Thursday, August 30, 2012

tempo run + jogger = fail?

I'm reminded as to why I gave up structured workouts when running with the kid.  Today was supposed to be a 4 mile tempo run at a 9 min pace.  Given the 3 beers I had the night before plus the 5 cups of coffee that went down the hatch in the hour leading to the run I figured this was going to be disastrous.  Kid + jogger is upwards of 50lbs so I would have been ok with a 9:05ish pace.  I ended up with a 8:35 pace for the 4 miles.  WTF!  Here's the problem with following a generic on-line plan, there's no coach to meet with when this happens.  Did I run too fast today or is my plan too slow?  I'm not sure I'm going too fast, last week's tempo was 8:45 and now a 8:35.  Neither run felt all out, but I'm not running consistent miles, I start slow and get faster.  Today 8:49, 8:31, 8:19; last week 8:59. 8:49 and 8:28.  The difference between the 2 runs is last week's tempo was the run part of my tri, not ideal but that's how it happened.  So do I adjust my plan and run my tempos at an 8:40ish or keep the goal at 9 and just see what happens.  If I'm running my tempo's faster, should my fake track workouts get faster as well?  End goal remains a 2 hour finish at the Cape Cod Half, (do I dare dream of an even faster finish??).

Ran 4 miles and 60 min hill work on trainer.

Tuesday, August 28, 2012

Trainer boredom

So as previously discussed I only get to ride outdoors on the weekends, meaning my weekly mileage is all on the trainer and after too many months to count I'm over it.  I don't know if I'm over thinking my workouts due to my new heart rate obsession or what but man I'm having trouble finding the motivation to push hard on the trainer.  Movies and books pass the time but then I instantly drop my effort.  Workouts help to shake it up but I've done them all too many times.  I know the new structure in my runs is a factor, until recently the runs were all unstructured with the trainer workouts having much more structure and focus.  There are only so many sprints and intervals you can do in a day; I don't care if they are running or biking.  Tomorrow I'm not working at night so might try to take my Phat Whip outdoors for an albeit quick, but hopefully refreshing workout on the pavement.  Who knows, maybe it was just a bad day and a balance to the nice run workout I had prior to?  I should just go to bed and stop worrying about it!

Ran for 4 miles and biked for 70 minutes.

Sunday, August 26, 2012

I'm fully committed

No, we aren't going to discuss my marriage, lets talk about my half marathon training.  I've been bored since the 70.3, we all know it...time to get over it.  I won't start to think about next year til Octoberish so I needed to find something to focus me over the next 6-8 weeks.  Drumroll please....the run 3 day a week half marathon program.,7120,s6-238-244--9369-F,00.html  Yep, 3 days a week and they say it basically gaurentees me a faster finish time.  I got nothing but time on my hands over here so lets put it to the test.  So I'm running a track workout, or a dreadmill workout in my case, a tempo run and a long run.  That's it no more, well there is the biking and swimming that still happens but that's it for running.  I'm aiming for a 2 hour finish at the Cape Cod Half, which would be a PR by 3 minutes.  I would say I'm confident about this, but really not sure that 3 days a week is really enough. But I'm too lazy and disinterested to come up with my own plan and I think it'll be fun to see what my results are.  So not only am I sticking to their workouts, but also the times they are recommending for me; it really couldn't be any simpler. Yesterday's run part of the tri counted as my 3 mile tempo run, should have been a 9 min pace but was a 8:45.  Today I went for a long run of 6 miles at a 9:40 pace, and I held it even when it felt a bit slow.  So we'll see what happens, I'll keep you posted if 3 days of running is enough to help me achieve a PR for the half marathon distance.

Miles run today: 6

Saturday, August 25, 2012

Cranberry Tri-Fest Sprint Race Report

Nothing special, regular race morning breakfast of coffee, plan bagel with cream cheese on the ride down (around 5am).  Made the mistake of allowing my toddler to “help” me prepare my stuff the day before so there was about an hour of panic when I realized while setting up transition that my bike helmet with still at home.  I vow to never judge anyone who makes this mistake; I can’t believe I didn’t have it with me.  Luckily the race director (who was amazing) was able to find me one from another racer.  Transition was set up and down at the water by 7:45.  My swim wave went off at 8:07.

.5m Swim: 17:34
Water temps were 77, wet suit legal so I wore one.  My complaining must be reaching the masses; I didn’t brawl with any breast-strokers.  Route was a rectangle and the lake was really clear.  Last year the swim course was short and this year it was right on.  My sighting was fairly accurate and I didn’t get too off course.  I’ve been skipping the swim workouts lately and paid for it, pooped towards the end.

T1: 3:17
Yes, I suck at transitions but this on involved a climb up a narrow stone staircase that was soaked by swimmers and then a quarter mile run to my bike so with that taken into account it’s not terrible. 

14m bike: 48:41
Not sure what happened out there but it wasn’t pretty.  It was a fairly flat 1 loop course, total climb of 377 feet.  I focused on keeping my cadence over 100 for the entire ride and maybe that did me in, but I was nauseous the whole ride and spent the last 2 miles wondering if I could puke without getting off my bike.  I had 1 Gu about 6 miles in and sipped on Vitalye every 10 mins or so. 

T2: 2:41
I need to learn to run with no socks and get the shoe laces that don’t tie and maybe I’ll get quicker in T2. 

3.1m run: 26:21
I have no idea how I pulled this off, especially given how terrible I felt on the bike.  Knowing the course from last year helped.  Running all those miles with the jogger helped on the hills. The run was through a residential neighborhood with a good amount of shade, most of the 2nd mile is uphill.  My miles were all progressively faster with a last mile of 8:29.  And the nausea went away so who knows, but I’ll take it.

Overall: 1:38:32  10/22
I really like this race, it’s my second year competing in it.  Well organized and the things I didn’t like about it last year were corrected this year.  I’ve been skimping on swim and bike training and I felt it.  I’m very happy with the run (almost a 10 minute improvement from last year!) but was hoping for a better over all performance. Compared to last year my transitions and bike were all slower (swim can’t compare b/c last year was short).  Transitions are slower b/c last year I didn’t ride with clips so never changed my shoes.

Monday, August 20, 2012

Would you rather...

Would you rather shop for daycare or run a solo track workout on your basement treadmill?  I'd rather do neither and unhappily report I did both's a hard call regarding which was worse.  The daycare shopping is not going well, we were lulled into the false belief since the kid is a big toughie now it would be's not.  We thought we had a plan, after a failed visit today we are back to square one.  I know that all parents struggle with this on some level but that doesn't really make me feel any better about it.  That and my OCD/Type A parts are insisting that I do nothing but perseverate on it, sorry to all my co-workers who have listened to my whining all. night. long.  So after an irritating morning I decided to punish myself even further by going down to the basement to hit the treadmill for some 400's.  So to be clear, it's been a good year since I've done any speed work and closer to 2 years that I've done any speedwork with regularity.  It only took 2 repeats before I stopped swearing about daycare and started to swear about running, so mission accomplished.  I'd love to say that I'm going to move out of the world of solo speed work on the treadmill to some real track work but that's likely not going to happen anytime soon.  I'm not about to try measured intervals on the road with the stroller but it would be nice if even on the treadmill I started to do some weekly speed work.

Miles run today: 4

Thursday, August 16, 2012

The playground workout

So as stated earlier, I'm not really sure what I'm training for...likely a fall half marathon and things have happened just so that I've spent more time running than anything else over the last 2 weeks.  No biggie other than just logging the miles gets old and it's hard to do anything structured when I'm running behind 50lbs of baby and stroller.  We started out this morning without much of a plan, I knew I wanted to go longer than just the Blvd and had thought doing about a loop and a half but threw that idea out about 7 steps into my run.  I recalled a playground near the Lincoln School end that we hadn't checked out yet so I ran in that direction.  It was just about 2 miles from the start.  We stopped and had a 20 minute snack/play break.  Just enough time for the kid to touch every truck he could find in there and test out the swings to be sure they work the same as all the others.  Then it was time to run back, focus being on negative splits.  Lets see if I can do it a bit faster...too bad the second half was uphill.  I was also forced to run on the middle of the Blvd due to construction which always slows me down a little.  If nothing else I have a new workout I can add to the mix, aiming to get that second half done quicker than the first.

Miles run today: 4

Sunday, August 12, 2012

training aimlessly

I don't know what the heck I'm doing and my training is showing it.  I've decided to bag the idea of a fall 70.3 and it's too early to start laying down the foundation for next years big race.  So now what?  I still have at least 1 sprint, maybe 2, on the calendar.  I've toyed with the idea of a half marathon in October to see what I can do for a finish time.  Regardless my training is changing from what I've done for months now.  I don't need to do the same volume, which is good b/c my work/life balance sucks currently so I don't have the same time that I had earlier this summer and spring.  I did take the plunge and purchased a heart rate monitor so am trying to figure out how to add that into my training tool box.  ALthough, I'm really starting to doubt my ability to understand everything that comes along with HR monitoring.  I know it will come and I'll get comfortable with it but man, it's like learning a new language.  As of now I'm trying to swim twice a week, bike 3 times a week and running 3-4 times a week, long runs are at 10 miles with the kid and long bike rides are around 30.  Trying being the operative word there, it hasn't been easy with more hours at work.  All of that said I do feel like I'm out there just logging the miles and not really paying attention to how I'm getting them done.  So if you have any good moderate distance races suggestions send them my way because I need a new focus....

Ran 10 miles with the kid today.

Sunday, August 5, 2012

The pain of other's is my pleasure!

Yesterday the kid and I came out in support of Fully's marathon training, we hung for 10 of her 13 miles in the brutal humidity.  It felt better than expected, in fact all of my long runs since the 70.3 have been almost fun, so there were a few terrible thoughts that crept in.  Maybe I should sign up?  It's time for another one, and no I don't mean a kid.  But after a brief reality check I reminded myself that I hate the marathon and the marathon gods hate me too.  It's fun to join in an awful long run when you don't have to be there.  So fast forward to today which might take the award for most frustrating fitness day ever.  I could scream about squeaky brakes and bike mechanics but I will save that for another post.  So in the afternoon when I should have been out on my phat whip I was pouting in the kitchen convincing Jenn that it was time for her to woMAN up and run another 26.2.  Unlike me, she loves the marathon and the marathon gods are kind to her in return.  I do think that if Lou (her squeeze) could have, he would have slapped me for applying the peer pressure, he's not a runner.  While I'm twisting her arm about the Cape Cod Marathon, Joe makes a wise ass comment and finds himself in my sights.  10 minutes later and he's in.  Yep folks...the Macedo's are coming back to marathon training.  Well, I'm not...I hate the marathon....but Joe is and I'm pumped.  This means I get to pour over hand written training plans, plot out long runs, play with goal paces...I'm already getting too excited about it.  In our life pre-child all we did for a number of years was train and race together and although there is a lot of training and racing happening in our house it hasn't felt like old times.  Joe hasn't been training and it's got to be the both of us for it to feel right.  So today when we finally got out there for this complex web of workouts that involved the car, a bike, the stroller and 3 pairs of shoes (no heels, 2 for running and 1 for the bike) it just felt right.  83 days to go, and man the marathon is so much more fun when it's not your race!

Trained for 14 miles on the bike and 2.5 running.

Friday, August 3, 2012

Naval Station Newport Sprint Race Report

Naval Station Newport Sprint Tri Race Report

Pregame – Ate a nice meal of pasta with avocado pesto the night before.  Can’t say I went to bed early but it could have been later.  Alarm was set for 4am and coffee pot set for 4:15.  Morning included a new system of a packet of instant oatmeal, water and coffee at home.  Hit the road at 5 and pulled into the parking lot at 6.  Very easy check in and body marking.  I did forget my bike pump and thankfully a stranger allowed me to use his.  Bananna went down the hatch at 6:30.  Set up transition and began to pace.  It was a pretty small field and my bike rack only held 10 bikes so there was plenty of room.  Headed down to the water at 7:02 for the prerace meeting.

Swim: .33 miles in 10:17 (garmin) 11:17 (official)
Swim was in a cove at the Naval Station.  Not flat water but really not enough chop to count as any real waves.  Event started a little late, but could have been worse.  It was at the swim when I realized that we weren’t grouped by age group and our ages weren’t written on our legs.  Not a huge deal but it’s always nice to know who is passing you.  My wave was the 3rd to start, it was out to a bouy, across and back in.  Ocean swimming is definitely a different animal than freshwater and it was a shock to my system at first.  Quickly found my groove and kept at it.  I hate those who choose to breast stroke, it should be outlawed in races.  After dodging a few breast strokers it wasn’t long til we hit the shore.  Official results are still pending but I know I caught up with the wave a head of me and missed the onslaught of faster swimmers from behind.  My swim training has paid off as I felt strong, wished I hadn’t doubted myself in the very beginning but overall happy with my performance.

T1: 3:13 – garmin – no official transition times
I have no idea what happened here.  It was a jog to the bikes but it shouldn’t have taken this long.  I knew it was going slow but really couldn’t get out of my own way.  Need to address this somehow going forward.

Bike: 10.35 miles in 35:14 (garmin) 39:19 (official)
It was an out and back on a pretty much closed course.  Some rolling hills but nothing dramatic.  I didn’t love the conditions of the roads but loved having the course closed to cars and enjoyed all the excitement of the volunteers so won’t complain.  I tried to be focused on this ride, stayed low on my handlebars for entire ride.  Took a  GU at the turn around.  Anyone I passed stayed behind me and anyone who passed me looked like they meant serious business so I was ok with it.  No complaints with an average pace of 17.6 MPH, again I really feel like my training is paying off.

T2: 1:51 – garmin – no official transition times
Again, I promise I didn’t stop for lunch.  It was clumsy.  I need help with fixing this, maybe time to practice. 

Run: 2.66 miles in 22:58
I’m irritated that the course was short, they announced at the start that due to some construction there were some last minute adjustments but still.  Nothing special about the course, it was on the base so not much to see.  The course snaked around so you saw a lot of other people.  Again great volunteers so will keep my grumbling to a minimum about the short course.  It wasn’t flat but only had an elevation gain of 157 so not bad at all. 

Finish 1:13:32 – 5th in age group!
It’s hard to claim a PR on a new-to-me course but I will, based on the fact that each leg (other than transitions) had a faster pace than I’ve done in any other tri.  I really enjoyed this race and will plan on racing it again next year.  It would be nice if they got some bike support, cleaned up the roads and accurately measured the run course.  Also the official timing system should have transition splits.  I LOVED having really no traffic to deal with.   All the volunteers were excited and knew what they were doing.  Post race there was plenty of food and drink and it was an easy set up and break down.  It’s also a cheap entry fee compared to other similar events.  As for my own training, I'm going to keep doing what I’m doing and start to think a bit more about what I need to do differently in transition.

Ran 2 miles this morning, again I'm telling myself that something is better than nothing!

Thursday, August 2, 2012

The good, the bad and the tired

So after my "I can do anything post" from a few days ago, I felt it only fair to report where I'm at in my professional marathon.  We'll call yesterday a draw, I had planned to run 4 and went 2.  I could have squeezed in a 3rd mile but it was run 1 more mile or shower and get dressed without the supervision of a 13 month old.  Being able to shower and get dressed without his supervision was a far better choice and 2 miles is better than none.  I knew last night that today would be tough, I was dragging ass when I got home, but didn't think about it.  It was one of those nights that I never really settled in for a sound sleep, wish I could blame the kid for this one but he was silent.  I just couldn't turn off my head, around 4:37am I sent a text bailing from my 6:30am swim.  Yes, I know I only have 4 chances this week to swim over the next 14 days...down to 2 now.  So the key to me being a good parent is 3 cups of coffee.  After 3 cups of coffee everything is good, manageable and pleasant.  Prior to 3 cups things are very grim...exceedingly grim.  I know this so I set no expectations until after the last sip on the 3rd cup.   The last sip went down and the lights didn't turn on, a sign of a truly bad day ahead.  We got through the morning and even made it to the park for some pigeon chasing.  At 11 I decided I had to bail on my trainer workout and needed to sleep.  So I get us all upstairs (2 dogs, the kid and took a while).  The dogs were under strict orders to get ready for a nap while I dealt with the kid.  Finally I go to jump in my bed to find that the fucking dog peed in my fucking bed.  He peed in my bed.  Fortunately for the dog my homicidal rage was quelled by the sleeping child in the room next to us.  I had a silent but extreme fit, stripped the bed and quietly stormed down the stairs.  He peed in my bed.  The only way to regain control that didn't involve alcohol was to get on the trainer.  An hour later, I'm feeling better...still not speaking to my dog...but no longer homicidal.  So over the last 2 days I've only skipped 1 workout completely, 1 was cut short and due to my rage the 3rd workout was pretty damn good.  I'll keep you posted as to how things continue to pan out.

60 mins of hard angry hills on the trainer.