Spring Race Training: Week 2

09spr-training-02January is over, finally. I don’t normally mind January all that much, but this year’s version has been so awful weatherwise that I’ve had to do the majority of my runs indoors. This has been not only a tedious proposition, but also quite challenging as my weeks feature more and more faster running. February is typically even worse, so it’s not as if we’ve turned a corner or anything. But at least we’re that much closer to spring.

I felt sub-par for most of the week. The half marathon last Sunday took a lot out of me and then I spent the early part of the week fending off a cold that Jonathan picked up. He was well for a day and then either suffered a relapse or has managed to pick up a totally new cold. Either way, I’m now trying to avoid catching that one as well. Anyway, this manifested itself in an elevated heart rate, swollen glands and general feeling of malaise.

On Wednesday I modified the planned workout (13 easy with last four at just under 28:00). I was again on the treadmill and had attached my little footpod to a new pair of shoes. Our treadmill is way off — typically reporting that you’re running 15-20 seconds per mile slower than you actually are. As you can imagine, this makes quite a difference when doing faster work.

For speed and mileage information I look at what the footpod is telling the watch, which I’ve calibrated on GPS measured runs outside, and ignore the treadmill’s lying display. Well, the footpod matched the treadmill on this particular pair of shoes — something I didn’t notice until mile 11 when I was thinking, why am I so exhausted and why is running these faster last miles so freaking hard? I moved the pod to an older shoe and all was right with the world. So, that session sucked.

On Friday, now wise to my capricious foodpod’s ways, I did 5 x 1K intervals — still not feeling great — and did pretty well. The plan was to run each in 4:00 (a 6:26 mpm pace). I only managed one, but the others were pretty close. This run was notable because I have never run that fast on the treadmill. It was cranked up to 8.9 mph for that 4:00 interval. I recalled the days when I had trouble running with it at 7 mph.

I learned on Friday that it’s dangerous to listen to comedy albums when running intervals. You laugh, then lose control of your already highly challenged breathing, then you forget to move your legs and then laugh harder at what a moron you are for deciding that it would be a good idea to listen to comedy while running at almost 9 mph. For curious readers the album was Judith’s Roommate Had a Baby by Judy Gold. Needless to say, it was so funny that it nearly got me seriously injured.

Saturday I woke up feeling like a brand new woman. For the first time in five days, I didn’t feel like shit. The 9 mile recovery run, done after several hours of enthusiastic housecleaning, was a breeze and almost a pleasure.

Yesterday’s 20 miler turned into a 20.7 miler due to needing to extend my outside loop as well as a short bout of getting lost. The Scarsdale/White Plains loop is a hilly course plus it was, as always happens, on the windy side. While I would have liked to have run faster than 8:30, it’s really not a bad pace for that particular course.

Week 3 is another 85 miler with more faster running and, on Sunday, a 20K Mpace run in hilly Connecticut.

9 Responses

  1. [...] Spring Race Training: Week 2 [...]

  2. Thats a lot off miles this week and a lot inside running.
    I don,t like running treadmill, but whit that cold and snow you must!.
    And the display speed treadmill in or fitness are not oké, most time you run to fast, because the display show to slow!!!.
    Goodluck this week.
    Rinus.

  3. The amount of recovery running in your schedule gave me food for thought. I went out for a recovery run this morning, that somehow morphed into an easy run, so I was hoping to ramp up pretty quickly from yesterday’s half. After looking at your post-half week, I think I will exercise some caution.

    I don’t have a treadmill but I hear they’re notoriously inaccurate. I seem to remember Jack Daniels describes in “Running Formula” how he calibrates them, by measuring the belt and counting belt rotations with a stopwatch.

  4. Yes, you can calibrate (or rather, know how fast or slow your treadmill is and make mental adjustments — since you can’t actually change its speed). I’m just way too lazy to do that.

  5. You sure train hard for a lazy person :)

  6. Hey, what happened to your million dollars post? It disappeared.

    There’s also the danger, with comedy, of having the other people at the gym call the police…

  7. That was a good week considering the cold and tiredness fending. Nice 5 x 1000s.

    I heard this generality about treadmills… that they need to be on a certain % grade to cancel out the advantage of having no wind resistance.

    Effort or HR could be a better way to judge the workout, rather than the running speed. For example, with the 1000s, are you getting the same ave/max HRs that you would for the same session outdoors?

  8. I took down the million dollars post because J. and I are idiots who can’t do math properly.

  9. I run with the treadmill at 1%, having also seen those tables. But I often wonder if the lack of atmospheric wind/air having a cooling effect cancels out the lack of wind resistance.

    I’m having trouble remembering what it’s like to run outside, actually. And I have yet to have done a 1K intervals session outdoors, so I’ve got no point of comparison.

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