Sunday, August 31, 2014

Going In The Right Direction

I can't believe August is over; the month has just flown by.

As we roll into September, I'm getting excited for cooler temps and most of all, race season. My plan is for 5 races with the first being a 5K next Saturday, the 9/11 Heroes Run to benefit the Travis Manion Foundation, and all systems are go. I've been hard at it the last 3 months with 313 miles logged and trust in my training. PR or no PR I'm going to give it my best.

I really consider myself fortunate to live and run in AZ. Granted it's hot but if you run early in the morning or late in the afternoon, the heat is bearable. The plus is that it's pretty much proven that training in the higher temps has physiological benefits once the cooler weather comes; what doesn't kill you makes you faster.

I hope you all have remained injury free in your summer training and are ready for the fall race season as well. There are PR's and medals to be had out there, go get them.

Also, don't forget that the days are getting shorter and you want to see and be seen. Just because you can see the oncoming traffic, that doesn't mean they can see you. Click on the sidebar to get your own RUN-BRIGHT lights and reflective belt. It is a front and rear lamp worn around the waist that allows you to see your foot-fall while giving you 360 degree visibility.

Sunday, August 3, 2014

Don't Stop Believin'

It's hard to believe that it's been a a year since I began taking my training seriously to where I was actually following a plan, logging over 1000 miles since last August. While it hasn't always gone well, one thing I can tell you is that I've learned a lot.

#1 lesson is to not try to do too much too soon or try to make up for missed miles. I bet you can tell by looking at this chart beginning with June 2013 that I did just that.

And this doesn't even begin to tell the whole story since I missed many runs in November and December but racked up miles on long runs. In January I was limited to one run a week due to injury and February was a washout due to injury and an unplanned travel.

In March I began the current training cycle and things have gone much better. Granted I've done a bit more than the recommended 10% increase but I've remained injury free, save for a blister that cost me some miles in July. Nice smooth curve since.

I have to tell you, it's all one big learning experience.

Last year I would be absolutely freaking out with my results lately; you see, I'm getting slower. That's right, my times have actually been getting worse as the cycle progresses. The reason why I'm not fretting this is that along with evening running and TapOut XT on non-run nights I'm also doing XT in the morning as well. This started with 10 Minute Trainer and the ante has been upped to Focus T25 for the last 2 weeks.

It's also been HOT. There is only so hard you can push when it is close to 100 and/or the sun is beating down on you. For the most part it is still 100+ at 6:30pm when I do my Tuesday and Thursday runs and even though it isn't quite to 90 when I run on the weekend, the sun just beats down on you and with monsoon season we see humidity anywhere from 50-70% which is extremely high for these desert climes.

Probably the biggest reason for the decrease in speed is that the missus and I have cut way back on our carb intake. While this is a great way to burn fat and get down to my desired running weight, it doesn't provide the right amount of fuel. The process to train the body to burn fat effectively, especially for long runs takes time but time is what I have right now.

It is said that we don't know what we don't know but this is my plan, I believe in it and I'm sticking to it. My sole focus is to run a sub 1:30:00 half in November and know that I am going in the right direction. March-April-May were about preperation, June-July-August are about laying down a strong foundation and then it is time to really let it rip as race season begins in September.

With exactly 90 days until my goal race, I wont stop believin'.