in control and feeling strong the whole way. Not killing myself but not slacking either. A rarity for me: I did this run wholly on roads. No trails today. I do this route about once every six months. Last time I did it was Ash Wednesday. It's odd the things you remember.

Weekly Numbers
71 1/4 miles in 5 runs
22 minutes aqua jog and 1200 yds swimming
1 lifting sequence
5 core routines

Next week is a cut back week w/ a probable race at some point on the weekend.

Thursday, August 27, 2009

Dog Days

Some swimming, running, and lifting in this entry.

Thursday 8.27.09
AM: Lifting Routine
Back at the YMCA to go through the normal routine w/ all of the machines to which my body is accustomed. No two nautilus machines are the same, so not having to think about how much weight to pin was nice.

Wednesday 8.26.09
AM: core
PM: 12.5 miles in 91:07
The mileage is my best guess. This was my first evening run in about a month. It's much hotter at night than in the morning. I was tired and the humidity was zapping me. I still managed a workout.

2 x 5, 4, 3, 2, 1 minute pickups w/ 1 minute recovery between each

I ran the first set very aggressively. Working real hard. Trying to improve my speed. I was happy w/ my effort. After the first set, took a ~4:30 recovery. I was dead (the heat and my effort). The second set I wanted to focus on stamina. I knew I wouldn't be able to repeat the speed of the first set but I didn't want to pack it in quite yet, so I ran the second set hard and controlled. The first set was a little out of control. I was really feeling it on the second half of the second set. I had the black dots and dead man walking thing going on.

I did the pickups on Aggie's trails. Hopefully my body appreciated the softer surfaces, eventhough I think I would've felt smoother and faster on asphalt. When the workout was over, I was dying of thirst but still had to cooldown all the way back to my house. Dead for the rest of the night.

Tuesday 8.25.09
AM: aqua jogging and 1200 yd swim
PM: core
Did the h2o jogging for about 22 mins then swam 1200 yds in two spurts. I swam 200 then rested for a minute. Then I did 1000 and got into a nice groove. The water was cool and I just kept going. Had to get out of the pool to be on time for a work meeting. Otherwise I might've had a mile in me.

Monday, August 24, 2009

This Week in Running: 8.17 to 8.23.09 (+1)

One day late w/ the "TWIR" update. On many different levels, this passed weekend was a good one. Here's how it sugared out running wise:

Saturday 8.22.09
AM: 23 miles in 3:02.53
A 3 hour tour. May've been farther than 23 but I was on trail for 2/3 of it so must estimate the mileage. It was hot and humid, mostly humid, and I actually wore the fuel belt for a portion of the run. I wore it out to Rocky Woods then took it off there b/c I knew I'd be doing loops. Knowing I'd have a couple of ounces of water every 25 or 30 minutes really helped. Halfway through the run I looked down at my body and I was completely soaked. Every inch of my body was emitting sweat. Desired salt but settled for an energy gel at 2:25. Prior to that I zoned out and went off the trail for a few minutes. When I snapped out of it, I didn't know where I was. It took me a minute to get my bearing and back on the correct trail. Even running a few minutes out of your way on a humid run like that can kill you. With two to go, I came across a water spigot and soaked my head, neck, and hat. That got me home. My pace was likely low 7s for the first 2/3 and high 7s for the last 1/3. Felt good to accomplish the run.

Sunday 8.23.09
AM: core & 7.25 in 51:55
Easy recovery day. Took the time to stretch, stick, and ice.

Monday 8.24.09
AM: 13 miles in 89:44
PM: core work
This run could've been over 13, but the trails make it hard to judge. Whenever I don't know, I tend to lowball the mileage. Took it easy the first 4 then did 2 x 20 min push w/ 3 minute recovery between each one. The pickups were at medium hard pace on not the best trails. The long surges woke me up and made the run go by quickly. At one point I was running at 6:04 pace, so the pickups were steady but not fast by any stretch of the imagination. Last half of the run felt much better than the first half as I cruised home w/ a 6:10 final mile. Legs are just a bit sore from the last three days. Extra stretching and icing are on the agenda.

Numbers for the Week (8.17 to 8.23)
72 miles in 5 runs
5 core workouts
1 lifting sequence
30 min aqua jog / 1200 yds swim

The mileage may be a weekly high for the year.

Thursday, August 20, 2009

Reversing Direction

Before I get to my mundane training, let's talk about Usain Bolt for a minute. The guy is unreal. 9.58 for the 100! 19.19 for the 200! That's crazy fast. So fast that he was even the lead story on PTI today. How low can he take the 100 WR? It's now not unreal to say that someone may run under 19.0 in the 200. I remember watching Michael Johnson in Atlanta and thinking nobody will touch that time for a long, long time. Is a dozen years a long time? Not really.

Thursday 8.20.09
AM: 14 miles in 98:38
PM: core work
This workout was a bit of a dandy today. Got up early in an attempt to beat the heat but the humidity thickened the morning air. The plan was to do 2 x 3mile then 1 x 2mile w/ 3 min. rec in between each repeat. I wanted to run the reps. in ~5:40 pace. Here's how it turned out:

29 min warmup
3 mile rep. in 16:54 (then 3:06 recovery)
3 mile rep. in 17:42 (then 3:18 recovery)
2 mile rep. started @ 6:00 pace; ended at 5:08 pace
15 min cooldown

So what happened in the second 3 miler? Not to pin everything on this, but I ran it in the reverse direction. For some reason I thought it might be disadvantageous to take all my turns in the traditional counterclockwise fashion, so I switched it up. Mistake. I couldn't get in a groove. Wanted to change direction after a half mile but made myself take my medicine for being dumb. Fell why off the pace. Funny thing was I wasn't feeling horrible. Could merely reversing my direction alter my psyche in such a way that it slowed me down by nearly a minute? Henceforth, I am running in the traditional direction.

By the time the deuce came up, I was feeling fatigued. Ran the first half mile on the track then got off it for a trail loop. Finished the last half mile on the track and really worked hard, mostly b/c I knew I must have more in the tank after the slow second repeat and the slow first half of the present repeat. I did have more. Too much more? That's the question.

I did a few strides today both pre and post track work.

Wednesday 8.19.09
AM: 12.75 miles in 89:12
PM: core work
Up real early to get this one in. Had to cut the run a little short b/c of a full plate scheduled for the day. Started slow but worked down to ~6:25 pace at the end of the run. Felt good.

Tuesday 8.18.09
AM: core work and 30 minutes of aqua jogging; 1200 yards of swimming
First time in the pool since June. Have been doing mostly biking on my x-training day. The very hot weather made the pool feel good. Nice to get back in there.

Monday 8.17.09
AM: 15 miles in 1:53.00
PM: core work
Nice and easy today after yesterday's race. The miles were coming pretty easily. Happy to put a 15 spot in the log. Legs feeling pretty good. Only problem was the thirst. Still can't bring myself to wear the fuel belt. Did get some H2O from a spigot w/ 2 to go.

Monday, August 17, 2009

Runaways 5 Mile Road Race

The Skinny

5 mile time: 27:39
pace: 5:32
place: 3 (division: 1)
1- 5:37
2- 5:27
3- 5:41
4- 5:38
5- 5:17

The Full Race Report

Sunday, August 16, marked the 7th Annual Runaways Runaround 5 Mile Road Race. The race started at 9:00 am and it was a good thing too, as it was already pretty steamy by 8:30. Got to the race around 7:45 to register. While waiting in line, I noticed a small bevvy of high school and college runners. I took that bit of info w/ me to my warmup. I know that runners in the 19 and under category tend to start fast and based on my last race I figured going out in a 68 first quarter wasn't what I needed.

The warmup went well. The course begins in a beautiful part of No. Attleboro, an area of which I was not familiar. I jogged just about the first and last mile of the course to get a feel for it. There was some shade and some hills.

Now to the start of the race: Ayla Brown of American Idol fame was present to sing the national anthem. Previously unknown fact about Ms. Brown: she starts for the Boston College basketball team. After the anthem and a several many remarks from the race director, the "go" command was given and we embarked.

I started the race in the second row. After the initial 100 meters, I started to work my way through the high schoolers and some of the college kids. I noticed Heather Capello, the women's winner (w/ a new course record to boot) was ahead of me. At this point I told myself that I was probably going out a little conservatively. Over the second half of the first mile I continued to move up into 6th. We banged a right and hit an incline. There I passed another guy. So at the mile there was a lead pack of 4 then me.

The second mile started downhill. I closed the gap to the lead pack a little but didn't catch up to them. After the downhill we took a right onto the shadeless part of the course. I mean there were no trees in sight and the sun was bright hot. I was feeling strong at the mile and on the shadeless streets of the next two miles I wondered if I may be picking people off.

The lead pack of four started to disperse. Jeff Ragazzini, the winner of the race, started to breach the field. He had a guy on his shoulder, who I later discovered was a Bentley runner, but he mysteriously dropped out at the 2.5 mark. That put me in fourth and closing the space to the third place runner.

The sun was really coming down at this point and the course was rolling. I managed to pass a runner but Ragazzini and Steve Bergantino, another Bentley harrier, were spreading out pretty good. With farmlands on either side of the road, the course reminded me of The Great Race, just supplant corn fields for cranberry bogs and hills for flats. They both shared a lack of shade. Finally, a corner turned and offer a bucolic street. To go along w/ that street, however, was a pretty good incline.

This hill marked the start of the 4th mile. Having jogged the 5th mile in my warmup, I knew that it was primarily downhill. I tried to judge if I was closing the gap on Bergantino, but he seemed to keep about a telephone pole's length ahead of me. At this point, Raggazzi, who raced w/ a pulse rate monitor, was a bit out of reach.

I opted not to take water at 3.8. I was trying to close the gap on the runner ahead of me. When I hit the 4th mile marker, I tried to pick it up and thought I was closing the gap. I tried pushing through the downhill, but the other guy did too. He ended up beating me by 11 ticks. The winner beat me by 16 ticks, I think he must've struggled in a bit as he needed assistance in the chute.

About a minute later, Heather Capello crossed the line as women's champion and new course record holder. Congrats Heather.

...When I was cooling down, I tried to figure why I ran so slowly. I thought I was in better shape. Here are my excuses: 1) it was hot, 2) despite the 5th mile downhill, the course was rolling and hot, 3) I was coming off a 21 miler on Friday. I did train through this race and wasn't expecting a PR but it was disappointing knowing that I've run 5 miles about 2 minutes faster than I did today. I will keep training through races until late September, then work on sharpening. Still, a race is a good way for me to do some hard running. That being said, I would like my hard running to be faster. I should be easily sub 5:30 pace. I hate running in the 27:00s for a fiver.

Overall, the race was well managed. I received a medal for winning my age group and even won one of the many, many raffle prizes ( a pair of women's socks--hey, I didn't want another frisbee). Lots of water and food post-race as well. That's always a plus.

Sunday, August 16, 2009

This Week in Running: 8.10.09 to 8.16.09

This week was capped off w/ a trip down to the 7th annual Runaways Runaround 5 Mile Road Race. I didn't meet my expectations for this race. I'll put up a full race report tomorrow or the next day. In short, I came in 3rd (1st in division) w/ a time of 27:39 for a 5:32 pace. Thought I might be running faster than that...extrapolations in the full race report. With warmup and cooldown I logged 11.5 miles for the day.

Overall, I count this as a good week. Trained hard for most of it. Monday and Wednesday and Sunday I did faster stuff. Friday I ran a solid 20+. Saturday and Thursday were "days at the beach."

Bought that fuel belt this week but haven't tried it on a run yet. I feel a little odd and wimpy using it.

Numbers for the Week
67 3/4 miles in 6 runs
140 minutes on the bike
1 lifting sequence
4 core workouts

Saturday, August 15, 2009

A Day at the Beach

On the "Click Here for Kerin" link (right-side margin) there are 80 (yes 80!) new pictures to peruse. Some highlights include an adventure w/ rice cereal, a day at the beach, a visit from the g'parents, and, of course, another date w/ her main squeeze. We tried to get the the little chubba to tuck in her tummy for this picture, but there was no use. The latest album is entitled "Kerin14."

What I did running-wise today was just about a day at the beach as I am running a road race tomorrow morning. Training through it but still am looking for a hard effort.

Saturday 8.15.09
AM: core work and 7.25 miles in 51:27
Easy run at Adams Farm today. Feeling tired at the start from yesterday's long one but ended feeling refreshed. Ended the run w/ stretching, sticking, icing.
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Friday, August 14, 2009


Friday 8.14.09
AM: 21 miles in 2:33.21
Hit blackjack on this morning's run. Did just the amount of miles I planned, so psyched about that. The pace was a bit slower than my normal long days but I don't think I crested over 7:30s at any point. Probably did a bunch at 7:00 or sub but this run was almost 100% on trail w/ no mile markers. No gel on this one but did take water at 50, 1:24, 1:40, and 2:22. I considered strapping on the fuel belt but opted against it pre-run. Getting out early helped as the morning air was cool and foggy. Also happy that I did most of this run on trail. Went through the sheep pasture and town forest before arriving at Borderland for a couple of loops. It was there that I discovered a bubbler (as we say in this neck of the woods) and took advantage of it 3x. Body felt good for the most part as I continue to get accustomed to long runs of 18 or more. This run would've killed me a year or two ago. Muscle memory is a very real thing.

Thursday 8.13.09
AM: Lifting routine at rec center
AM: 2 easy treadmill miles
Found myself w/ an extra 45 minutes on my hands and jumped on the t'mill for a deuce. Did it more for the stretching that accompanied the run.

Wednesday, August 12, 2009

Watch Got Some from The Tonight Show

Watch Got Some from The Tonight Show

Posted using ShareThis

Got Some

For those of you unawares, Pearl Jam is releasing a new album in September. Above is a performance of "Got Some," which they did live on Conan O'Brien a few weeks ago. "The Fixer" has been on the radio, as it is their first single from the upcoming Backspacer. Enjoy. It's a good song to jazz you up before a workout. Speaking of which...

Wednesday 8.12.09

AM: 12.5 miles in ~93:28

PM: core work

The plan for today was 12 x 3 min hard w/ 1 min recovery. I'm happy to say that I executed this workout as planned. Felt good for the whole thing. After the 9th rep, I knew I'd be able to complete this workout feeling strong. It was good to do so after the last workout I did on the track...Did this workout at Bird Park as opposed to a track in an effort to protect the calf. Found a good loop that was just about three minutes. The loop had variant surfaces ranging from mulched wood chips to a cement walkway to grass to crushed stone. I think this loop made the workout go by faster than doing it on a track. Maybe I was just in a good frame of mind today. Ran a slow cooldown and iced it up when I arrived home.

Tuesday, August 11, 2009


The last two days have been hot, good but hot.

Tuesday 8.11.09
AM: bike 140 minutes
PM: core work
Would like to know the mileage I logged, but the bike odometer kept clicking off and on. Frustrating. I'm thinking I did about 40 miles. Biked to Marathon Sports and back. Picked up a fuel belt there. Don't worry I won't be using it on any eight mile runs or 5k races.

Monday 8.10.09
AM: 13.5 miles in 94:31
PM: core work
Glad to get out early as it was already steamy by zero-eight. Did some hard tempo work today.

The workout:
4 x 6 min hard/threshold pace w/ 1 min rec
followed by 5:20 rec
1 x 20 min hard/threshold pace

The splits were slower than I wanted them to be. Took out the beginning of this workout hard and didn't get any splits on the trails. When I doubled back I finished the last of the 6 mins. on the track for a half mile and was doing 5:42 pace. Back on the trails for some recovery and feeling it. Drenched in sweat and no H20 in sight. The beginning of the last 20 mins started at 6:00 pace and ended w/ a 6:02 mile. Disappointed these splits weren't in the 5:40 range. I need to work on that. Still haven't done much speed work to date and the doc isn't exactly endorsing it given the condition of my perpetually tight calf. I'll keep working at it.

Two years ago today I married the coolest woman eva. Happy Anniversary J!

Sunday, August 9, 2009

This Week in Running: 8.3.09 to 8.9.09

As planned, only ran four days this week. After two days off, my body was well rested for Saturday's run, which turned out to be one of my stronger running efforts in a long time. I was happy about that. Sunday was another easy day as I'm gearing up for an aggressive week starting on Monday.

Sunday 8.9.09
AM: corework and 7.25 miles in 51:53
Easy run to and through Adams Farm this morning. The weather was cool w/out a hint of humidity. I consider this a "bridge" run between two harder efforts.

Saturday 8.8.09
AM: 16.5 miles in 1:48.11
Ran a good portion of this run at Rocky Woods. Nice soft trails over there, which are very runner friendly. Felt good from the start. By a 1.5 miles I was at 7:14 pace and a couple miles later I clocked a 6:26. Couldn't get any splits on the trails but the effort remained consistent if not faster than the :26 split. On the way back hit 6:23 on an uphill mile. A bit later I was at 6:00 pace and my ending mile was again 6:00. Would've liked a 5:something in there, but I felt strong, controlled, and comfortable the whole way. Did the distance w/out water or gel and didn't mind it at all. The weather was nice and conducive to some hard cardio. Finished the day w/ a few hours of yard work.

Weekly Numbers
42 1/2 miles in 4 runs (planned cutback)
1 lifting session
5 core workouts

Thursday, August 6, 2009

The Cut Back Continues

The last few days:

Thursday 8.6.09
AM: core work

Wednesday 8.5.09
AM: 9.75 miles in 67:36
PM: core work
Up at zero-four to get this one in before the conference. Didn't know what to expect as I'm not used to waking up this early to run. Despite using the first 5k to wakeup, this turned out to be a great run. Turned into a progression and was running low to mid sixes by the end of it. Felt good to be done w/ cardio at 6:15 in the morning.

Tuesday 8.4.09
AM: Dr. Mika visit
PM: core work
Mika cautioned me about track workouts. He thinks they may be putting too much stress on the left calf. Be careful, he says. He recommends hard progression runs and fartlek type stuff as a substitute for track workouts. This will be a bit of a change for me as I like getting splits, but it's something I should consider.

Monday, August 3, 2009

Major Cut Back Week

This week is a planned cut back one but will be more drastic for a couple of reasons: 1) primary-work conference all week w/ long hours and a long commute (longer than usual anyway) 2) secondary- family is visiting from out of town. I picked a good week for a cut back so I'll savor this one, recharge, and be ready to go for next week. I hope to get 4 runs in this week and a little core work.

Monday 8.03.09
AM: core work
PM: 9 miles in 66:36
Not the best run, not the worst run. Happy to get out there after a long day, but my body felt tired. I'm tired now. I'm hitting the hay.

Sunday, August 2, 2009

This Week in Running: 7.27.09 to 8.02.09

Hardest week of training, I've had in some time. Feel good about that. Highest mileage week of the year and one of the most intense as well. The week wrapped up w/ some good ones.

Sunday 8.02.09
AM: core work and 11 miles in 78:57
Hit the track for what intended to be 8 x 1000m w/ 200 m jog recovery. Tired from the get-go but ignored that initial feeling. Wanted to do them in a controlled 5:30 pace to protect the left calf from over-tightening. I can deal w/ minor tightness; it's the big time knotting that worries me. Ended up only doing 7 reps b/c 1) I was not feeling in control, and 2) my calf was "talking" to me. I probably could've done the final repeat but didn't want to risk it. Am I contributing to the wussification of America? Maybe. Here are the splits:

1 - 3:24
2 - 3:24
3 - 3:24
4 - 3:25 (changed running direction on track after 4th one)
5 - 3:30
6 - 3:29
7 - 3:25

The recovery was okay. The temperature and humidity might've slowed me down a bit. Didn't feel nearly as strong as I did for the 6 x 1200m workout two weeks ago. I think several factors were involved in that, so I'm not panic-stricken.

Saturday 8.01.09
AM: 9.5 miles in 72:10
Down the cape for this one. Headed out from Captain Small in Yarmouth and hooked onto rr tracks and powerlines. Some good trail running, but a couple of wrong turns (perceived short cuts turned into long cuts) later and I ended up doing about 2 miles more than I wanted. No big deal as the pace was casual. No icing or stick today. I did soak my body in the Atlantic Ocean though. That was cool.

Sidebar: Kerin's first dip into the ocean was today.

Friday 7.31.09
AM: 20.5 miles in 2:28.26
First: thanks to Jen for putting out some water and a gel for me. That helped me on the back half. The long runs seem to be going well as I finished this one strong and at a good rhythm. Rocky Woods is proving to be a good spot for long days. Two 109 splits: 7:02 (down) and 7:06 (up). Fastest pace of the day came over the last 3k as I was feeling good. Continuing to try to finish long runs at not a slow pace. Gel at 1:57 helped the last half hour. Thanks again Jen.

Numbers for the week
67 3/4 miles in 6 runs (year high, I think)
4 core workouts
33 miles on the bike
1 lifting sequence

new sneakers: new balance 1223