Saturday, October 29, 2011

8 Days until NYC, Welles Park Run/Walks

a.m. 4 mile run/walk around Welles Park.

Only 8 days until the marathon.  Next week is traditionally a severe taper week, but I am just getting my running legs back.  I think I will run a little every day until Wednesday.  Then I will take off Th, Fr, and Sat. to get my shin as close as possible to a shin that will carry me 26.2 miles.

p.m. 2.1 mile run/walk around Welles Park.

Friday, October 28, 2011

Welles Park Run/Walk and a New Marathon Strategy

I tested my new marathon strategy today.  Run 4 minutes take a 35 second walk.  I am shooting for an 8min pace.  This is from Jeff Galloway's run/walk marathon plan.  According to Galloway:

"Most runners will record significantly faster times when they take walk breaks because they don't slow down at the end of a long run."

That's good enough for me.  The advantage seems to be compounded if the breaks are taken earlier, rather than later.

Welles Park morning run/walk:  2.4 miles total.

Sunday, October 23, 2011

Today: 13.1 Running Miles

NYC Marathon is 2 weeks from today.  I tanned on ran to Oak Street beach and back with short walks in-between.  8:12 was my average including walks.  By the last mile, my legs were very tired and shin is slightly sore.  Does not seem possible that in two weeks that my legs will be able support 18 miles, much less a full 26.2 without walking.  Oh well, walking a few miles of the marathon is inevitable.

Saturday 5 and 3 Running Miles

Did 5 in the morning then 3 in the early afternoon.  Let's see if I can get 7 solid days in before a mini taper....

Friday, October 21, 2011

Top 10 Marathon Tips Learned This Year (Pre-Marathon Edition)

Recently, I have read a few blogs by marathoners who did not meet their goals in their marathons. The posts even include stories of people dropping out before or during races they had prepared long and hard for.  Inevitably, these marathoners/bloggers make lists of the things they did wrong and/or would do differently next marathon training season.  I had the initial goal of a sub 3 hour NYC marathon, and now will be happy just to finish it.  Knowing that I will not finish close to my original goal (unless there is a 60mph tailwind the entire 26.2 miles) I am happily able make my list 2 weeks BEFORE the event.

Here is the list of 10 things for me to remember this winter as I train for the Boston Marathon.

1) Shin injuries seem to happen at the end of the running season.  If you have been training virtually non-stop, say for 12 months in a row, BEWARE of shin injuries (or any injury for that matter).  Your body will eventually force you to rest whether you like it or not.

2) After buying new shoes, never run fast in them right away.

3) After buying new shoes, make sure they are not laced all the way to the top holes.  Shins can tear if they are stiff and the shoelaces are laced to high and tight.

4) NEVER run 2 hard days in a row.

5) Take at least one day off a week.  At my age, it is probably best to take two days off (or one day off and one do one day of cross training).

6) If you run one high mileage week, always follow it with a medium mileage week.

7) Only do one speed session a week (as opposed to two).  Speed miles seems to cause more injuries than slow distance miles.

8) The #1 goal of training is to get to the starting line of the marathon as injury free as possible. If the above items are too aggressive, back off training for a few days, even a week.  The small signals of pain in your legs will likely develop into something more problematic without rest.  It is better to take a week off somewhere in the 16 week cycle, than to miss the race entirely due to injury.

9)  If you do tear a muscle/joint/ligament.  Give it at least 3 to 4 WEEKS (not days) to heal.  Walk, bike or swim during this time.  If you run you will prolong the recovery time.

10) "Chi Running" says that if you lean forward slightly when you run, you take pressure off of your shins.  I will experiment with this and see if it is true.

My injury was caused by not heeding 1 through 9 above.  So for my Boston Marathon training, I will keep this list handy to refer to during my training this winter!

Run Walk Combo - 4 miles

After taking a break for a few days due to a cold, I completed a run walk combo:

Mile 1:  All walk = 13:49/mile
Mile 2: 50% walk, 50% run = 11:03
Mile 3: 40% walk, 60% run = 10:19
Mile 4: 20% walk, 80% run = 9:01
Mile 4.2: All run = 8:09/mile.

Average pace 10:56. So, if I repeat this strategy at the marathon, I will complete the marathon in about 4:45.

Monday, October 17, 2011

30 Minute Bike

Horner park about 5 mile bike for 30 minutes.  About 6 hill ascents.

Wednesday, October 12, 2011

5 mile run

5 miles around Welles Park including .25 mile walk. Icing shins.

Tuesday, October 11, 2011

Video: Shopping at a Running Store circa 1981

Taken from Albert Brooks' 1981 film "Modern Romance."  By the way that's Albert's real life brother "Super Dave Osbourne" as the best sales clerk ever.

3.5 mile run and a 30 minute bike ride

3.5 miles around Welles park with  a little walk in between.  7 mile bike around Horner Park including about 5 hills.  30 minutes.

Monday, October 10, 2011

Will Caviness at the Chicago Marathon

I took this picture of Will Caviness, a NC firefighter who was running the Chicago Marathon in order to raise money for a burn center.  It was taken at about mile 13.3.  He collapsed later in the race and died at the hospital.
Will Caviness Chicago Marathon 2011

Video of him starts at 3:16:

Will Caviness

Saturday, October 8, 2011

Flat Tire Adventure

As I was biking around Chicago Avenue and the lakefront trail, I hit something with my rear tire.  It didn't sound good.  Instead of immediately turning around and heading home,  I proceeded down to Grant Park to watch the Chicago Marathon setup. Mistake!  On my way back, around Chicago Ave., I heard a hissing noise coming from my rear tire.  I biked as fast as I could in order to get some extra distance in before the tire gave out.  Not more than 200 yards later, my rear tire was completely flat.  It was 8:30 am, and I was in a hurry to go to yoga, which I needed to leave home for at 9:30 am.  So, I called Lakeshore Bike at Irving Park and the lake, but they were closed.  So, I decided to take the "L" home since a new inner tube wasn't going to happen.  I walked my bike to North Avenue and LaSalle, needing to break the $20 bill that I had brought, in order to pay for my $2.25 train fare card (they don't give change at the "L" station).  Anyway, I spotted the Green City Farmer's Market just north of North Ave.  So, I bought a $0.50 pepper with my $20 and got $19.50 in change.  With change (and a tiny pepper) in hand, I quickly realized that I was only a block from the southern terminus of Lincoln Ave, so I could take the #11 bus pretty much all the way home.  However, once I got to Lincoln Ave., the #11 whizzed by me, and the chances that another one coming by was not likely for at least 15 minutes or so.  So, my next best option was to walk the crippled bike to the Fullerton Brown Line station.  Eight blocks later at the station, I got a fare card, slid it in the handicapped entrance and opened the gate.  I carried my bike up the stairs, then had to wait about 10 minutes for the Brown Line.  After sitting in a seat by the door and riding for 15 minutes or so, I exited at Western Ave, and ran/biked using my bike like a scooter.  Got in the house at 9:15, just enough time for a shower and a protein shake .  I left right at 9:30 for yoga!

Here is a picture taken just before I hit the object on the trail that started the leak in my tire (by the way, this is a dangerous position I am in, not recommended if you don't want to get yelled at by other bikers!):

Lessons learned:  Always bring a spare tire and a pump, on every ride.  You will eventually get a flat and it is not fun.  Always carry a cell phone, a few singles for a fare card, or a fare card.  Also, don't get a running injury so you have to bike.  Then you can avoid all bike related mishaps!

10/11/11 Update:  Got the tire repaired that evening at Lakeshore Bike.  Was able to bike down and watch the marathon with friends the next day.

Friday, October 7, 2011

16 mile bike - Is biking easier than running?

Bike workouts seem to be easier than running workouts.  Maybe it's the constant braking and coasting with biking as compared with the "always on" nature of running.  However, bike training has taken on a whole new dimension with my discovery this morning of "Cricket Hill" at Montrose Harbor.  Cricket Hill has an steep bike trail from the base to the summit.  I did two summits on cricket hill with my bike which really got my heart rate up.  I will try and get a lot more Cricket Hill "summits" in over the weekend as I need to get better workouts when bike riding.  On to the pictures from today.   The first few were taken around North Avenue beach and the Fullerton Ave. Bridge. The last picture below is from a film that was shooting at North Avenue Beach this morning.  By the way, the shins are getting close to healed.  I think I should be able to run next week (knock on wood!)

 Fullerton Ave. Bridge

Wednesday, October 5, 2011

50 minute Bike Ride to North Avenue Beach

Nice thing about biking is that it's easier to have my cell phone along.  Picture from my bike ride around 6:30 am.  North Avenue beach.

Tuesday, October 4, 2011

Monday, October 3, 2011

Lakefront BIKE ride

Rode to Fullerton and the Lakefront Trail and back.  Plan is to do this every day for the rest of the week, slowly increasing mileage.