Thursday, December 23, 2010
My challenge is for the blog members (and especially Eric) to establish a training program, pick an actual race (preferably a 5K) to enter, train for that race, enter it, run in it, and report the results with a good blog article and if possible, photos.
Charlottesville certainly must have some good 5k races in the Spring, so that might be a good time to shoot for.
The more important injury was to the ulnar nerve on my left arm. That injury is probably the result of riding done many years ago and riding done more recently. It was a minor annoyance until I did a 100 mile ride this past spring. About 8 hours on the bike in 1 day was enough to really cause some serious discomfort. Some testing revealed that I was dangerously close to permanent damage. The solution was to get off the road bike and give the nerve time to recover. Having done that, it looks like I might be able to avoid surgery. One sure way to avoid surgery is to not get back on the road bike. But I don't want to give it up. So I'm going to continue to stay off the road bike until the spring and then make some changes to the bike that might help take the pressure off of the nerve.
If the changes to the bike don't work well enough, surgery is an option.
Getting off the road bike didn't mean not biking. I did a fair amount of riding of my hybrid bike this summer. Riding the hybrid seemed to be okay on the ulnar. It caused some different nerve-related discomort, but that nerve discomfort, according to my doctor, is not a sign of potential really nasty, permanent ulnar nerve damage. That discomfort is a result of minor spine injuries that might have been caused when someone rear-ended me in a car accident many years ago.
I stopped running outside when it got too cold for it to be fun. When I stopped running I did increase the intensity of my exercise bike riding, but not the amount of time I ride. I'm still riding for 45 minutes--enough to feel like I'm getting a workout, but not so long that I can't wait to get off the bike. Riding an exercise bike is a really poor substitute for riding a real bike. Riding a real bike is fun.
Tuesday, December 21, 2010
Friday, December 10, 2010
Season Finale!! My fifth and final cross country race of the "season" is over! I think it was successful, but as usual, with cross country races, time does not tell you much, and sometimes place doesn't either. Regardless, I finished 8th overall out of about 140, 1st out of 15 in the 50 to 54 age group, and a time of 27:49 for an unofficial 6K. Now 6K is about 3.75 miles; however, two of us with GPS watches clocked the course at between 4.03 and 4.11 miles. GPS typically underestimates hilly courses, so this was a minimum distance. Using 4.03 miles, I averaged 6:55 per mile, but my guess was the distance was closer to 4.2, and thus my pace closer to 6:50.
I did do a little online research after the race, and the guy that finished just 4 seconds ahead of me ran in the 17s for 5K and 4:57 for the mile earlier in the year. Not sure what that means, but overall, I felt like I ran and competed well.
I must say, though, that the Montgomery County Road Runners Club puts on a great buffet after the race, and the entry fee was only $10. The homemade chili was the highlight for me!
I think the real test of my endurance was that I was able to get in the car and drive 8 hours back to Buffalo after the race, and not feel too bad!
Next up, a possible go at at an indoor mile on December 30, 2010. Unfortunately I can't train on the track, due to snow and cold. In fact, today, I cross country skiid for 45 minutes in the snow instead of running!
See results below or click on the post title to see full results.
Wednesday, December 8, 2010
In 1965 he set the Wheaton (IL) College indoor record at 48.9. I don't know what kind of track he ran that on, but back then there were not many good indoor tracks, so that was a very nice time. In the 1965 outdoor season John ran 47.7, a Wheaton record, and that was on a cinder track. With today's equipment, track surfaces, and training, who know how fast John would have been. The Gold Medal time in the 1964 Olympics for the 400 meters was 45.1.
John was an accomplished Master runner and is contemplating another comeback. Now I have yet another person to look up to, which should take some of the pressure off of Mark.
Sunday, December 5, 2010
This cold intolerance has put me off cycling in the late fall. I was on track to be easily over 3000 miles this year. Now I'm going to have to scrape together 57 more miles in December to make that!
Tuesday, November 30, 2010
Friday, November 26, 2010
Tuesday, November 23, 2010
After my run I road the exercise bike for 30 minutes and expect to be up to 45 minutes tomorrow.
Sunday, November 21, 2010
Eric is now (or was) in Kyoto. Wasn't this a place where there was some sort of political agreement? I think I remember something called the Kyoto accord, but i have no clue what it was about.
Anyway, Eric is now cycling, albeit at an easy pace. He explained in a comment on the blog that there were several reasons for the easy pace. Anyway, here he is again, cycling, but not on the bike in the photo. Note: he is the one without the dark hair! The other guy must be a competitor.
I wonder where Eric will turn up next??? He really gets around!
Saturday, November 20, 2010
I did three one mile repeats in Bassett Park today, on grass/trails/hills. Also a 1.25 mile warmup, then a 1 mile warmdown (total 5.25 miles). I rested 6 minutes between each mile repeat. Times: 6:34, 6:38, 6:31. After the 1st two repeats, I took off my sweat bottoms, and one layer off the top, so the final repeat was with shorts and just one long-sleeve shirt on top. The lesser weight seemed to help, as I thought my final mile was going to be the slowest. This was a little slower than my target 6:30 pace, but then I was thinking of wearing racing spikes, and probably thought about shorts. So if you add the weight of the sweats and training shoes, I was probably close to target pace.
But the main point is, didn't we use to do one mile repeats under Coach Truce on the cross country course? It hurt then and it hurt now.
Friday, November 19, 2010
I took my 3-year-old grandson, a 3rd generation Dr. K Strider, to the track a few days ago, and without telling him anything, he started doing 50 meter intervals. He kept stopping after each interval, though, to play in the long jump sand box! I tried to keep the rest between intervals about equal to the time spent running the interval, in keeping with Coach Truce's instructions.
Thursday, November 18, 2010
Eric is currently in Tokyo, apparently doing some real life business or client development. But the question is, is he running? His previous post mentioned that it would not be a great week for running. Here he is, getting out of a cab, then going out to eat. So, at least we know he is taking cabs and eating.
Tuesday, November 16, 2010
Approximately 31 years after finishing up my cross country career with Coach Truce, I ran in a comparable cross country race to our school days. The 8K championship race of a 5-race upstate ny series, hosted by the Genesee Valley Harriers, reminded me very much of a typical large invititational in the Truce days, even about the same 5- mile race distance. This race had over 160 runners, many of them fairly high caliber post-collegiate age athletes, plus many enthusiastic "age group" (i.e., codger) runners such as myself. In short, with a time of 32:28 (about 6:32/mile), I finished in 73rd out of 161, and only 11th out of 50 in the 50 to 59 year age group (sadly, called the "veterans" age group - doggonit, I'm old).
I even had to dig deep for an allout sprint down the final straight as a fellow 50 to 59er tried to come back and catch me, after I put on a good half-mile surge, with a faster surge during the last 300 meters to pass him. Embarassingly, I even leaned at the tape to get that 73rd place and coveted 11th place age group finish!
Another highlight of the race was bumping into Jim Miner afterwards. Jim, now in the supervets over 60 age group, is still running and doing crazy stunts like back to back marathons on consecutive days (some might remember his famous double Sub-3 hour marathon stunt, running sub-3 in both the Buffalo marathon, driving all night to NYC, and running sub-3 in NYC the next day). He outdid himself recently by running two marathons in ONE day, with a 6-hour drive in between events. By the way, did anyone ever figure out why Jim used to run with us, when he wasn't really in school at Binghamton? In fact, did he ever go to school there?
Results are at the link below (or click on the title), and I'll modify this post with some good race photos later, so stay tuned!
Saturday, November 13, 2010
When I get back I'm under orders from Mark to run fast so I can get a photo taken for the blog. The problen is I'm in no condition to do this--even a 220 at a decent speed will be difficult since I haven't done any kind of "speed" work for months.
I'm so glad that spring is only about five months away where I live.
Thursday, November 11, 2010
Anyway, last night (8:30 at night after dinner, on a full stomach), I ran a tempo run, consisting of 5 miles total: 2 miles at 9 minute pace, 2 miles at 7:00/mile pace, then a warmdown mile at 9:05 pace. These after dinner in the dark runs just seem to be slow. I had hoped I could be closer to 6:30 per mile for the tempo portion, but it must be a combination of the dark, full sweats, and trying to run after dinner. I felt like the effort was good.
So, we'll just see what happens on Saturday. I feel like I am in better shape than last year at this time, when I ran about 18:48 on the track by myself. However, last year, I was doing consistent speed workouts on the track, and numerous mile time trials. This year, I have been running higher mileage, but no track speed workouts, only tempo runs.
My tentative plan is to go out at about a 6 minute pace, if I can, and see if I can hold on..........
Tuesday, November 9, 2010
A dilemma has arisen in my running career. Almost accidentally, it seems, I ended up winning a 10K trail race on Saturday, my first outright win (not counting age group wins) in more than 2 decades! But the question is, should I retire now while I'm ahead, as this is not likely to happen again, or should I pursue a comeback, including the elusive sub-5-minute mile? I would appreciate some input from the faithful followers of this blog. Retirement seems appealing!
My time was slow - 44:57, or about 7:14/mile, but it was an extremely hilly race, all trails, wet and muddy conditions, and snowing fairly hard for most of the race. Of course, since I won, this begs the question....where were the decent runners?
Click on link below or on title of this post to see full results!http://www.grtconline.org/images/stories/2010_race_results/mendontrail10k_overall_results_2010.pdf
Monday, October 25, 2010
Not Just Another Race
The miles continued, with escalating hills, several creek crossings, and mud, mud, everywhere, mud! Just as the shoes were drying out to a crust, the orange flagging would force us through yet another slime pit, typically followed by an uphill “scramble” so steep that hands were either required for balance, or at times, needed to grasp at branches and trees trunks to prevent a downhill slide. The Garmin now showed 8:20 per mile average, but I didn’t throw the watch away, continuing to defy the race director’s instructions. There must be some flat sections or downhills to average out the slow pace of what was now becoming nothing less than a grueling struggle with nature. Finally, at 4.5 miles, the course wound gently downhill, then opened up onto a tame, gravel road. The pace quickened, and the hearts of my nearby competitors were visibly lifted. Then it came into view…..an 8-feet deep natural pond surrounded by wetlands, perfect for hikers, photographers, nature lovers, and triathletes, but somewhat disconcerting for runners..and what was that dock for?. Although I was initially planning on taking the 1/3-mile penalty lap around the pond, I was overcome by peer pressure (how silly of me at my age), and took the icy plunge into deep water, estimated at below 60 degrees, or at least well below comfortable swimming pool temperatures. Fifty yards later, gasping for breath, yet strangely refreshed, I heaved myself out of the water, once again stepping in mud up to my knees. My nearest competitor, also in my age group, comforted me with “that wasn’t so bad, was it?” Fortunately, after the “swim,” there was a brief respite from the topography, with a moderately gentle incline to the next swath of forest, including the only civilized and paved section of the run. This allowed for about 200 meters of drying time before the next phase.
More of the same followed for the next two miles: scenic woodlands, hills, single-track trails, navigating through brush, straining to see the next piece of pink or orange flagging, and taking a wrong turn (but correcting it before too much damage ensued). Then came the final mile, when the legs had already been beaten to a pulp. Another steep climb, mostly walking, but strangely, no runners gaining on me from behind….everyone was in the same condition at this stage of the race. Now, at about 7.3 miles, the race began! After a welcome downhill in a meadow-like setting, the trail veered sharply back into the woods, up a steep hill, and then over two military-style pole barriers, the first only about 5 feet high, and the second over our heads. After the barriers were successfully scaled, breathing a sigh of relief, a downhill provided a needed rest, but then a sharp left turn was required, taking runners off the trail and straight into a rocky creek bed. “Yes, stay in the water!” yelled the spotters, almost joyfully. I looked at the Garmin….over 8:50 per mile now. Then another spotter shouted “aha, another victim!” followed by “get down, don’t hit your head on the bridge!” I found myself crawling on my knees through the cold water of the rushing creek, under a footbridge barely 1 ½ feet high (and I did hit my head), then was promptly attacked by tough briars that wouldn’t let go of my legs and running shorts, and cost me some blood and another precious few seconds. Over 9 minutes per mile on the watch now, and still concerned about time and pace…..yet I didn’t throw it away.
The last ¾-mile was deceiving, appearing rather open, gentle, and inviting, but what was gentle at the beginning of this odyssey was no longer after the quads and hamstrings had been hammered to a pulp by hills, creeks, hay bale climbs, water, swamps, mud, and various barriers and obstacle devised by cunning race planners. Finally, into the horse corral near the finish, the spectators were enthusiastic, although they insisted and cajoled each runner to jump the barriers (intended for horses, not humans), not just step over them. There was thunderous applause as I complied with their wishes, and from there, it was easy….through the horse barn, with large curious eyes staring from the stalls, maybe retired racers themselves……..8:56/mile on the Garmin at the end, but I no longer cared.
Thursday, October 21, 2010
Just a short note to post results. A complete article with race photos will follow in a separate post. I ran the 4th annual running of the Jensen Stables Ultimate XC Challenge race this past weekend, including a 40 to 50-yard swim in a very cold pond. I managed a 17th place finish overall out of 182 runners, and grabbed the third and final slot in the 50 to 59 year old age group. My time??? 1:13:27 for about 8.3 miles, just under 9 minutes per mile. Seems slow, but you'll understand when I post the full article!!
I'm on the right in black in the photo (this is near the start, across a farm field).
Results found at link below:
Thursday, October 7, 2010
I may run another race this weekend, then on October 17 I am planning on a very rugged 8.5 mile trail/obstacle/cross country race.
Wednesday, September 29, 2010
Yesterday, I did my first "speed" workout of the "season." (my wife always says "what season??). I ran 4 non-stop miles, almost all on grass and trails. The first 1.25 miles was at about an 8:50 pace, followed by 2.1 miles at 7:06 pace (7:09, 7:04), and the last 0.8 miles at about 8:50 again.
I have several interesting cross country races planned, but my father has been ill, so my schedule is always uncertain these days.
I'll keep you posted!
Where is Eric????
Sunday, September 19, 2010
Not sure what this week will entail. I'm still in Maryland for now.
Thursday, September 16, 2010
Today it rained, so I may do roads, unless it stops. Not sure how these trails would work in the rain.
Where is Eric? Actually, he emailed and he is alive and well, just nothing noteworthy recently to blog about.
Friday, September 10, 2010
Then Sunday, I'm driving to Maryland to help out with my dad. Depending on when I leave the house, I'll try to run 4 miles when I arrive, then I hope I can run at least 3 or 4 times during the week in Maryland. I found out that there is a nice trail system near my brother's house (Cabin John Creek trail), so I hope to run there a couple times. The area has rolling hills, so I should get in some good workouts.
Tuesday, September 7, 2010
Friday, September 3, 2010
Cross country season is upon us!!!!
Sunday, August 29, 2010
The tour went very well; our training and weight loss program really paid off. It's now almost September, and I've managed to stay fairly slim. Not like the almost anorexic 145 that I was in college, but I'm keeping under 170. That's 40 pounds down from my peak in January!
Sunday, August 22, 2010
I lost another tennis match to my 4.0 level buddy, a dismal 6-1, 6-3. We played a consolation set, which I won 7-6 (7-5) in a tie-breaker, but of course, that doesn't really count for anything.
I did find out that my 4.0 buddy played another guy whom I always considered at least a 4.5, and ended up beating him 6-4 in a single set. So maybe my 4.0 buddy is on his way to a 4.5 level, and losing to him isn't so bad!
Getting back into it a little. Down here in Maryland helping out with my Dad, so I ran Friday and Saturday (4 miles each, hilly, 8:53 per mile each run). That made about 12 miles for the week plus one tough round of tennis (3 set, see above). Today I ran 5 miles in the sweltering heat and humidity of Potomac, Maryland, averaging about 8:46 per mile.
May try to run tomorrow, but not sure I'll have time.
Monday, July 26, 2010
I think I remember from last year, that alumni may be invited to run in one of the actual home cross country races (if there are any), but then we would be way at the back of the pack, looking a little foolish finishing several minutes behind the main pack, especially if there were only a handful of us. I wish they would bring back the Gary Truce!
Friday, July 16, 2010
Upon my return, I have only run twice so far (about 4.1 miles each time 8:20 to 8:30/mile pace), played tennis twice, and lifted weights once. I should be running tonight and hopefully tomorrow.
On the tennis front, I played my 4.0 buddy again last night. Unfortunately, he won 6-3, 6-4. I was actually down 5-0 in the 2nd set, battled back to 5-4, but then caved and lost 6-4. I think my serve has picked up a little speed and consistency. I think I only had about 5 double faults (not bad for me), and my 2nd serve, although slower than the first, wasn't too bad, and he didn't hit many winners at all on my 2nd serve. I still don't have a true kick serve. This may take some work and even a lesson. My buddy took a private lesson from a pro just to start getting the hang of a kick serve. He didn't even try it in the match last night. Apparently, although seemingly routine, a good kick serve takes a lot of work.
That's it for now. No plans for time trials for now. Just enjoying summer in Buffalo (and Key Largo), playing tennis, and running as time permits.
Monday, June 28, 2010
On the running front, I ran 3 times last week, played tennis once (details above), and did yard work on Saturday (pretty tiring in the heat).
Yesterday I started the week with a 4.2 mile run, again under warm, humid conditions.
I'm leaving this coming Saturday for Key Largo, and don't expect to run much while I am there for a week. I think last year I may have run 3 times, about 3 to 3.5 miles each, which was about all I could take in the heat and humidity. However, I typically swim/snorkel every day, and even play some tennis at night, so i feel that I at least maintain my conditioning on these trips. I will target running at least twice, maybe 3 times if I can this year.
Wednesday, June 23, 2010
Anyway, I ran 4.2 miles, with some fartleks, and averaged about 8:16/mile. It was quite warm and humid (for Buffalo), so this was a good effort.
Hoping to play tennis with my daughter tonight, probably no running or tennis tomorrow night, then singles tennis Friday night, then we'll see for the weekend.
With Wimbledon in full force, I feel the pull of tennis more than running right now. I really need to learn that kick serve!
Tuesday, June 22, 2010
Monday, June 21, 2010
However, I didn't run Friday night (although more than 2 hours of very physical hard-fought singles tennis felt like a reasonable workout), didn't run Saturday (did mulching/yard work in hot weather), then ran only 4.1 miles Sunday at 8:28 per mile.
This type of scenario may be continuing here for at least a couple months.............(I mean playing more tennis, not necessarily winning).
Thursday, June 17, 2010
I think the problem is that tennis works different leg muscles, as much of the motion is side to side. This seems to hamper my running a bit, not to mention that every time I play tennis is a day or night that don't run (not enough time or energy for both in one day).
The good news is that I really enjoy tennis, get a good workout, sweat a lot, it's more fun than plain running. It sort of combines the endurance and speed of running with a real sport. Although my tennis skills are not always equal to my opponents, I can often come close to them or at least give them a hard match due to my running ability. I often get comments like "you've really got a set of wheels!"
So, what I'm trying to say is that you may see several tennis updates throughout the playing season, with running and racing possibly taking a back seat until September.
I'll try to get a couple photos of me trying to play tennis! I am improving, however, and I'm finally working on a legitmate second serve, which is intended to be a kick serve.
Friday, June 11, 2010
But maybe I shouldn't be surprised--didn't I read something recently about a SUNY-B runner breaking 4:00 in the mile? And this change isn't just going on with distance runners. SUNY-B broke 3:10 in the 1,600 meter this past season. That's a very respectable time and means that there are at least four good 400 meter runners on the team.
The article about Jeff mentions some of what the overall running program has accomplished recently and how much the program has improved over the last few years. So, I think the time has come to stop picking on the teams and saying that they are no better today than they were more than thirty years ago. SUNY-B appears to finally have some runners who are not only faster than Mark, but would probably also be able to beat Bob Daniels. Way to go Colonials! (Sorry, as sad as the Colonial was, it was still better than an imaginary Bearcat that looks like every other cartoonish unimaginative logo out there.)
Tuesday, June 8, 2010
Yesterday in my first timed distance run I did two miles in 17:01. I thought that wasn't too bad when compared to how my running has been going on the track. In addition to the two miles of running I walked five miles.
My dilemma is that now that the clay court club is open, I need to play enough times to make my membership worthwhile. And on nights where I have an opportunity to play tennis, I simply don't have enough time to run, so it cuts into running and training for the mile directly.
Any advice out there???? My wife tends to lean towards me playing tennis, as it is good exercise, relaxing (so she says, but she doesn't watch me competing), and good for my health. Tennis works a few more muscles than running.
Please help! My mile time is probably suffering already!
Wednesday, June 2, 2010
As I told Dominick, that was today. There is a decent chance that tomorrow I'll struggle and might not get under 8:00. It was nice to have this pleasant surprise.
Sunday, May 30, 2010
This mile was perfect not only because of the splits themselves, but because it was 6 seconds faster than 8 minutes. And 6 is truly a perfect number. And not only is 6 a perfect number but it is the smallest perfect number. For those who don't remember, a perfect number is one who factors, excluding the number itself, total to the number. So with 6, since the factors are 1, 2, 3, and 6, we add 1, 2, and 3 and get 6.
I think the only was to top this accomplishment will be to run a 3:54 mile comprised of the following 4 splits: 1:00, 59, 58, 57. To do this is going to take some very serious training so I better stop blogging and start running.
1) Going on a two-week business trip kept me off any kind of bike for two weeks.
2) My finger is still hurting from when I fell awhile ago and landed face-first, and used my hand to help break the fall.
3) I had been having some minor ulnar nerve issues on my 20+ miles rides. When I did the 100+ mile ride a few weeks ago I either did some real damage, or at least messed up the ulnar nerve enough so that recovery is very slow. I have an appointment with hand specialist for late June.
Since returning from my trip about a week ago, I've just about everyday and have also ridden the excerise bike almost everyday. Monday I didn't feel too bad running and at about the half-mile point decided to try and run a "decent" time. I did a 7:44 mile. The next day I did a 7:45 mile. This coming week I hope to do some riding on a real bicycle, but will be watching how my hand feels.
Tuesday, May 18, 2010
Well, our district track championships start tomorrow with prelims and finals on Friday. The top eight in each event advance to the finals. In realistic terms, Greg's high school track career could end tomorrow. Competition will be keen to advance as a good number of runners are running quality 400 times. In fact, a number of last week's league championship meets saw 400 times as low as 48.39. This was a runner who then doubled in the 800 with a 1:54 and change! It seems like this is a bumper crop year for the 400. Guys running between low 50 and 51 are all over the place. Greg ran a personal open best last week in our league meet of 52.79. This is nowhere near fast enough to get to the finals for our district. Greg remains confident he can go into the 51's tomorrow and I think he's right but he'll have to run leaving nothing behind. It will likely take this level to advance to Friday's finals.
Monday, May 17, 2010
Although behind last year's mile time at this time of year (5:33), Raybuck is encouraged by the result. Statistically, this is his fastest opening mile time of the "season" since 2002, when he last made a serious run at a sub-5 mile. Last year's first mile attempt, by comparison, was 5:52, and it was not until the second attempt that he reached 5:43. This year, Raybuck is placing a greater emphasis on mileage early in the season, and thus does not expect to see the faster times until later in the "season" and after serious speed workouts have been initiated.
Although feeling a bit silly, Raybuck started the solo time trial yesterday at the Casey Middle School track with a formal warmup, including 100-meter strides, changing into ultra-lite racing flast, lining up a few meters behind the start line, stating "Runners Set!" then scuttling quickly up to the start line and shouting "Boom!" After an initial quarter at 84 seconds, Raybuck realized the Norton Barrier was within reach. The 1/2-mile was reached at 2:54, exactly on Norton Barrier Pace, then 4:21 at the 3/4, followed by a final quarter of 82.8 seconds to break the Norton Barrier by nearly 4 seconds. After completing the time trial, Raybuck's initial thought was "I'm retiring,", but seconds later, he felt much better and started planning for his next attempt.
Monday, May 10, 2010
Yesterday, I only ran 4 miles, at a pace of about 8:50/mile, and was quite fatigued. This was a combination of running 6 miles on Friday evening, then about 4 miles Saturday in a windstorm, then digging and landscaping in my yard yesterday afternoon before my run.
Today, I hope to run either 4.5 miles or conduct a mile time trial, then take tomorrow off, run Wednesday (or do my time trial then), take Thursday off, then run Friday, Saturday to round off the week. Due to time constraints with work during the week, I may postpone my first mile time trial until next weekend, but I will do it soon. The initial goal will be sub-6, but in the back of my mind, I would like to hit sub-5:48, which is the "Norton Barrier." (search blog for Norton Barrier for an explanation).
Sunday, May 9, 2010
My primary goal was to finish. I did that. Total time on the bike was about seven hours. My secondary goal was to maintain a decent pace for the first 50 miles. I did that. Time on the bike for the first 50 was 2:58.
This was not a race, but was an organized event (click on the title of the post) that started at 7:30 A.M. and they wanted people to be done riding by 3:30 with a drop-dead time of 4:00 when all support for riders stopped. The requirement of averaging 12.5 miles/hour including rest stops was somewhat inspirational.
The riding went well for the first 52 miles. Then, just about a half-mile from the "halfway" rest stop, I got leg cramps. The next 50 miles were tough because I was fighting leg cramps and the wind was really nasty. The cramps were probably the result of dehydration and just plain old being tired. Prior to this ride my longest ride had been 33 miles.
The worst part of the ride was at the very end when my little group couldn't find the finish. Mentally, I was prepared to go 100 miles. The fact that the course was probably 103 miles and that not finding the shortest path to the finish added another mile or two was really frustrating. Driving 75 miles home after the ride just added to the fun. Once I got home I took a shower and then spent the rest of the day crawled up in a little ball in bed moaning in pain.
In addition to not drinking enough I made at least two other rookie mistakes. I put too much sunblock on my forehead and when it melted away and ran into my it was very difficult to see and it made my eyes hurt. I didn't where any glasses. I thought about wearing them and decided that they would probably annoy me. That was a mistake because I didn't factor in the glare reflecting off the road on an all-day ride. Most of my riding has been in late afternoon and early evening when the sun hasn't been strong.
It will probably be two weeks before I'm back on the bike because on Tuesday morning I leave for Silicon Valley and Japan. So running will have to do until I return.
Friday, May 7, 2010
Next week there is an organized century ride (100 miles) nearby. If the weather is good I'll ride that, and it will be a kind of graduation. A century this early in the year is a good sign.
Weight loss is going well. I'm down 25 pounds from where I was in February. You'd think that I would be dramatically faster in the hills, but that isn't the case.
Eric must have jinxed me because I crashed again last week. I was riding home from work on the commuter bike and a stick got caught between the fender and tire. It jammed up, brought the wheel to a stop and I did an endo. No faceplant, and just a few bruises. I got off easy. Now I know why modern fenders have breakaway tabs.
Thursday, May 6, 2010
After a first mile at about 8:30 pace, I decided to do a few longer fartleks, so I did about 4 of those throughout the run, about 2 to 3 minutes each. I'm guessing these were at 7 min/mile or faster pace, since my average pace at the end of a 4-mile run (on roads) was exactly 8:00 per mile.
Anyway, it was encouraging to see faster times, although I did take the day before off. I plan to take tonight off, then run Friday and Saturday.
Then it is back to Maryland Sunday, for another few days of "hill" training.
Monday, May 3, 2010
Still no time trials or speed work, but I am sticking to my plan of trying to run more distance this year, if possible. I may try a tempo run this week, just to get used to running a bit faster.
Sunday, May 2, 2010
Friday, April 30, 2010
Good Morning All!
Thursday, April 29, 2010
We had reasonably good weather last night for our dual meet. A bit windy on the back turn but otherwise OK. Greg ran 52.8 for a second place against our opponent who won in 52.5. I was expecting something faster but the good news is that Greg continues to run pain free so I'm more confident that we have put the hamstring injury behind us. I could see that Greg did not go out as fast in the first 200 and this cost him the race. His opponent closed the stagger on the back straight away and while Greg closed in the home stretch, it was not enough. We talked about the race afterwards and Greg agrees he needs to go out faster in the opening 200 and begin his kick a bit earlier. I am still encouraged by his strength at the end. He seems to be able to hold on and not lose ground as in past years.
Monday, April 26, 2010
Thursday, April 22, 2010
Anyway, I'm up to about 13.5 miles in 3 runs so far this week, with two more runs planned.
Next week, I'm out of town all week again at my brother's house (working from there), but I hope to get in at least 4 runs next week.
Wednesday, April 21, 2010
Last night I ran a fairly brisk 4.5 miles on trails at 8:15/mile, and felt pretty good (included three fartleks of about 200 meters each).
Yes, I will do a mile time trial soon, just to make sure I'm in relatively decent condition. As usual, my goal for the first mile of the year is just to break 6 minutes, then the next goal is 5:48 (the Norton Barrier, search previous posts for the significance of this). And of course, ultimately, I would like to make a stab at a sub-5-minute mile this year. That will remain to be seen.
Monday, April 19, 2010
Biking is fun. It's great that you can cover more distance, but there is so much equipment/clothing, logistics, etc. Here in Charlottesville, most people that do a lot of biking have to drive to a place where it is "safe" to bike. And I quote safe because the safety of biking on country roads is debatabl
Yesterday I road 33 miles on fairly hilly roads. My chain fell off three times as a result of things being slightly out of whack from my recent incident. This was a bit frustrating since I had brought the bike into the shop after the incident. After the ride yesterday I headed directly back to the shop.
Saturday I was on the track and working towards my half-mile time trial.
I am looking forward to the time when a 33 mile ride in the hills doesn't leave my quads sore.
Sunday, April 18, 2010
Friday, April 16, 2010
Overall I got off really easy because I was going very slowly when it happened. I was riding on a sidewalk as a I transitioned from one part of the neighborhood to the other and my wheel got stuck in a groove between sections of the sidewalk. The bike came to a complete stop and I didn't.
The big lesson is that riding a road bike takes complete concentration. My mind was somewhere else. I am having an old hybrid bicycle reconditioned and something like that can be ridden with a lot less focus because the tire are more forgiving.
Prior to this incident on Wednesday biking had been going well. Sunday I did my longest ride in recent history: 33 miles. If my finger is working well enough to hold onto the handle bar, shift, and brake, I'll go out this Sunday for another longish ride.
Running continues. I'm now working more on speed and not so much on endurance, figuring that the biking should be giving me some conditioning. I think it would be reasonable to do a half-mile time trial sometime in the next month or so. But first I've got to run a quarter at some reasonable pace.
Thursday, April 15, 2010
More updates later! (whether you want them or not)!
Wednesday, April 14, 2010
I am not doing any speed workout yet, but did do a couple fartleks of unknown pace. If I was really hard core, I could upload my Garmin to the computer and then check to see how fast (and far) the fartleks were, but that is too much work.
Hoping to run a similar run tonight, then take Thursday off, then run Friday/Saturday to get in 5 runs this week. For the Friday or Saturday run, I will increase my "long" run to about 5.5 miles, if everything works out.
As mentioned previously, I think I really need to get in more mileage, longer long runs, and a better base this year than last, if I want to make a serious attempt at at a sub-5 mile. One thing I am planning this year to help inspire my mile training is to run the 1500 meters in the Empire State Games (New York State's scaled down version of the Olympic Games). There are, of course, age groups. The Games are actually in Buffalo this year, so why not?
Tuesday, April 13, 2010
Monday, April 12, 2010
Not sure when I'll do my first mile time trial, but I hope it will be soon.
Friday, April 9, 2010
Thursday, April 8, 2010
Anyway, this week I'm down in Potomac, Md, helping out with my father, who is doing ok, but undergoing some chemotherapy treatment. I have run twice so far this week, about 4 miles each. The runs were fairly slow, about 8:45 to 8:50 per mile on my Garmin, but there were rolling hills, and 3 miles of my course is on a gravel/partly paved, very windy course with fairly steep elevation changes.
I hope to run that course again tonight, then may be traveling home tomorrow. If I don't travel home tomorrow, I'll run again tomorrow night.
I would like to do a mile time trial, probably in a week or two, but this year I would REALLY like to get in a bit more distance base. I ran 5:21 last year in the mile, but on a shoe-string budget of about 20 miles per week, with a few 25 mile weeks. If possible, I would like to get in a few 30 mile weeks in a row, and see if that helps, with some longer runs of 8 to 9 miles. Last year my "long" runs were typically 6 miles, with just a handful of 7 milers.
Tuesday, April 6, 2010
Sunday, April 4, 2010
Friday, April 2, 2010
After signing up we looked at the small print. What we hadn't spotted before plunking down our deposit was that there was a significant amount of climbing involved in this ride. Three days of ~6000 feet. For us, a really hilly day would be about 4500 feet of climbing. We recognized that to survive the climbing we would have to do some training, and even more important, we would have to get light.
Eric can attest that I am no longer the tall skinny guy I used to be. In February I was tipping the scales at a decidedly porky 210 lbs. It was time for a diet. Fortunately the dieting has not been particularly painful. What with all the crap I'd been eating I was probably consuming about 3000 calories a day. I cut that down to under 2500 and weight started coming off.
I'm now down to 195 lbs. I have no particular end state in mind. The 2500 calorie level is fairly comfortable. I've mostly just cut out wine and snack kinds of foods.
We are in fairly good cardiovascular shape. We go the the gym four or five times a week for spinning or aerobics. Once the weather warmed up enough to bike we were able to jump right in and do 30 mile rides. On two days in March we did 50 mile rides. Not fast mind you, but I'm happy with 50 mile rides just turning the cranks. Our training goal is to be ready for the Charles River Wheelmen Spring Century in mid May.
Thursday, April 1, 2010
Yesterday was a breakthrough day for cycling. The 21 mile ride up and down hills was surprisingly comfortable. I was able to go uphill in much higher gears than previously and with a lot less huffing and puffing. I think riding the exercise bike is helping a lot. On the exercise bike there is no coasting and every 5 mintues for 45 minutes I increase the difficulty of the ride. I've also determined that the road bike I have is quite fast. I can tell this because of my speed while coasting relative to the speed of others I'm riding with while they coast. I usually go faster than they do. That's the bike, not me.