Tuesday, March 03, 2015

5K fartlek

I wasn't sure this workout would happen. Last night at dinner and in the evening, I could barely lift my legs to cross them while sitting. My hip flexors were SO SO SO sore from x-c skiing. It was worth it, though!

This morning my legs still hurt, though not as much. I went to the indoor track at the new Student Life Center at the U, because we had a couple inches of snow and more forecast. The snow wasn't sticking that much to the roads and track just yet, but it was supposed to, and besides, I had been wanting to try the track out for some speed work. In addition, I didn't want to be cold. The only problem was parking...the meters by the building were all full, of course, but I lucked out and scored one about 5 minutes' walk down the street. Perfect.

When I got up to the track (it's on the top floor) I warmed up. After 3 laps not managing to crack a 6:30/km pace, and legs that hurt every step, I thought maybe today wouldn't be my day to do this. But I tried a 4th and 5th lap (292.608m/lap) and sprinted the 5th lap in 1:44, and decided maybe I could do it after all. I did really want to do the workout, and didn't want to have to postpone it.

I felt better during the fartlek, forgetting the leg pain a bit in favor of the pain of hard exertion; my piriformis acted up a bit, too, but I focused hard on technique to try and use the proper muscles. No weird soreness resulted today, and afterward I felt fine except for needing a good massage for the left piriformis.

Jim said to alternate 2 laps fast/2 laps medium for 16 laps and then to do the last lap fast to make 4974.3m total (17 laps). My splits were: 1:39.3, 1:42.3, 1:47.4, 1:49, 1:42.1, 1:44.9, 1:47.3, 1:52.3, 1:43.9, 1:45.6, 1:52.7, 1:51.8, 1:44.7, 1:45.9, 1:53.0, 1:52.4, 1:42.7. Total time was 30:17, which works out to 30:26 for a full 5K fartlek. Slow...but... I'm happy with it anyway, because 1) first 5K fartlek in a while, 2) my legs were very sore and I did it!, 3) I can only improve on that later, 4) I got in 30 minutes of good speed work, and I need more speed work if I'm going to get faster.

Grace is demanding my attention so I must go :).

Garmin data here. 

Monday, March 02, 2015

8K racewalking

This morning I was to do 8K easy. It was threatening rain and/or snow with a slight drizzle for the last 3-4km, but it didn't amount to much, thankfully. It was nice & warm at 3.9C (40F). My legs are a bit sore (normal DOMS) from the x-country skiing yesterday; mostly hip flexors, which are quite tender. My glutes are a little sore, possibly with some of the weird soreness but I'm not 100% sure. I was on the microscope for a while this morning at work and it was bothering me. Hopefully it's nothing...but who knows.

Anyway, the 8K went fine. My legs were tired about 4km, especially the hip flexors. I think the x-country skiing was a bit vigorous :). However, I still did an average of 6:31/km even with sore legs, so that's good. Total time 52:07 with ave HR 155 (that's high, but the HR monitor went nuts at the beginning of my walk; it wasn't damp enough and was picking up static, probably because I did a quick grocery run before my walk since Calvin needed Cheerios for breakfast!).

Hopefully my legs won't feel worse tomorrow since I'm to do a 5K fartlek. Well, it was worth it. I had a great time skiing.

Garmin data here.

Sunday, March 01, 2015

a little cross-country training ;)

Today I went cross-country skiing with my racewalking friend, Alex, his girlfriend Melanie, and his friends Murali and Chris. We went up to Alta and skied up a fantastic trail that was groomed and very cross-country friendly, and FREE to boot. YES! Since I own a pair of skis and boots, I didn't pay a cent other than the gas to drive up there.

It was uphill on the way out, and then downhill on the way back. I got lots of good cardio - about 50 minutes' worth - and had a great time too. I only fell twice, going slowly, and it was no biggie. Snow is soft. I did use a lot of unfamiliar muscles; I can tell I'm going to be a bit sore tomorrow. Oh well...it was worth it! I really need to do this more often.

Garmin data here.

Saturday, February 28, 2015

16K and feeling good

I was a bit apprehensive about 16K. Haven't gone that far in a while, and this past week has been iffy with my piriformis problem (probably due to the car ride...grrrrr...) and general fatigue due to lots of extra appointments (financial planner, attorney, therapist, parent-teacher conferences). Running a household is hard work.

Anyway. The weather was lovely today; it was windy at my house, but when I drove to the Jordan River trail, it wasn't so windy there - just a little breezy. It was 1.1C (34F) and felt pretty good. I wore a long-sleeved shirt and jacket but ended up taking the jacket off after 6K, as I warmed up and so did the weather. Snow is predicted for later today, and now that I'm done with my walk it can snow all it wants :).

I started off with a slow 500m as the walkway near Arrowhead Park was slippery with frost - it's elevated above a swampy area and the plastic boards get very slick. But after that I was consistent and kept a nice moderate pace. Haha...speaking of pace, a man and woman ran past me and said, "Nice pace you've got there!" clearly appreciating that I was walking fast. Also, a Good Samaritan stopped me for a second around 1 hr 10 min into my walk - she said, "Do you drive a white Toyota Rav4?" Um, wow, she is pretty good, I was thinking. She had figured it out because of my license plate "RACEWLK" and watching me walk. She had found my pepper spray on the ground near the car and wanted me to know she'd put it on the hood. I was VERY grateful! I forgot to stop my watch during our 30 second conversation, so my time overall is 30 sec faster than on my watch.

I stopped at 5K for a brief drink and piriformis stretch, at 6K to tie my jacket around my waist, and at 10K back at my car to roll out my piriformis on my medicine ball and eat some Jelly Belly sports beans and have another drink. Then I went back out for 3K, stretched briefly, and walked back to the car. My legs felt really quite good; they got tired around 12K but not horribly so. I have no weird soreness now, 3 hr after my walk, but I am a little stiff, which is normal for being a bit out of shape :).

Sugar was a good companion today (photo above taken yesterday...but you get the point), though I admit that human companionship would have been nice. I imagined my friend Nyle walking with me and that helped a bit. I also saw my good friend Sarah out there; she was doing 17 miles as she's training for a marathon. She was with the Galloway run-walk group, though, so I couldn't join them (run-walk is great for some, but it's not my thing). I also saw another friend, Cyndie, and high-fived her as we passed the second time.

Total: 1:43:13, subtracting the 30 seconds I was talking to the Good Samaritan with my watch running. That's 6:26/km with ave HR 148. I'm happy with this, mostly because I am not having pain or fatigue :). Garmin data here. 

Friday, February 27, 2015


Easy 5K this morning. No problems. Piriformis feels fine; am working hard to keep upright and make sure my knees are coming through straight and that I am using my flutes more. Still...need to do strength training...no time...have to figure it out. Weather was decent and seasonal at 30F (-1C) with a slight breeze.

Mood isn't good. Not enough sleep last night after staying up late to do something at work :(. Then I ate a big piece of cake :(. Ugh. Feeling a bit bleak. Oh well. This too shall pass.

At least it's Friday. But I'm anxious about 16km tomorrow. I want to do it and want it to go well but worry it won't. I really want to be able to go long again without being so afraid.

Garmin data here from this morning. 32:20 for 6:28/km with ave HR 142.

Thursday, February 26, 2015

cross-training; 8K

Yesterday: I took it really easy. I was afraid of two things: 1) increasing any piriformis problems and 2) mystery illness relapse. I slept in a little and then only had time to do 21 min on the elliptical. That was enough; I am working hard on my eating and was quite careful. It was a co-worker's birthday and I did enjoy a very small piece of carrot cake (that I made for him) but had a very modest dinner of turkey soup to compensate. I feel good about how the eating is going now that I'm back from vacation.

Today: After going to bed early last night, I woke feeling better than I've felt all week. That's not saying much, but I did feel good. I went out for my 8K, and it was reasonably warm for February, at 36F (2.2C) and calm and overcast, with rain predicted. Well...they got that one wrong, as it's been snowing since about 9am! Glad I got my walk in early. The 8K went well; my piriformis felt OK, no weird soreness resulted, and I wasn't fast but wasn't slow either. It took me 51:44 for 6:28/km with ave HR 152. Sugar, my dog, sure enjoyed getting to walk with me again after a hiatus due to vacation and then bad weather on Monday.

Other minor items - I'm still a bit concerned that I could be having a little relapse of the mystery illness. It's hard to tell minor weird soreness from the piriformis issue; they are different, but there is some overlap. Also, I've been a bit fatigued this week but that could easily be attributable to 1) the time change from CA and 2) being back from vacation. Finally, I have lost a bit of the weight from vacation; probably some water, but hey, who cares? Scale's moving in the right direction. 162.4 this morning, down from 164.0 on Saturday. Hopefully it's a trend. I'm working hard. Need to get to a reasonable number by May to improve my 15K speed. Of course, being able to train will help equally. Hopefully we can increase the speed work one of these days. Seems like there are lots of roadblocks at the moment. I'm trying to remain positive and enjoy my workouts stress-free, but that's hard given that I'm worried about mystery illness and piriformis trouble.

Garmin data here. 

Below, snow as seen from work today.

Tuesday, February 24, 2015


I hate coming back from vacation.

Yesterday: couldn't wake up (time difference). Had to go to indoor track after work because of the cold and wind - super windy. Left work late and so had a limited amount of time and only managed 21 laps on the track for 6.145km instead of the 8km I was supposed to do. Piriformis was nagging a bit but otherwise OK. Did 6:17/km for 38:37 with ave HR 152. I felt strong. Garmin data here. 

Today: went to track a bit late (again...time difference) and there was construction there and I had to park on the side and then couldn't figure out how to get in. Grrrr. Finally figured it out and warmed up. Then while doing drills after warming up (just dynamic stretching) my piriformis was really nagging badly. It hurt. I decided that I did NOT want to push it by doing speed work. Obviously I need to strengthen my left glutes so my piriformis is not so overworked, but of course that requires time. Time I maybe don't have, but had better find or I will be back to spinning because of injury. So I skipped my 3K fartlek and went home. My kids were grumpy. It was a lousy morning. Work wasn't so hot either (so far). Oh well.

Not sure what to do now, but definitely no speed work today. I might go do the elliptical later and tomorrow as well, and then RW again on Thursday. I have to do some strength exercises. Used my new ball for massage, which helped. I also have a bit of delayed onset muscle soreness from yesterday's workout on the indoor track; I think the 90 degree turns are rough on my body.

Coming back just sucks. I'm not sure I can do this.