Monday, January 31, 2011

Monday of pre-race week, 5x5's

1/31 lift box squat 5x295 towel bench 5x245 plus snatches 3x100 and pull-ups with 50lb kb

I also did some rotator cuff exercises.  After my second set on the towel bench, I felt kind of a painful pinching sensation in my left shoulder and this is still bothering me right now.  I also seem to have tweaked the right side of my neck.  I think the neck could be related to the box squats.  When I do box squats I touch the back of the power rack with the bar, but it ALWAYS only touches on the left side, so today, I made a point to touch on both sides.  I don't know if I end up off center or if I have a natural twist to my form or maybe the bar is out of round.  Either way, it felt like forever to lean back enough for the right side of the bar to touch the back of the power rack.  We've decided to keep lowering the box once every 4 week cycle.  This will mean we move less weight on the box squat, but it should help us at the bottom of our regular squats.  I had some issues with my left arm locking out the snatches, I think this is related to my shoulder injury, but we'll see how it feels on Wednesday.

I still can't decide about my run for tomorrow.  I plan to run for about 1 hour, but I can't decide which trail or if I should do intervals.  I'll either run Company Mill without intervals or perhaps run Sycamore with intervals.  I can't decide which would be a better strategy pre-race.  The intervals would allow me to control my effort level, but Company Mill would be a confidence booster if I could have a good run on it.  I think I will probably do Company Mill simply because of how irritated I was on Saturday.  If I can get my pacing right, I might even do my intervals on it.

Sunday, January 30, 2011

long run...who said anything about easy?

1/29 run 70 mins on Company Mill trail @ Umstead with left foot taped

HR avg 165 max 180

Somehow what was supposed to be a long run at an easy pace turned into another maximum effort run.  It didn't help that I made some poor choices before the run.  They included:

1. got up too late to eat my regular breakfast before run
2. used waxy maize based powder for my run hydration and mixed it way too thick (note 1)
3. wore my silk base layer on top with the temperature hitting a high of 57

Note 1: Also upon returning home I found some research to backup something else I felt during the run.  Maltodextrin based hydration does a better job than waxy maize starch for runs under 2 hours (I haven't run far enough to comment on anything over 2 hours).  Now I see research that indicates waxy maize starch would be good for endurance events in excess of 2 hours, so perhaps the ultra folks might have a better use for it, but I'm back to my maltodextrin based hydration.

This was my first time running Company Mill and I wasn't prepared for how it differs from some of the other trails.  Company Mill has the longest continuous stretches of uphill and downhill out of the trails I've run at Umstead.  This requires some serious adjustments to my strategy as I'm used to more of a rolling trail.  I don't mind lots of extreme uphills and downhills, but I like to change direction every few minutes as opposed to a long, slow climb followed by a long descent.  I'm sure this will payoff in the race, but it messed up my plan to take it easy on the long run.  I think I pushed myself harder in several spots than I have on any trail.  I know my heart rate hit 180 on more than one occasion.  I should have just let the +1 pace me and I wouldn't have had these problems, but I think doing a trail for the first time makes it hard to relax.    

I will say my knees feel better than they did after my midweek run, but I've been able to rest them the rest of the day.  No Diclofenac so far, just taking two Cissus capsules three times a day.  I'm on my second bottle and it seems to really help with my elbow tendinitis, shoulder pain and left foot arch issues.

Friday, January 28, 2011

squat, snatch and two smoked weightlifters

1/28 lift squat 3x275 bench press 3x240 plus pull-ups with the 50lb kb and a new addition, barbell snatches with 3x135

I really didn't want to squat with 275 today, but I sucked it up and gave it a shot.  Thank goodness I managed to get the reps, although it was a near limit experience.  I don't know how I would handle another squat related failure.  I used to be a great squatter but even though my back feels great, it seems like my power has never recovered.  Now anything over 135 feels heavy to me.  Moved up 5lbs on the bench, although I definitely felt every ounce of it.  Due to our continued two steps forward, three steps back progress with the one-arm dumbell snatches, we decided to add a similar explosive movement to Fridays.  We were originally planning to add some lighter, high rep one-arm dumbell snatches, but I wanted to play around with the barbell snatch, as I haven't done them in years.  Turns out my technique seems to have improved.  I think we will be making these a regular item.  I look forward to really pushing some weight on them next week, although I should take it easy, as it will be the day before the race.

Thursday, January 27, 2011

spinning my busted wheel

1/27 run spin 60 mins at SYNCstudio in Laurissa's class with a VERY RELUCTANT +1 (Love you, honey!)

HR avg 156 max 173

I'll be honest, the +1 wasn't the only one with reservations.  My knee being too sore for an easy run, I rolled the dice on the +1's type A need to workout and we snagged a couple spots on the SYNCStudio waitlist.  Miraculously, the stars aligned and we both got into the class.  My spinning skills didn't get any better since my last class, but I think my cardio base has improved.  The music selection was really good and the +1 likes the teacher, so I was out of the doghouse before I was off the bike ;-)  I wore my Timex Global Trainer to keep me honest and to gauge perceived versus actual effort on the bike.  I took it easy on the tension as there seemed to be a direct correlation with my knee pain and how much tension I put on the bike.  We both left feeling refreshed.  I'll have a better picture tomorrow of where I'm at for the weekend run.

Another Wednesday Tipping Point

1/26 lift power clean 3x210 deadlift 3x375 plus inclines 70,75,80 and overhead presses with 55's

The cleans were ugly again, my strained left calf caused me to do a split clean on my heaviest set.  The deadlifts are still getting better, thanks to a slight change in form and foot position.  Inclines felt strong and overheads are sucking thanks to my left shoulder troubles.  I don't think I did my right knee any favors by lifting on it, even though lifting seems to make it feel better, at least while I'm lifting.  The swelling is minor compared to what I experienced after my first long run but it's still enough to limit my range of motion and make going down steps slow and painful.

If it wasn't for having to work on the car standing up before and after lifting and going out to dinner that night, I think I would be better shape, since I could have kept my knee elevated and on ice.  The hardest part about swelling in the lower extremities is the difficulty and time it takes to dissipate the excess fluid.  Having to spend most of my days with my leg elevated cuts into all the things I need to get done, but if I don't do it the pain and swelling will just keep getting worse.  I'll be glad when this race is over and I can take the time to find the line between maximal and optimal adaptation in my current training regimen.  Here's a good article on the subject.

Pace work on the trail

1/25 run 60 mins over two loops of Sal's Branch @ Umstead with 2min x 5 pace work (zone 5)

HR avg 165 max 178

This was a hard run for me, oddly enough, the last 16 minutes after the pace work are what felt the hardest.  I drained my bottle by the end of the run (mix of bcaa's, glutamine and GU Brew).  I wore my silks on top and bottom and this turned out to be a bit warm for 49 degree weather.  I took off my headband within the first 15 mins.

In retrospect, as I sit here with a strained left calf, which I think is a result of my kick during the pace portions and a sore and slightly swollen right knee again, I probably pushed it a little too hard.  I think I have to decide on speed or distance at this point.  It seems to try and do both is pushing my body over the edge, especially with my weight workouts.  It's Thursday as I finish typing this and my knee is still way too sore for a recovery run.  I hope it feels better by Saturday or I might be changing my running schedule again...

Tuesday, January 25, 2011

3x3 week begins

1/24 lift box squat 3x295 towel bench 2+1x265 plus snatches 5x75 and 3x100 on both sides and pull-ups with +50lb kb

Other than lowering the weight for my squats (cough..50lbs), today was a good day.  I will attribute being down on my squat to lowering the box height, but I should probably blame the running too.  My right outer quad and itb still feel like one giant knot since Saturday.  I've been hitting them with the stick and the foam roller every day.  I think the increased protein might have paid off a little, as my snatches were much better today and I don't feel as gaunt and run down.  I hit my previous max on the towel bench, but only got 2 reps instead of 3.  I think we are going to add a sub maximal olympic lift to Fridays to help stabilize our dumbell snatches.

Sunday, January 23, 2011

Cool Runnings

1/22 run 55ish mins total on Sal's Branch @ Umstead (45+10 run out)
HR avg 161 max 177

Wow, this was by far the coldest day I've ever run outside, with the temperature right at 30 degrees (probably less in the woods).  I felt pretty good on the run, although my legs were definitely hurting from the heavy squats around 15 hours earlier.  I wore my REI silk base layer top and bottom, shorts, long sleeve Brooks shirt, Smartwool beanie (switched to Mizuno headband after 5 mins), Saucony gloves (removed after 15 mins), sunglasses, Balega socks and NB MT101's.  I found this kept me warm enough for the duration, although I could see adding another layer on bottom for longer runs.  I think I would probably just wear two silks, but I might try to get some real pants if it gets much colder.

I met up with the +1 to help her finish out a 3 hour tour of the woods.  She was in bad shape when I showed up, but somehow she just keeps going...I don't know how she does it.  She'll probably be fully recovered and rip-roaring to run again in a couple days while I'm still hobbling around!  She took my Mountain Hardwear jacket, which was a good thing, as I would have been WAY too hot if I had left it on.  It really helped me to try and pace her, as this way I was able to run a little smarter, especially with my legs still reeling from squats last night.  The run felt pretty good, but I find as the temperature drops my ability to feel what's going on is reduced, so I have to be extra careful.  I iced my knee as soon as we got done and I'll be curious to see how I feel for my lifting on Monday.  I've been allowing myself to eat whenever I want (and just about whatever too).  I need to get some more ground turkey breast and some other protein sources to keep around for snacking.  We'll see if all this eating will make a difference in my recovery and strength for the coming week.

Friday, January 21, 2011

Consistency of Brutality

1/21 lift squat 6x265 bench 10x190,6+2x205,2+2x225 pull-ups with 50lb kb and rotator cuff exercises

I felt the need to list out the bench, as I blew myself out on the first set.  I don't know what it is about the 10 rep set, but I knew as soon as I racked the weight, I was done.  You get that feeling where your muscles feel too swollen to contract properly.  I wonder if my high rep efficiency would improve if I started doing more push-ups and crossfit workouts again (perhaps my lactic acid threshold is down?).  I'm not going to worry about it until after I get through Uhwarrie, as I think I'm already pushing my limits for physical adaptation at my current fitness level.

I think brutality is a good description for my squats today.  I've been on a downward spiral with my squats lately, which I would like to blame on the running and the knee injury.  So today I sucked it up and pushed myself as hard as I could to get those reps.  I believe my conscious effort to up calories  and protein played a part in my success (I sit here drinking a protein shake and eating two eggs at 1am).  I went up on my 10 rep set to 205 and I stuck with 225 for 8 and 265 for 6 (which I failed to complete in a single set last time).  I got myself bent over on a couple of reps, but I gutted through it and got it done.  I ended up working out around 11pm tonight, as work was a mess today.  It's funny how I find myself pushing heavier weights when I'm alone, but I feel less pressure in doing so.  I guess, in part, I enjoy the calm and mental focus I get working out by myself.  I've trained solo for most of my life and I think it definitely has it's place, although there is nothing like a training partner to maintain honesty and consistency.

My knees feel good and I seem to have no residual issues from my run on Thursday.  I'll be planning for 45 mins on Saturday.  If this goes well, I'll restart my running schedule of Tuesdays, Wednesdays and Saturdays.  I will probably just repeat the distances I've done so far.  I have the potential for 6 more runs before Uwharrie and I need to make the most of them to get my body ready.  If I can get up to 1.5 hours injury free, I'll be fine.  My only real goal for the race is to prepare my body for the mileage, so I don't experience mechanical failure or injury.

Thursday, January 20, 2011

On the run again... for now

1/20 run 28 mins one loop of Sal's Branch trail @ Umstead

I felt pretty good on this run with an average heart rate of 166 and a peak heart rate of 178 bpm.  My right knee felt much better than my last run and I made it through a full loop of Sal's Branch.  I wanted to keep going, but I need to be smart and build up my distance more slowly this time.  On the run I was subconsciously tensing up my right quad to protect my knee and it seemed to be making things worse, so I did my best to relax and ride out the downhills.  I remembered to bring my ice pack in the car with me, like I had to do for my left knee when I first started running.  My plan is to do 45 mins on Saturday at an easier pace if my knee stays healthy.

Wednesday, January 19, 2011

What a difference a little success makes

1/19 lift power clean 2x225 deadlift 2x385 plus inclines presses with 65,70,75

Today felt like a breakthrough in comparison to my last few weeks of lifting.  I struggled to make the cleans, as I still can't seem to find any explosiveness in my legs and back, but I made the same weight as last month.  I've been reading up on powerlifting form looking for ways to improve my lifts and I think it paid off on the deadlift today.  I pointed my feet straight ahead to help me drive my hips forward.   This seemed to really make a difference, as I had no trouble making the double.

I want to up my protein intake to 1 gram per pound and perhaps as high as 1.5 grams per pound.  My hopes is that this will help me to progress in my lifts.

Tuesday, January 18, 2011

The Downward Spiral

1/18 lift box squat 3x290+3x285 towel bench 5+1x245 snatches 5x75 and a few attempts with the 100 (no success on the left and one on the right) plus pull-ups and dips

We lowered the box squat down a notch today.  I think this plus the fact that I've lost some weight is starting to really catch up with me.  I haven't looked back to check, but I'm starting string together weeks of missed lifts and a downward trend in poundage.  My plan is to increase my intake of quality calories and maybe change up some of our auxiliary lifts.  I might try to run again tomorrow after we lift, depending on how my knee feels.  It's not great, but it doesn't feel any worse than it did on Sunday before we ran.

Sunday, January 16, 2011

This was supposed to be my good knee!

1/17 1.6miles of running on Sal's branch (stopped due to right knee pain)

So it has been over a week and I was itching to try and run again.  Going into the run, the knee was still not right, but the swelling had gone down to the point I had full range of motion and I was moving up and down stairs without pain, albeit gingerly.  Things were going well in the beginning, but the pain and weird disconnected feeling (fluid?) in my knee got progressively worse.  It also seemed to spread from the outer rear to the inner front of the knee, as well.  Around the 20 minute mark I decided to call it quits on the running and walked the rest of the loop.  My plan was to run one loop of Sal's Branch (about 2.75 miles).  I tried to start running a few more times, but even I could tell it was a bad idea if I want to have a chance at being healthy enough to do the 8 miler.  Like a dumbass, I didn't bring an icepack so I wasn't able to ice it until we got home.  I iced until the one pack was melted and have maintained elevation all evening.  I normally rotate through ice packs, but I want to get a feel for how much damage I'm really dealing with from the short run.  My main goal is to keep the fluid out of the knee.  So I'm going to stick with an aggressive elevation plan.  I figure if I can keep the fluid down, my chances for running again in the next 7 days are greatly increased.  I don't know if I will be able to build up my time at all, but at this point I'll be lucky to rebuild back to my performance from a week ago.

Saturday, January 15, 2011

Sometimes a "no lift" is better than not lifting at all

1/14 lift squat 3x245 bench press 2x245 plus overheads with 55lb dumbells and pull-ups with the 50lb kettlebell

I don't even want to get into what happened today, but suffice to say I failed to complete a double on the squat and two attempts at a single on the bench.  I weighed myself after lifting at 210lbs, so I'm down about 3lbs from my stomach issues yesterday.  I can say for sure my GI tract is still a wreck as even the simplest foods send my stomach into knots.

Thursday, January 13, 2011

Ground Control to Major Tom, ABORT ABORT!

1/13 lift power clean 1x225 (failed 235) deadlift 2x345 (failed 395 twice due to nearly puking myself)

I'm not sure what happened after I did my deadlift double, but I started to feel chills and a wave nausea hit me.  I went ahead and attempted my single, missed it, grabbed my sweatshirt and hat (I was freezing) tried the single again and nearly puked everywhere.  I told my training partner I was feeling ill and ran upstairs to the bathroom before I puked everywhere.  By the time I cleaned up the bathroom and brushed my teeth he was heading out, so I gathered myself together and told him we would pick things up again tomorrow.  As soon as he left, I was back in the bathroom puking again...and again.  This continued for quite awhile with bouts of shivering, drenched in sweat on the bathroom floor in between the puking.  At some point it calmed down enough for me to grab a bucket, a blanket and go lie down on the couch.  I managed to hold down some Gatorade around 5pm and had some soup and corn chips for dinner (closest thing to gluten free saltines, I guess).  I have to think something I ate for breakfast must have made me ill.  Knee is still busted up, but the swelling is down.  Feels similar to when I tore my posterolateral corner.

Tuesday, January 11, 2011

Schwinn it to win it

1/11 bike 45 mins on Schwinn Airdyne with my bum wheel

I needed some bike time to test out the knee, and just my luck, the wife wanted to do some indoor cardio too, due to the icestorm outside. I managed to average a heart rate of 140bpm (max 159), which took a whole lot of flailing of the arms and legs, resulting in an arctic blast of air courtesy of the Airdyne.  It doesn't help that our basement is already around 60 degrees.  I wore two shirts and my headband to keep from freezing off my ears.  Jury is still out on if the knee feels better or worse.  I don't think I will know until tomorrow.  I also shocked the sh*t out of it with the TENS 3000 unit I borrowed.  I think, at this point, I am looking at minimum of a full week without running.  I'll keep doing weights as the knee allows.

Monday, January 10, 2011

Bum Wheel on 5,4,3,2,1 week

1/10 lift box squat 3x315 towel bench 1x275 plus snatches 5x75 and pull-ups 3 sets, one with 50lb kettlebell

My right knee decided to swell up Saturday evening after my long run.  It's become hard to bend or straighten and quite painful to walk on.  I don't even like to think about when I have to go up and down the stairs.  I did manage to lift on it without much pain, but I made sure to go super slow and avoid any explosive movements with my legs.  I've got the ice back on it now and I started taking 75mg of diclofenac every 12 hours.  I think if I could just get rid of the fluid in the joint capsule I'd be ok to run again (carefully, of course).  My lifting partner says I should think about getting it drained if it doesn't go down in 3 days (he's had acl and pcl reconstruction on his right knee).

In other news, I think this is the first day I haven't noticed my sinus/cold issues!  Looks like I might be done with this year's sinusitis.

Saturday, January 8, 2011

Trailjackers and my 1st Long Run

1/8 run 70 mins on Sycamore Trail @ Umstead with left foot taped in NB MT101's plus an 8 min run out (I got too cold to walk out the trail)

Wow, it was cold this time.  I think temperature was about 37 and we had light snow/hail flurries during the run (thankfully they stopped).  I wore my silk base layer tops and bottoms with short sleeve shirt and shorts plus my headband, sunglasses and the usual footwear.  My friggin Global Trainer lost signal right when we started the run, so my distance was missing about 1.25 miles.  I think I ended up doing about 5.85 miles in 70 mins, which is acceptable for my first long run, especially with the problems we encountered...or rather problem.  We got hijacked on the trail, and by hijacked I mean this lady decided she wanted to have a conversation with us without actually stating her intentions, so I kept trying to give her room to get by (she was ALOT faster than us) and the wife actually stopped, in the hopes she would run on, but she slowed down too, then finally she returned to her normal pace and zipped off (apparently she's run Boston and tons of other stuff).  The only problem is we catch up to her in the middle of the hail/snowstorm and she is sitting on a log taking pictures of the trail with her phone, so I am forced to stop so as to not run into her shot!  Finally, I asked if she minds if I run ahead as it was taking her forever to get the photo.  She then proceeds to pickup again and run with us, but this time she asks if she can hang with us for the rest of the trail, but I guess she changed her mind at some point, as she took off again...  It wouldn't have been a big deal if she had just stated her intention to run with us in the beginning and done so, instead of having us jump out of the way every time we thought she was about to pass, only for her to instead, start in on another story.  It didn't help when she asks to run with us the second time and then takes off again...make up your mind!!!  I have nothing against meeting new people on the trail,  I only ask that we all be considerate of each other and our individual training goals.

So, back to the reason for this post, my first long run!  I knew going in, there was no way I could make it without taping my foot for Plantar Fasciitis.  Here's the link to the video I've been using for my tape job.  I wish I could say I did a better tape job this time, but I ended up with lots of wrinkles again.  I will say I didn't feel the pain on the back of my heel as much, not sure if this is because I'm getting used to the tape or because I made a point to keep the tape lower on my heel.  I was worried it wouldn't hold up, as the job looked like crap, but I made it through the run without too much pain!  I might try to go without taping on my easy runs depending on how my foot feels in between, but at least I think I've found a long term solution to running through my foot problems.

My heart rate average was 161bpm with a peak of 176bpm.  Other than a few times where our run was hijacked, I felt pretty good.  I kept my pace under control thanks to the hrm, but for some reason the strap kept sliding down, even though I had it adjusted from my last run.  I guess it must have stretched some, but it never fell off, it would just work its way to below my lats in the back.  I felt pretty good for this run and didn't have any problems finishing it out.  I couldn't believe how tight my quads were trying to stretch back at the car.  I think the tightness was setting in from my 5 sets of squats on Friday.  I'm a little worried about my knees, as my right one is very stiff and swollen right now, but I have two days to heal up before my next run :-)  I just wanted to give a big thank you to my +1 for all her patience and encouragement to get me to this point.  I won't say I enjoy running yet, but it does carry a certain sense of accomplishment.

Friday, January 7, 2011

Goodbye 5x5 week

1/7 lift squat 4+1x265 bench press 4+1x230 plus overheads with 55lb dumbells and one set pull-ups and two sets of dips

The squat was a struggle, my legs felt good, but my upper and lower back was still sore from Wednesday.  I had trouble keeping my head up when I would come out of the hole and my legs would straighten faster than I could get the back to fire, so I would end up bent forward.  It all stems from my back injury, as I never had this problem before the injury.  The bench would have been no problem but I kept hitting the supports on the rack.  I'm not sure if that means my chest is shrinking or what.  It really throws you off a rep when the bar hits the support before it touches your chest.  I tend to drop my left side, but today I actually hit on both sides on a rep or two, so I had to reset.  If I had lowered the supports first the set would have been no problem, but it's good to keep them there for the times I don't have a spotter, so I don't risk crushing myself.  Backed off on the pull-ups to keep from aggravating the forearm.  Shoulder felt pretty good today.

Wednesday, January 5, 2011

Double Down part 2

1/5 lift powerclean 5x195 deadlift 5x365 plus inclines with 6x70 and 5x80

Wow, I could barely hobble down the stairs to the basement after the run, so the thought of trying to do 5 sets of 5 reps in anything that involved bending my knees seemed impossible. I was in a lot of pain at first with the cleans (especially my right knee), but I guess the endorphins kicked in and I was able to get through them. I found myself using more of my back to pull my cleans, as my legs had no spring left in them. The deadlifts weren't any better, this was probably the closest I've been to the edge on the deadlift in awhile. I'm still shocked I was able to pull 365 for 5 reps only a few hours after putting in 40 minutes on the trails. My left shoulder felt better today on the inclines but by the time I got to this point in the workout my body was spent and I struggled more than normal to complete the reps. I actually missed my first attempt to clean the dumbells into position, which hasn't happened to me with 80's in a LONG time, certainly not in the last year.

I'm still dealing with some residual congestion from my on going cold, but each day things seem to get a little better. I want to try and make a note of this, just so I know the exact day I finally get over this crap, so I can look back next year when I get it again.

Double Down part 1

1/5 run 40 min "easy" out and back on Sycamore trail @ Umstead

The temp was about 5 degrees cooler than yesterday (42ish), so I wore my silk base layer bottoms as well as the top along with my headband, glasses and regular running gear. I also figured this would be a good time to test out the heart rate monitor with my Timex Global Trainer.

Something which I forgot to mention the other day is I've been playing around with the Timex Global Trainer and my wife's Garmin 310xt. I wore both of them on my pace run yesterday and I wore them both again today. I definitely feel like the Garmin is the superior device but I've also been to a 310xt specific training class with our regional Garmin Rep. It's taken me quite a bit of time to figure out the Timex. I did manage to setup my time intervals before my repeats yesterday, but I wish the watch would vibrate in addition to the audible alarm. I had a pretty big discrepancy between the two on distance yesterday, but today they were pretty close. The Timex Global Trainer is consistently shorter in it's distance calculations compared to the 310xt, I can't speak for which is more accurate, but based on the online data I've seen the Garmin is closer to actual distance. I'm not passing judgment until I get a chance to use the Timex on a measured course. So back to the heart rate strap.

Back in the day I used a Polar strap when I would do cardio, so I was at least used to wearing one, but this was my first time doing so in the great outdoors instead of on a piece of cardio equipment. I was concerned it might come loose between the deep breaths and unpredictable nature of the terrain, but I didn't have any issues. I found the monitor really helped me to figure out when I needed to push and when I needed to throttle back, especially with some of the longer hills. I found that as long as my heart rate was under 170, I could manage pretty well. On some of the hills I would push up into the 170's and this was where I realized recovery could become an issue if I didn't adjust my pace to get my heart rate under control. My average heart rate was 158bpm including warmup, so I would say I hover around 160 once I'm cruising, my max for the run was 175, which I know I hit on more than one occasion. Looking at the zones on the watch, I was in "Zone 4" most of my run with periods in "Zone 5" during the climbs. I don't really know what the implications of this are, so I guess I have some research to do tomorrow. I think I will start using the strap on all my runs to help me train a bit smarter. I think it could be really helpful when I do Uwharrie so I can tell when I'm really getting myself into trouble and when I'm just psyching myself out.

Tuesday, January 4, 2011

Time to Get Serious

1/4 run pace 50 min on Sal's Branch Trail @ Umstead

This was supposed to be a pace run consisting of a 20 min easy run, followed by 5x1 min repeats at 10k pace with 1 min recovery in between and a final 20 min easy run.  Things were going pretty well until I caught up to another runner on the trail at the start of my repeats.  At first he seemed to be going much slower than I, but he started to speed up the closer I got.  So his pace ended up somewhere between my repeats and my recoveries.  I didn't want to have to keep passing him, so I ended up balling out for several minutes until I passed the trailhead, figuring he was wrapping up his run(and he was).  By this time my oxygen debt was much too high to jog off, so I found myself trying to walk and then do another repeat followed by another bit of walking.  I probably walked no more than 2 minutes total, but it was demoralizing and frustrating to have screwed up my workout that way.  I did manage to get things back together enough to finish out my 20 minutes of running, although there were times I felt like I was barely moving.  This was an important run just for me to get through the 30 minute barrier.  I'm used to running 30 minutes but that is generally where I call it quits.  My legs felt like they weren't going to recover at first but eventually I got through the wall and on to the next one until the run was done.  I walked out the rest of the trail, which was a bad idea, as I started to get super cold on the walk (47 degrees) to the point where I almost started running again, but with my easy run tomorrow, I really want to stick to the program in the hopes of avoiding any possibility of injury.  I could feel it in my foot toward the end of the run, but I feel pretty good right now.  The real test are the first few steps out of bed the next day.

I should add that my cold is much better than it was on my last run, but I still have a ways to go.  I was able to clear my nose during the run without too much trouble.  I did have a coughing fit in the car on the way home, but hopefully I will continue to get better.

Monday, January 3, 2011

5 sets of 5 for the New Year

1/3 lift box squat 5x320 towel bench 4+1x245 plus snatches 75x5 90,100x3 pull-ups with 50lb kettlebell

I made a decision ahead of time to not do 100lb snatches with my left arm due to my shoulder problems.  My elbow was really bothering me on the pull-ups.  I might have to take another break from them if it gets any worse.  I've been taking 6 capsules of cissus a day for the last few days and it seems to reduce the pain and irritation, but I'm not sure if it's actually helping to heal my tendonitis.

New Year, New Run

1/1/11 run 30 mins continuous "easy" run at Umstead

I was fighting my respiratory issues on this one.  I couldn't use my nose to breath due to the congestion and after awhile it started to run constantly.  I think I'll be doing much better once my nose clears up.

Sunday, January 2, 2011

Lifting Out the New Year

12/31 lift squat 3x275 bench press 3x235 plus pull-ups with +50lb kettlebell and some hammers with 55 and 85lb dumbells.

I managed to gut out some decent squats, but my bench is still suffering with my left shoulder.  I started taking a Cissus supplement to see if it will help with my tendon issues.