Wednesday, May 23, 2012


Yes, I am slacking about reporting my training. I said on my last post on Saturday that I would try to post regularly. That lasted all of one day.

The weekend was full of back-breaking yard work in the warm sun and a shortish run on Sunday. Yardwork + sun + running usually kills me and knocks me out. This 40 year-old body just ain't cut out for it anymore.


I was exhausted at the previous days work. Basically opened the pool, cleaned the cover and water bags, plus planted tons of flowers around the back yard. It was a very, very full day. So I was tired and exhausted when I woke up on Sunday. So, instead of doing the planned 7, I just did 4. Why? Because it's still the offseason and I don't have to kill myself. I'll kill myself in June.

  • Distance: 3.98 miles
  • Time: 35:12.32
  • Pace: 8:50/mile
  • Weight: 164.8 lbs
  • Weather: 68F, Sunny
Tried to do Week 3, Day 1 of the 100 push-up challenge, but failed on the last set. Did 14-18-14-14-14 with 60 seconds rest. Arms felt tired from Saturday's yardwork extravaganza.

Weekly Summary

  • Distance: 43.2 miles
  • Time: 5:53:31
  • Pace: 8:15/mile


As with Sunday, I was thoroughly exhausted on Monday morning, Sunday was yet again spent doing yardwork around the yard. Basically getting the pool clean and ready for swimming, but planting like a million annual flowers in the yard (again). So when I work early Monday morning, my body wasn't jumping for joy at the aspect of running the 9.66 mile loop.

The goal was to do it in 1:15:20, or 7:48/mile pace. Broke out the new Kinvara 2's I posted earlier and off I went. Started out a little faster than previous runs, but the legs still got tired towards the end. Splits were: 8:29,  7:51, 7:42, 7:26, 7:35, 7:37, 7:46, 7:53, 7:45, 4:57 (7:30). Once I hit the goal pace I didn't push as hard, but legs were still noticeably tired. Used the Garmin pacer for the first time (which tells you how far ahead/behind you are). Interesting, but didn't understand how to stop it properly.

  • Distance: 9.66 miles
  • Time: 1:15:06.76
  • Pace: 7:46/mile
  • Weight: 165.8 lbs
  • Weather: 59F, Overcast, Humid


Woke up tired again. Staying up way, way too late. So decided to sleep in and skip a run. Attempted Week 3, Day 1 again for the push-up challenge and did work than the first attempt. Arms were really tired from weekend. Only managed 14-18-14-14-10 with 60 seconds rest.


It seems a common theme for this past week/post is staying up too late. So once again I didn't get to bed until after 11pm and with a wake-up call at 530am, that isn't enough sleep. Had wanted to run 7 miles, but cut it back to my 6.1 loop. Just kept it easy, but my cadence was paltry and slow. Maybe 170 strides/min if that....

  • Distance: 6.13 miles
  • Time: 53:09.49
  • Pace: 8:40/mile
  • Weight: 165.0 lbs
  • Weather: 61F, Overcast, Humid
One more run left before I head over to Ireland for about 10-11 days. Will try to run some over there, but not much. The real training begins when I get back!

Saturday, May 19, 2012

Training Program? What's That

Remember in that last post when I said I would try to post my training everyday? I lied. This post will be brief because I'm tired and I want to go to bed.


Yesterday was a recovery day, and it was a slow recovery day at that. I could feel it in my legs and just kept it easy. Never really felt comfortable on the run, but got it in. Details:

  • Distance: 5.23 miles
  • Time: 46:18.07
  • Pace: 8:51/mile
  • Weight: 166.4
  • Weather: 44F, Sunny
After the run, and since I was done with Week 2 of the 100 push-ups program, I did another max test. The first test I did was 17, yesterday was 34. Nice progress I guess. Onto week 3.


Well this morning I was originally going to do 11 miles. However, both kids had friends sleepover last night, I mowed and edge the lawn last night and didn't get to bed until 11:55pm, which is way late for me. So I decided to sleep in until 7:30am (Whoa), and didn't really feel like running 11 miles, so decided to do my 7.3 mile loop in 1 hour, and that is exactly what happened. The run was OK, legs still don't feel fresh and fast, but with my longest run being 9.66 miles since Boston I can't expect much. The real training/running will start the beginning of June.

  • Distance: 7.34 miles
  • Time: 59:51.52
  • Pace: 8:09/mile
  • Weight: 164.8
  • Weather: 65F, Sun
The rest of the day was spent opening the pool, which always seems to take forever, buying annuals for the yards (we bought 5 flats of impatiens with 72 plants in each flat), and planting said flowers (half of them). I probably should get ready for my trip coming up on Thursday....

Thursday, May 17, 2012

It Snowed In May!! (Pollen that is)

Up early (5:15am) to run the 9.66 loop around 1:15:55. (7:51/mile). Will try to very gradually run this loop twice a week at a faster pace. When I got outside this morning, it was noticeably cooler, less humid and windy. And it also appeared to have snowed pollen overnight. Everything was covered in yellow. A slight breeze formed yellow pollen clouds. As cars drove on the roads, yellow clouds would form. By the end of my run it felt as if I had sand in my eyes. Should have taken a picture to add to this post.

Run went well, slow in the first 3 miles (8:48, 8:03, 7:50). Over-ambitious the next three as I felt good and these paces were not pushing it (7:15, 7:33, 7:33). Held back on mile 7 (7:43), however legs felt tired after mile 7 and it showed in the pace (7:57, 7:48). Finished off last 0.66 at 7:40/mile pace. A pretty good run, though I would legs didn't get tired at end.

The details:
  • Distance: 9.66 miles
  • Time: 1:15:40.35
  • Pace: 7:50/mile
  • Weight: 165.8
  • Weather: 55F, Partly Cloudy, Windy
I hit 500+ miles on my Kinvara 2's this morning after this run. I have another fresh pair waiting in the wings. I usually only put 500 miles on a pair of shoes. I probably could put more on a pair, but with a fresh pair waiting I like to jump into the new shoes. Here is a comparison of the tread of the fresh pair versus the old pair.
Supinate Much?

Picked up a nice case (24) of the Sam Adams Summer Pack from Costco yesterday. Last night was one Sam Adams Boston Lager and one Sam Adams Belgian Session. Both were tasty...

My son, David, kicked my ass in an epic game of Jenga on a carpet.
I count 26 layers

Wednesday, May 16, 2012

A Change Of Heart (In Training)

I'm sure you are all wondering were I've been, right? Billions of people across the internet will finally give a breath of relief, that my I have not got lost on my last run, or fell down a really big, long, dark hole.

Nope. I'm still hear. However, as the title of this post shows, I've had a change in heart about my training. After another slow, slog on Sunday with high HR values, I basically decided on Sunday to put the HR monitor because I asked myself the question, "Why Do I Run?". Do I run to over-analyze every aspect about my Pace vs. HR, which in most cases isn't that positive. Or do I run because I enjoy it.

I run, mainly,  because I enjoy it. So the HR monitor went away and I ran Monday and today without it. Since the month of May is still low key, I slept in yesterday, because... Because I just felt like it. OK, here's a short summary of what's happened since my last visit to the blogosphere....


Last run with a HR monitor. After a probably too fast run on Saturday, Sunday was a recovery run for an hour. My typical 7 mile loop fits that desired time period nicely (8:34/mile == 1 hour). It was a nice Mother's Day morning, but my legs definitely felt the previous day's run and 5 hours of yard work. (Did I tell you again that Spring + Running don't mix well for me?). Just wanted to keep the run easy. So instead of pasting a picture from my running log, I'll just post the details here:
  • Distance: 6.99 miles
  • Time: 1:00:31.52
  • Pace: 8:39/mile
  • Weight: 165.4 
  • Average HR: 138
  • Max HR: 150
  • Weather: 61F, Partly Cloudy
I'm not even going to post the beats/mile, or the beats per cadence levels or whatever. The run was slow, as I am now slow and out of shape.


So without the HR monitor bolted to my chest, I wanted to run "fast", but not strenuous. Basically, run around 7:55/mile for my typical 9.66 mile loop. Legs didn't feel to great, and it probably felt too hard, but I'm out of shape. Nothing else really to say about this one. I really need to post these dailies because it's tough trying to remember two days ago (let alone 2 hours ago).

  • Distance: 9.65 miles
  • Time: 1:16:14.54
  • Pace: 7:54/mile
  • Weight: 165.8
  • Weather: 62F, Partly Cloudy


 Took yesterday off because I wanted to. So, basically a repeat of Sunday's run sans HR monitor. The whole goal of these non-"fast" runs are to basically run at a pace that feels effortless. With my old, creaky legs not really easy to do the first mile or two, but the legs did "warm" up this morning and I was able to has a nice easy hour run on the same 7 mile course as Sunday.

I was very foggy, humid and rainy most of the run. However, since it was warm out, it didn't really matter except for the rapid fogging of my glasses (one thing that sucks about running when wearing glasses). Over-all a good, easy run...

  • Distance: 6.98 miles
  • Time: 1:00:14.14
  • Pace: 8:37/mile
  • Weight: 165.6 
  • Weather: 61F, Rain


Still doing the 100 push-up challenge. Failed at Week 2, Day 3 on Monday. Only did 16-17-14-14-12 with 120 seconds rest in  between. However, this morning after my run, I completed Week 2, Day 3 with 16-17-14-14-21 push-ups. I'm huge now. A regular beefcake, Arnold Schwarzenegger.

So on Friday afternoon/evening I will do a max push-up test before moving onto Week 3. I think I might be able to get to 25-30. We will see.....

Saturday, May 12, 2012


Well after that little HR rise episode on Thursday and me being super obsessive man, I took yesterday off. I also decided to change things up a bit in order to not be "Mr. Obsessive Man" when it comes to HR. So, the plan was to hide the HR data on the Garmin watch while I ran, but still record it using the HR monitor strap. I've done this before, and actually it is more enjoyable for me. So instead of the HR setting the pace, I run the pace at the intensity I feel it should be and I will use the HR data for a guide.

Now, today I was going to run my normal 9.66 mile route. I wanted to try and run it at around 1:20 as I thought that would line up well with the supposed HR145 is was supposed to be for HADD. It was brilliantly sunny and it warmed up rather quickly during the run. Temps went from 52 to 68 during the run. Legs felt OK, and the first miles were probably too quick (actually looking back at the data most of the miles were too quick).

I just went with the pace and legs felt pretty good for the first 6-7, then they got tired as I ran the gradual uphill back home, especially with around mile 8.4 where my legs seems to stiffen up. Looking back at the HR data, the run is probably laughable. I have a long way to go with this HR data. Can't believe I hit a max of 165 on this run. Beats/mile over 1200. My run on Monday was at 1123. Well, this is why I sometimes hate the HR training, it just plays mind games with me. Below are the dirty details. Not too pretty I must say. However, they are comparable to last weekends slow as molasses runs.

Oh, I also basically got no sleep last night. Stayed up late watching the end of The Town and the beginning of Moneyball. I tend to do these stupid things when I'm not it training.

Did W2D2 of the pushup challenge afterwards. Actually completed it with 14-16-12-12-17 push-ups with 90 seconds rest in between. Will do W2D3 on Monday. Tomorrow the plan is to run 7 miles in 1 hour. Nice and slow. Let's see how craptacular that run is.

Thursday, May 10, 2012

Reason #1 Why I Hate HR Training: Crazy HR Reading = Crazy Mindgames

Well it seems that instead of April Showers bringing May Flowers, we have had April Summer/Drought bringing May Monsoon. I really can't remember a day that has been without some sort of cloud cover or rain. This morning was no exception, raining when I got up so I would head down to the basement for 60 minutes at HR150 (ILTHR) on the TM while watching Biggest Loser episodes.

Now everything about the run went fairly well. During the first 5 minutes I needed to pause briefly to clear a screen that popped-up while running (Apple asking to update their software, why no thanks). Started out at 6.7mph and increased the speed 0.1mph every two minutes when my HR would be 147 or less. Once I get into the 148+ range I keep the pace the same, or decrease if HR gets above 151.

Missed a mile lap mark at mile 5, but around mile 6 I noticed the HR starting to creep up. I would lower the 0.1mph and the HR would creep up 1 bpm. This happened until I was at ~157 and I just said screw it and stopped. So instead of going for 60 minutes I made it 51+ minutes. This HR anomoly started around 50 minutes in.

Now, it was humid and about 66F in the basement. I really haven't been drinking a lot of water (I will the rest of today), but this HR stuff just plays mind games with me, and I am not good with mind games. Not at all. As of now, later in the day, I do feel a tad dehydrated which probably would be a good reason for the HR rise. It wasn't as if it was drastic, but I did feel different.....

Here's the gory details. First 6 miles good, last 0.68 were "What the....???"

Here is my HR graph over time, notice the slight ramp up at 50 minutes. Nothing drastic, but still sucked...

Also, after the aborted run tried to complete W2D2 of the 100 push-up challenge. Was still a little off and did worse than on Tuesday. Only managed 14-16-12-12-7 with 90 seconds rest in between. Will go for try #3 to complete this challenge on Saturday.

So, now crazy Jeff is wondering what to do about tomorrow. Should I run, run without a HRM, run with the HRM and not watch it, or just do what I've been doing. This is what I hate about HR training, I get way too over-obsessive about it. When I suck without wearing the HRM, I know I just suck. When I suck when wearing the HRM, I know I suck but I always have in the back of my mind that there is some underlying health concern or that I'm on the way to death's door. A lot of this crap goes back to two not-so-pleasant episodes I've had back in 2003 and 2007. Not fun times...

Oh well....

Wednesday, May 9, 2012

Where Has Summer Gone?????

Honestly I don't think the sun has been out for more than a few hours the past few weeks. We went from March 1st through the middle of April (Boston time), with little to no rain, glorious sunshine. So now when I want to actually work on my yard and run outside more, we've turned into DrearyTown.

Another rainy morning, which meant another run on the 'mill while watching The Biggest Loser. One of this morning's episodes was the episode where they all decided to quit the show because the show wanted to bring back an at-home contestant. Might as well just call the show "The Biggest Baby", because honestly that's how they've all acted this season.

My run, you might ask? 45 minutes at HR140. Got to pick it up a tad on the TM, and the run was again uneventful. I did have to stop for a few seconds after the first 30 or so seconds to fast forward through the Biggest Loser episode to the right part. Can't watch the same stuff twice right????

Anyway, managed 5.44 miles in the 45 minutes. I'm a speed demon. Here are the details. Tomorrow is a repeat of Monday's "workout". 60 minutes at HR150. Hopefully I'll be able to run outside. My predicition is that it will be worse than Monday's effort. I'm such a positive thinker!

Oh, and the Capitals better beat the Rangers tonight!