Saturday, January 29, 2011

Workout Update- 25 miles This Week 7 Min per Mile or Faster

Sat: Today I had planned to try for 15 miles but the wind and temperatures send me to the indoor track. I didn't feel very good but turned in a good workout. That last one was hard!

2 miles with Sumo
3 miles in 20 minutes (6:40 per mile), x 3, resting about 7 minutes.

Total for the week= 50 miles
Total miles run 7 min per mile or faster= 25 (ave pace 6:40 per mile) See yesterday's post.

Track with a Hill

This is in Spain and I think it's real.

Friday, January 28, 2011

New Marathon Training Strategy

Here are the facts:

1. I've got a marathon in less than 2 months, with a sub 3 hour goal in mind.

2. I've been logging in some decent miles (close to 60 per week).

3. Until recently, all of it has been slow, and I mean 8:30 to 9 min mile pace slow. Continuing down this path is not going to get it done, even with 18-20 mile runs.

4. Running tempo or interval workouts in the dead of winter in South Korea is not easy.

So here is my new plan. Rather than focusing on weekly miles, I decided to see just how many miles I could run at or under 7 minutes per mile (a 3 hour marathon is 6:52 pace). My theory is very simple. The more miles run at marathon pace or faster, the easier that pace is going to feel on race day. Just a guess, but I feel that averaging 26 sub 7 minute miles per week for the next 4-5 weeks should be enough. The trick will be to keep the pace of any one workout from getting too fast so I can run these workouts on consecutive days.

This is going to require running some workouts on the indoor, tight 10 lap per mile track, or the outdoor (yes they did remove the snow) track when early morning temperatures are hovering in the single digits.

So far so good.

Monday: 3 miles on the indoor track in 18:58 (approx. 6:20 pace).

Tues: 5 x 1 mile on the indoor track with 60 sec walk recovery.
6:48, 6:34, 6:34, 6:33, 6:32 Time for the 5 miles including rest was 37:08. This workout is almost a modified Galloway with planned walking breaks. The indoor air is very dry, so the short break enabled me to get water. I also found the 1 mile goals much easier mentally compared to running 50 non-stop laps.

Wed: 3 miles on the outdoor track in 20:11 (6:44 pace) The track is a 3 mile jog from home, so I got in 10 miles total (including 2 with the dog to start the morning).

Thurs: Getting out of bed I was contemplating something similar to Wed, however I wasn't too confident my legs would respond. So instead of the extra 6 slow miles to the track and back, I came up with the novel idea to DRIVE, and felt good enough to run 5 miles in 35 minutes flat. Still an 8 mile day including 2 miles with Sumo and a one mile cool-down. The good news is this pace was comfortable enough that I actually found myself daydreaming to pass the time! That's a good sign.

Fri: Today is just a slow 3-4 mile jog.

The plan is to go on base and run the perimeter (5 miles) x 3 at 7 min miles (as always, weather permitting), probably with a 5 minute break between each. For the week I've got 16 miles in at 7 min per mile or faster, so if I can do at least 10 more tomorrow I've accomplished my new goal. Stay tuned!

Tommy Fulton: Whatever Happened To?

Back in the spring of 1973, I was in Arkadelphia, Arkansas for the NAIA National Track and Field Championships, and had the opportunity to witness an amazing performance by a Texas Southern runner by the name of Tommmy Fulton.

He's a guy you've never heard of, but take a look at what he did at NAIA in 1973 (Mike Boit won the bronze in 800 meters in the '72 Olympics and ran a 3:49 mile in 1981! He had his hands full and more racing against Fulton. If I recall correctly, that was the first sub 4 minute mile run in the state of Arkansas). Counting heats, Fulton raced 8 times over a 3 day span.

1973 NAIA

Wednesday, May 23

7:45 pm 1 mile heats
1. 4:08.3 Tommy Fulton, Texas Southern
2. 4:08.8 Mike Boit, Eastern New Mexico

9:20 pm 880 heats
1. 1:50.2 Tommy Fulton, Texas Southern

10:30pm 3 mile heats
1. 13:58.2 Tommy Fulton, Texas Southern

Thursday, May 24

8:40 pm 880 semi-finals
1. 1:50.2 Tommy Fulton, Texas Southern

9:20 pm 3 mile final
1. 13:33.4 Tommy Fulton, Texas Southern
2. 13:34.2 Rex Maddaford Eastern New Mexico
3. 13:38.2 Phillip Ndoo Eastern New Mexico

Friday, May 25

7:45 pm 1 Mile final
1. 3:57.8 Tommy Fulton, Texas Southern
2. 3:58.5 Bob Maplestone, Eastern Washington
3. 4:00.3 Mike Boit, Eastern New Mexico

8:45 pm 880 final
1. 1:47.7 Mike Boit, Eastern New Mexico
2. 1:48.8 Tommy Fulton, Texas Southern

9:15 pm 6 mile final
1. 28:42.2 Peter Fredrikkson,
2. 28:55.2 Tommy Fulton, Texas Southern

I found this at

Tuesday, January 25, 2011

High Intensity Intervals!

So you think you work hard on your intervals? Check out the videos Part I and II by Dr. Joseph Mercola, a osteopathic physician who is well known for his nutrition and health recommendations that often go "against the grain" of traditional advice.

This particular workout is designed to boost metabolism (Mercola was once a competitive pairs figure skater, and according to his bio once ran the Chicago Marathon in just over 3 hours).

Sunday, January 23, 2011

Workout Log Jan 16-22

Sun: Nothing- sick and recovering from yesterday

Mon: 2.5 miles with Sumo, then 6.5 miles

Tues: 2 miles with Sumo, then 6 miles

Wed: 2 miles with Sumo, then 7.5 miles with 2 miles under 13 minutes. I ran over to the outdoor track and ran on the artificial turf for 2 miles. I didn't catch the time on the first one but mile 2 was similar (6:24).

Thurs: 4.5 miles. Tired

Fri: 2 miles with Sumo, than 5 x 1 mile indoors in 6:30-6:35. 3 min recovery. It's impossible to run fast on this 10 lap track, but I wanted to get some sub 7 min miles in and hopefully not be trashed for tomorrow's long run.

Sat: 2.7 miles with Sumo, then 15.3 miles. The footing was ridiculous. We got some light snow that did a great job covering up the ice. I made a big mistake by running the trails rather than the roads on base- had a foot slip at least a dozen times and finally did go down with a mile to go. Hamstring is still an issue on these long ones- but more than likely I aggravated in on Friday.

Total for the week= 56 miles with a day off. Not bad but no quality. I am going to start tracking the number of sub 7 min miles- only 7 this week. Hamstring and weather are major roadblocks.

Tuesday, January 18, 2011

Can The Common Cold be Cured?

Probably not, but there is some evidence that you can shorten it.

Researchers at Charité -- University Medicine Berlin were the first to show that a specific food supplement made from fruit and vegetable juice concentrates significantly reduced the number of days with severe cold symptoms. The secret? Juice Plus, a fruit and vegetable concentrate.

I just have 2 questions- who paid for this research and can V-8 produce the same results?

According to, Researchers aren't clear about the exact role saunas play in prevention, but one 1989 German study found that people who steamed twice a week got half as many colds as those who didn't. One theory: When you take a sauna you inhale air hotter than 80 degrees, a temperature too hot for cold and flu viruses to survive. That's good enough for me. I've been in the sauna twice in the last 3 days.

Other remedies include Vitamin C and Zinc. I'm taking 4,000 mg of Vitamin C and 30 mg of zinc daily.

I'm drinking low sodium V-8 but only in the morning.

Workout Log Jan 9-15

Sun: 2 with Sumo, then 10 miles in 73 on the indoor Supergym track, 2 mile jog. Too windy to get a decent workout outside, so I just made up my mind to run 10 indoors. This track is 10 laps to the mile with very tight turns so not a bad workout. 120 laps is probably not a good idea to repeat too often though.

Mon: 2 mile jog with Sumo, then 5 x 150 meters swim

Tues: 3 mile jog with Sumo, then 3 miles in 19:30s on the indoor track again.

Wed: 11.5 miles - a few inches of snow fell overnight so this was a long very easy jog on poor footing that I enjoyed. My legs felt fresh after 2 low mileage days. pm: 5 x 150 meter swim

Thurs: 6.5 miles

Fri: 3 mile with Sumo and still fighting off a cold.

Sat: 2.7 miles with Sumo, then 15.3 miles in 2 hr 14. Not feeling very good but got in the miles. Spent my entire Sunday in bed recovering.

Total for the week = 59 miles

Comments: I have a cold, the weather has been rough at times, and my hamstring is still not 100%- in other words I still feel it and must be cautious running sub 7 min miles. In other words,things are not going well for my marathon preparation (March 20). My weekly totals are not bad, but I am sorely lacking quality workouts. All I can do is keep plugging along and hope to get through this bad stretch.

Monday, January 10, 2011

Workout Log Jan 2-8

Sun: 8 miles slow, swim workout
Mon: 8.5 miles slow, short bike
Tues: 5 miles slow, swim workout, pm: 1.5 miles
Wed: 9 miles slow
Thurs: 9.5 miles slow, swim workout (5 x 150 meters)
Fri: 3 miles, then 15 x .2 miles under 7 min pace, 2 mile cooldown (8.5 miles total)
Sat: 3 miles slow pm: swim (5 x 150 meters)

Total for the week= 53 miles

Despite a slight hamstring problem (caused by stretching) I was able to get in several easy runs. Finally on Friday I felt able to do something other than slow jogging. I found a .2 mile clear stretch of back road near my house (most back roads are snow and ice covered). Despite 3 degrees F in the early morning I did 15 x .2 mile with about 30 sec recovery- I didn't time them - too cold to check the watch! I did peek at the GPS and noticed that most of the time my speed hit 6:40s, enough to wake up some muscle fibers that have not been used for a while!

This wasn't a great week, but not a bad one either- when you run very slow you spend more time on your feet. It's almost like altitude training- you can get very fit (endurance)with high volume slow running but you won't run fast until you get back into doing some quality.

I've gotten back into the pool hoping to make up for the lack of intensity with some quality anaerobic work- it will take a couple of weeks to get back some of the upper body fitness I've lost so I can hold the intensity.

Saturday, January 8, 2011

Ryan Hall Carries His Arms Too Low

Compare Ryan's arm carriage in this video to the one below of his American record half marathon performance in 2007. I see a clear difference in the angle at the elbow and his hands are now consistently swinging below hip level. Unfortunately, the quality of the American record video isn't the greatest, and the soundtrack is even worse, but you can clearly see that his elbows are breaking 90 degrees and his hands are consistently held higher.

I believe a lower arm carriage can make a significant difference in energy cost over 26 miles. According to Coach Roy Benson,
To see how tightening the angle at your elbow will make your arms swing through their range of motion quicker, picture a pendulum like the one in a grandfather clock as it swings back and forth with a counterweight attached. The length of the arc of the pendulum swing will depend on the center of gravity of the pendulum, and that’s determined by the position of the counterweight. The lower the center of gravity, the longer the arc and hence the more time the clock takes to record each swing. Thus, If the clock is too slow, by raising the counterweight, you’ll raise the center of gravity and thus shorten the arc of the swing back and forth. In short, the clock speeds up and runs faster.

I know about this because I have the same bad habit.

In case you are not familiar with Ryan Hall, check out his bio at wikipedia.