Saturday, February 20, 2010

Better than expected

Well that was pretty cool, don't get many days when all goes to plan so you have to enjoy them when you get them!

I felt pretty good waking up this morning. Sinusses still messed up and still had a cold but it didn't feel like it was going to impact my performance. Baby sitter came right on time and I arrived at the race in plenty of time. I was actually really pumped in my car on the way which is always a good sign- music blasting and singing along! Legs felt really peppy in the warm up too- one of those days when you don't feel you even need to stretch much. race report is on r2w link so I'm not going to regurgitate it, suffice to say that I felt strong throughout the race and was still pretty fresh at the end. Promising signs for the Half in two weeks and longer term for bringing down my 5k pr this year once I start concentrating on training for the faster stuff...

On top of that having a great time just hanging out with Sophie while Mom and Emily are living it up down in Atlanta. We don't get much time together like this and I'm cherishing it!

Looking forward to seeing how it all shakes out in Salisbury tomorrow. Race season has started!

Thursday, February 18, 2010


That pretty much sums up how I feel right now. Not just in the legs but in general. For the last three mornings I have been on the roads by 5am and it is taking its toll! Of course staying up to watch the Olympics does not help. I am determined tonight to forego the excitement of curling or figure skating or whatever sport that I would never ever normally watch but have been because it is ‘the Olympics’ in order to hit the sack early. I ‘only’ have to meet with Jay and Caitlin at 6.15 for tomorrow’s acres so that will be a positive lie in for me!

I have also picked up a cold but luckily at the moment it is just snivels/cough/sore throat and all above the neck so hopefully will shake that off quickly

Sunday’s run was as much fun as anticipated! 20 of Charlotte’s fastest runners were dropping sub 7 minute miles all over Charlotte on what was a beautiful, if cold, morning. We ran over the Corporate Cup Half course just to confirm what a brute it is going to be!

Following Sunday’s 18 I had a workout Monday and Tuesday and 16 today as I have to get my long run in early this week as I am on babysitting duty from tomorrow afternoon through Sunday evening and apart from the race on Saturday morning will not be running. For Emily’s 7th birthday Lisa is taking her and some friends to Atlanta where they are going to pamper themselves and their ‘American Girl’ dolls while I look after Sophie. Don’t know how I managed to wangle my way out of that one!

So after tomorrow’s 6 planned I will have 80 miles in the bank for the past 7 days as I head into Saturday’s race- not my usual taper!! It could be messy…

Saturday, February 13, 2010

Back on

Cupid's Cup is back on! Babysitter arranged. Today's run in lieu of the race was a nice and easy 11 miler in a snowy and soggy Mcalpine on a beautiful Saturday afternoon. Not a workout as you may have expected in place of the race. As Coach advised, if there hadn't been a race we wouldn't have been doing three workouts this week! Tomorrow will be an 18 mile jaunt with a bunch of Charlotte's speediest. Should be fun!

Friday, February 12, 2010

Snow joke

Well all that anticipation for nothing! Mother Nature's intervention in this crazy winter of weather has put the race back a week. Lisa and Emily are away next weekend so me and Sophie are having a weekend together. Bets that I can find a babysitter on a Saturday morning at 7am?!

Excitement, mystery and dread

So after a couple of months hiatus after Thunder Road, tomorrow sees the return of the road racing scene in Charlotte with the Cupids Cup 5k race. From now right through until December you can pretty much guarantee being able to find at least one race per weekend in the immediate vicinity.

Coincidentally tomorrow's race will be the first time I have pulled on the singlet and racing flats since December. As usual when I haven't raced for a while there's a mixture of feelings going into the race.

Excitement, about getting out there again and laying it on the line- this is what we train for, right? This is why we drag our butts out of bed every morning at 5am while most of the (saner) population snooze on.

Mystery, about how I am going to perform. Having not raced for a couple of months it is difficult to know what to expect tomorrow. Once you're into racing season and have run a few races on back to back weekends you can obviously get a feel for what sort of race shape you are in and pretty much predict within 10 seconds the time you should be able to run at a particular race. Tomorrow I have no idea. I've not been training for a 5k so other than at Tuesday's workout (see r2w link on right) none of my work has been at anywhere near 5k pace and also I'm 'training through' this week, with another hard workout in the bag yesterday and 80 miles since last Saturday.

Usually when I return to 5k racing after a break I tend to hit around the mid to high 16s as an opener. This time round my expectations are higher. I have been able to build nicely on top of the decent couple of months training i put in before Thunder Road and my training in 2010 so far has gone to plan. I'm hoping that that consistency of work will at least show some sort of fruition tomorrow, I will be disappointed if I can't get close to the low 16s.

Finally there's that feeling of 'dread'. The race is going to hurt, no doubt about that, lungs,legs, everything burning.

At the end of the day though, it's just a race. Running is a pretty simple sport. When it comes down to it, tomorrow's race will just boil down to running as fast as you possibly can for 3.1 miles. Log back in to see how I do after the race....

Monday, February 8, 2010

Weekend update

So three of the days in this little block are out of the way. A workout, long run and 41 more miles in the bank. Saturday's workout went great and was a good confidence booster. The only drawback was that I wore a pretty old pair of flats for the whole 15 miles and my legs got beaten up a bit more than I would have liked- those shoes have since joined the 'discard' pile.

That made Sunday's run a bit harder than I would have liked. We did a road loop and finished off with 4 miles on the track but my legs weren't feeling like pushing it anything much below the 7 minute pace we had maintained for the road loop. We had a great little group of us in the end for this run which certainly made the 18 miles go past faster- all the result of a bit of Saturday Facebook status updating!

My right hip flexor was actually getting a bit sore by the end of this run and I could certainly tell I had run 33 miles in 24 hours. I have been trying to strengthen and stretch this area religiously for the past few weeks as it occasionally gets a bit sore around there and generally after a good bit of massage and stretching it feels fine. Just something to keep on top of.

I was still feeling pretty tired when I hit the sack last night and the prospect of a 5:30 alarm call to get today's acres in was not exactly enticing. After a pretty good (for me) night's sleep, I tossed and turned a little this morning trying to come up with other ways I could get today's miles in without hitting the trails immediately. In the end though I sucked it up and just got out there and glad I did baecause after a few miles the legs started to come round again and it ended up being a good recovery run.

Friday, February 5, 2010

A hard few days ahead

Today I am taking completely off. From Saturday 6th through Sunday 14th I have a pretty intense 9 days of training planned!

Long run
5k race
Long run

Miles- 108

This could be interesting!

Change of plans

My original intention was to run the Columbia Half on 2/27 as the goal race of this block. However, I have decided to ditch this race and run the Corporate Cup Half a week later here in Charlotte instead. The course in Charlotte is very tough (including a brutal last couple of miles from the bottom of Morehead) but at least I will know the route very well. With Columbia I had no idea what the course was like, the race entry was going to be twice that of the bargain $35 for Corporate, then there was gas and having to drive down VERY early on the Saturday to get the race in time. Plus of course I now get an extra week of training! Coach has been notified and the new slightly tweaked training plan delivered. Now looking forward to rocking the first major race of the 2010 Charlotte road racing season...

Tuesday, February 2, 2010

Now that's dedication!

I have been very impressed and inspired by the commitment and dedication of some of my Charlotte running friends over the inclement weekend. Nathan and Caitlin completed their 22 and 16 mile long runs on the dreadmill, Tom Kreger lapped the YMCA indoor track 63 times two days running to get his 7 miles in, the Godfather ran 28 miles outside in the eye of the snow storm Saturday morning, Ben, Dan, John, Billy, Michael, Jordan and myself overcame 50 yards of snow and ice on the PDS track to get our track workouts in yesterday. This is to name but a few examples. Inspiring stuff.

Hopefully over the next few days some sort of normality can resume, although we are forecast more snow and ice over the weekend. My legs could certainly do with hitting their stride without worrying about slipping, sliding and sinking. The last few days have been annoying!