Wednesday, April 21, 2010

Quick Update

I just wanted to check in before I hit the sack to let you know how my day went.

I went to bed before 10 last night and think I was asleep fairly quickly. Had my usual disturbed sleep but when the alarm went off at 5am, I was ready to get up. Had a little coffee and a banana, got dressed, and left the house around 5:40. The sun wasn't up yet but it was light enough to see fine. It was about 11C (50F) so I wore my tights and a long sleeved shirt under my jersey. It was a beautiful clear morning and I felt happy and excited to out on what was going to be a lovely sunrise.

I made sure I did my full 10 minute warm up so that I was ready for running fast. I hit the lap button and started my workout.

The goal was to run 10km doing an interval workout and then record my 10k time.

The workout was:

2 minutes at 5k pace (had to guess on that, just ran pretty fast)
1 minute recovery ( I did about 7 min/km pace (11:15 mile)
1 minute fast again
30 seconds recovery
30 seconds fast
30 seconds fast.

This set took 5:30. I hit the lap button at the end and repeated the pattern until I'd done 10km.

My heart rate averaged around 165-170 on the running segments, and dropped down to 155-160 on the recoveries.

Nothing hurt while I was running although my hips (ITB) got pretty tight after about 7-8 km.

I kept a fairly steady pace for all the sets although I got a little slower on the last few.

Here are my splits:

Set # - Avg pace for the whole 5:30 set

1 - 5:41
2 - 5:46
3 - 5:37 (best pace = 9 min mile)
4 - see below
5 - 5:51
6 - 5:44
7 - 5:50
8 - 6:02 (slowest pace = 9:42 mile)
9 - 5:57
10- 5:51
11- 5:28

For the 4th set, I hit the lap button at every interval to see my true running pace.

2 min - 5:05 (8:26 mile)
1 min - recovery
1 min - 5:15 (8:10 mile)
30 sec recovery
30 sec - 4:45 (7:38 mile)
30 sec recovery

My 5km split was about 28:30

My 10km finish time was 57:52

I was pretty happy about that. I always thought my 10km race goal would be to break an hour so I never expected that I'd break it on an interval training run.

28:30 is not my best 5km time but it's the fastest I've run in a year and I'm pretty sure I could do a 26:30 5km if I didn't do the recovery intervals.

Of course, I can never seem to do that pace in a triathlon after I've been biking hard. I'm always lucky to break 30 minutes then.

Anyway, the real challenge of this run wasn't to be able to run fast, I was pretty sure I could do that. My real goal is to see if I can recover from a hard run and not be injured.

I was in a bit of a hurry to get ready for work after my run. I forgot to factor in time to stretch and ice, but I did get a little stretching/icing done before I left for work, and I took the ice packs with me and iced my legs while I sat at my desk before school started. I did a really good stretch while the kids had PE today. Oh and I wore my Zensah sleeves all day too.

I iced them again after work and then had a hot epsom salts bath and then I used the foam roller and stretched again.

My legs have been pretty tired and sore-ish all day but not painful, so far, it's a good sore I think.

I guess we will have a better idea in a couple of days. Holding my breath until then.

Tomorrow is a hard 1 hour interval ride. Warm up, then 30 seconds all out, 30 seconds spin - repeat for 15-20 minutes. My legs are gonna be tired I think.

PS Coach called me a stud today. That's a good thing. :)

Tuesday, April 20, 2010


Went to see my physio therapist today to deal with a long term chronic issue that has not directly affected my running biking or swimming but that I suspect may be having some effect on my shin problems.

For a long time, several years in fact, I feel pain when I bring my left knee to my chest and I have more limited motion in the left leg when doing yoga and certain stretches. My PT did a number of strength tests of both legs and found my left leg was weaker in a few areas, but for the most part, was about the same as my right.

He concurred with the diagnosis that my MT and I came up - and he thinks that I probably tore or severely strained my Sartorious at some point. He says we need to break down the scar tissue in order to regain full mobility of that hip.

He showed me how to run the scar tissue while my leg is in a deep stretch and says I need to do that once a week for about 6 weeks. I'm going to give him an update in a month and if I am seeing no improvement, he's going to lend me an ultrasound unit to use daily at home and see if that will help get rid of the scar tissue.

So anyway, I'm happily on the way to getting that little issue dealt with.

He also looked at my spine and hips and noted that with the way my low back caves in at the spine, and my propensity for low back pain, he suspects I may have spondylolisthesis. He has it himself and he thinks that for the most part, as long as I stay fit and have strong abs, I probably won't have any problems with it. He recommended I see my doctor if I start to get any sciatic pain though.


I had a really crappy sleep last night so I don't think I'll have any trouble sleeping tonight. My plan is to get up at 5 and head out the door at 5:30 tomorrow. I'm crossing my fingers that me legs feel ok with this speedwork. My left shinbone was a little achey all day today, especially when I climbed the stair 20 times at work...

Cross your fingers....

Monday, April 19, 2010

Speed Work

So my first planned early morning run on Wednesday turns out to also be my first "speed" workout instead of a simple "run 1 hour" workout that I usually have. It looks kind of fun and challenging but at the same time, it'll be hard to judge how long it will take because I need to do my warm up and then run 10km. It usually takes me 70 mins to run 10k so that could mean I need to plan for 1:20 but since I'm supposed to be running some of it at my 5k time, I assume it'll be closer to an 60 mins plus warm up.

Anyway, here's the workout.

Surges. Warm up. On a 10k course run 2 minutes (recover for 1 minute), 1 minute (recover 30 seconds), 30 seconds (recover 30 seconds) at ~5k pace. Repeat for entire course. Cool down. Record 10k time.

So the first challenge is timing. I need to give myself at least 1:15 to complete this, just in case. That means getting up even earlier than I had first planned, or at least being out the door by 5:30 am at the latest.

The second challenge is that I have to do this long-ish, speed-work run on the road instead of the greenway trail because I don't want to drive down and run on the trail at that time of day. It would add another 20 mins or so to my workout and I would be too isolated.

So that means I have to run at home. My two choices are to run laps around the block - that's about 12 laps. Or I can run the 3km loop about 4 times. The 3km loop has two hills on it so that's probably not best for this run. 12 laps around the block it is. Hopefully everyone in the neighbourhood will be asleep and not wondering what the heck I'm doing....

Of course, the million dollar question is how I'm going to feel after a run like that? Will my legs hurt? Very much?

I am now realizing that this will not be a very good experiment to see if morning runs are any easier on my legs because I am changing two variables - time and speed.

Ah well, it can't hurt to run in the morning so if I'm sore after the run, it'll be because of the speed.

Final challenge - WTF is my current 5km pace now?????

I have no clue. My 5k pace in the past has been 5:15 - 5:45 per km (8:26-9:15 mile) depending on how much my legs were hurting. I will just try to run faster and see how it goes.

So tomorrow is physio and Wednesday morning is the run. I hope.

Sunday, April 18, 2010

Another Sunday Update

I think I should always update my blog on Sundays because it's almost always a good day. My legs aren't tired and I usually have had a few good weekend workouts. In other words, I'm in a great mood! :)

So how are things in Kelownagurl Land you ask?

Well they are just dandy. After 3 weeks, I figured out the pattern and didn't have a melt down when I hurt a lot during the week. That patience was rewarded with a great, more or less pain-free run today!

Apparently, my legs only hurt on week days. Coach and I think it's because I am on my feet all day at work, including a lot of stair-climbing, and then I run after work. I thought it was ok because it was just getting me used to running on tired legs. Coach thinks it's bad because it can lead to injuries.

So I am thinking through the concept of running in the morning before work. I did it once or twice last spring without much success but truth be told, I didn't give it much of a chance, so I have decided that I will give it another try. I figured it'll be a good thing whether it works or not. If it helps, then I will be motivated to continue getting up early to run. If it doesn't work, I will be able to say, there, I told you, it doesn't work, and continue to sleep in until 6:30am. It's a win-win situation right?

OK so I have a 12 year old son whom I have to be home to prod to school every morning. I need to be getting ready for school by 7am. That means I should be home from my run by 6:45am at the latest. That means I have to run out of the door by 5:45am. That means I need to set my alarm for about 5am so I can have a cup of coffee, eat a little yogurt and get my system moving before I leave.

Getting up at 5am is about an hour and a half earlier than I currently get up. That means I should probably go to bed about 90 minutes earlier too. Going to bed at 9pm is not very practical or likely. But I think if I can be asleep by 9:45 -10pm I should be ok. I sleep really crappy 60% of nights though, due to constant hot flashes/night sweats. Hopefully I'll have a good night before I have an early run.

Erik said I could get to bed a lot earlier if I just turned off the computer earlier, so I went into the settings and have it set to turn off at 9:30pm. I realize I can just bypass that if I want to, but I'm hoping it'll at least give me the KITA that I need to head to bed.

Training This Coming Week

Monday - 70 min swim. 20 min WU. 40 min steady swim. 10 min CD. I like this kind of swim - I will enjoy this.

Tuesday - Physio Appt. I finally made an appt with the PT. My MT and I think we have isolated the issue with my hip/groin. We think it's the Sartorious muscle that is bothering me. This has been a chronic pain for several years. It does not hurt with I swim bike or run so I have ignored it. However, it's starting to get worse and I suspect it is affecting the other muscles in my legs. How could it not?

If I turn my knee out the wrong way, it sometimes snaps right at the attachment point in my groin. That hurts. I can also feel it when I do yoga or other types of stretching and I cannot bring my left knee to my chest without feeling it.

My MT also noticed that my upper shin/calf area is painful where the Sartorious attaches below the knee as well.

Wednesday - Run speed work!!!! So excited! Except that I have to get up at 5am to do it!! Still trying to be excited anyway!! :D I have a one hour run that has surges at a 5k pace. 2 min 5k pace, 1 min recover, 1 min surge, 30 sec recover, 30 sec surge, 30 sec recover. Repeat. This sounds fun. Wish I could do it down on the Greenway but it'll have to be in the neighbourhood because I'm running alone early in the morning.

Thursday - Bike 1 hour bike. 30 seconds hard 30 seconds easy X 15-20. Just gotta find the right course for this. He's got more info there and I don't totally understand exactly how to do this so I will ask him to explain a little more.

Friday - off

Saturday - Swim and Bike

- Swim 3600m (he's got that down as taking 1:10 LMAO - more like 1:30) long complicated workout.

- Bike 2:20 with 20 min intervals in Zone 3. Gotta find a good place to do this where I'm not interrupted. Might have to go back and forth on some road that takes me 20 min to ride uninterrupted. Not easy to find. It's also going to be really hard to fit both of those in that day unless I do some fancy planning.

Sunday - 2 hour run. I'll do this in Penticton along Skaha Lake while Erik is doing a duathlon rehearsal. I get to run a little faster into Zone 3 too. That should be interesting!

Looks like a whole lotta fun I think. Wish me luck!

Sunday, April 11, 2010

Sunday Long Run

I had my longest run ever today. I was a bit worried about it earlier in the week because my Tuesday and Thursday runs were fairly painful and my legs felt heavy, tired, and sore all week. However, I had 2 days off since my last run and I made sure to stretch and use the foam roller every day. That thing is painful but I think it is working.

So the schedule called for a 90 minute run today. I asked Coach Jeff Kline if he thought it was safe to wear my Newtons for the whole run and he said yes. I was happy about that because it kind of throws me off having to stop partway through a long run and change shoes. It's hard to get back into my stride. (Last Sunday I wore them for 45 min but Tues and Thurs I wore them for the entire 50-60 minute run with no trouble.)

I decided to wear my fuel belt today to see how it felt. It only has two 8oz bottles but it's better than carrying the hand-held bottle I think. It felt pretty comfortable so I am considering buying a 4-bottle belt so I can have 3 bottles of fluid and use one as a gel flask.

Today I drank both bottles which each contained 1/2 Nuun tablet and 1/2 scoop of Carbo Pro. I also carried a hammer gel with me and took it after about an hour but only because I was hungry and had only had a late breakfast before my run.

I did my regular warm up which consists of about 8-10 minutes of walking, butt kicks, high knees, and 1 min runs over 1 km. Then I ran. I ran 45 minutes down the trail, turned around, and ran back. I felt really good for the first hour, like I could run all day. For the last 30 minutes, I felt some mild tightness and soreness in my lower legs, mostly the posterior tibial tendon on my right leg at the ankle, but nothing serious at all. Nothing that made me want to stop running. I tried to use good form, stay loose, light on my feet, head held high etc.

When I had run for 90 minutes, I stopped and walked the last 5 min back. My legs felt tight when I stopped but I stretched my hamstrings and calves at the car, then stuck my lower legs in tall bucket of cold water when I got home. My quads feel tired right now but nothing is hurting.

I can't wait to run for 2 hours. I absolutely cannot wait. :D

My twitter friend, Ron, showed me that I can embed my Garmin Connect into my blog now so here's my run.

Monday, April 5, 2010

Happy Birthday to Me!

Had such a great weekend - gotta love having 4 days off on your birthday!

Friday night - I ran 8km on the Half Iron run course. Felt good.

Saturday - rode a challenging 41km on the Half Iron bike course. Headwind both ways (seriously!), rain, hailstorm, soaking wet and frozen feet and fingers by the time we got back. Ugh. Makes you tough tho right? 1:55 meant a disappointing avg speed of about 21kmh. Boo.

had my longest run ever. 1:15 plus warmup / cooldown meant 12.5 km in 1:30. NO PAIN!!!!!!!!!

- I swam 2400m and biked a hard 32km in 1:10. Felt great! I am feeling strong considering my advanced age... LOL....

I promise to put out a couple of blog posts in the next couple of days so that auto-playing video below is out of range... Sorry about that but it IS a cool video. :)

Friday, April 2, 2010

Good Friday

I'm heading down to Oliver/Osoyoos today. Going to stay overnight at a nice place and ride the HIM course tomorrow. My PTT is pretty sore but my shins are a bit better. I'm supposed to run today. We'll see.

I'm in a better frame of mind today in case you were wondering.. ;)

See you Saturday night :)