Monday, February 25, 2008

Treadmill Running

Too much snow and cold. (Even if I did see people running in shorts yesterday afternoon!)

I did a tempo run on Friday, where I pushed my speed up to 9 mph for half a mile. It felt like I was running faster than ever before, but really that was only because of the treadmill. I've run that fast for short distances before, but only outside. It's harder to run that fast indoors.

Sunday I wimped out on going outside, and did 10 miles on the treadmill. Although I was listening to Pheddipidations, Austin Powers was on TV. Oh behave!

There was another runner there who's been rumored to be training for Olympic trials. I asked her about this, and we chatted for about 10 minutes. She's quit her job and trains full time. I couldn't really understand that, since she doesn't really expect to make the team. But she felt that this was the only opportunity she'll ever have to train at this level, and so she took it. (I'm guessing she doesn't have too many of those things called "expenses"!)

In any case, now that I've chatted with her, and high-fived Meb, I like to say that I regularly hang out with members of the running elite. :-)

Special thanks to those that have contributed to my Colon Cancer Challenge fundraising. I'm still well behind previous years, but at least it looks respectable. I've also recruited a bunch of teammates, and together we're over $1100.

Tuesday, February 19, 2008

Back to the Track

I finally made it back to the track for some speedwork today. It just doesn't feel right in the cold. Or maybe it's just that I'm out of shape.

I'm not on any schedule, so I kind of made up a workout. I did 5 x 800m with 400m rest intervals. My splits were as follows:

I actually didn't know how fast I'd been in the past, so I wasn't sure how I was doing. I knew I was being consistent. Until the last interval where I pushed harder, and ended up with 3:11.

Now that I'm home I looked up some old splits. Back in November I was doing these 800's in about 3:23. Well, but that was just after the marathon. How about before the marathon? Well in October I did eight 800's, ranging from 3:03 to 3:18.

So I'm definitely slower. Or out of practice. Which is kind of annoying, since I have a 5K coming up in 2 weeks. I had really wanted to break the 7 minute mile barrier. I'm not sure I'm up for it now, though I'll probably still try.

Sunday, February 10, 2008

Bronx Half

I'm kind of burnt out from racing, but I've been skipping midweek runs because of the cold. I figured signing up for this race would make sure I got my long run in this weekend. That was the primary goal.

I went with a couple of friends this morning, and we got there right before the race. 3,261 finishers as per the NYRR - quite a big turnout for a race that's hard to get to. Big traffic jam at the baggage drop off.

I started the race holding back, because I didn't want to push myself. By a few miles in, I was really struggling. I wasn't going too fast, but I was just dreading how much further I had to go. By mile 4 or so, I decided I'd take a bathroom break, and at the same time rest for a bit. By mile 5 I still hadn't seen a portapotty, and now my left shoelace was untied. Hmm, don't remember that happening before in a race. I pushed on, still planning to stop once for bothe the bathroom and my shoelace.

Just after mile 6 we passed the start area, with about 30 portapotties. Nice! I stopped, tied my shoe, used the facilities, and got back out there. I think the total time spent was about a minute, but I felt better.

For the second half of the race, I tried to work on keeping my breathing steady. I wasn't pushing to run faster, but I was trying to feel like I was not out of control. It kind of worked, and by mile 11 and 12 I think I felt the best I'd felt all day. My splits were faster on those miles than all the earlier ones!

The last mile we hit a lot of wind in the wrong direction, and it made finishing with a kick tough. I told myself I wasn't really "racing" so I didn't push too hard. I think I ran the last 0.1 mile a little faster.

My splits:
9:14 (bathroom break)

Total: 1:48:43, for an 8:17 pace.

I finished tired, but happy I'd come. I'm definitely looking forward to a 3 week break from racing though. Coogan's, which is in 3 weeks, has traditionally been a good race for me. I'd been looking forward to smashing my 5K PR. Now I've been skipping my speedwork, and putting on weight. I'm definitely slower than I was a few months ago. I'm going to try and reverse these trends and see if I can still pull off a 5K PR on March 2nd.

In other news, my Colon Cancer Challenge fundraising is not going so well. I've recruited a few new team members, but my personal fundraising total is stuck at $5. Pathetic. I definitely have to work on improving that.

Monday, February 04, 2008


I didn't run all week, although I did do some other exercising. Sunday was a 4 mile race in the park. I had planned to do a long run on Friday but it was puring all day. I scrapped that run, but decided to put in some extra miles before the race. I woke up too early for a Super Bowl Sunday, but got 5.5 miles in before the race. I ran with a couple of friends, so it was nice. (3 trips to the bathroom in 5.5 miles. Maybe I shouldn't have had a coffee on the way to the park. But it was cold!)

The race itself was 4 miles. I started up close to the front and got off to a fairly quick start. A lot of people there, but I didn't feel too much traffic effect. I did however feel tired.

My splits:

Finish time: 30:05, for a 7:31 pace.

I had a little energy for a finishing kick, but not much. (If I had known at the time that I was 5 seconds away from that arbitrary number, I might have pushed a little harder.)

In other news, I updated my sidebar. I updated the blogs I read, as well as some of the links. I've also included a few new (or recycled) things. From top to bottom, they are:

The Colon Cancer Challenge. This is an event I run every year. It is a Road Runners event, which raises money for Partners In Prevention. This is an organization that supports public awareness, and increases availability of screening for colorectal cancer. Colon cancer is essentially a preventable disease, and instead, it affects 150,000 Americans a year. The organization is also involved in research. This is something that I see almost every day at work, and so it ties into two facets of my life, running and medicine. I've run all previous 4 events, and this will be my second year putting together a team of runners. I'm looking forward to a big turnout and successful fund raising. I'll be keeping a tab of my personal fund raising total, and posting it in the sidebar. Please consider making a donation here.

Next is my weight loss goal. Although I run almost 50 miles in January, it was a decrease from the previous months. And of course, I continued to eat the same as before. And so unfortunately, some of my pants have gotten tight again. Rather than get new pants, I've made a commitment to get the weight back off in the next two months.

Finally, a little lower down, I've added links to some of the products I talk about in the blog. I've become an Amazon associate. I don't expect to quit my day job, but I feel like I've referred a few people over the years to buy things here and there. If I get a check for 10$ from them one day, I'll have one more happy day.

Manhattan Half Pictures

Can't you just tell how much my enjoyment of this race was just growing by the moment?