Thursday, July 31, 2008

Back onto the Track!

I had a very good workout this morning- 6 x 800 with a 2 minute plus recovery.

Decided to change my inital plan to run 8 x 800- since I am racing next week I thought it wiser to see what I had left the last 1-2.

At the US Masters meet next week, I am entered in the 5K and 10K, scheduled just 48 hours apart. In order to simulate the schedule, tomorrow I will take another easy day and Friday do some kind of track workout again- maybe a time trial.

I am feeling a little more confident after this one.

Wednesday, July 30, 2008

Easy Day

After a decent day yesterday (3 mile with dogs, then 10 at a good pace) I fought the temptation to go out there again today for another similar workout. I took the dogs very slow for 60 minutes on the trails, hoping for a quality track session tomorrow.

Tuesday, July 29, 2008

Hearing Loss More Common - Excuse Me?

Although national estimates of hearing loss are lacking, the incidence of this condition in the U.S. is predicted to have risen significantly because of the aging population and growing use of personal listening devices.

This is a huge problem that many runners in particular continue to ignore. Running with earphones is a very bad idea! Remember, hearing loss is irreversible- it cannot be fixed.

From 2003 to 2004, 16.1 percent (an estimated 29 million) of American adults had speech frequency hearing loss in one (8.9 percent) or both ears (7.3 percent). “Thirty-one percent of participants (equivalent to an estimated 55 million Americans) had high-frequency hearing loss [12 percent in one ear and 19 percent in both],” the authors write. Hearing loss, especially at high frequency, was found in participants age 20 to 29 (8.5 percent prevalence) and in those age 30 to 39 (17 percent prevalence).

Post Race Runs

Sunday, July 28- after a terrible race yesterday, I did an easy 2 hours on the trails.

Monday, July 29- An easy 30 minutes with the dogs, then 10 miles at a decent pace. I actually felt good- most of this was on the road.

Perhaps I am doing too many slow trail miles. Still nervous about going back to the track. Maybe Thursday.

Torchlight 8K- Alan Webb Would Have Dropped Out

OK- I knew this race was going to be a problem, so I went out comfortably- with a hill I hit the mile in 6:04 or something- not bad- 2 miles in 12:09- 3 miles I don't recall- 4th mile was a nightmare and I felt like walking! What a difference from Bellingham just a few weeks ago. Fortunately a good 800 meters of the last mile was downhill- finished in a very disappointing 30:45. 62nd place in a deep field. The top 48 were under 30 min. I was 3rd in the 50-54 but who cares?

Torchlight Run results

Eccentric Hamstring Fatigue May Be a Problem for Marathoners

Overground running (running a marathon) is associated with eccentric hamstring fatigue. Eccentric hamstring fatigue may be a potential risk factor for knee injury and soft-tissue-type injuries during running. Eccentric hamstring training should therefore be introduced as an integral part of the training program of runners.
-British J Sports Med, 2006, July, BioInfoBank

MY COMMENTS: Marathoners would be well advised to spend a few minutes on eccentric hamstring work in their preparation. Eccentric strength training is done by stressing the muscle while it is lengthening rather than contracting. Here are 2 different exercises you can try.

Saturday, July 26, 2008

The Day Before a Race- What Should You Do?

Since I am racing tomorrow, this is definitely a day to take it easy. As I see it, there are 3 options to experiment with the day before a race:

1. no running
2. easy running
3. some easy running with a 2-3 minute tempo run. This would be a scaled down version of the marathon taper I wrote about in an earlier blog. Marathon Taper.

Since I did a 12 minute tempo yesterday, all I am doing today is some very easy jogging. I was out on the trails with the dogs for a very easy 60 minutes. A little long but I don't believe that will be a factor (I wasn't going much faster than a walk- in fact I did walk the short steep hills). My race is not until 6:30 pm so I'll get an extra 10 hours or so of rest and hope for the best.

Friday, July 25, 2008

Bad Workout Follow-up

Today I did an hour with the dogs and felt ok, followed by a 12 minute hilly tempo run. I've got a loop that I started doing about a month ago at tempo pace- it's 2 miles give or take. I am a much better runner on the flat, so this is good practice on some up as well as down. My time today was 12:00 flat- so I will be seeing how close I can get to 11:30 over the next 2 weeks.

Thursday, July 24, 2008

Bad Workout? What Should You Do?

I had a bad workout today. I was attempting 5 x 1,000 meters on the track. Number one was 3:32, then each one after got slower up to 3:36 by number 4.

My general rule when it comes to intervals is this- if you can't maintain your pace on each rep. within 1-2 seconds it's time to shut down, which is what I did after 4.

Sometimes it's difficult to pinpoint what is going on- not enough recovery, dehydration, depletion, or deconditioning are all possibilities. I did an interval workout two days ago, but in the past I've been able to recover, so maybe I needed an extra day. Or perhaps I am still damaged from that 3 hr 33 min trail run this weekend. I could be dehydrated.

Whatever the cause, I will be running easy for the rest of this week and racing on Saturday- I'll go out cautiously in that race and see how it goes.

Usually it takes a few days to bounce back from one of these. I raced very well in Bellingham 2 weeks ago, but I am not very optimistic I will feel as well on Saturday.

Tuesday, July 22, 2008

Top 6 Stretches for Runners

Ironman Champion Dave Scott shows you how to stretch those muscles in the hip and pelvic area.

The Simple Crunch for Strong Abs- Do Them Right!

US Masters Track and Field Outdoor Championships Aug 7-10 Spokane

The 2008 USA Masters Outdoor Track & Field Championships will be held August 7-10 at Spokane Falls Community College in Spokane, Washington. The meet features athletes ranging in age from 30-95+ in a display of speed, strength, and endurance for all ages. Track events range from 100 meters to 10,000 meters, while field events include the full range of jumps and throws. --USA Track and Field

I entered the 5,000 and 10,000 meters, meaning that focus will be on track interval training the next couple of weeks. Today I did 6 x 800 in 2:47-2:49 with 2:40 recovery. It's been a couple of weeks now since I've done a quality track workout so I felt a little flat out there today. I needed the extra recovery time between reps.

My goal is simple- get as close to 17:00 as possible in the 5K. That's 5:29 per mile, or 82 second 400s, 2:44 800s. Based on today's workout I should be looking at 17:30, but I am hoping to knock those average times down. I might be feeling the effects of the 1/2 Monty on Saturday- my legs were pretty beat up Sunday morning.

Stay tuned for daily updates!

Monday, July 21, 2008

Don't Play Dead!

Read this account of a trail runner being bitten by a black bear-

The plan to play dead backfired as the bear continued to approach her, sniffing and licking the back of her legs and eventually biting her multiple times on her upper legs and back

Wednesday, July 16, 2008

Salazar to Participate in 10 Mile Race

Alberto Salazar — a former Olympian and marathon world record holder — will run in the Medtronic TC 10 Mile race this fall, the Fridley-based medical device company said today.

Following a sudden cardiac arrest last year, Salazar received a Medtronic implantable cardiac defibrillator — a device that can help patients by shocking failing hearts back into healthy rhythms. Salazar will serve as honorary captain for a group of 25 runners with medical devices.


Chuckanut Foot Race- Bellingham Washington

I visited Bellingham for the first time this past weekend- wow. What a beautiful community with an abundance of running trails. If they had a university here they could rival Eugene as a running mecca.

I was in town for the 41st running of the Chuckanut 7 mile foot race- the oldest race in the state of Washington. All I can say is the course was fantastic- beautiful, shaded, mostly flat 7 mile point to point. A couple of challenging hills strategiclly placed after 2 and 5 miles- just enough to make it interesting. I ran a very good race- averaging 6:10 per mile on trail for 7 miles is about as fast as I can go.

The Greater Bellingham Running Club did a fantastic job handling 1,000 plus participants. results

Steve DeKoker Seattle, WA 27 M............ 00:37:47.1
263 Ian Fraser Port Townsend, WA 34 M...... 00:37:55.8
543 Michael Lynes Tacoma, WA 42 M.......... 00:38:43.5
117 Dusty Caseria Bellingham, WA 21 M...... 00:39:09.9
792 Joshua Simpson Sedro Woolley, WA 19 M.. 00:39:39.4
424 Cory Jenkins Lynden, WA 20 M.......... 00:39:40.2
51 Dagen Bendixen Bellingham, WA 29 M..... 00:39:56.4
346 Travis Harris Bozeman, MT 24 M........ 00:40:33.7
671 Peter Oviatt Bellingham, WA 38 M...... 00:40:38.0
501 David Larpenteur Bellingham, WA 23 M.. 00:40:45.8
270 Marc Fuhrmeister 17 M................. 00:40:50.5
527 Danny Lindstrom Anacortes, WA 19 M..... 00:41:02.9
324 Jason Gulley Ferndale, WA 28 M........ 00:41:11.4
216 Robert Durrant Langley, BC 43 M....... 00:41:14.2
922 Keefer Whan Mount Vernon, WA 43 M..... 00:41:48.0
885 Joshua Vander Wiele Lynden, WA 27 M... 00:41:52.3
53 Hunter Bennett Bellingham, WA 16 M..... 00:42:04.8
198 Rusty Dodge Bellingham, WA 29 M....... 00:42:23.0
238 Alex Evans Bellingham, WA 22 M........ 00:43:05.8
973 Dave Elger Coupeville, WA 54 M........ 00:43:19.7

Tuesday, July 15, 2008

Caffeine Boosts Glycogen Reloading

Glycogen, the muscle’s primary fuel source during exercise, is replenished more rapidly when athletes ingest both carbohydrate and caffeine following exhaustive exercise. Athletes who ingested caffeine with carbohydrate had 66% more glycogen in their muscles four hours after finishing intense, glycogen-depleting exercise, compared to when they consumed carbohydrate alone source- American Physiological Society

Monday, July 14, 2008

CordyMax May Enhance Endurance

Clinical research on CordyMax on athletes at 70% max (cordyceps sinenesis mycelia)

- increased workload
- lower heart rate
- lower lactic acid
- improved recovery

Pharmanex presentation on CordyMax here

Price: Auto delivery...$20.45 per month

Order information here

Thursday, July 10, 2008

Plantar Fascitis

One of the more common injuries among runner, plantar fascitis is also one of the most frustrating. Watch the demonstration of some exercises that runners can use to treat and prevent this debilitating problem.

Sunday, July 6, 2008

More Footage from Boston 1980- Jackie Gareau, Patti Catalano

Here is more footage that I shot at the 1980 Boston Marathon- watch for female winner Jackie Gareau and runner-up Patti Catalano.

Friday, July 4, 2008

Training Tips from Craig Virgin

-Run negative splits in interval training to develop strength,
increase biomechanical efficiency, and promote mental toughness

-Visualize your top competition on your shoulder during workouts,
especially at the end

-Always run last interval hard like the end of a race; learn to change
gears (without thinking about it) even when you are tired

-Train on both flat terrain and hills. Be a “complete hill runner”; run
both uphill and downhill aggressively

-Run your goal pace not theirs; except in a few situations. Record and
study splits in every race; planned vs. actual. Look for recurring weak areas
and strive to shore up in next competition

-Run back to school 3 to 5 miles after away meets (short interval workout
at out-of-town race site if running short of day light in the fall)

-Run all your intervals on grass in cross country and even some during
the track season to give your legs a break and different biomechanics

-Blend in speed with strength all season long – just change the emphasis
or proportions as the season progresses

-Establish both team and individual goals between coach and athletes before
season starts write them down and post them in appropriate places. Set the
goals high enough! What is considered good and what is considered great?

-Commit to “attacking the finish” whether you’re in a battle or not. Don’t
ease up until you’re well past the official finish line.

-Strive for consistent training; day after day, week after week, month after
month. Major break-throughs in racing performance usually come as a
result of training momentum generated over considerable time.

-Coaches should actively promote the team’s results/accomplishments
to the general student body and to the media every week to reinforce
their athletes’ commitment, effort, and sacrifices

Craig Virgin was a 2x world cross country champion, former American record holder for 10,00 meters, runner-up in the 1981 Boston Marathon. He once held the high school outdoor 2-mile record (8:40.9).

Tuesday, July 1, 2008

SeaFair Marathon a NightMair for 400

400 Miss Start of SeaFair Marathon- Seattle Times

You pick a marathon and train for months. You go to bed the night before full of excitement and nervous energy. You've prepared well and are ready to run.

Get up early, drive to the designated parking area near the finish, expecting to hop on a bus and get dropped off at the start, and off you go.

To your surprise, the line of people waiting for a bus goes on for blocks and blocks. You wait patiently in line, hopeful that an army of yellow buses will pull up at any moment and haul everybody away.

As race time draws closer, it's obvious that the start will be delayed- no way they are going to get all of these people there on time.

Finally, the hammer falls when a staff member announces to the stunned crowd of 400 runners that no more buses are coming, and you are on your own. They are sorry, but welcome to catch a ride to the half way mark of the marathon so at least you get a half marathon of running in. "You should have been here earlier."This is exactly what happened to me and 400 others yesterday at the SeaFair Marathon in Bellevue, Washington.

To be fair, most of the runners I observed were not that upset. But a few were steaming mad, and had every right. Besides not reserving enough buses, the most obvious blunder was allowing family, friends, and other non-runners to board the bus, each and every one denying a registered runner the opportunity to participate.

I was stunned.

I am sure the race organizers learned a valuable lesson- too bad it was at our expense.