Saturday, December 22, 2012

A harsh reality

When you run on the track it is hard to hide. Thursday 20 December was the last meet at track and field for 2012. As it was carnival night, it was a good excuse to take part. Ouch the harsh reality of lost fitness, speed, you name it! Running around 5 min/km is dreadfully tough at present, as was evidenced by 10:06 in the 2km turkey run and 14:52 in the 3km, a massive PW over that distance. A couple of long 'intervals', but I doubt I'd have been able to go much faster even if I only did one of those events for the night. And to think I used to be able to run close to 5 min/km for an entire marathon with it feeling easy most of the way! Fitness seems to have gone backwards since the first event in the YCRC Spring series. Oh well, onwards and upwards, maybe 2013 will be a better year running wise, 2012 ended up being quite a fizzer, the dragon was extinguished/slain.

Michael Roden and Sue Bourke, winners of the President's 100m handicap
More of the same this week with gym sessions and running. I skipped Park Run as the legs were tired from track and it would be foolish to overdo it at this point in time. It will probably be back on the menu next week.

Latest training:
Sunday - ~11km E long run
Monday - Gym session - upper body and abs
Tuesday - 6 x 250m hill reps with appropriate warm up and cool down jogs
Wednesday - 30 min E + 6 strides (20 sec)
Thursday - Gym session - upper body and abs; track 2K @5:03/km and 3K @4:57/k (HRav 160 bpm) with warm up jogs
Friday -  Day off
Saturday - 10km E long run; gym session - legs + bench press

Saturday, December 15, 2012

Off to a good start

It's been a good start to the new plan post-Indonesia. Although I have always loved my long runs, I am finding this running short and sharp approach quite pleasant. Best of all, no muscle fatigue when doing the shorter runs, just a glaring lack of fitness and speed! The idea is to give it a few weeks and then see if there is any improvement in pace/fitness. Based on the today's Park Run performance, there is a LOT of work to do.

Antlers are the flavour of the month
There is a nice intermediate running program in the Daniels' Running Formula book that I have adapted. Along with this, there will be the ongoing gym work that will be worked in around the running. The general gist of the running is: hill reps (~250m) or 400m on the flat reps (mixed up with some shorter ones as well); long (1km) intervals with 2 min passive recoveries (or equivalent if running @ track); a long run that doesn't go over 60 mins; a couple of easy 30 min runs that are finished off with 20 second strides. Today's park run was supposed to be one of those 30 mins easy, alas it was anything but easy.

Latest training:
Saturday - serious butt kicking, DOMS causing legs session - ouch!
Sunday - long run ~60mins
Monday - gym session - back, shoulders, abs
Tuesday - 250m hill reps x 5 with appropriate jog warm up and cool down
Wednesday - gym session - arms, chest, abs; 30min E + 6 strides
Thursday - 3 x 1km reps @4:55 min/k pace with appropriate jog warm up and cool down
Friday - Well earned day of rest
Saturday - Park run in antlers @ 25:38, HRav 158bpm; gym session - legs and bench press.

Friday, December 7, 2012

In need of some good health

As predicted, there was no real opportunity to do any training in Indonesia. To add insult to injury I came down with a case of Bali belly during the last couple of days of the trip. That was followed with a head cold that was likely picked up on my last day in Indonesia (I remember being near someone who was coughing and spluttering in a crowded space). As a result of all of that, not much has been happening on the aerobic exercise front. I have been to the gym for some weight sessions, but there hasn't been much running and no cycling.
Baby at the Sumatran rhino sanctuary in Way Kambas, Indonesia
Given what has happened over the last 9 months or so and after a bit of reading, I think I need to reduce the amount of time I spend doing aerobic exercise and instead focus on getting fit doing shorter and sharper stuff. The fatigue/training intolerance seems to mostly relate to time/distance. It is exacerbated if I then try and include some speed work while also trying to keep the time/distance training up. However, if we look back, when the distance and time in training were limited and I was doing mostly short sharp stuff there was little in the way of training fatigue. I had some great training sessions at this time last year, but as soon as I tried to increase my mileage, I went backwards. Doing just low intensity stuff has not helped keep the training fatigue at bay. Sooooooo, for now most running sessions will be short and there will be a mix of short high intensity intervals (up to 60-90 sec) and some hill intervals. 5K will be the longest 'racing' distance, and long runs won't go much past 70 mins. No kms just for the sake of kms.

The calf muscle is fully recovered and Jim has 'cut me loose' so to speak. It has happily handled a couple of 200m hill rep sessions and is ready for more. Park Run will be the focus until the YCRC Summer series starts. Maybe a 5K on the track late in the season and any 5K fun runs that might pop up. I will miss the longer stuff, but for now it's not able to be tolerated and the focus needs to be elsewhere. Time to lean up and build those muscles ;-).

Recent activity:
Sunday  - Gym session - legs and bench press; 11.5km run @ easy pace
Monday - Gym session - back, shoulders and abs
Tuesday - Off work and off exercise
Wednesday - Gym session - arms, chest and abs
Thursday - Off, still battling the lurgi
Friday - 200m hill reps x 5 with easy recover and 1.5 km warm and cool down. No issues with fatigue.