Monday, January 20, 2020

Boston Training 2020: Week 5. The time when winter came, and it got cold

This was another perfectly fine week of work. Despite some cold and snowy weather, I continued along right on schedule.

On Monday, I headed out for  6 miler which ended up taking place in an unexpected storm. Things were just fine when I headed out, but drastically changed at the point when I was as far away as could be. It was instant ice- a HUGE mess, and I'm thankful that I met zero traffic on my return trip.

Covered in ice chunks
My mid week runs were all treadmill. At some point I did 6x800 at the infamous 7:36 pace that I seem to gravitate towards.

Saturday long run was done in some COLD (18 degree) weather, and in the aftermath of a decent sized snow storm on Thursday. The challenging footing (either glazed over road, or snow that was similar to beach sand) made things more challenging than one might wish for. However, I got the workout done, I stayed warm, and my legs cooperated.

It has been cold and snowy
Sunday's recovery run was in possibly even grosser conditions. Another good sized storm moved through overnight, and temps rose to about 33 during the day. When I headed out, the roads were covered with a remarkable amount of slush, slime and grossness. Lovely.

I was happy with this week of running and can notice that my legs are coming back. I'll be easing into some slightly higher mileage for February, with the big workouts scheduled for March.

I don't have any "training" races scheduled prior to Boston. I managed to spend all my race cash on Boston, and a fall race for 2020 so I plan to pass on other race options. If Boston doesn't yield a BQ for me, I'll make a plan change and shoot for a smaller, local marathon if I feel that is the correct choice (as in: I fail to BQ due to a shitty day, not a stupid injury or similar.)
The past two years I have run the Mid Winter Classic, and then Hyannis (marathon in '18, half in '19) It's nice to have supported long runs, but I don't mind passing this year to save some cash. I can make the training happen in my own.

Stats:
Total miles: 36.2
Long run: 14
Coldest Day: COLD. A high of 10 with bad wind chills. 
Snow: 9" Thursday, 7" Saturday  
Random: even though I have been running for a while, the thought of running two miles still seems almost unfathomable! Like, I'll drive two miles and my subconscious will say "a person could never run THIS far!!" Weird.

Monday, January 13, 2020

Boston Training 2020: Week 4. The time that running became slightly better

As the title implies, it was a better week on the training front. I feel like I was noticing the (slight) fitness benefits of a few consistent weeks, which was pleasant and helpful.
Strava sent me some helpful stats from last year. I should have tried to estimate the bike mileage I put in prior to MCM, because it would have brought those numbers up a bit.



Another pretty straightforward week. A couple treadmill runs, including 12x400 at 7:30's. Not super fast for 400's but it never makes a huge difference. The thing about speedwork is it all helps in the end- and while it's nice to be hitting wicked fast paces, it's better to just do SOMETHING then avoid it, in terror, over the wicked fast paces.
(quality training advice)

I had a decent enough, VERY warm (over 50) 12-ish miler over the weekend with no ill effects. While I am really not concerned about my summer leg condition returning (since we rarely hike in the winter) it is still good to feel no pain.

There was a full moon. Which meant the dog wanted to wake up in the night and look at it!!


I was contemplating my summer leg/lameness issues the other day. The number of time I rolled my damn ankle last summer was just insane. I ended up with so many issues because of that, and I was congratulating myself on clearly being stronger/more coordinated now.
SADLY, that is not it. All winter long, I wear boots. (I work outdoors) and my boots keep me from constantly straining my ankle. Actually, I can imagine that my ankles are mostly likely at an all time high level of weakness, due to being constantly supported by my boots. So yeah, I'm probably one shitty step away from being a hobbley jackwaggon again!

It would be nice to be able to make time for some strength work and stretching. Ya know, bolster up the weak little stems.
DREAMS, ALL DREAMS. It probably won't happen!

Anyway. Week 4 in the books. With the past two winters containing a February marathon, one part of me feels very behind schedule! However, I know I'm on the right track.


Stats:
Total miles: 33.5
Long run: 12.3
Coldest Day: 20, and it felt damn cold 
Snow: About an inch of rain..... 
Random: In addition to running, my hobbies are hiking (which you all know about) reading (which I love) and puzzles (because I like hobbies that most people find dull) Oh, and drinking beer. 

Wednesday, January 8, 2020

Boston Training 2020, Week 3: The time when I wrote a post and forgot to hit publish

So yes, delayed. Hitting publish helps.

Of course, I know that nobody waits for this with bated breath (if you do, cool!) Blogging isn't really a thing anymore, but I certainly think this is a handy way to keep a training log.

So, on to that.

It was a fine week (as in, no impending injury, no real issue) but my motivation to run, and my enjoyment of the actual act was at a pretty solid low (not an all time low. but low.) It shall pass.
If not, it's not like I actually need to do this. However, I'm pretty sure this is just a temporary dislike and I'll snap out of it soon.

I managed to get in a couple runs outdoors, despite the increase in snow.



I did a 10+ miler, in some pretty constant rain to the pup (as usual.)


We've had a tough go the last month or so, as one of the owners of our pub had a horrible accident and passed. It was unexpected and extremely jarring. Over the past two years he became a good friend to us. Much more than just a "bartender" but truly someone who we enjoyed seeing, talking to, and sharing a lot in common with. Rarely a week went by when we didn't find ourselves heading that way to share conversation, let our puppies play, and just hang out. We are working our way back to pub runs, and pub time, but it really has not been the same. However, the best way to honor our friend's memory is to continue to support his business, and to let our dog run amok in there the way he always allowed. Hence, pub runs will continue to be celebrated.

I managed 8 400's at mid 7 pace at some point. Had a couple basic runs. That was it.

Stats:
Total miles: 26.4
Long run: 10.4
Coldest Day: Not cold enough to care about. 
Snow: 12" The biggest storm of the season
Random: It took me two years, but I wore out a pair or darn tough socks. On principle, I have sent them back to be replaced. However, I do not plan on doing so again, as two years is plenty to expect from socks. 

Monday, December 30, 2019

Boston Training 2020, week 2. The time when December was brown.

Week two was no problem. Basically as unexciting as one could wish for.

I had a couple treadmill runs, which will continue to be a trend as long as I continue to work until well after dark.

In the theme of discontinuing my habit of leaving speedwork until the last moment, I did 6x400 at 7:48 early in the week. Hey, gotta start somewhere!

I did manage to hit the actual road twice, in the first time in a very long time. Luckily, one of the outdoor days was my "long" run, which (at 8 miles) was not terribly long. However, it should be noted that it was my longest run in a training cycle since September 12th (again with the "you have to (re) start somewhere!)
Currently, the snow levels are almost non existent. The roads are in great shape.
(this will come to an end, there is a foot of snow in the forecast. barf.)

Brown December evening
We did a great hike of Webster, Jackson and Pierce on Boxing Day. The weather was just outstanding (30, no wind, just amazing.) We cruised around the loop in exactly 5 hours. The next day, this caused me to feel like I had run a half marathon. (totally counting this as downhill work!! Not really. But I'm sure it counts for something.)

Well this is nice!!!!
Anyway. That's it from week 2. Pretty standard stuff. Low mileage still, low intensity. I plan to add a reasonable number of miles on this week, not that I have had a month or so of consistent running.

Stats:
Total miles: 22.4
(plus 9 hiking miles) Long run: 8
Coldest Day: Not cold enough to mention, or remember. A few days when it was legit 40. 
Snow: Nope
Random: I'm really delighted in the sub-culture of Vizsla owners. We all get "it." If you have ever found your dog on top of your car, or refrigerator, you get it too. Plus, you really never knew how much "help" you DID NOT have, until you have a a little Vizsla helping you with EVERYTHING. I love her. 

Monday, December 23, 2019

Boston Training 2020: Week one. The time I wrote a boring recap.

Week one was uneventful.

I ran 21 total miles, a "long" run of 7, and a few short (400) repeats. Everything was done on the treadmill this week, because I was working until well after dark.

Things, in general, felt fine. My treadmill has been having some technical challenges. The incline has become uncalibrated (I'm not sure if that is what it is called, but you get the idea.) I have not been fretting about it, but I have been amused to find myself running up a quite steep incline when it is set at zero. Oh well, hopefully I'll be able to make it out onto the roads pretty soon.

It has been two years since I have not attempted a mid winter marathon, and hence, the first December where I am not well into training. We will see how fit I feel come April (I certainly imagine that 18 weeks can get the job done.) After the summer fiasco, my first goal is to simply stay healthy. My second goal is to Qualify for 2021.

Stats:
Total miles: 21
Long run: 7
Coldest Day: Cold, one day with a high of 12 which was terrible but short lived
Snow: The first "real" storm of the year, on Tuesday, with about 3-4 inches
Random: I often think back to my early days of running and remember feeling so impressed and proud of myself for hitting milestones- first 5 miler, first 10k, first 13.1!! I kind of miss that, one really looses sight of how impressive just running a few miles is, when one has been doing it for a while.