I know, no track and field until the upcoming Friday, but I'm excited. I used to road race bicycles, so it was fun to watch a pretty crazy Olympics cycling road race yesterday, guys were flying off the road in all directions on a pretty technical downhill. I know how much that hurts! (I've had my share of crashes and road rash, but thankfully never broke anything).
To get political - I'm really happy the Russian track and field team (and other sports as well) were banned due to doping. I understand the argument on both sides to disqualify the entire Russian contingency, or allow some others to compete. I fall more on the side to exclude the entire country to make a point. I do feel a tinge of being hypocritical since Galen Rupp (coached by Alberto Salazar) has some shaky history of possibly doping (see Steve Magness or Kara Goucher). Galen won the US 10k and marathon trials, and might have a chance at a medal in the marathon...he looks pretty strong....unfortunately this part of our sport is not going away any time soon, I don't think.
For my training, this week has been "back to normal' somewhat as I'm back home from vacation and working my normal schedule at the office.
My next race, a 20k is in two weeks, so I will start tapering next week. This is my last "full" week of work.
This week my faster paced workout included 2 miles at "Tempo" pace (I set the treadmill to 6:30 pace for this one - as I said before - I'm a little unsure of exactly what Tempo pace means for me, except I know it's slower than 10k and faster than HM pace - so I split the difference), later in the same workout I did 6 x 2' @ 5k pace (6:00) with 1:30 jog recovery.....it all felt pretty comfortable at 1% incline.
Small change this week - my Wed workout I cut short on the overall mileage. I had planned on 10-11 miles, but after 8 miles I stopped. I ran out of time, but really got bored on the treadmill and cut my cool down short. I've read before that sometimes a "recovery" type run the day after a workout will help recovery even more than not running. So, since I cut Wed. run short, I thought I'd try it...I ran about 3.5 miles on Thur REALLY easy, I even walked a one point on an incline to make sure I really had no real effort the entire run. So...did this help on my Friday run? Eh, dunno. I did feel pretty good on Friday, so I will keep this idea going forward. It was also cooler on Friday, so that probably helped Friday's run. I don't think the change hurt me any....so that's good.
My Long Run was 15 miles, and sprinkled with some fartleks at HM pace to continue to try and get a better "feel" for HM pace / effort without overdoing the workload......
Side note on my running routes. Most week days I run on the W and OD (Washington and Old Dominion) path. This is an asphalt bike path that runs from DC into Northern Virginia. For most sections of this path there's an option to run on a "horse path" or side sections that are not paved. I spend about half my miles on these "hard packed dirt" sections. The C and O canal towpath is all packed gravel / hard packed dirt...so all my miles on C and O are on a "path". Both are relatively flat, with only slight incline / declines. This week, I estimate about 26 miles on dirt, 8 miles on the treadmill, and 17 miles on asphalt. I've read it's good for my old legs to mix up the surfaces, and the trail / softer surface will help avoid injury. Might also be some strength benefit as I maneuver over / around even surfaces / tree roots, etc. Plus....I REALLY enjoy being on a narrow trail surrounded by trees!
I also tried a strength exercise called "Hot Salsa" for the first time this week. I found "Hot Salsa" when looking at YouTube videos of training Galen Rupp and Mo Farah do with the "Nike Oregon Project". Seems pretty good, combining some strength work with balance and requires a medicine ball. I've been thinking of how to add medicine ball / kettle bell / "Olympic" type moves to my strength training. I think it can't hurt (or maybe it CAN if I do them wrong!).
Total Weekly Mileage: 51
Long Run: 15
Daily workouts: (Bolded days are the harder workouts).
Monday - 35 minutes easy on WOD in Herndon. Low 70's and 100% humidity. I'm getting used to it (I guess). Legs a little (actually quite a bit) tired from yesterday's long run. More of a "recovery" run today. Got in 4.3 miles (8:10 pace).
Tuesday - 50 minutes easy. WOD in Herndon. Same weather as yesterday. 6.3 mi (8:10 pace). Core work, dynamic stretching and foam rolling.
Tried the "Hot Salsa" strength / core thing for a few reps today, just to try it out. It seems like a good exercise to add into the rotation.
Friday - 72 minutes easy on WOD in Herndon. Felt pretty good today. 9.1 miles / 7:55 pace. A little cooler than prior days. Thursday's "recovery" run helped? Dunno.
Saturday - 40 minutes easy including 4 strides on roads around my house. Kept the pace really easy today, prepping for tomorrow's long run. 4.9 mi / 8:10 pace. Core work/ITB rehab/foam rolling and stretching.
Sunday - 15 miles, work in some HM pace here and there on C and O canal towpath. Ran the first 10 miles right about 7:30 pace, then slowed it down some for miles 11-12 (about 8:00 pace). Then, miles 12-15 did some fartleks at/around HM pace with slower jogging between. Overall time: 1:55, overall average pace around 7:35. Felt pretty good today, especially first 10 miles....fartleks felt a little harder than they should have...but they're fartleks so that's just me pushing it too much...
My last long training run for a while. Next week's plan has a cut back long run, then I have the 20k race and a 5k race 4 weeks later.....
Next week I start tapering for the 20k race in 14 days.....