Tuesday, March 31, 2020

Week 4: Be Essential B...E...Essential

Well that escalated quickly!  On “Safe at home” orders which for those not from Wisconsin or in my area of that state that means go North to the cabin....smh....idiots

This is actually my 6th week of base building for the first phase of my marathon prep.  The 6 weeks saw an increase of mileage from 30 to 48 miles per week and will finally take a rest week next week. After the last Sunday long run with 4x10 thresholds in it I managed to squeak out an easy 7 Monday and then kicked down some 1 mile thresholds x 6 reps at (5:49,5:52,5:48,5:46,5:54,5:40) 3 min jog/walk rest not too bad but I should have done it a day later.  Went easy for the next couple of runs of about 5 and 6.5 miles.

Friday went for my longest run of the long season at 11 miles and really felt pretty damn good!

Friday RedBull announces they postponed the copper peak race to sept 26th, but that’s the weekend before my marathon so I will not be able to make it and super bummed.

Picked up a new to me frame can’t wait to rip some laps at winman on this!

Spare parts and a first mountain bike for Charlee...lucky kid!

More parts and now a single speed was put back together 


Sunday, March 29, 2020

Week 3: Lock Down

 Chinese, Wuhan, Covid-19 virus is trying to derail the everyday lives of people all around the world but here’s the thing....I won’t let it happen and I sure as hell won’t let this consume the pure soul of my little goose!  We will be strong as a family we will adapt to our temporary situation and it will not bring us down.  We did the school work which included gym class!! We got outside for workouts and activities and while we did our normal routines we were respectful of our responsibilities to our community to prevent spreading the virus.  That being said I got some work done.
(4x10 min at threshold 3 min jog rest Sunday Long Run)

Went easy on Monday and Tuesday with some lifting and band work with Charlee at the gym as well before it would all be closed down.  Just over 11 miles in two days feeling pretty good.
I got out Wednesday for my favorite hill workout 
DeCastella Hills.  Threshold 10 minutes and then 8x1min up Kings Hill.  Easy jog rest and then a final 1 mile threshold run felt good but wished it was warmer outside.  I would cruise in easy for the rest of the week before a monster long run.  4x10 min threshold run as a long run is painful.

Gym class with dad

 Various fitness challenges 


Push-up Challenge with Charlee

All in all a good week!  This virus will win if you let it.  Get outside but be responsible and stay safe everyone.

Wednesday, March 18, 2020

Week 2: Welcome to the Twilight Zone

 What a difference a week makes.  I capped last week with 36 miles feeling great, ready for the nice weather, track was starting up and I had a race coming up Saturday in Duluth to test out some speed...things would get a bit interesting...the weirdness of it all resembled that of the hours and days post 9/11.  It’s just the vibe you know....so boom here we go driving up to my cousins place in Esko MN.  We had 3 hours and 30 minutes to listen and read all about things getting shut down.  New vocabulary would enter our minds “social distance” being a big one.  I checked my email repeatedly through the night and then it happened....race cancelled.  Unfortunate??? Sure did we panic? No!  Did we respect it enough to make sure we did our best to stay clean and healthy?  Yes and no.

While we were not able to enjoy the race, we did take a night on the town in Duluth but things were quiet yet active at the same time. We did some axe throwing, went to a supper club, a tap room, and a high end drink lounge.  People were very respectful all doing the responsible thing we should have been doing already, but here we are.  

Love the Grandmas organization for trying to hang on to all hope to the last minute but things happen.  Training would not go to waste and still found a way to get in 40 miles.  Here’s how I did it.

Monday was the first day of track and after a long run Sunday at a solid marathon goal pace I went easy with the Hatchet track squad on a warmup and cooldown.  Tuesday was a bit of a push with 10x500m around Ralph Rd.  100m jog rest and pacing around 10k to 1/2 marathon pace.  Felt amazing!  Wednesday and Thursday were easy distance runs.  Friday off.
Saturday with the race cancelled I found a loop around Esko and noticed the track had some clear lanes which was crazy but they blew the snow off all winter and lanes 5-8 were open and fast so I did a 10 minute 100m on/off run.  Sunday after we got home I got out for one more long run of about 10 miles and it still felt good.  Weather was colder this week but manageable.

Lifting was up to 4x10 on legs and arms and my dips and pull-ups were bumped up to 4x11.  Core was 250 crunch variations and 100 reps on the bands.

The virus wins if you let it.  Be healthy, be safe, be mindful and get outside and just get away from all the crap on the news.

Races are getting cancelled but that doesn’t stop you from training or just playing outside!

Sunday, March 8, 2020

Weekly Wrap 1

 Smiling happy people blah blah blah....or squinting....put the damn glasses on.   I was just happy to crush my long run today.  This week was strange.  My hr on my easy runs seemed off a bit and even during parts of my workouts but then today boom it was about right considering the windy conditions and the hills.

A key workout this week early on was my favorite early season run.  4x1100 with 2 minute walk rest.  You start with an aerobic but “spirited” 800m and then kick for the last 300.  Felt solid but the heartrate didn’t seem to be right, but my guess is this could have been legit since I really haven’t logged mileage outdoors since December so there were more stressors if that’s even a word to account for like wind, incline, footing when encountering ice and snow in shaded areas so I just put it behind me.

My goal for the week was 36 miles in which was a 10% increase from last week and that is the plan of attack for the first 6 weeks of this long base phase.  Next week I should be around 40, but it will be a bit of a challenge with the St. Fennesy 4K up in Duluth/Hermantown Minnesota.  The family is coming up there with me in order to hang out with my cousin and her family so we’ll run and have a great weekend afterwards. 

Long Run this week was about pushing that qualifier pace for Boston and I am hoping to break 3 hours right out of the gate.  Now granted my mile says I’m capable of more like a 2:45 based on my 5:00 at UWSP indoor in January, but I don’t quite have the capacity to hold that pace of 6:17 for more than a few miles without my heart rate moving past threshold so I will be working on it in hopes I get there but at least get to the point where I can get my BQ pace of 6:51-7:13 (7:03 will prevent getting cutoff). Today I tried out some 2xu mcs run compression shorts and I was hesitant about being too tight in my hip flexors and causing me to shuffle but they were light and comfy plus zero chaffing over 9 miles so that’s nice and plus I felt amazing... I wanted to push it but thought better of it...there will be days for that coming up just get comfortable at qualifier pace today and that I did....will need to work on fueling I can see already, but once I get to 10+ miles I will press it more.

Weights for dates lol.  Two lift days and multiple days of band work plus a day of core.  Lower body I did 3x12 of Backsquat, leg press, calf raise, banded pistols, weighted lunges, kettlebell swings and I think that was it lol.
Arm/upper body day was about the same for bench press, delts, lats, triceps, biceps, face pulls, and shoulder press. My dips and pull-ups are getting a bump up this week with 10 reps then 3x11 and next week it goes up to 4x11
Core was standard 10 minutes of work with 225 reps of crunches with variations throughout.  Hip bridges planks and leg lifts back extensions some toes to bar rounded that out yeah in 10 minutes just ask my wife “be home in 10 minutes”  and I roll in 20 minutes later ughhhh 
Band work has been a point of emphasis to strengthen my hips and joints in my lower body and legs. This week I did various movements with 75 reps on each leg with the xxheavy band.  

Wooooo that’s a lot of info....have a good week and if you have any questions about my training let me know.

Friday, March 6, 2020

The Beginning of a New Journey...Well Sort Of...

Week by week mile by mile here is how this is all going to go down.

I always wanted to be able to have the capacity to fully train the way I would want in order to qualify for something as huge as the Boston Marathon, but a lot of things self induced usually put a stop to it.  I had a major ankle setback after my PR 1/2 marathon at Journeys (1:19:07).  My whole right side seemed to give up on me at one point as it turned out my pelvis was pretty out of balance which required a lot of adjustments and even some shims in my shoes to get a normal gait.  The hip issue cause many other issues down the road till things began to line up.

I chased some pretty lofty goals in the past few years. Wanted to go 4:30 in the mile and break 16 in the 5k and who knows I may still do it but that is not the focus as of right now.

My focus is solely on getting that Boston Qualifier (BQ). I will be turning 40 prior to the 2021 race and that time qualifier is 3:10:00.  Now because of the amount of entrants in that age group I will need to run faster in order to have a better shot at getting in.  My goal is to get 3:00-3:05 or about 6:51-7:03 per mile.  Now in theory I should have no problem with this as most of my any run even some easy heart rate based runs have been in that range pace wise, but here is the kicker, I don’t think I’ve ever run farther than 15 miles but I have done a lot of my long runs at well under 7 minute pace so this should be no sweat....Yeah I laughed to.  If you go back through the blog there’s a long streak of endurance races I’ve been lucky to do well in but my training hasn’t always been the smartest.  I’ve been too much in that danger zone where I just wear myself out and get nagging injuries go figure.  I had to learn a a lot about training properly and have it beaten into my head repeatedly (mostly by Dennis Welch) as I’ve been coaching and trying to apply those lessons to my past experience going forward, I feel really good about my approach to this very long training cycle.  If I do this right this will be the most consistent cycle I’ve ever done and that’s saying something considering that there was a couple of weeks in my last two blocks that went a little stray due to sickness.

So with all that said I want to share this journey with you all.  Weekly from now till race week (Minneapolis Marathon is 10/4) I will share my week.  Hope you enjoy.  Meanwhile, take a look at some older posts can be kind of amusing....Hahahaha!

Monday, April 3, 2017

A little late for a first race report but anyway

Started my base mileage early on in December and so far logged over 600 miles leading up to my first race of the year.  The Lakeland Union High school in Minocqua Wisconsin has hosted the April Fools Run 5k for over 10 years and always starts at around midnight.  This race is always a large draw with costume contests to Zumba warmup class to unique awards.  I've been a winner of this race for 3 years and hoped to make it 4 on Saturday night but a younger athlete from Minneapolis had other plans and a pr of 15:45 to put this old guy away early.

I typically don't taper for this race and I definitely don't shy away from mileage in the week leading up to it.  In fact I had over 40 miles and a hard day of strength training and I chose to lift legs so I really did it to myself.

I felt heavy in the legs prior to the start but not as bad as I had anticipated and got off the start line at a fast and controlled pace and as rabbits faded and things settled down I found myself in 2nd overall with the leader slowly but visibly pulling away, not to much after the first kilometer of the race Andrew Schilling, a former Lakeland distance star and UW-Madison Track Club racer pulls alongside of me and begins to pull hard and I respond accordingly for about another mile until I maxed out and fell off his increasing pace.  He was out for a training run and it was nice to have him there to chase for the last bit of the run.

I was pleased with being a few seconds slower to be honest and running in the pitch black dark night is always a challenge both in regard to pacing and footing, but the season always has a first race and I'm glad it was a good one even though I didn't.

Got on the podium with a second place overall and a time of 19:54 over 3.44 miles pacing at around 5:45.  Pretty solid 5k time is around 18:00 based on my gps tracked 5k.  Did a very easy 4 mile trail run on Sunday to end the week with over 47 miles and capped off my first build block with 97 miles and heading into a deload week.  

2016 Season Wrap Up

As soon as I typed this title I had to immediately open up strava and look at what races I actually did vs what I wanted to do and was pretty happy with how things went despite a couple of setbacks. 

I had a decent year with mileage closing in on 1,700 big increase from last year but not the most I've ever done.  The weight training has really improved but the majority of that improvement has come mainly after the Minnesota Spartan Sprint starting with my shoulder rehab and carried over into a lot of dedicated lifting and lots gains. 

January and February- Started my training no intervals just some fartlek running and weights.  Traveled down to Milwaukee for a Midwest masters regional indoor meet and ran a 3k taking 2nd and running a solid early season time of 9:54.  I also made a trip to UW-Stevens Point for a college indoor meet and ran a 4:53 mile catching some students on the closing laps giving me a sense of "you're only as old as you feel"  I felt like I was 19 again so that's a plus HA!

Early Spring brought the first real test at the Point Bock Run.  The field is always strong here with many former NCAA / WIAC runners that just blow the door off on a fast 8K.  I would PR with a time of 28:29 and take 11th overall....just shy of a top 10 that I wanted and will be a goal for 2017.  I would notch my first win a month later at the Minocqua Fools Run 5k.  The race starts at midnight and usually there is still some snow and ice on the trail and this year was no exception 19:50 felt fast and sketchy at times but hey that's racing.  Even though Journeys Half Marathon was in May the weather was more like March, wind, rain, sleet, snow and a really good place and time 2nd overall and a 1:19:07 time.

The summer training and racing started pretty well with another 5k win at the Rockin Tomahawk 5K with a time of 17:33 after a great move on the trail just before the 2 mile mark and somehow made it stick.  The Minnesota Sprint was setup as my peak race and I had my best legs of the year.  What I didn't count on was the 2 dislocated shoulder incidents that took me from being a podium contender to 44th in the elite field...all considering it was a great race and didn't completely fall apart and gutted it out.  My legs were still feeling it a week later at the local 10K on the 4th of July but would still manage a sub 36 10k and 3rd overall I guess my shoulder doesn't need to be perfect to run a good race and with a little luck I did heal up enough to get my first OCR win at the Crandon Big House Mud Challenge which rewarded agility more than strength and grip as I would find out would be needed at the Chicago Terrain Race 10K.  Prior to the Terrain Race I would go back to Milwaukee and run the Hank Aaron 5k and not run very well in the heat but still a 17:30's 5k and 15th overall in a good field.  The Terrain Race in Chicago was wet and rainy but I got the job done on a shoulder that's about 80%.  4th overall and qualifier for the elite wave at OCR Worlds was probably the highlight of the year but the decision was made to rest up and gear up again for 2017. 

So the season would end about the same way it started with some running and even a....wait for it....mountain bike race.  I did return to the Nutty Trail Run as two time champ and left as the three time winner with a great time.   I would also enter the Thunderdown 3 hour mountain bike race on the singlespeed and yeah I got a flat but finished 2nd.  Definitely missed my time on the singletrack and would ride a lot here in the offseason while my ankle heals up.  It was a tough year, but very valuable learning experiences with the help of Team Strength and Speed.

As far as 2017 goes....lots of racing obviously, but I want to get my Spartan Trifecta and to also compete in the top 10 with a podium or two in Spartan races.  Prep will begin early for Spartan Worlds and OCR Worlds.  Nutrition and health will be greatly improved and will focus on doing what makes me happy.  I feel like riding my bike for 12 hours or more I am going to do it.  If I want to skate ski sure, snowshoe race...yup, play hockey...why not.  I will be 36 in January, but why should I just lay down and be the old guy when I guy be that fast old guy.....hahahaha!