Finally Under

by daniel


For a while I've been looking to get under 20 minutes for the 5K. Here is my previous progression.

July 2007 - 22:22
June 2011 - 21:54
June 2012 - 20:47
Mar 2013 - 20:03
June 2013 - 20:25

Last week I ran a trail 5K in 22:05 and my idea for the summer is to race often (2 or 3x per month) and try and get my 5K time down. I ran my second race yesterday: a 5K in Riverside Park through NYCRuns. The race drew 197 people and was on some fairly hilly paths in the park between 96th and 116th streets. They did a good job with the $10 race and I was surprised that they brought out a timing mat.

I drank too much the night before but got enough sleep. I treated myself to a chipotle burrito for lunch (sponsorship??) at 12:30 and had some pretzels and herbal tea around 5:30 (7pm race). 1 mile jog to get there, plus form drills, plus 3x 100 meter strides to warm up. Then I milled about looking for anyone I knew. Recognized a couple folks, but in Philly I would always know a bunch of people at any given race. I miss that.

I went out a bit slower than the pack and rolled them up during the race. I think I was probably in 50th a quarter mile in and ended up finishing 17th. I tried to stay within myself for the first mile and go up hills conservatively. I tend to run up hills slower than average, but bomb down them. I felt still OK at the 2-mile mark, and figured I was running too slow to PR. I started to wind it up with a mile to go and then with 800m to go I tried to really get going. There were some other runners around me at that point and I was able to use them to finish strong. 

Verdict: 19:49

I walked home with my chest puffed out and a smile on my face. Then when I got home I saw that my close friend / running mortal enemy ran a 19:35 5K the same day. I feel great about my accomplishment and look forward to getting even faster throughout the summer.


Back to work

by daniel


So after the Brooklyn Half Marathon I went on a 4-day, white-water rafting trip in Utah along the Colorado River. It was so fun and was a much needed break from work, school, running.

Trip by Western River Expeditions

Trip by Western River Expeditions

Now I'm home and have put in some decent running. Mileage was 24 and 27 for the two weeks. 

During the half I really struggled after I got out of Prospect Park. My first 5K was in 6:58 pace, which I guess was too fast. I wanted to really get after it. While I was hurting, I overheard a girl coaching her friend, "It's better to be feeling it now than never to feel it at all during the race."

It's true - I don't want to finish a race without going to the well a bit, otherwise I'd feel like I held back. But I got to feeling it earlier than I planned. I tried to embrace the pain, but I struggled mentally. I was like, why do you do this? what are you trying to prove? is this actually good for health, etc? It got dark. I don't feel like I gave up at all, have no regrets, and finished in avg of 7:20 per mile.

What I'm surprised by is how quick I bounced back. Running has been fun these past 2 weeks and I've already run another race and signed up for another. I ran a 5K xc/trail race through Van Cortlandt Track Club. They're putting on races every two weeks this summer for only $5. I ran fairly well, but got beat up by the hills/terrain: 22:05. That time's definitely worth more for a road 5K, but by how much, I don't know. 

I guess I'll find out Wednesday when I run NYCRuns Riverside park 5K. Tune in Thursday for results. Maybe not this week, but some time this summer I will get under 20.


Reincarnation

by daniel


Got into the taper before the Brooklyn Half and fell off here. I ran pretty well, but never got quite as fit as I wanted. PR, 1:36, step in the right direction. I died a bit in the race, wondered why I do this to myself. Funny though, because already I'm back having fun running.

No big plans on another big goal race. Excited to race a bit more often, mix up the distances, get in some cheap summer $5 and $10 races.

BHM.jpg

Workout 26: Track Repeats

by daniel


OK, so I fell off the wagon bit here, both in terms of the running and the posting. 

Since last update:

  • Motivation ebbed a bit
  • 4 weeks of training (21, 31, 3, and 37 miles, respectively)
  • Missed a week of training with a cold
  • Missed my 10K due to oversleeping
  • 8 workouts, generally decent
  • And now it's spring

With spring comes easy running motivation for me. Because running means spending time outside in the sun, which is all I want to do anyway.

--

Workout 26: April 8, 2014
Track Repeats
Repeats / Neuromuscular workout

4x200m with 200m recovery jogs
in:  37 / 38 / 40 / 39
2x400m with 400m recovery jogs
in:  85 / 87
1x800m with 800m recovery jog 
in: 3:01
2x400m with 400m recovery jogs
in:  90 / 90
4x200m with 200m recovery jogs
in:  45 / 42 / 42 / 42

--

Generally I'm moving away from the repeats workouts and doing more long intervals and tempo work. I am training for a half marathon after all. I decided to do a shorter workout today, because I didn't wanna run mile repeats in what was super crazy wind. It felt good to touch on the faster stuff. All the hard stuff today was at around 6 minutes per mile pace, which is a bit under my 5K pace.

I've got about a month to go before the Brooklyn Half Marathon (May 17). My goal is to run 1:30. How am I doing so far? Not perfect. It seems like something closer to 1:33 or 1:34 is in the cards. A 1:30 half marathon is 6:52 pace, and unfortunately right now that feels closer to 10K pace than 13.1 pace. Is my goal still possible or out the window? When I'm hopeful I'm thinking of these three things:

  1. Still have four more weeks of quality training
  2. Could still lose a couple pounds
  3. Net downhill in the race

Last 7 days: 33 miles
Previous workout: 6x1mile with 1 minute rest
Next workout: 40-minute tempo run


Workout 18: 6 mile tempo

by daniel


I may not be the fastest runner, and I am certainly not an experienced coach or an exercise physiologist. What I talk about here are my experiences and my core beliefs with regard to distance running. I'm no expert, but I enjoy talking about running, and I enjoy reading first-hand accounts of training put into action.

am an expert in one facet of distance running, though perhaps not the most glorious aspect ... running-induced shits. How I could regale you with all the times I've been struck by panic mid-run. Is there a Starbucks nearby?? Or I could catalog all of the times I've run off into at least a semi-private, public place upon reaching the end of my rope.

But rather let me just leave you with this. The one concrete thing I have learned: In those last few moments before leaving the house... When I think, hmm maybe I have to go. No I don't really need to. I don't really feel like it. I have never ever been out on a run when I said, man I really wish I hadn't visited the toilet that one last time.

--

Workout 18: Mar 9
6 mile tempo
Tempo / Lactate Threshold Workout

Outside Central Park Loop (approx. 6.1 miles)

1.25 mile warm-up run to the park
Loop in 43:19 (7:06 pace per mile)
1.25 mile cool-down run home

--

So for those of us keeping track, I've run this loop 3x as a tempo run, first in 44:01, then two weeks ago in 43:47, and here in 43:19. That's a nice progression.

I felt really good/zippy early on in this run. I was really getting after it. Then around the 4-mile mark or so, my stomach started to feel a bit iffy. I didn't have to stop, but I had to ease off the gas just a little bit. Usually I like to pick it up a bit for the last 2 miles.

I thought I would make it home, but there's that thing when the closer you get to home, the less your body is willing to cooperate. So I stopped in a random Columbia academic building less than half a mile from my house, because even just another 5 minutes was not in the cards. 

Oh the places I've gone. Countless times outside on runs, I've had to let loose, I don't know what's wrong with me. Usually I'll duck into the woods, but at least 3 times it's been over asphalt. I'm a blight on society, I realize. I try to make up for it in other ways.

Last 7 days: 29 miles
Previous workout: 10x400m
Next workout: 6 mile fartlek