Thursday, July 30, 2009

7/29 Run and Swim

Another day at the gym to beat the heat. And no snarky comments to mix up my commentary. Just amazed that peoples limbs don't fall off as fast as they elliptical... Wow.

6.0 miles @ 0% in 1:00:00 (10:00 min/mile pace) @ 149 bpm avg

More data is needed, but this run may confirm my theory that I run better on the third day in a row. Overall average HR was down a few points, and the first half/second half difference was nowhere near as dramatic. Deflection point happened about 5 minutes earlier, but the change was more gradual. The first half was at roughly 146 bpm, the second half was closer to 154 bpm.

More towel timing problems, but they had some by time I was done, s0 I sauntered to the pool for another try. Fortunately a lane was open, by the time I got changed so I didn;t have to kill time, or figure out how to share a lane. This time, the goal was to keep the workout relaxed, fun, and as aerobic as I could. I did forget to take the band aids off my nipples till halfway through the swim, embarrassingly enough. :|

I don't know enough about swimming to accurately name or pick strokes, so I'm just playing right now to try and get more comfortable in the water, build some endurance, and some more upper body strength.

I started with a crawl variation with my arms out of the water, but my head up for 100 yards, with a short break each 50 yards to reset myself and take a break. I realized I'm not comfortable enough to swim that stroke slowly, so it wasn't very aerobic. Watching one of the other swimmers, I decided to try a two-armed backstroke for 50 yards, and that worked very well.

I decided to stick with that, and alternated modified crawl for 50 yards, and backstroke for 50 yards. Seemed to work well to get my HR down, and I was able to experiment with alternating arm backstrokes a couple of times. Was also able to breathe off my right side for a half a length when experimenting with true freestyle.

500 yards in ~22 minutes. No speed records, but a VERY nice improvement in enjoyment and workout.

7/28 Run

Tuesday's run was a not particularly spectacular run on the treadmill to avoid the heat. Gym is having towel issues, so I just sweated all over their equipment instead. :) (I wiped it off... I'm not a complete slob. :))

6.0 miles @ 0% in 1:00:00 (10:00 min/mile pace) @ 151 bpm avg

Moved the incline back down to 0% per the article I liked yesterday, and not surprisingly, when I think about it, my HR is now about what I expect it to be at the 10 min/mile pace.

Another advantage to running the fixed pace is that I can better see the effect of time on my HR. It was interesting to see the HR change at 3 miles in, which I think I've commented about before. The first half was at roughly 148 bpm, the second half was almost exactly 156 bpm.

As an aside:
An open letter to the gal on the treadmill in front of me. While I appreciate scenery at the gym as much as the next person, and I appreciate your success in maintaining your body/gluteus maximus the growing fuddy-duddy/father in me would like to mention that if your ass eats your shorts that you might want feed your ass a different meal as nylon isn't very nutritious, or, possibly, to get a different size of shorts that don't require our constant attention. Thank you. :)

Tuesday, July 28, 2009

7/27 Run and First Pool Laps

It's been unpleasantly warm in the Northwest, so I deferred my run until the evening and dragged myself to the gym and the treadmill in the 'air conditioning'.

I decided that I'd just set the pace and just record the heart rate data instead of running based on heart rate like normal. Especially since it get so hot on the treadmill that it jacks my HR up every time.

Original plan was 1 mile warm up, 4 miles 'tempoish', 1 mile cool down. At some point in to the first mile of the 'tempo' component, I decided I wanted to run faster, so it turned into an 'interval'/speed workout. I also confirmed again the my max HR is 187. :) So, a good, hard run, that pretty much destroyed me. :)

All running done at 1% incline, except for about .05 miles at 2.5% when I was confirming my max HR. Hey it was already floating between 186 and 187... Why not. :) Did find an interesting article taking the 'anti' side of the treadmill incline discussion here. Makes sense, I think. Don't know if I'll change anything I'm doing, but thought provoking none the less.

1    - 10 min/mile
1    - 8 min/mile
.75 - 7 min/mile
1    - 9 min/mile
.75 - 7 min/mile
.5   - 9 min/mile
1    - 10 min/mile

I think I clicked start a little late, and actual mileage was more like 6.07, so we'll go with that.

6.07 miles in 53:00 (8:44/mile) @ 170 bpm average (187 max)

Oh, the HR plot was kind of neat, in that you can really see the pace changes pretty dramatically. Except for the last 1.5 miles where my HR never really came down.

I've been meaning to try the pool out and start doing some laps, and decided that even though I had jacked my heart rate all the way to oblivion it would be a good idea to try some laps anyway. I mean it's just swimming, how hard can it be? :)

I realized I didn't pack properly for this combination of workouts, so I swam in my compression shorts, instead of my trunks so I could wear them home. And realized I need a second pair of flip-flops for the pool. At least I remembered the goggles. :)

Got in and worked my way through 50 yards of freestyle, took a 12 breath break (inspired by Ruth Kazez and here 0 to 1650 program) and went back for a second round of freestyle. Halfway back on this lap I lost my mind. I forgot how long it's been since I was in the water last, and my comfort level was much lower than I thought it was. Combine that with the fact that my intensity level was off the charts, and I started to panic. I kicked down, trying to reach the bottom, forgetting it was only 4 feet deep and hammered the crap out of my right foot. My right big toe is missing a patch of skin the size of my thumb nail, and my right foot hurts a little when I walk on it. If I screwed up my running by swimming I'm going to be pissed. :|

Survived my panic attack after a break, and doggy paddled back to the side to finish the second 50 yards. Went back out again with heads up freestyle/doggy stroke combination for the third and fourth 50s. Finished with grand total of 200 yards. Got out and had to use the wall for support since I was a bit wobbly. Intensity level a bit high for the evening I think. :) So next session will be Wednesday, I think, and at a much lower intensity level. More research too...

Monday, July 27, 2009

Semi Random Race Pictures

I finally have pictures from the last few races, so I though I'd throw them up.

St Pats Dash 2009

Cold and wet now that we stopped running. And I think the reflective clothing might just work. :)

(L to R) Me (this is why I wear contacts), Val, neighbor Dave with his daughter, his brother Dan.

Beach To Chowder 2009

Kaitlyn, being pushed by my Mom, is in the purple stroller. Mom's friend and her granddaughter, and Kaitlyn's new friend, are next to them. Little Miss got her first finisher's medal thanks to Grandma. It's up in the kitchen wall with Mom and Dads. :)

Val looking strong!

A gratuitous ass shot. Apparently the photographer was intrigued by the fuel belt. Go figure. It is kind of artsy/sports.

Val and I snagged little miss from Grandma and ran Kaitlyn in to be sure she won her age group. :) And they got a nice shot of us all!

Rock and Roll Seattle Marathon 2009

Probably the best picture of me running so far. I'm at about mile 26.1 here and 'sprinting' in to the finish. :)

As an aside, why doesn't blogger insert images where the cursor is located? Grrr....

7/24 Run

Friday's clockwise run around the lake was uneventful. Garmin was late on some known splits. (I know, horror...)

63-69, sunny for that temp

6.09 in 1:01:44 (10:08/mile) @ 142 bpm

9:30 @ 140
9:43 @ 142
9:50 @ 144
10:53 @ 143
10:42 @ 143
10:12 @ 143
0.09 - 0:56 (9:49 pace) @ 145

Friday, July 24, 2009

7/23 Run - New SLU Clockwise PR?

Much cooler day on Thurdsday, and I was working so I couldn't get out as early as I would have liked. Started at 1145 and 62 degrees. Much better. :)

Decided to do a clockwise around the lake, and started off nicely. Got caught by the Fremont Bridge at about 1.5 miles in, and had to stop the clock and wait for 5 minutes or so. This occurred during my last PR around the lake. I'm still not sure if I should count it. I will, but I still have some doubts. I think the rest makes a big difference.

I think next week I may experiment with an ultra style hard and fast 5run:1walk ratio and see what that does for my speed. I'll keep the runs under my current HR target, but walk quickly and see.

Saw the kids group out kayaking by Zymo again. Still need to get the boat out. Maybe once we get done painting the house.

6.13 in 1:00:37 (9:54/mile) @ 142
9:19 @ 142
9:28 @ 141 < - caught by fremont bridge (stopped clock)
9:46 @ 144
10:30 @ 143
10:22 @ 142
9:57 @ 145 <- oops
0.13 - 1:16 (10:07 pace) @ 146

previous PR (also caught by bridge)
6.11 in 1:01:33 (10:04/mile) @ 141

Wednesday, July 22, 2009

7/22 Run

Wednesday's run was nothing spectacular. Though I might have a line on a new SLU clockwise PR, but not so much. Got out early again at 11:10 and had and nice low 60s start, warmer at the end high end. It was nicely cloudy at start, but it burned off by halfway, and things started to warm up.

6.1 in 1:01:48 (10:08/mile) @ 142
9:32 @ 143
9:52 @ 141
9:54 @ 143
10:35 @ 143
10:47 @ 142
10:03 @ 143
0.10 - 1:04 (10:20 pace) @ 144

Tuesday, July 21, 2009

7/21 Run

Bailed out of Monday's fun since I had to actually do some work. :) Got out Tuesday early at 10:55 to try to beat the heat. Mostly worked: 73 at the start, 78 by the time I was done. Decided to do the lake counterclockwise for some variety.

The heat made it difficult to control my HR. Spent some time thinking about the Lake Union 10K coming up. I think that if I'm employed, I'm running it. :)

It was really cool to come up on the hand carried launch by Zymogenetics, and see what must have been a 'Y' summer camp of kids all out in doubles, with a handful of instructours out ins singles, kayaking in the shelter, with everyone looking like they were having a blast. Need to get the boat out!

6.15 miles in 1:04:50 (10:33/mile) @ 142 bpm
9:55 @ 141
10:23 @ 143
10:45 @ 143
10:43 @ 142
10:44 @ 143
10:55 @ 144
1:26 (9:51/mile) @ 143

Monday, July 20, 2009

7/17 Run

Friday's Run
Out much earlier at 0810. Temperature was also much better starting at 67 and ending at 77. It was a hot day for house prep. Nothing spectacular as far as the run went. The best of a hill on 100th was unpleasant, but not as much of a killer as it used to be.

Decided to run the block counterclockwise, and then got started on the house.

1:02:11 (10:04/mile) @ 142

0.17 - 1:43 (10:09/mile pace)

7/16 Run

Thursday's Run was fairly early at 0900 it was already in the high 70a. Too dang hot. It really sapped the energy out of me.

Took the day off to prep the house for exterior painting. By us. Wheeee. :| Ran the block at home clockwise and then met Val at the gym. Was trying to make it in for a full workout, but just did my step ups and box jumps, 3 sets of body weight dips (10, 10, 3) and 2 sets of hanging leg raises. Oh and a set of incline chest presses to try out some of Val's workout.

Had an interesting discussion with Val's trainer about Couch to 5K for her, Power lifting competition for Val, and some other gossip. She's a nice gal. Thinking I might use her to jump start my swimming thing, as she has been a swimmer for years. Or, I'll go to WEST Coast Aquatics for 8 sessions for $75. We'll see.

1:04:30 (10:25/mile) @ 142

0.19 - 1:55 (10:09/mile pace)

7/14 Run

Tuesday's Run. Went out for a clockwise around the lake run with Blake. Good run, mostly me babbling. Work stress about this job transition/acquisition is getting to me, so I'm really glad I was able to get out for a run.

Blake and I chatted about that, his transition to Boston, and a bunch of other stuff. Blake's been suffering from what is probably an IT band issue, and bailed out at mile 4 and took the bus home. I finished the run and beat him in. His bus got caught by one of the bridges. Doh! :)

1:03:53 (10:23/mile) @ 140

0.15 - 1:29 (9:58/mile pace)

7/13 Run

Mondays run, counter clockwise around the lake, seemed long. It was actually pretty fast, and I felt like my legs were doing pretty well, it just seemed like it took a long time for some reason.

Very comfortable run, 60ish, overcast, and thinking aboout raining. Which is good since I forgot the hat and shades.

How is it the same route in different directions can be so off according to Gamin. Same route clockwise is 6.13 or so, counter clockwise it's 6.08.

1:00:46 (9:54/mile) @ 141
0.13 - 1:21 (10:15/mile pace)

7/11 - Run Of The Mill 5K Race Report

Saturday I paced Val in her third 5K of the year so far. We parked and dropped Kaitlyn off with her grandmother and walked the 4 blocks to the start. Kaitlyn and co were going to see us at the finish. Got our bibs and ran into Jim, his wife and two of their boys. Chatted with one of the photographers from Artis, who were doing the official photos for the race, and then found a spot about 2/3rds of the way back.

Started out nice and slow, and then worked out way up to cruising speed. Val had the HR strap on, and I ran next to her with the Garmin on. We don't really have good HR data for her, but we could see how hard she was working, and watch changes when she had to walk. We ran all the way to the apartment clubhouse and the first hill and walked. We knew we were speedwalking up the hill when her HR didn't come down, so we slowed a little more. As we were walking the hill, just before the Mile 1 marker the cleared the other lane for the leaders to blaze past!

Just after mile 1 was the first downhill, and I had her try to let the hill do the work. We got some great speed coming down the mild slope, but the increased intensity aroused Val's nemesis, a really ugly side stitch to rear it's ugly head. Especially after this race I really think it's intensity related. I'm not sure if more base building is the answer, or more intensity work to try to break past it.

Another slight uphill and then a really nice shady downhill, and then onto the trail and back up the route we just came in on, at 2 miles. The trail had some walking and side stitch fighting, but we were able to power up the hill at the end of the trail uneventfully.

The last mile was a bit of a push, but as it was mostly downhill, Val was able to really get some good speed. We walked a couple of times, but she was able to get moving in the last quarter mile, and really hammer out a nice finish. I dropped back a second to make sure she was the first one in.

A shiny new 2 minute PR for her! And a pleasant run with my wife for me.

37:57 (12:13/mile)

1:13 (9:15/mile pace!!)

Sunday: Washed the house with JOMAX and then powerwashed. 7 hours or so...

7/10 Run

A little behind... getting caught up.

Friday's run was great!

I forgot Garmy again, and I got out late (1245) and remembered I had a 2:00 meeting as I was walking out of the building. Figured if I pushed a little I could make it back in time to get everything taken care of an make the meeting. I was figuring on 9 minute miles.

Once I got on the road, even with the heat (high 70s, low 80s) I just got into a groove and hammered. I wish I had the HR monitor though, since I am curious to see what the numbers were, since this was absolutely a lactate threshold finding workout. I could have made it to 10K and if it had been a race I would have set a pretty nice new PR (by like 45 seconds).

I wished I had my water bottle the last 2 miles as I was just cooking. I probably could have slowed down, but why, when I was running so well. :)

6.15 miles in 48:21 (7:52/mile) @ unknown HR
0.15 - 0:53

Sunday, July 12, 2009

Rock and Roll Seattle Marathon 2009 Race Report

Nothing like a two week delay. Thank you for your patience. Please pardon any syntactical/grammatical stuff. I putting it out on the blog tonight, dang it. And I'm not reading it again. :)

Night Before:

Finally got in from Denver (out there for some work funded Oracle training) roughly on time at 10 pm. Once I managed to find my bags (which had been on the earlier flight, on the off chance I could get on with standby, I was able to get to my car and drive to the Howard Johnson's a few miles away.

Thanks to the power of the iPhone and Google Maps, I was finally able to get there after taking a wrong turn, get checked in, and call Val. We talked about the logistics of getting her and Kaitlyn down to the finish line and decided that it just wasn't very practical. My Dad was going to be there, so I'd still have a ride home.

One of the disadvantages of the size of this race, and the course, is that it is in no way as spectator friendly as the Seattle Marathon is.

While Val and I talked I laid out all my gear for the night before, most of it coming from a box that had been sitting in my trunk for the last week. I was paranoid they'd lose my bags, so everything I'd need was duplicated in the box so I wouldn't have to worry about it. Only thing that I did wrong was pack the cheap band-aids, but they held up OK in the end.

The room was absolutely tiny, with a window AC unit practically on top of the bed, and the refrigerator was close enough you could touch it with your foot if you sat on the corner of the bed. And it had a noisy compressor that would kick in about every 45 minutes. Not the best 5 hours of sleep I've ever gotten. Laid down around 1145, and up at 445.

Morning Before:

The morning routine went pretty smoothly. Up and started putting on clothes, eating my traditional pair of CLIF nectar bars and getting 16 oz of water down. All the wast disposal systems cooperated, and between changing, eating, taping ankles, remembering packet pickup documentation, putting gear back into car, getting parking paid for for car, etc. it all went smoothly, and I started walking the mile to the start at about 5:20, right about on time.

I was a bit nervous about the walk to the start at first as the first block was a little seedy. What I get for a airport hotel right on 99 I guess. :) After that first block it settled out into normal residential ares, and I was up early enough that there weren't a whole lot of people out and about.

Had to cut through what the map said was a valid street, that apparently suffered a sinkhole at one time and was officially closed, and then had to cut down an embankment when I realized the right turn was a road under the one I was on. A few minutes after that I was suddenly at the start area


Right by the corner I came into the office park was the Customer Support tent, and I was able to pick up my bit and chip with now problems. They used this cool disposable chip that took me more time to get put onto my shoes than it did to get my packet. Attached to the bib was a ticket so I could pick up my tshirt at the end of the race, so they had that figured out already.

Got in line to use the portasans, and finally got to meet Betsy from Eat, Drink, Run Woman when she spotted me standing in line. I was right behind a group with some really nice embroidered jackets from the Toad Hall Track Club. They were having a lot of fun, one of them actually put a banana peel outside her buddies portasan as a gag. Kind of had to be there I guess. :) She handed me a business card, but their website doesn't work. Bummer for them I guess. :) As I was walking away I got to see Tina Ellis (MM #975) from Beach to Chowder again too.

I still had around an hour to go so I started walking around to find my corral, get oriented and see if I could find any of the people I knew who were running the race. As I was walking down the currently empty corrals, I had to make way for a group of belly dancers working the opposite way. Seemed really random. Gotta love 'em for being out there, but they made me vaguely uncomfortable.

No joy looking for friends, so I got back in line for the portasans again, managed to open a door on a poor gal who hadn't locked her door, and headed for my corral to get settled. Looked a little more and then headed back to Corral # 10.

Took a couple of snaps with the iPhone, and someone took a picture of me. It might even have been Nikki, a Race director from California (Under The Sun Events) who I chatted with until the start. She was running the half, her first race since giving birth, and now 6ish months postpartum and (I certainly wouldn't have guessed.) and shooting for 2:00:00 as I recall

We chatted till they played the National Anthem, and then they started the race. Volunteers kept the corrals divided by holding lengths of rope between themselves until the corral was at the start line when they got out off the way and when John Bingham (of RW fame) said GO! off each corral went. They said go and we didn't even notice till we saw people ahead of us start moving. Garmy says I crossed the start line around 7:14. The official start was at 7. Gotta love chip timing. I think I tagged the start a few seconds early, but again, Yay Chip Timing!

The plan I finally decided on was to do essentially what I did at the Beach To Chowder Half and go by pace, heart rate, and comfort level. As described long ago the goals were in ascending order of likelihood, 3:50ish, 4:00, 4:15 or under, beat previous PR (4:32:58), finish. (Assign values to each goal as desired.)

Mile 1: 09:21/mile @ 149

First mile was the typical large race first mile, but much more reasonable than I expected given that there were already 7000 people out on the roads with me. Probably thanks to the corrals. The standard bobbing and weaving and sorting yourself out and finding the people that you might see for the next couple hours.

Early water stop at mile 1ish, first bands and first cheer squads. I must be getting old. The cheer squads, all of them, looked an awful lot like middle schoolers to me. The list implies that most of them are high schoolers. Cheering in general on the course was pretty mellow. Lots of "G. O., Runner, Go" chants. :)

Heart rate at the end of the mile was at the original target of 158, but given how flaky first miles on run and in races can be I decided to give it another mile and reevaluate.

Mile 2: 09:44/mile @ 157

With a full mile of data, but some more hills, I'm starting to not be very happy about the pace at the current heart rate target. This report is long and getting longer as I fill things in so I'll put more analysis in another post, but I knew this wasn't going to be a 3:50 day right here. At Beach To Chowder, I must have just been ON. At this heart rate, I was at 8:43/mile. I 'm pretty sure I've got an ugly hill coming up in mile 3 or the beginning of mile 4 so I decide to keep the HR down, continue to warm up and settle into my stride.

Love those hard turns. The sharp right turn and the crowd made for some awkwardness as we all tried to get our feet under us and maneuver for the first time as a group. Over the freeway, and a hard left and we're really moving now.

Mile 3: 09:51/mile @ 158

Still working our way uphill and over the crest as we head toward Seward Park. Since I'm still on the hill, I decide to keep the lower HR till I get to the top of the hills and not completely trash myself out too early. Not settling into anything... Looks like this HR/pace combination is here to stay. Going to have to pump it up a little I think.

Water station was right at the start of the mile. Apparently the mile 2.5 water station was the Balanced Athlete station. Saw Eric on the side of the road looking for some of his athletes, and recognized a couple of his crew working the water line.

Mile 4: 09:17/mile @ 159

Heading mostly downhill or flat for this mile. Pace is better, but I've still got that 3:55/4:00 in my head, and decide to start working my heart rate up to try to make up some time. New HR target is around 168.

Hard right, and now we're really headed for Seward Park, my first major mental checkpoint.

Mile 5: 09:32/mile @ 170

As we can see I didn't so well with keeping 168 thanks to the hill, but 170 felt comfortable, so I went with it, even up the hills that slowed me down.

Finally hit the top of the hill near the end of the mile, thank goodness.

Mile 6: 08:18/mile @ 170

Finally some downhill at the new HR. No real effort, just flying down the hills letting them do the work as I make up some time. Round the corner at Seward Park and turn onto Lake Washington Boulevard. This time, with no fog, I can see. And the view is absolutely wonderful. I even hear some people comment on how pretty it is. And then I start paying attention to my running, and avoiding people, and ignore the view.

At this point in things a 'scenic' marathon would really be lost on me. I don't really look around much when I run, especially in races. Apparently there was a bald eagle here. Missed it.

Mile 7: 08:45/mile @ 170

Lake Washington Boulevard is pleasant, and flat. Since we don't have the out and back like Seattle had we have the whole road, which means it's easier to run in the middle and stay off the cambered parts of the road that annoyed me so much last year. Admittedly we weren't as far along as I was last year, but it was nice to be headed north feeling good.

Mile 8: 08:57/mile @ 170

More Lake Washington Boulevard. Very gradual rise, but nothing significant. Chat with a woman running her 4th marathon, who ran Seattle last year. We discuss how much nicer it is to run this year without the fog this time.

Mile 9: 09:03/mile @ 170

More Lake Washington Boulevard. One minor hill toward the end, but nothing major. Last part of this mile was through a very nice area of town. I remember this part of town from last marathon. Very nice. There was a volunteer here, or maybe at mile 6, who was misting runners with a hose. Thanks to him.

Mile 10: 08:55/mile @ 170

Brief short, hard hill up the access road to the freeway , where the half marathoners split toward the stadiums and the finish line, and we marathoners hang a right out onto the I-90 floating bridge. And then a nice easy downhill.

The bridge has some great views, but it's hot out in the sun, even with the breeze, and while I don't normally notice the hardness of roads, the bridge feels a little hard on the legs. Finally back up the bridge and toward the tunnel.

Mile 11: 09:02/mile @ 169

Around the turnaround and the water stop and the band and back down hill and then back up the rise into the I-90 tunnel. Just after I crossed into the tunnel, I had a guy come up behind me, and tell me how glad he was to see another yellow bib. And how awesome it was that he has made up so much time from corral 23. The I realized that I think he came in from an angle...where we rejoined the half marathoners where we had left them at just after mile 9.

Maybe I should have said something, but I didn't. I'm pretty sure he didn't run the bridge and got mixed up with the split. Wonder if he ever figured it out? Or if I'm wrong and just thinking the worst about someone I've never met.

Mile 12: 09:17/mile @ 170

Through the tunnel, and out. This was a bit of a slog. The band and water station at the end of the tunnel was a bit squirrelly. The band and the echoes from it made it practically impossible to hear, the water stop was uncomfortably tight, and a bottleneck.

Coming out of the tunnel was the nicest thing ever, it was about 20 degrees cooler outside than it was in the tunnel, and a light breeze welcomed us back to the sunlight and fresh air.

Mile 13: 08:47/mile @ 171

Hit the half at 2:02:24 (9:21/mile overall pace). Seattle was 2:04:35 (9:35/mile)

I remember this stretch of I-90 from Seattle. The roadway camber is horrendous, like 10 degrees one way. And we're out in the open again.

We've been back in the mix with the half marathoners again for a while and if feels a bit crowded.

See at least two runners in colorful Balanced Athlete jerseys/shirts.

Saw medical staff arriving at the side of a runner or volunteer on the ground with their fee being elevated by a fellow runner. Hope that worked out OK. :(

Mile 14: 09:15/mile @ 169

Finally turning into the city and off the freeway. Now we have spectator support again, it's almost odd. Cross one section with people cheering on both sides of the road. Almost have to slow slightly as people skitter from one sides to the other.

Odd to be running through the buildings, and such. You'd think that the city could have filled holes and cracks a little better though. :) Can see the stadiums, the finish line, for part of this leg. It's almost sadistic. End of the mile is a hard left toward the next major milestone, the transition to the double out and back on the Viaduct.

Mile 15: 08:53/mile @ 169

About a quarter mile into this leg we split from the half marathoners the final time as we get into the Viaduct. The half marathoners hang a left and head toward the finish line. We hang about a 110 degree right and get some nice shade and a breeze off the water as we start working our way north. It's a boatload less crowded now. :)

Running on the lower level of a double decker bridge is a little odd. Not something you do every day for certain. :)

I haul the iPhone out and text Val '15'. I can't remember if I am supposed to from our discussions last night, so I do it anyway. Notice I have a Voice mail and no missed call, so I check it. I'm anal I guess. Turns out it was my Mom wishing me luck. I call her back on the run and leave her a message, pack my stuff up and keep moving. Apparently concentrating on the phone makes me faster though.

Mile 16: 09:39/mile @ 170

A 'well meaning' volunteer got called out by a fellow runner. She was calling out the whole 'almost done' thing. Seriously, we've got 10 miles to go. That's not almost done. Didn't bother me much, but the gal who called her down was seriously bothered by it.

Through the Battery Street tunnel,and out. Another 4/10ths of a mile of noise, humidity, and extreme road camber. End of the mile is just as we exit the tunnel. Seriously? I've still got double digits to go. I can't start counting down yet.

Mile 17: 08:35/mile @ 167

Technically, I guess we're on Aurora Avenue now. And it's a long slow log of uphill for a few miles. It's getting pretty warm, and there's no real cloud cover at this point.

Pretty seriously considering 'downgrading' to running halves. I'd have been done 4 miles ago. And I'd be able to run another next weekend.

I can finally start counting down the last miles!

Mile 18: 10:26/mile @ 170

Seriously? Over 10 minutes a mile? Are you fucking kidding me? God. Does this hill never effing end?

Just about to the top of this hill, and I see a lollipop and a cluster of runners. It's the 4:00 pace group. I left them behind around mile 3, and now they've caught up. This may be my only chance to get back on pace to meet the 4:00 goal. I tuck in behind the group, try to hold on, and pray that we get to the top of the hill so maybe I can keep the pace.

Finally get onto the Aurora Bridge near the end of the mile, with a slight downhill, and I can almost breathe again.

Mile 19: 09:04/mile @ 172

I'm holding on as we run down the downhill of the bridge, and then we get to the u-turn, on the other side, which requires a brief, probably not so steep uphill that just destroys me. I make it around the u-turn and back to the downhill, before the uphill back up the bridge and am physically incapable of holding the pace. And then, at the risk of sounding melodramatic, I watch 4:00 run off into the distance.

It's not so bad though because I'm busy trying not to collapse as I work my way back up the bridge. What speed I got this mile was thanks to the pace group, but I'm starting to run out of energy.

Mile 20: 10:13/mile @ 172

Only think that kept the pace somewhat lower was the downhill as I recovered from pushing too hard to keep up with the group. I remember hearing one of the bands on the way up, and I got to hear them again. I'm not normally a reggae kind of guy, but they sounded good. Starting to get seriously warm without any cover.

Probably need to make my training long runs longer. Not for the physical endurance, but for psychological. I hit this marker and the first thing I thought was: "Aren't I supposed to stop now?"

Mile 21: 09:28/mile @ 166

Still downhill, and warm. Reenter the Battery Street Tunnel just at the end of the mile. Back to camber, heat and humidity. No cheering in this tunnel. Just the pitter patter of little feet, and the sound of breathing. Can't get my HR up to 171ish no matter what I do. I'm baked.

Mile 22: 09:25/mile @ 168

Out of the tunnel, and back onto the viaduct. Just chugging along, cooking.

Mile 23: 09:59/mile @ 167

Still running on the Viaduct. Just trying to hold on.

Mile 24: 10:12/mile @ 166

About half a mile of downhill as we head toward the last turnaround. At least the viaduct miles were in the city. We're out in the port now, containers for the containers ships on either side of us, no cover and it just sucks. I decide during this mile that I'm not running again after I finish this fucking thing. Ever again. I'll just sit on the couch and get fat.

Mile 25: 10:29/mile @ 168

This is just sadistic, who was the idiot that thought running a second marathon was a good idea? He really ought to be shot.

Hit the effing u-turn early in the mile. And some heavenly lukewarm water. And some crappy music.

Now it's just a slog back to the stadiums. Everyone is red and glistening with sweat. Really stuck in my head for some reason.

Mile 26: 11:27/mile @ 171

Dying. It's hot, I can't remember if I took the GU at mile 23 or not. Last water station was a blessing as I'm out of water in the belt, and I'm cooking. We're all slowing down on the horrible half mile uphill. It's only like 50 feet of elevation gain, but it's just destroying people. Lots of walking going on. I consider it pretty strongly, but I'll be damned if I do. I'm running all of this one, even if it's slow.

Finally up the effing hill, and we hang really hard 120 degree right to go back down toward the stadiums.

Heart rate was up only because I was running up the hill. As you can see from the pace, I'm pretty done.

Mile 26.2: 09:31/mile @ 170

Just as I hit the mile 26 marker, Tina, the marathon maniac came up behind me and invited me to run in with her. I tried to beg off and tell her that I wasn't going to be able to do it at her pace, anyway. She encouraged me to come on, and I was able to dig a little.

We ended up running behind, and then finally passing one of those medical golf carts hauling a guy to the finish, as we ran through the finish corridor. Hope he was OK.

Ah, the brain draining power of the marathon. It took me 5 seconds to realize someone was calling my name as I chugged through the corridor. About another 2 seconds to turn my head to the left. And about 3 more seconds of staring before I realized that Val and Kaitlyn had made it down to the finish!!

That gave me a nice last little bit of a boost, and I 'sprinted' in to the end. The finish video is pretty amusing to me.

Race final: 4:11:47 @ 167 bpm average, 9:37/mile

Just after the finish line, I slowed to a walk, an staggered along for a bit, trying not to pass out as my 'sprint' had apparently raised my blood pressure and I was feeling pretty dizzy. After I started to recover, I realized my Dad was on the other side of the finish line, and he had me stop for some pictures. I staggered my way down the line toward the staged finish pictures, got some water, and a orange slice. Finally found a banana, and snarfed that down as I worked my way toward the family meeting area and the bit "C" that we were meeting under. :)

I met my Dad and Karen there, and after some confusion, and me finally sitting down, and demonstrating that I am completely incapable of higher brain function after a marathon, Val and Kaitlyn make their way over and I got the see my wife and daughter for the first time in a week. Happy tired Daddy. :)

My Dad took my fuel belt, since it now weighed about 80 pounds, and we wandered around the 'celebratory' area to find where I could get my tshirt (which they were kind enough to swap from a Large to a Medium). We then stopped at the store and decided that all the gear was overpriced and bailed out and went to find me a restroom.

After a much needed break we headed for the truck. Curbs were a challenge, and I was fortunate that Val had found a spot only a half-dozen blocks away. One of the biggest differences between this marathon and Seattle was that my recovery time was much faster. Steps and Curbs were a challenge, but by the time we made it to the truck I was moving stiffly, but still moving. And once in the truck, I was looking at next marathons, despite my howls of pain at mile 23-26, in 90 minutes instead of 7 days. :)

Drove back down the the start to get my car, and then back home for a shower and some chow. Dad and Karen watched Kaitlyn a few hours later and Val and I went out to Azteca. See, much better recovery than the last one. :)

Some Observations:

Garmin doesn't play well in tunnels. :)

It seemed like some of the official mile markers were a little off in the 16 to 19 mile range, they seemed to get accurate again as the race continued though.

Don't remember the mile splits as vividly as Seattle. I was splitting manually then so that may be why. That and the fact that I was more focused on physical way points this race.

Bands weren't really that motivating. Couldn't hear most of them except for a couple hundred feet on either side of them.

The half marathoners really had the good race, scenery, etc. It seemed like they said, hey we've got an AWESOME half marathon, let's tack 13.1 more miles on it and make it a marathon. Not sure if I'll run this again.

Only physical damage this time was a blister on the ball of my right foot. Same place as last year, but no toe blister at least.

Almost burst into just random tears a couple of times after I was done and walking around. It's amazing how ling endurance events bring your emotions so close to the surface.

Fueling was mostly on schedule except for possibly mile 23. I can't remember if I talked myself out of it since I felt mildly nauseous. Snagged two cups at each water station after mile 8 or so, in addition to my bottles.

I REALLY need to thank Tina for helping pull me through to a 'kick' at the end.

Tuesday, July 7, 2009

7/7 Run

Ran the lake counter clockwise for some variety. Living large, I know... :)
Got out around noon, not a bad day, breezy and 65ish. A very comfortable run.

Just as I neared the Streetcar turnaround, I noticed another runner on the other side of the road, headed the same direction as me. Took me a second to realize it was the "Triathlon/Marathon Girl". I see her a couple of days a week, and she looks powerful and strong. (She also has a distinctive running style as well. :)) And I'm not up on my local runners as much as I should be, but I swear I've seen her in an issue of Northwest Runner. Anyway...

She caught me about a half mile later, and I was able to keep her within sight, even keeping my HR in check for about half the run. I finally lost her @ Speedy Reedy when I missed the light.

Good run, fellow runner!

Bailed out of my workout tonight since I feel pretty trashed. Off running tomorrow, but plan on going to the gym for something.

6.14 miles in 1:03:00 (10:15/mile) @ 141 bpm

9:49 @ 138
10:12 @ 141
10:11 @ 142
10:11 @ 141
10:26 @ 143
10:40 @ 143
0.14 - 10:30 @ 144

7/6 Run

Monday I got out a little past 1:30 since I had a meeting I had forgotten to budget the time for. Great day for a run, partly cloudy high 50s, low 60s temp wise. Nice break for the high 70s/low 80s we had on the weekend.

6.13 miles in 1:04:35 (10:31/mile) @ 142 bpm

Clockwise around the lake. Nothing spectacular run wise. First mile held out some hope for a fast run, but, not so much. Definitely off my feed thanks to the antibiotics.

Tentative plan for the next few weeks while I try to get back down from my current high of 183-185 is to run M, T, Th, F, and do workouts T, Th, S. I'm going to try to mix in some other cardio, and fun/experimental workouts, too. Bike, swim, row, whatever.

Then, once I've lopped of this last 10 pounds or so I'll start looking at the next marathon

7/3 Short Workout

Decided to take advantage of the holiday and go to the gym and see Val workout. Dropped Kaitlyn off at Kids Club and we both went and started to work out.

I felt really light on my feet and energetic. The front planks weren't as miserable as normal, and the box jumps, especially the single leggers, were much easier than normal. Probably from only running 9 miles last week. :)

By the time I finished my core and leg stuff (about 45 minutes since we had left K) they were calling for us and I had to go home. It just wasn't Kaitlyn's day, when was pretty clingy to the playroom manager, and once more kids came in and she couldn't give here on-on-one she melted down.

We went home and settled down, and then I did 5 sets of 20 pushups, I was on my knees by the middle of the 3rd set, but they got done.

Then I got to spend my afternoon in the Dentists chair getting an unplanned root canal, for a tooth that had decided it had had enough.

Not entirely sure how a 45 minute workout can tear me up more than a marathon did, but this one did. It could be the antibiotics (which are royally playing hob with my system (random aches and pains, etc), just like the last dose), or it could be the time in the chair, but it really felt like the workout. Calves, abs, etc.

Initial Pushup Set: 33

2 sets as supersets
Front Planks - 80 seconds
Side Planks -50 seconds
C1: Stability Ball Crunches (5 second hold) - 10 reps
C2: Stability Ball Forward Rolls (5 second hold) - 10 reps

PlyoBox Step Ups and Jump Ups
P1: 18" PlyoBox Step and Hold - Front - 10 reps each leg
P2: 18" PlyoBox Step and Hold - Sideways - 10 reps each leg
P3: 18" PlyoBox Step and Hold - Sideways Twist - 10 reps each leg
J1: 18" PlyoBox Jumps - 3 sets - 10 reps
J2: 12" PlyoBox Single Leg Jumps- 3 sets - 10 reps each leg
J3: 24" PlyoBox Jumps - 10 reps

J2, P1, P2, P3, J1, P1, P2, P3, J1, J3x2

Wednesday, July 1, 2009

7/1 Run - Recovery? Oops.

Went down to the locker room to change and realized I'd forgotten Garmy.

Decided to run the way my body felt, and just play it by ear. Intention was for a recovery run, but I let my cardiovascular system talk me into a fast run apparently. :)

I knew from the approximate splits I was running faster than I should, but it felt good, and I didn't want to. And apparently I accelerated in my stubbornness. :)

4.88 in 44:06 (9:02/mile) @ unknown bpm

13:00 (for 1.22)
12:39 (for 1.22)