Friday, April 28, 2017

Less than 2 weeks to Bloomsday

Another wet week in the books and I'm on track to toe the line healthy and fit for Bloomsday in a little over a week. After attempting several marathon build-ups in a row over the last 18 months, it feels refreshing to get back to training for shorter distances. Continuous marathon training can really make you feel stagnant physically and mentally, and I think all marathoners can benefit from dropping in distance for workouts and races for at least a little while each year. While I haven't quite hit workouts that make me think I'm in 10k PR shape, I am surprised at how quickly track workouts are coming back to me. I'm trying to patient, but I can start to see my fitness just over the horizon in a matter of weeks. I have time for one more big interval workout before Bloomsday that will hopefully be a nice confidence builder.

I'm looking forward to competing over 12km without worrying about the clock. I normally have a decent sense of my own effort and can measure out my race pretty well by feel without knowing any splits. Bloomsday is also a fairly hilly course which should play to my advantage. It will be a great opportunity to get back to basics and have something to show for the last several months of training.

Thanks again for reading, and feel free to check out last week's training below.

Weeks to go: 2
AM PM Strength Mileage
Monday 5 off 40 minutes 5
Tuesday 5 15 x 200 @ 29-30 w/200 meter jog recovery 16
Wednesday 14 off 40 minutes 14
Thursday 11 5+ drills and strides 16
Friday 6 10 x 500 meters (77-80 seconds) 100 meter jog recovery 16
Saturday 11 5 40 minutes 16
Sunday 18, push 14-18 @ 4:55-5:00 off 18

Friday, April 21, 2017

Less than 3 weeks to Bloomsday

Portland is on pace to have the wettest year since records started being kept in 1894. It has been a rough winter and spring, but the couple of days we've had with sun in April have felt incredible. I lucked out with both of my workouts this week with weather I haven't trained in since last year, and I definitely had an extra spring in my step. Some of it is mental, but it is physically much easier to run when it's not 40 degrees, windy, and putting your legs through an ice bath with heavy rain. Unfortunately there isn't much of a reason to be optimistic about the weather turning for the long run as we have had years where the rain doesn't stop until July. The trails have been a mess, but one positive note to running through war-torn Forest Park this year is that I'm putting a lot of miles in shoes that haven't worn much in the past. It's been fun to put the tread and fit to the test and still get some soft miles in. If you're looking for a new trail shoe, check out the Brooks Mazama and the Caldera. The Mazama really holds onto the ankle, is more firm, and built like a racing flat. The Caldera is great for longer runs as you have a more cushion under your foot and more surface contact for when you're running a bit slower.

We're edging closer to Bloomsday, and I am very excited to show something for my last several months of training. In spite of the setbacks, I am quite fit at the moment. I'm sure I'll still need a few more races under my belt to chip off the rest of the rust, but I hope to get that over the next couple of months. I'll also be spending the final 3 weeks of training getting a few fast workouts in as we've been mostly focused on strength since early March after my plantaris injury. I'll post those workouts next week.

This will be my first go at Bloomsday, so any course advice would be greatly appreciated! Comment on this blog, are find me on Twitter: @ryavail
Thanks again for reading, and feel free to check out last week's training below.

Weeks to go: 3 AM PM Strength Mileage
Monday 9 off 40 minutes 9
Tuesday 11 5 + drills and strides 16
Wednesday 4 mile tempo @ 19:01, 3 x mile @ 4:38, 4:37, 4:34, rest = 1 min 4.5 18.5
Thursday 11 5 40 minutes 16
Friday 10 5+ drills and strides 15
Saturday 12 mile tempo @ 4:58 pace off 18
Sunday 7.5 off 40 minutes 7.5

Friday, April 14, 2017

Less than 4 weeks to Bloomsday

It's been quite a while since I have posted my training, and I apologize for that. Following my disappointment in New York, I decided to take a short break, and the break kept extending itself as new challenges arose. I also felt that I was continuing to toot my own horn when it came to workouts without producing race results. I'll give a very brief rundown of the last several months, and then give a recap of my most recent training.

NYC was several months ago, but I think it's important to note that no injury occurred. I simply had a bad day. Bad marathon days certainly happen, and I think one could argue this was my first truly bad day. The timing was rough after being hurt for so long. Training had been going well, and I was confident and ready. Fortunately that training has not gone to waste, and I continue to inch towards my best fitness. 

The next race was the US XC Champs, which I also had high hopes for, but disappointed myself once more. I don't know exaclty why, as my workouts for the 8 weeks leading up the race were strong by my standards. I can blame it on the fact that I hadn't finished a race in 18 months, or not going to altitude before, but either way, I didn't reach my expectations. I followed the US XC Champs with a few of the best workouts I have had in at least a couple of years and was excited heading into NACAC XC in Boca Raton, FL as well as Gate River in mid-March. Unfortunately, the week of NACAC, I suffered a small tear in my plantaris. I had originally thought I had damaged my achilles, but an ultrasound fortunately showed that was not the case. It still required 2 weeks in the pool, so there was a bit of a setback in fitness, but nothing overwhelming. I have been slowly building back up since then and am back to reasonable volume and training. I plan to start posting my training weekly again and look forward to a productive spring/summer. 

It seems that the plantaris injury was caused by wearing spikes during training after the long break from track workouts. Because of this I have decided to skip track this season and focus on the roads. I will be running the Bloomsday 12k on May 7th and look to follow this up with Peachtree on July 4th. I will likely select something between these races as well as something in the early fall. This will hopefully put me in position to have several months of 100+ mile weeks under my belt before building up for an early fall marathon. 

I truly appreciate all the support this last year and a half, and I am extremely anxious to turn all my training from the last half year into race results. Thanks for reading, and I'm looking forward to re-engaging with my blog!

Weeks to go: 4 AM PM Strength Mileage
Monday 6 + drills and strides 1 hour aqua jog 6
Tuesday Fartlek: (5 min, 4, 3)(4, 3, 2)(3, 2, 1) w/half recovery  5 40 minutes 17
Wednesday 14 off 14
Thursday 10 + drills and 150 meter strides 5 40 minutes 15
Friday 10 5 15
Saturday 3 miles, 2 miles, 1 miles (4:46 pace, 4:42, 4:39), rest = 3 min, 2 min 5 40 minutes 16
Sunday 18 off 18