Monday, December 31, 2012

slow, snowy 8K

Yesterday was a rest day, and I really needed it. I was extremely sore after Saturday's 5x1k.


Today, the morning started off inauspiciously. I woke up with a start and it was 6:59 am. Uh-oh!!!!! My alarm hadn't gone off (or I turned it off?). I had told Kelly to meet me at our car repair shop at 7:05 am because I needed to take my car in and we were going to walk right after that. In a hurry, I forgot my Garmin, and when I got outside it was SNOWING. Mind you, it was NOT supposed to snow this morning. And because it was 18F (-8C), it was sticking readily everywhere.

When we started walking it was a bit slippery but not too bad; my legs, however, hurt a lot. My right hip is especially sore. So we started off slowly on purpose and then sped up a little bit as I started to loosen up. By the end of my walk, my muscles did feel a bit better, believe it or not. I had Kelly look at my gait and sure enough, I am hitching my right hip again, but my knee was OK and I was able to correct it with a little help from her. It's nice to walk with someone who is an observant physical therapy student!!!

Within about 1.5-2km it started to get a LOT more slippery and soon we had about zero toe push. Oh well. So, we were very slow - her Garmin showed 53:14 for 6:39/km. I have a feeling my heart rate was pretty low, because it felt very easy. That was good, because theoretically I'm racing a half marathon in the morning. We'll see about that. I'm playing it by ear. I think there's a good shot I'll feel up to it, but I may not. It depends on how I continue to recover. I did feel better today than yesterday, and if that trend continues then I might be up to it. We'll see.

Saturday, December 29, 2012


My legs felt pretty recovered today. That is, until I started this workout! I thought I was ready to have a good workout, but honestly this one just hurt a lot and wasn't very fast.

Part of that might be that I did the workout in the afternoon, which I don't normally do. I waited for Kelly to get back so that we could do it together. I picked her and Kael up at the airport and we started our workout as soon as we could. It was still light when we started, but pretty soon it began to get dark. It was cold (27F, -3C), but I warmed up quickly and only noticed the chill on my face and a bit on my legs. Mostly, I was in too much pain to notice the cold!

After a thorough 2K warm-up, we got started. Kelly has been fighting a terrible cold, but despite that, she was a few steps ahead of me on all the intervals. She jogged on the 2nd interval because she was a bit nervous about doing all of them with her illness, but even with that she was stronger than I was today. I just didn't feel good - my legs were weak and I was breathing very hard. I just didn't have it.

Here are my interval times; note that we did this on the road (the track is under lots of snow) and that the first one was slightly downhill and the fourth one was slightly uphill. The first and the fifth intervals were on the same bit of road, so the fifth one was slightly downhill too. 5:22, 5:25, 5:31, 5:40, 5:33. You can tell from the times that I felt OK on the first two, but then I really started to hurt. Kelly encouraged me a lot, which helped quite a bit since I was fairly discouraged by how much it hurt and that I wasn't very fast for how hard I was working. My heart rate was in the low 170s at the end on the last 3 intervals.

This has been pretty hard for an easy week - not sure what is up with that, but hopefully I'll feel better in a couple days since I'm doing a half marathon on January 1st.

Garmin data here.

Thursday, December 27, 2012

10K on indoor track


I'm very sore. I was sore before I started from yesterday's 3k fartlek, probably because it was slippery and I used slightly different muscles to keep control.

Now I'm even more sore, because I haven't worked out on the indoor track in a while (but had to today because we got 6" (15cm) of new snow) and that also uses muscles slightly differently - it's a small track (211m) so there are lots of corners. My right leg is particularly whiny about things. Add in the fact that it was hot in there and then later today I took Calvin to see "The Hobbit" and sat in the theater immobile for 3 hours, and now I am feeling really stiff.

Looking at my heart rate, it did get pretty high and stay up there, considering the pace wasn't that fast.

I did the 10K in 61:07 with ave HR 151.

Garmin data here.

Wednesday, December 26, 2012

8K; rest day; 3K fartlek

I did 8K on Christmas Eve (after resting on the 23rd). Unfortunately, my Garmin totally ate the workout. It's been doing that...I deleted the activities manually from the folder on the watch and now it won't keep things like it used to. Grrrrrr. I really ought to troubleshoot that sometime. Anyway, my legs were a bit tired, even after a day off. I did 48:50 for 6:08/km. Not sure of my average HR but I think it was close to 150. I didn't feel that great and I was working kind of hard. It was raining moderately and about 37F (3C) so it was pretty cold too. I met my friends on the trail, which was fun but I only saw them for a bit because I had to go my speed, and they went theirs. I saw them again on the way back and we got a group photo.

And here's what it did later in the we had a white Christmas! :)


Christmas Day was a rest day :). I enjoyed hanging out with my family (mom, dad, husband, kids, cousin, and a friend) and cooking and resting a bit. We introduced the kids to Monopoly, which Calvin loved. He's quite into games now but VERY competitive (hmmm wonder where he gets that from?) and gets pretty upset when he loses. He will learn eventually I think.


Today I was to do a 3K fartlek. I reveled in sleeping in until 7 am and then hanging out doing not much for a couple hours before doing my workout. It's nice to have the week off.

It was snowing lightly and the streets were slushy, but they looked passable for a 3K fartlek. The track was out of the question (under 6 inches (15cm) of snow), so it was either the indoor track (ho-hum) or the streets (more fun). I opted for the streets, and unfortunately they were a bit slicker than they looked from my house. We live on a bit of a hill, and so they are better at plowing our street than some of the flatter streets that I prefer for the fartlek workouts if the track is impassable. Anyway, the outcome was that the street was probably 90% clear for a single car width, with 10% of the route having spots that were slippery. I estimate that probably took 5-15 seconds (conservatively) off of my 3km time. Given that, I was pretty fast.

I warmed up for 1 mile (1.6km) mostly on a slight downhill, in a very fast 9:05. I felt pretty darn good! I was excited to get going. I took the first 500m (slight downhill) a bit fast, in 2:33, and then the second 500m was flatter/slightly uphill? and slower at 2:48. Then I pushed a bit on the medium effort 500m, maybe because I was annoyed with the 2:48? I did a 2:53 and thought "wow, that was fast" before turning around (I did 1.5km out and 1.5km back) and doing another really nice fast 500m in 2:42, a fast medium effort in 2:51 (OK, it was pretty hard, but I did ease up!) and finally a very hard 500m on a slight uphill in 2:39! Total time was 16:28, which is 10 seconds slower than my PR for this workout. Still...with the slushy/slippery conditions I'm pleased.

As for my right knee, I am pretty sure it was good on the non-slippery parts. All bets are off on the slippery spots! Impossible to think about that many things while trying not to fall over :).

I pushed hard, as my average heart rate was 161 for the very short workout, and my max was 175! I feel pretty good now, a few hours later, though I am a bit stiff. I ameliorated that a bit by going figure skating for an hour with my kids and my friend Sarah and her kids.

Garmin data here.

Saturday, December 22, 2012


Briefly - have a lot to do today.

Weather: 27F to start (about -3C?) and 41F at finish (4C). Breezy to start, and then downright windy (enough to slow me a bit) in my face from 10K-14.5K. Then at my back until 19.5K.

Legs: Started off feeling decent, but not great. Made it to 10K all right, and then my legs got really tired and continued in a downward spiral until the finish. They are thrashed now, but hey, I finished.

Splits: 2:03:06 for 20K, with ave HR 151. 5K: 29:52, 30:03, 31:28, 31:43. Yup, VERY tired at the end. But for being THAT tired it's a pretty decent time.

Of note: Ran into Nancy and Diane on the trail at 6.67km :). Was so happy to see them! We chatted a few minutes and were back on our way again.

Garmin data here.

Friday, December 21, 2012

6.3K; snowshoeing

This morning I was supposed to do 10K with 2x5' bursts. Well...I got to about 3K and my legs were really quite tired. I decided that it was smarter to cut my losses and not do the full workout today in the interest of probably completing 20K tomorrow. So I just went around Liberty Park once and didn't go down 600E at all. I called it quits at 6.3K; legs were tired but not dead.

My average pace was 6:07/km with ave HR just 140. Garmin data here.


This afternoon the lab went snowshoeing for our holiday party :). I love having a boss who is active! We brought the kids (his and mine; the others don't have kids) and they had a blast - they "ambushed" us with snowballs and it was a hoot. We snowshoed uphill about 1 mile and the back down 1 mile or so (about 3.2km total). It was pretty easy pace-wise, and my legs are feeling good tonight. I hope the 20km goes all right tomorrow.

Thursday, December 20, 2012


I guess it was coming. I pushed a bit too hard...

I went to the track this morning. It was dark and 18F (-8C). My legs hurt before I even started. I did one lap in 2:50 (ughhhh! slow!) and it felt awful. I just couldn't see doing 10K even easy, never mind doing a 10K fartlek. I left.

I went home, changed into shorts under my outerwear, and went to the gym and did 40 min on the elliptical instead. That felt OK, but not great.

Then I took the kids to school, made a big salad for a holiday party at work, and drove to work. My stomach started feeling off even before I left the house. By the time I got to work I was so nauseated all I could do was lie on the there I was, on the tile floor in the lab. Finally I summoned strength to move to the couch in the break room, where I stayed for quite some time. I started to feel a bit better, and so I went back to the lab, told a co-worker about a couple things she could do for me, ordered a few essentials, and then left.

I got home about 11:30 am and went straight to bed. I didn't wake up until 2:45! I guess I needed the rest. I'm feeling better now - the nausea is gone and I ate dinner, and it went down OK. I guess I just melted down from overdoing it? I'm not 20 any more and sometimes I forget that, but I'm learning.

Hoping to do my scheduled 10K in the morning.

Wednesday, December 19, 2012


Nothing remarkable today, just 12K. Kelly and I were going to meet to do it together, but she wanted the extra time to study for her final today, so she decided to do it this afternoon after she flies to California. Good choice. It was very cold here this morning at 18F (-8C) with a slight breeze. My legs were very cold when I was done, and when I got in the shower they got tingly and red and then itchy! I've had that happen before on very cold days. I guess I should have worn my fleece pants over my tights.

Anyway, the workout went well. I did the first 10K pretty fast, in 59:45ish, and then my legs kind of died on the last 2km of slight uphill, finishing in 1:13:04 for 6:05/km with ave HR 148. I hope my legs recover well enough for tomorrow's 10K fartlek. It's supposed to be cold again, and I have to do it by myself, as Kelly will be gone until the 29th :(.

Garmin data here.

Tuesday, December 18, 2012

10K kickdown - PR!

Well, the extra rest day didn't hurt :). I know it wasn't ideal as I'm supposed to be training hard right now, but it really was unavoidable. And you know what? I got to walk with Kelly today, which was way better than doing it alone yesterday anyway.

It was 33F (1C) and threatening snow, and pitch dark for the whole workout (we finished about 7 am and it doesn't get light until well after that now). It got colder and started to snow later this morning after we finished, but happily it waited for us to be done.

We went by feel this morning instead of trying to hit certain times. That seemed to work out well. We started off nice and easy, and then each 2.5km went a bit harder, and the last 2.5km was pretty much as hard as we could. I know on the last 500m I was breathing pretty out-of-control. But I stayed with Kelly! We were together the whole time - she never got more than a step or 2 ahead of me and vice-versa.

Here are our splits: 15:13.8, 15:02.4, 14:45.4, 13:49.0 (!under 14 for the first time!), for a total of 58:50.6. My HR got up to 169 and I don't know about Kelly's but her breathing was really hard and we were working it hard. Her left knee looked a lot better today than it has looked; I only saw it bent once or twice. I am pretty sure my knees were good too. In the middle of the workout I wasn't sure I'd be able to do well, but then I started to feel a little better and managed to stay strong to the finish with none of the jello-legs thing I felt last week on this workout, and it showed in my times. My last five 500s (and Kelly's) were 2:46.2, 2:42.4, 2:45.3, 2:49.7, 2:45.4.

Now I'm really tired/sleepy, and my legs feel pretty trashed. Hopefully I'll be up for another hard one on Thursday.

Garmin data here.

Monday, December 17, 2012

rest days...

Yesterday was a rest day. I thought about doing my 10K kickdown yesterday, but I was sore, and I remembered that today I had a sitter from 3-5pm so I could go in the afternoon. (I couldn't go this morning because I was flying home from 6-8:45 am.) I was pretty busy yesterday helping out my brother and his wife, anyway.

Well...guess what? My sitter canceled and so now I can't do a workout at all. Bummer. These things happen, I guess. Once in a while you miss one unintentionally. The best planning sometimes doesn't help when nature intervenes and your sitter gets a bug.

Will have to consult with the coach about tomorrow's workout. I am thinking I should do the hard one tomorrow so I don't miss it. It wouldn't be that hard to do that and still do another hard one on Thursday. But it's up to the coach.

Saturday, December 15, 2012

20K in Davis

I did the Davis Bike Loop for my 20K today. My brother told me it was 12 miles, and 20K is 12.4, so that is just about perfect when you add in the slight distance from his house to the loop.

The weather here was better than at home! The temperature was the same - 34F (1C) - but at home it was snowing and looked like it was sticking, at least from people's Facebook photos. Here, it was merely foggy. I was glad to be here :). It was actually a nice day for a walk.

I was fast today. I have no idea why, other than maybe the altitude decrease from home??? I was worried that my knee was bent because I was so fast, but I was very careful about it, pretending that Kelly or some judges were looking at it. I wonder if maybe the new environment and the enjoyment of a walk in my old stomping grounds played a role in my speed as well? Who knows.

I felt great for the first 16km - truly great - and then was a bit tired for the last 4km or so. Not horribly tired or anything, but I was sore in the glutes and glad that I'd get to stop soon.

I really enjoyed traveling a new route and seeing this city again. I lived here from '93-'96 and it's nostalgic walking around and seeing what is the same (lots) and what is new (lots again!). Some of the farmland near the university is being converted to dorms, and there are lots of new houses near campus. Away from the campus, a lot is the same and looks just like it did 20 yr ago. I have pictures of the route below. It's FLAT except for a freeway overpass at 17km; the elevation here ranges from 12-18m above sea level. Hahahaha! At home it's like 1300!

Here are my 5K splits - get ready - they are fast! 29:46, 29:57, 29:31, 30:22.

Total time: 1:59:35 for 5:59/km with ave HR 142.

Garmin data here.


frost on baseball field

Davis High

orange trees!

park scene


gardens in west Davis

pumpkins in west Davis

new dorms going up for UC Davis

Our apartment when we were first married 420 Russell Park #5

bikes on campus

Shields Library

bike path on campus

neurosciences center in Research Park in south Davis

palm tree & fog - south Davis

10K w/2x5' bursts (Friday)

I'm behind...visiting my brother in California and so I'm behind on the blog. Yeah, I get to get away, and hubby is stuck home w/the kids. Don't feel TOO sorry for him, though, as my parents are helping out :). Yay for grandparents!

Yesterday I did 10K w/2x5' bursts. It was 34F (1C) with just a touch of a breeze. I felt a bit sore in the glutes but otherwise pretty good. Unfortunately, I have no Garmin data because my watch has been acting a bit weird since I manually deleted a bunch of workouts. I do remember that I did 6:06/km (1:01 for the 10K) and that my fast bursts were about 2:50ish for the first 500m of each. Not sure of my average HR, sorry. But I have done a master reset of the watch, so hopefully it will behave better next time.

Thursday, December 13, 2012

8K fartlek

I'm loving our warm weather! It was 44F (6.7C) this morning with a bit of a breeze. So warm for December. But it IS dark. Kelly and I met at the track at 5:45 am, and it was still pitch-black dark when we left at about 6:55 am. I wonder how people who live in far northern climates deal with the winter darkness, because it would drive me crazy. I do have a touch of seasonal affective disorder, but that seems to be well-managed with a low dose anti-depressant. All the same, I'm grateful for any sunlight I can get!

We were a little late getting started, so we did a 1200m warm-up instead of 1600m, and I did throw in a couple 100m fast on the last lap. After some dynamic drills we got started, and I tried to be sure and pace myself well. I felt like I did a pretty good job of that, doing 5:29 for the first km. My medium effort 500s were all 2:55-2:59 except for one 3:00 and one 3:01 (the last two), while my hard effort 500s were all 2:45 or 2:46 except the last two, which were 2:48 and 2:47. I did feel tired on the last two, but not terribly so. It was a good hard effort.

Kelly had to stop after 5K (which we reached in 28:23) because her hip was bothering her; she thinks it's because her ankle/foot is still a bit sore from when she rolled it last Monday and her gait is a bit off because she is compensating. I told her to stop if it didn't get better, because there's no point in killing yourself to finish a workout if it's going to create injury problems later. 5K of speed work is better than none, and better than 8K plus missing a week or two due to injury.

I'm pretty sore now and sleepy, too. Definitely feel those hard workouts!

Total time: 45:41 with average HR 160. It's not as fast as some workouts I did last fall but it's still a fast time. Kelly was watching my right knee from 5K-8K and said it looked good, so that's a relief.

Garmin data here.

Wednesday, December 12, 2012


Today I did the elliptical for 45 min at the gym, and read "The Scientist" magazine while working out. I can get a free subscription since I work in a biology lab, and it's a great magazine. I have subscribed to Scientific American for a long time, but tend to read mostly the biology articles, and so this is a welcome change.

It was nice to have a bit of a break from racewalking today; my legs were pretty sore from the glute exercises I did on Monday, so it was good to have a rest. Plus it was super windy this morning, and I appreciated being inside!

Tuesday, December 11, 2012


12K was on the agenda today, early. Kelly has a carpool that meets at 7, so we met at 5:25 am to get our workout in. It was pretty nice this morning for December, at 32F (0C) with just a little breeze.

My glutes were definitely a bit sore from yesterday, but they held up pretty well. I wasn't really fast, but wasn't terribly slow either. I felt happy with my walk. Kelly struggled at the end but when I pushed her she was able to stay with me; yesterday SHE was faster, but today I had more staying power. She is young and quick but I have more base at the moment. Soon she will be faster than me every day, but for now it's great to have a training partner. I gave her a bunch of red cards again today for her knee. She is learning and her technique is getting better, but when she is tired it naturally is harder for her.

Total time 1:15:00 for 6:15/km with ave HR 143.

Monday, December 10, 2012

10K kickdown

Met Kelly at 5:40am. It was cold (28F, -3ishC), dark, and snowing lightly. We are either tough or crazy or both. We met at Liberty Park to do the 10K kickdown starting on the south end of the park. We really must switch to the north end of the park - it's psychologically much easier because of the slight downhill you get on the last hard interval. Starting on the south end of the park, you have to do a slight uphill as part of your last hard interval. It hurts.

It hurt more today because I was tired for some reason. Nothing felt sore, but my walking just felt a bit stilted and uncomfortable. I knew I wouldn't be fast. I tried to psych myself up, to no avail. The first 5K was OK, and even up to 7.5K wasn't so bad, but the last 2.5K I had a lot of trouble going faster, and I was slow compared to what I can do when I'm feeling good. Still, it wasn't too awful, considering I felt lousy. Kelly did better than me, doing the last 2.5K about 10 seconds faster.

Here are my splits (2.5km):
15:34, 15:29, 14:48, 14:32. HR was up to 170, so I know I was working it.
Edited to add total time 60:23

Garmin data here.


Afterward I went home but I did do my glute exercises - 3 different ones. 3 sets each of one-legged getting up from chair (3x10 each leg) and also lunges front + back (3x10 each leg). 2 sets of step downs (2x10 each leg).

My glutes are quite sore/tired now! Tomorrow could be interesting...

Saturday, December 08, 2012


Today I felt a lot better and was ready to go for 20K. Turns out I wasn't wrong about my schedule - I was supposed to cross-train yesterday, and do 10K on Wednesday (where IS my brain this week?!???). So I got the schedule right, except that I couldn't really do the workouts Wednesday & Thursday because of how I felt.

Anyway, it was a pretty nice day today, at 40F (4C) and overcast, with a bit of a breeze. Later in the workout (about 15K) the wind picked up and it was quite windy, actually.

My legs finally felt recovered today, and when I started off I went pretty fast. Maybe too fast, but I did feel really good. I did the first 10K in just over 60 minutes flat (29:38, 30:27)! Then Kelly joined me for the second 10K. She is feeling better too - her foot is recovering quickly and it seems unlikely to be fractured. After the tape was loosened she felt much better, so she decided to try 10K today. However, after stopping for a couple minutes to get Kelly and throw some stuff in my car, I guess I stiffened up a little; either that or I got tired, because the next 5K was slower at 31:33. But I was able to pick up the pace on the last 5K, finishing in 30:53 for a total of 2:02:30, for 6:08/km with ave HR 150.

Yeah, I pushed it a little that last 5K and my HR got higher, but I was having a bit of fun with Kelly, who was getting tired. I would walk ahead of her a bit and tell her to catch me, and tease her that she shouldn't let the "old lady" (me) beat her, especially since I had gone 10K longer than she did! She did keep up with me and I think we had a good time. I enjoy her company a lot, even though I did give her 4 red cards today for her left knee :). She said my form looked good and that I was "a machine" today. Maybe, maybe not. My glutes were definitely tired at the end, but I was able to stay strong. I did slow down overall, but considering that I started a bit too fast, I think it was good. I'll enjoy my optional day tomorrow!

Garmin data here.

Friday, December 07, 2012

misread schedule

I swear I thought the schedule was for 10K on Wednesday and x-training today. But it wasn't. I just (seconds ago) discovered this. Oops.

I cross-trained today - did the elliptical for 45 min. My legs are still really sore, and from what I'm not sure, other than illness plus the 12K on Tuesday. I'm glad I cross-trained today and didn't racewalk.

Yeah, the schedule has been totally messed up this week. Fortunately, it's a while before my next race, and it probably won't matter. But I feel a bit stupid.

Thursday, December 06, 2012

8K fartlek...not!

Kelly and I met at the track at 5:55 am to do our workout. She was going to try to do it despite her ankle, which is improving but still hurts. I was going to try to do it despite my roiling guts.

Well...we warmed up for 4 laps and Kelly's foot was throbbing. She thought it was from the tape being too tight, but until she is sure, I told her to quit because it wasn't worth it. And me? My GI system is still unhappy - though it was much better yesterday, I woke with problems today. By the 2nd lap my guts were complaining. In addition, my muscles are very sore today (and were sore yesterday, oddly). I can best attribute the soreness to the lingering virus, as the 8K kickdown + 12K should not have made me this sore. I don't know what else is going on. Between my guts and my legs I decided that I should save my energy for recovery from the virus so that I can possibly do 20K on Saturday.

So after our warm-up we bailed to nicer locations (it wasn't too bad out, at 40F (4C) with heavy fog) and had a peppermint mocha (Kelly) and a hot tea (me) and chatted instead.

A workout was just not in the cards today.

Wednesday, December 05, 2012


I'm sick. Got what Michelle has - nausea, fever, and malaise. I had to go in to work last night for a hypoxia experiment, and felt horrible the whole time. I slept poorly as well - tossing and turning and feeling ill.

I deliberately did not set my alarm. I figured 10K this morning was stupid. So I slept (poorly) until 7:30 and when I woke up I actually felt a bit better. No more fever, and the nausea is greatly reduced. I took Calvin to school and managed to get to work and am generally feeling OK at the moment. If the trend continues I'll resume workouts tomorrow.

Tuesday, December 04, 2012


Today I was lonely. Kelly's ankle is pretty bad; she actually had it x-rayed because it was so painful. They couldn't see a fracture but were not 100% sure she didn't have one, so she is taking it easy for a few days and will monitor how it feels. So, I walked alone, which is always what I used to do anyway!

The weather was good for December: 35F (about 2C) and calm and overcast. I felt decent today and was only a little sore/tired from yesterday's 8K kickdown. I started off fast, going through 5K in just over 30 min on a slight downhill, but then slowed down a little bit. I never felt terribly tired, just a little bit, and the walk went well.

Total time for 12K: 1:14:22 for 6:12/km with ave HR 143.

Garmin data here.

Monday, December 03, 2012

8K kickdown

Yesterday was an optional day, so I rested :). I was a bit stiff on Saturday afternoon after the 20K but felt totally fine yesterday.

I was ready to go this morning for an 8K kickdown, at least physically. Mentally I was in a bad space because I ate too much chocolate last night :(. Sigh. Still analyzing that one to figure out what went wrong...but I digress. Back to the workout.

It was 35F (about 2C) and calm. Pretty warm for December; it's nice when it's above freezing. We met at Liberty Park, which is basically flat but has some slight ups and downs, all gradual. We got going and did the first 500m nice and slow, in 3:13 by Kelly's watch. I messed up my watch and somehow turned off the GPS so at 2km I powered it down and back on and got the last 6K on my Garmin. Good thing, as you'll see. Our first 2K was very easy, but we were still fast, in 12:17 (we'd planned on 12:40 or so), but we weren't worried because it felt super easy. We tried to just speed up only a little on the next one, and it was a slight uphill for part of it, so that worked out OK. The next 2K was 12:12, and we were still feeling really good.

We sped up a little, but the first 500m of the next 2K was a slight uphill, and we were a bit slow (3:02 by my watch, and I think 2:59 by Kelly's?). During that 500, though, Kelly suddenly screamed. She had rolled her ankle badly on a small pinecone, and was in a good deal of pain. She tried to walk some more but really couldn't and she had to stop and walk back to the car (which was close, since we were doing 2K loops). I continued on by myself (glad that my watch was now working), and picked up the pace a little bit, because I felt good. I was surprised to see the next 500m in 2:49! OK, so it was slightly downhill, but that was fast! I felt good and continued on, doing 2:48 and 2:49 before starting the last 2K. I knew I could go faster, but the first 1K of the last 2K is a slight uphill and I did it in 2:53 and then 2:50, but WOW I was faster on the way back with a 2:39 and 2:43. I know my right knee was straight, too, because I was really focusing on it and on my technique, especially at the end.

Total for the 2Ks: 12:17, 12:12, 11:30, 11:06 for 47:05! It was a good workout! Average HR just 151 for the last 6K, and my max was 168.

Garmin data here.

Saturday, December 01, 2012


This was an interesting workout! First, the weather was bizarrely warm for December. It was quite warm (50F, 10C to start, and 56F at the finish!) but windy. Windy enough that it slowed us anytime we walked south, and made us lots faster walking north.

I met Kelly at 8:30 am and we started our walk; we were both feeling pretty recovered from the previous workouts. However, about 12K poor Kelly just really started hurting - her legs were really, really tired. She found it hard to hold her form, and at that point I started being a very obnoxious cheerleader :). Actually, even before that I started giving her red cards every time I saw her left knee bent. I got up to nine by 17k, and then I told her to see if she could keep from getting 3 by 20K - she did much better then, and only got one before the finish.

Let me back up. We both felt pretty good to start and did 5K heading north (remember, here the wind was at our backs) in 29:45. Then we headed south for 10K, doing 31:13 and 31:10 for the next two 5Ks. Finally, we headed back north and with the wind at our backs we got to 20K in 2:03:29, doing 31:21 even despite how tired Kelly was. I was tired, too, but not too awful. My glutes and hamstrings were noticing the training this week, that is for sure, but I didn't crash and burn. I could have gone faster at points, especially near the end, but not a lot faster. My average HR was 148 for the walk, which is pretty typical for that distance. Regardless, I really wanted to walk with Kelly, and speed doesn't matter right now - just doing the km. She was really anxious that she was slowing me down, and I told her to never mind that, because it was just fine! And it was!

Poor Kelly worked SO hard today - she was really very tired from 12K on, but she kept plugging away and was able to stay really fast until about 1km from the end, when she really started to lose it. I have to give her credit for her determination and grit today, and for the fact that even when she felt TERRIBLE she was able to still walk a 2:03:29...I'm going to be in trouble when she gets trained! She'll be kicking my behind!!!!!

Garmin data here.

Friday, November 30, 2012


I was a bit sore this morning after yesterday's fartlek and weight training! Kelly and I had 10K scheduled and I knew it wouldn't be fast. We have 20k tomorrow, so we didn't want to push too hard.

The weather was SO warm this morning! It was 48F (9C) and a bit windy. It was amazingly lovely for November 30.

We got walking and I felt all right, though definitely a bit sore and tired. Kelly was even more sore and tired, but that didn't make me feel any better! I just felt bad for her. She's coming off of a long time of not training, and her iron levels are pretty low. I know how that feels, and it hurts! She was hurting pretty badly today - she said it was even worse than that Wednesday a few weeks ago when we were pretty slow for about 8K? 10K? Not sure, but regardless, she was hurting. I told her that was normal for the day after a hard track workout, and that she might rebound by tomorrow for the 20K. However, it might hurt...I told her to text or call Jim and see what he says.

By 5K she was hurting more, but then she started to feel a bit better around 6K or so. I think it might have had something to do with her form - I noticed her left knee was pretty bent today and I started teasing her, saying I was going to give her a red card. I told her to see if she could get to the end without me giving her three red cards. She made it to 9K before she got her 3rd red card from me, but she was feeling better (and looking better) at least. We had a good laugh about it, stretched, and did the last 1km, during which I gave her two more red cards :).

I felt tired but could definitely have gone a little faster today - not that I minded staying with Kelly, because I didn't at all - I love the company.

Total time: 1:04:10 for 6:25/km with ave HR 140.

Garmin data here.


After our walk, I drove to the gym and did some core work and some step-ups, but not too many as I have 20K tomorrow.


Food: yesterday was pretty darn good. The scale is being nasty to me, but I feel a bit bloated. I'm sure it's just water. I'm feeling more in control and continue to work hard on more sleep, etc. Seems to be going well.

Thursday, November 29, 2012

5K fartlek - workout PR and new 5K PR!!!!!

I felt like there was a fast one inside today. I got up after a good night's sleep and my legs felt fresh after cross-training (45 min elliptical) yesterday. Plus Kelly was meeting me at the track and I knew she'd push me.

It was so nice and warm for the end of November - 44F (7C) and clear, with a slight breeze. I just wore capris and a long-sleeved shirt and gloves.

Kelly and I did our warm-up of 1600m plus strides, in 9:33. Then after a few dynamic drills and some good-natured whining about how we weren't in the mood for speed work so early (it was about 6:10 am by this point, and pitch black dark!), we got started.

We did the first 1km quite fast - in 5:18, with splits of 2:37 and 2:41. I felt good, though, and thought I could hold that pace for the workout. And we did! Our 500m medium effort intervals were all 2:55-2:57, and the rest of our fast 500s were 2:37-2:39. I knew by 3K that it was good, when we came through 3K in 16:30 (just 6 seconds off my 3K race PR!), and by 4K I knew I had a good shot at my 5K PR! Wooo hooo! Kelly was with me the whole time, though on the fast intervals she was a couple seconds faster on the last few (no more than 2 seconds, but definitely in front of me) and on the medium efforts I'd catch her again so we always started together. She finished about 2 seconds ahead of me, and I finished in 27:39, shaving 19 seconds off my 5K fartlek PR and 9 seconds off my previous 5K RACE PR!

My average heart rate was 160, which is about average for this workout. I really gave it my all at the end, knowing that I was close to a PR. Obviously I'm pretty happy with this workout :).

Garmin data here.


Because I'm insane, or stupid, or really because I don't want to be injured, I went to the gym afterward and did some lifting.

3x10 step downs on each leg (just barely touching tip of toe to ground - so weight was on the working leg each time)
3x10 military press with 20 lb dumbbells each arm
3x12 lateral walks with resistance band (for abductors)
3x10 row machine, 70 lb
3x10 tricep extensions, 12 lb dumbbells each arm
3x10 bicep curls, 15 lb dumbbells each arm
3x10 one-legged dead lifts, with 30 lb dumbbell (for balance and hamstrings - this is a great exercise)

Now, my rear end is killing me. But I feel virtuous :).


Food: mostly good, some bad. I have been eating lots better overall, though Tuesday night I slipped up and ate too much cheese and caramel popcorn :( (of all the stupid things to's good but not THAT good and definitely not worth it...sigh). Still, I debriefed with my friend Gisela (my new food accountability partner) over lunch yesterday, recovered well from the slip (which is really what it's mostly about!) and yesterday was a great food day. Today is going well so far :).

Tuesday, November 27, 2012

hilly 12K

Today Kelly and I were to do 12K. The weather was chilly at 31F (-1C) going down to 28F by the time we finished our workout, but pretty good otherwise, calm and clear. We have had a pretty warm fall with relatively little snow, except for that one storm.

I figured I'd feel sluggish this morning, but I didn't feel too bad, and neither did Kelly. Kelly talked me into doing a hilly route around Liberty and SugarHouse parks just to do something different, and that was good, though it did require more effort. Still, I think we did pretty well considering the route. My muscles are sore from the weight training yesterday but not too bad, and after today's workout they feel a bit better than yesterday if anything. Tomorrow is just cross-training, so I'll get to recover a bit (though I'll almost certainly lift weights again).

It's been wonderful to have a workout partner. I can't say enough great things about it, and I'll be really sad when Kelly gets so fast that I can't keep up with her any more. Sadly, that will probably be a matter of 6 months or less. At least I can enjoy it for now.

Here's a picture of us on the Jordan River Trail the day it snowed:

Total time for our hilly 12.25km workout was 1:18:06 for 6:23/km (elevation gain and loss about 110m each), and my average HR was just 145.

Garmin data here

Monday, November 26, 2012

rest day; 10K w/2x5' bursts + weight training

Yesterday was a rest day :).


Today Kelly and I were to do 10K w/2x5' bursts. We met early at Liberty Park and got walking. First, though, I gave her a birthday + Christmas present combined (her birthday was yesterday). She was actually CARRYING a water bottle on Saturday for our 16K and I told her she was nuts :). In racewalking, your arms are too important to carry a water bottle. But she didn't have a fuel belt. Well, now she does :) and in hot pink too :).

Then we started walking, and she filled the bottles at the fountain in Liberty Park. We felt good this morning, especially Kelly! On the first 5' burst I felt great, but as usual on the second one I felt I was working pretty hard. Kelly was really pushing me on the second one - we did 2:50 for the first 500m! By the end we both still felt good, though we did slow down a fair amount. My legs were a little tired when I was done, but not too bad.

We finished in 1:02:09 for 6:13/km and my ave HR was 148. I dropped about 500m off of my Garmin by forgetting to push start again at a crosswalk, so the time is from Kelly's watch.

Garmin data here.


Then I drove to the gym to lift weights. My legs were OK after the walk but they are definitely tired now! I did 3 sets of 10 lunges on each leg - full lunges, back, then front as Jim told me, holding a 10-lb medicine ball. Ouch! I also did 3x10 sets of bench press, 3x12 abductors (gluteus medius, minimus, etc) on the hip machine, and 3x12 lat pull-downs with 70lb. Finally I did a few core exercises and stretched a bit. I think the 12K tomorrow might hurt :).


In other news, I've been eating terribly. Rotten. Horrible. Dessert has had my number. Well, on Saturday I had the worst WW weigh-in in a long time: 155.2 lb. That is not OK, because if I get to 157.0 I'll have to pay! Lifetime members attend free, and I really do not want to have to pay. I have kept my weight off for a long time and I know exactly what I need to do now. I just have to DO it.

I recommitted myself to my healthy lifestyle, and some practical steps:

1. Track all my food. Honestly.
2. Attend meetings more regularly. This will mean a later Saturday morning one when I have a long walk. Loren will have to help with the kids.
3. Sleep 8 hours per night. I know I'll miss this one sometimes due to work (hypoxia experiments), etc., but I am trying harder.
4. Spend less time on the computer and facebook at night and instead go to bed earlier and also spend a minimum of 20 minutes journaling/praying/reading scripture.
5. Keep accountable with Kelly (who is trying to quit soda) and Gisela (who would also like to lose some weight).

It's now Monday, and I've been doing great for the past 48 hours. I feel much better mentally. I'm confident I can turn it around.

Saturday, November 24, 2012

Cold Turkey race 2012

It's been a nice easy training week. After Tuesday's 8K, I cross-trained on Wednesday (elliptical, 45 min) and was all ready for the race on Thursday.

The Cold Turkey 6K is more like 6.2k, and it's a tough course. A slight uphill for a bit and then up City Creek Canyon; it's uphill for 3K and then downhill for 3.2K.

Kelly and I warmed up for a mile (1600m) with strides and felt OK. The weather was pretty good for this race; it was 35F (2C) and sunny. I actually felt warm enough after the warm-up that I wore just my singlet and tights and took off my long-sleeved shirt. I still wore gloves, though. In the sun it felt fine, but the going up the canyon it was pretty darn cold because it was shaded and there's a stream by the road which cools the air even more. Still, because I was racing so hard I wasn't too bothered by the cold.

We started together at 2:54/500m for the first two splits on the slight uphill. It felt just about right; hard, but not too hard. About this time, I pulled ahead of Kelly a bit, feeling strong, and going through the next 500 in 2:59. I managed some good splits up the hill, doing 3:01 and 3:08 and then 3:03, which included a tiny bit of the downhill. The downhill is nice in that you go much faster; however, I was still working really hard. I saw Kelly at the turnaround, about 20m behind me, and I knew I'd have to work hard to stay in front of her. She gradually caught me on the downhill despite the fact that I did 2:36, 2:35, 2:39, 2:37, and 2:34. She drew close and I pushed hard to the finish, doing 2:36 and then a 1:05 for the last .22km which was 4:56/km! My HR was 179 at the max, and I gave it all I had but it wasn't enough to hold Kelly off. She beat me by 7 seconds. The thing was, I was not at all disappointed in my race, because I broke my PR for this course by a whopping 21 seconds, finishing in 34:45 (vs. last year's 35:06). I honestly think I was probably in better shape last year, as it was just before the 50K, and I'd been training harder. However, a little competition can bring out the best, and that appears to be the case here.

Garmin data here.


On Friday I recovered with 45 min on the elliptical; I was a bit sore in my glutes and abductors but otherwise OK.


Today Kelly and I were to do 16K. We were both sore from the race, and Kelly was tired by about 5km, but we just took it easy and were able to finish. Unfortunately I had some serious GI issues today and had to stop a lot in the last 8km for intestinal cramping. I used the restroom a couple of times, and thought I was feeling better when we finished, but the rest of the day wasn't so great either. Not sure if I caught some bug or what? Well, no matter. It's done and tomorrow's a rest day.

6:29/km with ave HR 138; total time 1:43:26.

Garmin data here.

Tuesday, November 20, 2012



~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ ~~~~ ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

The Ron Zinn Memorial Award is given to this year’s outstanding U.S.
male and female race walkers to commemorate the achievements of Capt.
Ron Zinn, who lost his life in combat during the Vietnam War. A race
walker, Ron was a member of the U.S. Olympic Team in the 1964 Summer
Games at Tokyo and his sixth place finish in the 20 km event was
considered outstanding for American walkers at that time.

The winners of the Ron Zinn Memorial Award as the top male and female
race walkers in the USA for 2012 are:
-- Maria Michta and Trevor Barron; Both awardees are repeat winners from

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ ~~~~ ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

The Henry Laskau Award, commemorating the achievements of Henry Laskau
as an athlete and as a person, is presented annually to the USA's top
junior athletes in Race Walking. For 2012 the award winners are:
-- Maite Moscoso and Tyler Sorensen

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ ~~~~ ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

The Mike Riban Award is given in memory of longtime supporter and
official Mike Riban (Green & Gold AC, Chicago) to the outstanding
contributor to the event. In 2012 this award goes to our retiring
chairman of the race walk committee:
-- Vince Peters

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ ~~~~ ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

The Outstanding Association Award for 2012 goes to the:
-- San Diego-Imperial

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ ~~~~ ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

The Masters Male & Female Race Walker of the Year is presented annually
to the top master (35 and older) male and female athletes in the USA.
For 2012 the top athletes are:
-- Teresa Vail and Tim Seaman.

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ ~~~~ ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

The top three men and women in the Grand Prix in each division and the
top three teams will be recognized at the convention in St. Louis:

OPEN DIVISION MEN (name - affiliation - grand prix points):
1. Dan Serianni - World Class Racewalking – 57 ($300)
2. Tim Seaman – New York AC – 46 ($200)
3. Nick Christie - Unattached – 40

OPEN DIVISION WOMEN (name - affiliation - grand prix points):
1. Maria Michta - Walk USA – 40 ($300)
2. Katie Burnett - unattached – 39 ($200)
3. Tamara Stevenson - Wasatch Walkers – 34 ($100)

JUNIOR DIVISION MEN (name - affiliation - grand prix points):
1. Jonathan Hallman - Unattached - 44
2. Michael Nemeth - Wings of Moon - 28
3. Nathaniel Roberts - Bowerman Athletics Club – 22

JUNIOR DIVISION WOMEN (name - affiliation - grand prix points):
1. Abby Dunn - Maine Racewalkers - 33
2. Maite Moscoso - Central Florida Gliders - 28
3. Katie Michta – Walk USA - 25

MASTER DIVISION MEN (name - affiliation - grand prix points):
1. Chris Schmid - World Class Racewalking - 76
2. Dave Swarts – Pegusus AC - 59
3. Andrew Smith - Pegasus AC - 56

MASTER DIVISION WOMEN (name - affiliation - grand prix points):
1. Marianne Martino - High Altitude Racewalk Team - 47
2. Debbie Topham – Pegasus AC - 42
3. Darlene Backlund - So Cal Track Club – 34

1. Pegasus AC - 42
2. World Class Racewalking - 30
3. Shore AC - 26

1t. Florida Athletics Club - 10
1t. Pegasus Athletics Club - 10
1t. Racewalking Arizona – 10
1t. Walk USA - 10

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ ~~~~ ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

Master Men and Women - 5 year age group winners. The following
individuals are being recognized as the top Master athlete in their age
group for 2012:

35-39 Omar Nash None qualified
40-44 Tim Seaman Tammy Stevenson
45-49 Dave Swartz Teresa Vaill
50-54 Ray Sharp None Qualified
55-59 Mark Green Debbie Topham
60-64 Andrew Smith Marianne Martino
65-69 Christoph Schmid Panseluta Geer & Darlene Backlund
70-74 John Backlund Louise Walters
75-79 None qualified None qualified
80-84 John Starr Ruth Ketron
85-89 None qualified None qualified

Congratulations to all - the top athletes and volunteers in our sport in
the USA!

8K with 2x5' bursts

Yesterday I cross-trained on the elliptical.

Today was 8K with 2x5' bursts. I slept poorly last night for some reason - woke up at 4ish am from a work-related anxiety dream, which is weird because though work hasn't been boring, it hasn't been really stressful either. Anyway, I felt pretty lousy when I went for my walk, but as usual, I felt much better afterwards. Kelly couldn't walk with me today, so I was on my own. It felt odd to be walking by myself and I missed her company, but it was good to be out regardless.

It was nice for November, at about 40F (4C) and clear, with no wind. With light gloves, a long-sleeved shirt, and capris, I was comfortable. I started later than I'd planned, and at 6:50am it wasn't even pitch black dark.

I felt good this morning - really strong and fast. I made it to Liberty Park (2k) very quickly, well under 12 minutes. I started my first 5 min burst at 2k, and did 2:46 for the first 500m. Even when I relaxed after that burst, I was still pretty fast. My second burst was a bit harder; I started it at 5.1km and my second 500m was 2:49, so that was still pretty fast.

I will admit that I did push a bit today because I felt good :). I slowed up the hill at the end but still did a fast pace of 5:59/km with total time 47:48 for the 8km. My average HR was 153. My left glutes/hamstrings/whatever it is that is bugging me felt pretty good today, just bugging me a bit at the end.

Garmin data here.

Sunday, November 18, 2012


Kelly and I were to do 12K today. We were both a bit sore from the hill workout yesterday, and I figured it was gonna hurt today. Surprisingly, we did well and felt pretty good for the most part. The first 8K was fine, and the last 4K we were tired, but we were able to keep our pace pretty well.

The weather was interesting - pretty warm at 56F (13C) but it was VERY windy. Seriously, it almost blew my hat off at one point! We good-naturedly whined about the wind, but it was refreshing to have the cool air, and when we turned around with our backs to the wind for the last 6K it was pretty warm.

We made up a new technique chant today: "Toes, Tuck, Tush!". Toes refers to rolling all the way through the toes to get a good toe-off and long stride behind the body. Tuck means to tuck your rear end under. Tush means to use your glutes when you walk. We kept reminding each other to have good technique.

Total time was 1:14:11 for 6:11/km for the 12km. Pretty good for being tired. My average HR was just 144.

Garmin data here.

Saturday, November 17, 2012

long time no post

Oh my! I haven't posted since Election Day (November 6th!). Major oversight on my part. Well, I knew it had been a while, but I just didn't make it a priority since I haven't been training hard.

However, I have been training.

Here's what I've been up to:
Wed Nov 7: 30 min elliptical
Thurs Nov 8: 5K with Kelly in 30:24 (easy), hip was hurting a bit so then did 30 min elliptical.
Fri Nov 9: 50 min elliptical
Sat Nov 10: 8K in the snow! We had easily 2-3 inches on the ground, and it was snowing hard, and it was tough to racewalk through, but Kelly and I did 8K in 52:27 for 6:32/km which I thought was pretty good for those conditions.
Sun Nov 11: 45 min elliptical
Mon Nov 12: overslept = rest day
Tues Nov 13: 3K warm-up; 5K fartlek in 30:07 (at Kelly's pace; I could have gone faster but she was having a rough day so I stayed with her since it was her workout not mine); 2K cool-down to home.
Wed Nov 14: 8K in 51:07 with Kelly; 6:23/km. We were both a bit sore from the 5K fartlek and so were slow and a bit tired.
Thurs Nov 15: 10K with 2x5' bursts with Kelly; 6:21/km. Again, we were a little tired. I'm glad I'm easing back into things with Kelly. It makes it easier.
Fri Nov 16: 40 min elliptical
Sat Nov 17: 8K hilly with Kelly in 50:46 (6:10/km!). We did the route for the Cold Turkey race on Thanksgiving (Thursday this coming week) and it's pretty hilly. We added an extra km uphill since the Cold Turkey race is only 6K, but we still finished pretty fast for an easy effort.

Today after the workout w/Kelly we had a club racewalking clinic at the Olympic Oval. It was great fun to teach racewalking and watch people improve. I'm editing video now, but not sure I will post it here due to privacy concerns for the club members.

Oh, I neglected to say that I've been doing weight training (especially glutes) 2x per week. I'm working on getting that up to 3x/week but so far I've been a bit flaky.

Tuesday, November 06, 2012

Since last Friday...

Saturday: Elliptical for 1 hr

Sunday: I enjoyed a nice FAST racewalk on a hilly route. That tested my left rear end a was a little sore afterward but not too bad. I'm still recovering but the fact that I could do hills and not have too much trouble is a great sign. Anyway, I was quite fast for such a hilly route - I could hardly believe it. Apparently I've gotten quite a boost in my fitness from the 30K; at least that's what my coach says. Seems reasonable anyway. I did 10.37km in 1:01:16 for 5:53/km with ave HR 143.

Garmin data here.

Monday: I did the elliptical for 45 min and lifted weights/did glute exercises. My rear end is fairly sore today so I guess I did a good job. My left glutes are notably much weaker than right glutes, especially on the one-legged getting-up-from-chair exercise. That will change as I keep working on them I'm sure. I did 3 different glute exercises, and also did bench press (Smith machine - 105 lb), tricep extensions (12 lb), and lat pull-downs (70 lb).

Today: I went to the track with my friend Kelly; Jim had given her a 5K fartlek so I tagged along. We did 3 laps to warm-up (she was a bit short on time), some dynamic drills, and then she started the fartlek. I wasn't going to do it, so I walked more slowly than her...but then I just wanted to chase her. I did 500m in 2:45 and then realized I had the auto lap on and stopped to turn it off; I walked around the other way to meet Kelly for her medium 500m after her first 1km hard. We did the medium 500m together, and then I let her go for the fast 500m. But when she got to the medium 500m after that, I chased her down and did the rest of the workout together. She wasn't going to let the "old lady" (me hahaha...she is 24) catch her, so we did the fast 500m in 2:35 (! smokin' !) and the next fast 500s in 2:40 and 2:39 (her)/2:37 (me). I had a great time and so did she. We are going to try to train together much more often, as it's so much better than training alone. We are both so happy to have someone our speed to train with, although pretty soon she will be faster than me. Oh, and Kelly did the fartlek in 28:05!!! Very speedy!

After the track today, I went to the gym and did 20 min on the elliptical and then it was time to take the kids to school, so off I went.

That about catches me up for now. Tomorrow morning: 6K with Kelly and then some more elliptical and some weights I think.

Friday, November 02, 2012

crazy fast?

So I looked up my route from Thursday, when I did the 58:31 10K. I didn't believe my Garmin because that seemed too fast for my average HR of 148. However, when I retraced the route on the USATF Map It website, it came out exactly the same as my Garmin. Wow...I guess I really DID do a 58:31 10K? Crazy fast! And it was on gently rolling hills, too. I guess I haven't lost too much fitness, which is good.


I got home late last night. I'm thankful for power, hot water, and internet access. I was very happy to see my family! As soon as I got in I went into the kids' rooms and hugged and kissed them. They didn't wake up, but I was just so happy to see them.

This morning I met my friend Kelly for a walk. We did a nice easy 8K together, and it was so nice to train with someone. We have the same coach, and we're going to ask Jim to write us programs that allow us to train together when possible. We are both thinking to do the 20K in California in March as our next race. I was going to skip that one and just do the 15K in May, but Jim is trying to talk me into it, and I will discuss it with Loren and see if we can make that work.

Anyway, the 8K this morning went well. My legs are a bit sore from the weight training on Wednesday, but not too bad. My left hamstring or whatever it is that is bugging me didn't give me much trouble today. I don't know why it's getting better, but hey, I'm not complaining! I noticed it, but it didn't really hurt much or slow me down.

Total time 49:16 for 6:10/km with ave HR just 141.

Garmin data here.


The USATF Race Walking Sub-Committee announces the outstanding Masters Race Walkers for Age Groups:

35-39: None
40-44: Tammy Stevenson
45-49: Teresa Vaill
50-54: None
55-59: Debbie Topham
60-64: Marianne Martino
65-69: Panse Geer and Darlene Backlund

35-39: Omar Nash
40-44: Tim Seaman
45-49: Dave Swarts
50-54: Ray Sharp
55-59: Mark Green
60-64: Andrew Smith
65-69: Christoph Schmid
70-74: John Backlund
75-79: None
80-84: Max Green

Congratulations to all!

Note: To be considered athletes must have competed in at least two Masters Championships.

Thursday, November 01, 2012

Interesting weekend...

It was an interesting weekend week in Pennsylvania. I went on Friday for my high school reunion (25 years!) Saturday night and for the 30K national racewalk held in New York on Sunday morning. I was scheduled to fly out Monday morning, but due to Hurricane Sandy my flight was cancelled. I rebooked for Wednesday but that flight was later cancelled. Finally I rebooked for today, and I'm now sitting in the airport ready to fly out. Wow.

The reunion was a lot of fun (photos here) - good friends and a good time catching up, plus a "Philly buffet" including my faves - cheesesteak, soft pretzels, and Tastykakes! I tried everything but didn't eat too much because of the race the next morning. Got to sleep around midnight and then was up at 5 am to drive to New York.

I got a bit lost in New Jersey but only lost about 20 min on the way to the race, and so I arrived 40 min before the race, which was plenty of time. You don't need to warm up much before a 30K! I thoroughly enjoyed seeing my racewalking friends and saying hi before the race. I met Maria Michta, our 20K Olympian from this summer, and talked science with her (she's getting her Ph.D. in microbiology).

The race went surprisingly well. There are pictures here on Facebook - mostly of the men's 50K competitors and the 30K competitors who finished after me, but there are some shots of the awards too. Basically, I started out 95% sure I wouldn't finish, and about 12K into the race I was sure I wouldn't finish. I decided to get to 15K and quit. I quite literally had a "pain in the butt". But at 15K, it felt a bit better and so I kept going. It never really got bad again until I had less than 5K to go, and then I knew I would finish no matter what! It wasn't horrible, though - I wasn't limping like I was on the track a few weeks ago. I didn't push hard (for obvious reasons) and my time was a bit slow, but I FINISHED!!!!!!!! I was ecstatic to finish, and it was SO FUN to be out there racing with my friends. Yeah...time was really slow, at 3:14:03, but oddly enough I didn't care.

The funny thing is that my pain in the butt is getting better, despite the race. The day after the race I took a rest day because of the hurricane (impossible to exercise!) - rain, wind, etc. We got 75mph wind gusts - it was HOWLING out there and I was glad to be inside (my friend's parents took us in because we didn't want to have to pay for hotel for extra days; so we got to couch surf!). On Tuesday morning it was much better so I went for an easy 5K walk, and it only took about 31 min! My hamstrings were quite sore, and I have a sore toe (blisters) but otherwise it was great. On Wednesday, after almost 48 hr w/o power, my friend's mom took me to the gym, which had power! I got in an hour on the elliptical, lifted weights and did my glute exercises, and got a HOT shower :). Yay! Today we still did not have power. It was pretty cold in the house (probably 55F, 12C) but we felt lucky that we had no trees in the roof and no flooding.

I went for a walk this morning and walked a really fast 10K. Not sure how I did that - maybe the Garmin was off? I walked 58:31 and felt great. I went by my old house though, and there was a tree down and serious roof damage. It was a very large old tree and fell right into the master bath on the east side of the house. I took lots of pictures and talked with the son of the "new" owners (who most likely bought the house from my parents back in 1987, he thought). The son lives in my old room, which I thought was pretty funny. Anyway, he said this was the 3rd tree to fall on the house since his parents had bought it - one fell on the sun porch and damaged the whole front of the house, and one fell from the back yard and I'm guessing damaged the patio and room my brother used for a bedroom, as that has been removed from the house and replaced by just a flat patio. Here are the pictures I took.

I really enjoyed my walk - loved walking in the old neighborhood and seeing how it looks now - pretty similar, actually. I walked where my mom used to run back in the 1980s, and where I tried to run with her so long ago (and gave up because it was too hard!).

Anyway, I've got a plane to catch so must go!

Tuesday, October 23, 2012

more cross-training

Yesterday I did the elliptical for 45 minutes. Today, I was in the mood for a change, so I took a spinning class. I wanted to get some interval cardio work in, as I haven't been able to do any track workouts. I figured it couldn't hurt and might help.

As usual, spinning was tough. I mean, OK, it's only as tough as you make it, but I make it tough. When the instructor says add resistance, I add, and I don't start easy. Interestingly, I find that when spinning my perceived exertion is much higher for the same heart rate than when I'm walking. Today, when my HR was 160, I felt I was really dying! When I'm walking that feels hard but not that hard. I'd say that if I add about 10 to what my HR is spinning then it feels the same as walking. 160 spinning feels like 170 walking.

So it was a good hard workout. I was dripping with sweat when I was done, and it didn't hurt my hamstring/butt/whatever it is that is hurting.

Sunday, October 21, 2012

catching up again

Been a while since I blogged. I have been cross-training pretty much every day; usually I do the elliptical for 45-50 minutes, and a few days I've lifted weights too.

Yesterday I decided to walk 10K, as my left hip has been feeling better. I've confused my coach by using the term hip, when really, it's the left side of my backside. OK, for lack of a better word (sorry mom...I know, I know), it's my left butt-cheek. I am 95% sure it's my hamstring at the top where it attaches, and coach thinks now that we've had time to chat on Facebook a bit that it is probably a bit of tendonitis there. That makes perfect sense to me based on where it hurts, when it hurts (only when racewalking, and only after quite a while), and when it doesn't hurt (when sitting, it doesn't ache - hence not piriformis).

Anyway. I did great for the 10K yesterday - was super fast, and felt quite good until about 9K (with a fair amount of stretching along the way just as a precaution) when my glutes tired and then the hamstring started to hurt. That's lots better than last weekend when it hurt a lot sooner and it really slowed me down. Yesterday I was fast, finishing 10K in 60:51 with ave HR 143. Not bad at all if I could have kept going; it wouldn't have held for 30K yesterday though.

However, coach thinks it's possible that with another week I could possibly make it through 30K. He's trying to talk me into at least starting the race and just getting a DNF if I can't make it. I'm thinking about it.

Today I walked about 5.5K of casual walking along the Jordan River Parkway with my friend Nancy, who was doing the second of two back-to-back marathons. Yup, she did one yesterday and one today. Wow! Our friend Diane was doing the second race along with Nancy. I just walked with them for a short while; they were taking it nice and slow for obvious reasons, and that was perfect for me. My leg was fine - it got a little tight maybe but didn't hurt. I could tell it was slightly tired but no pain whatsoever, so that was good.

After that I headed to church and after church I had to work for about 20-30 min in the lab and then went to the gym to do the elliptical for 30 min before going to my parents' house to cook and clean for them. Whew. Busy day. Back at home now and it's bedtime! Elliptical and some weights beckon in the morning.

Sunday, October 14, 2012


I cross-trained yesterday and Friday, and tried to rest my hip. I was hoping that I'd do well today; Jim had told me to do 20K today if possible.

It was nice out: 46F (8C) and calm and clear. I got started and felt decent for about 5K. However, that didn't last long. I did the first 5K in 31:10 or so, but then my hip really started to hurt and while I was able to walk, I was much slower and knew I'd have to stop at 10K (I was doing 5K loops). I was very disappointed, but not terribly surprised. I made it to 10K in a slow 1:04 for 6:20/km with ave HR just 139 because of how slowly I had to go and how much I stopped to stretch.

I think I'm done for the season. I could keep pushing, but it doesn't seem wise at this time. I'm not 100% for sure writing the race off, but unless my hip is a lot better very soon, it's clear that I won't be able to do it.

Amazingly, I feel at peace about this. It just seems right to stop pushing. I have to rest anyway, because I obviously can't train like this, and so I'll cross-train this week and maybe try another walk after 5-6 days. However, I am pretty sure that I'll be volunteering at the race instead of racing.


In other news, my coach's brother died early this morning. I'm very sad for him and for his parents especially. His brother had a degenerative neurological disorder and they had known for a while that he was not going to make it, but that doesn't make it any easier for the family. I wish I lived closer so that I could do more for them. At the very least I can keep them in my thoughts and prayers.


My mom continues to improve after breaking her tibia badly two weeks ago. She is feeling better now and can get around the house OK with her walker. She won't be able to drive or to walk for 5 more weeks, but I'm helping out around the house and lots of friends have brought meals to my parents, so they are managing OK. It's not been easy for them, but they are getting by.


All of this puts racewalking more in perspective. It's one race, and if I can't do it, so what? No big deal. I'm still healthy and in good shape, and I can train more next year. There's always another race :).

Thursday, October 11, 2012

muscle spasm

Yesterday I did cross-training (elliptical) to try and recover from Tuesday's disastrous 15K. I honestly felt pretty good by this morning when I arrived at the track. It was very dark at 5:45 am, but it was pretty warm at 55F (about 12C) and I warmed up well. My left glutes were definitely tired from Tuesday (I probably shouldn't have done the last 3k of that workout), but I figured I'd be all right. And I was...for a while.

I was to do 3x2k and 4x500m with 2' rest. I started on the first 2k, and felt decent, completing it in 11:01 (I thought it was 10:59 when I talked to my coach, but it was actually 11:01) feeling pretty strong and knowing I'd have enough for the rest of the workout. I took my 2 min rest and stretched my left leg because it felt stiff. Guess what? It was really stiff and sore, as I found out when I started the next 2k. I made it 500m in 2:46 before it hurt quite a bit and I had to stop and stretch again. I thought I'd do another 500m and see if it loosened up at all. It didn't. After a slow 2:52 500m, it got worse, and I was almost limping, so I called it quits reluctantly.

Coach thinks it's my piriformis. It probably is; hard for me to tell for sure. I went to the gym and did the foam roller for a bit, and did the elliptical for a little to loosen it up, which helped somewhat.

I texted my coach, and because of the time difference, he was asleep (6:30 am here = 11:30pm in Melbourne these days). He did call me as soon as he woke up, and we talked for a while. This race could really go one of two ways for me: I'm in good shape, and when I'm fresh I've had fast workouts. However, I've been really sore and am not quite recovered from the 40K. If I recover by then, I could still have a really fast race. But if not, the last 10K of the 30K could be very ugly. And it could go either way - no one really knows what will happen. Jim still thinks I should do the race, and I am inclined to do it since I've done most of the training, and I was going to travel anyway for my HS reunion. But part of me is very afraid...

So, because of all this, I've earned myself a few more days of cross-training, followed by 20K on Sunday instead of our planned 25K on Saturday. Bummer. I really wanted to do 25K before the race. Jim says that the training I had this summer will carry me through the distance, as long as I'm recovered enough. He's usually right, so here's hoping.

Garmin data here.

Tuesday, October 09, 2012

15K slog


This hurt.

A lot.

The weather was perfect (46F, 8C) but my legs were not. They were sore from yesterday, especially my left glutes.

I made it to 10K in an OK time despite my heavy and sore legs, even 13K not so bad, but the last 2K my legs totally gave up. Seriously. It was like they were dead. I could barely racewalk.

Mentally, this whole workout was a huge struggle. I wanted to quit. But I only have one more week of really hard training leading up to the 30K, and I've put in too much now to quit. If my 25th high school reunion wasn't the same weekend as the 30K, though, I probably would bail on the 30K now. I just don't see this ending well. I should trust my coach, though. He's almost always right about everything and he does see it ending well. I'm tired today and not thinking clearly so probably should not think so much :).

Total time: 1:35:04 for 6:20/k with ave HR 145. 5K splits: 30:36, 31:34, 32:54 (!).

Garmin data here.

Monday, October 08, 2012

10k fartlek

Yesterday was a much-needed rest day. I was sore from my 20K, and it was good to rest from exercising. However, I did go over to my parents' house and clean and cook for them, since my mom is still pretty incapacitated from her hiking adventure.


Today I was still somewhat sore when I woke up, and I had a 10K fartlek to do. Well, no getting around that one. It was chilly outside but not too bad; 41F (5C) and calm and clear. I warmed up for 1600m with strides (9:35) plus did dynamic stretching. Then I got going on the fartlek. I felt great for the first 1km and the first 500m recovery and then I started to feel pretty lousy. My times weren't great - most of the fast 500s were 2:50-2:51 and after the first two, the recoveries were slow too - 3:04, 3:05, even 3:08 :(. Still, they weren't terrible times, and were far from the slowest I've done. My legs just felt tired today - by 5km the analogy that came to mind was that they felt like hamburger. I'm proud that I still worked it really hard and gave it my all and finished strong. I did actually feel a little better by the end - I didn't have that completely trashed feeling and my last 500 was controlled and strong, if not fast.

My legs are really tired now, though...and I have 15km tomorrow. Suck it up, buttercup!

Total time 58:43 (hey, that was my PR for a it's not like it was slow - just slower than I'd like right now) and average HR 159. HR lower than usual on this workout, as you'd expect from a fit person whose legs are sore.

Garmin data here.

Saturday, October 06, 2012


This one was better than I thought it might be. My legs were pretty darn sore yesterday, and were still sore this morning when I woke up, though a little better than yesterday. I thought this might be disastrous, but it went OK.

The weather was chilly but lovely: calm, clear, and 45F (7C) to start and 55F (13C) when I was done. I wore capris and a long-sleeved shirt but wished I'd worn shorts and a short-sleeved shirt, because the sun was warm. It was a gorgeous day, though!

I felt very good to start, and was surprised at how fast I was going for an easy effort. I was concerned that I went out too fast, but it IS a slight downhill, and I really did feel I took it easy. I didn't slow too much later, so I think it was OK. I felt a bit tired around 8K or so, but then perked right up and felt my technique really kicking in. I don't know how else to explain it, but I just felt like it was suddenly more correct and more fluid. It was great! I felt pretty good until 17K and then the wheels fell off a bit, and I was pretty tired on the last 3K, which was a slight uphill. My 5K splits weren't bad at all though: 29:41, 31:17, 30:50, and 31:41. Total time was 2:03:28 for 6:10/km with ave HR 148.

My hip was mostly OK; I did have to stop and stretch a lot but that was more for my glutes and hamstrings than for my hip, for which I was thankful.

All in all, a pretty good workout. Whew. Only 3 weeks until the 30K - it's coming up so fast. I'm not sure I'll be as ready as I want to be, but it's not because I didn't try.

Garmin data here.

Friday, October 05, 2012

10K w/2x5' @20K pace

I was hoping I wouldn't be sore after yesterday's workout, but I was. By last night I was stiff and a bit achy in my glutes. This morning, my first few steps were accompanied by "Ow ow ow ow" as I worked out the soreness.

We are having a cool snap and fall is definitely in the air. It was 43F (6C) this morning and calm and clear. Definitely chilly - tights, long-sleeved shirt, and gloves were in order, but once those were on it was quite comfortable outside.

I felt OK for the first 6K or so. I did my first 5 minute burst at 20K pace starting at 2.5k, and felt reasonably fast, doing 500m in 2:49 without working too terribly hard. But after 6K all bets were off. My second burst felt much harder and my 500m time was only 2:58. My legs hurt a lot from there to the end of the 10K. I slowed down a lot, too, but was still almost a minute faster than last week, which is good I guess.

I hope my legs feel better quickly. I really need to do 20K tomorrow.

Total: 1:01:56 for 6:12/km with ave HR 145.

Garmin data here.

Thursday, October 04, 2012

3x2k, 4x500

I was quite apprehensive about this workout. Yesterday I felt fairly rotten/tired from the second cold I've been battling. Runny nose, sore throat, and fatigue were dogging me. I went to the gym and did 30 min on the elliptical, hoping it would help, but it really didn't make me feel better; if anything I felt worse and wished I hadn't done it (one of those very rare cases where a workout doesn't make you feel better). At least I didn't have the 24-hr stomach flu like my boss, who had to go home sick yesterday - and he almost NEVER goes home sick unless he's half-dead, so you know that one was bad.

I woke up feeling pretty good this morning, though. I felt well-rested from the night's sleep, and had just a bit of a runny nose and that was it. The weather was lovely - 48F (9C) at home (though the car thermometer said 44F at the track), calm, and clear. I wore gloves and a long-sleeved shirt for the first time this season, though I did ditch the gloves after a couple 2k repeats. It was really dark, too, and stayed dark until I was almost done.

I warmed up for 1600m in about 9:30 and felt good on the warm-up. I did my dynamic stretching and then started the workout. The first 2K didn't feel too hard, and I was fast! Under 11 min, with 10:59.5! "Good," I thought. Now to keep that pace. I had 2 min rest between all the intervals today, and after my rest started again. I still felt good, to my surprise, and pulled off a 10:58.5. I was feeling pretty strong, and did the third 2k in 10:57.5. I worked that last one pretty hard, but I felt strong and good. Now for my 500s. I kept waiting for the workout to fall apart, but it didn't happen. All summer that's been the case because of the heat, but today it was just so nice and cool! My 500s were no problem. Yes, I did work them hard, but they were really fast and I felt good. I did them in 2:36.9, 2:35.8, 2:35.4, and 2:34.9.

What a relief! A good workout, finally. Now I can begin to feel a little more excited about the 30k. Hopefully this workout didn't take too much out of me and I'll be up for a good 20k on Saturday. I expect it will be fine.

Garmin data here.

Tuesday, October 02, 2012


I still have a few symptoms from my current cold: mostly congestion and runny nose with a little fatigue. The sore throat is gone and I never felt really lousy like I did with the cold before the 40K. I still didn't wake up eager to go, that's for sure, especially after how tough a slog 15K was on Saturday. But the weather was really nice at 55F (13C) and clear and calm, and that made it easier to get out there.

The walk itself went OK. It was much better than Saturday's 15K, and that showed in the time. 5K splits: 30:38, 31:31, 31:40. Total time 1:33:49 for 6:15/km with ave HR 143. I wasn't dying at the end like on Saturday, and could have done another 5K without too much problem, so hopefully 20K this Saturday will be all right.

The only problem I did have was that my right hip started to bother me again - I am pretty sure it's the piriformis, and it hurt more going uphill (even on a very gradual slope) than downhill. It helped to think of using my left glutes more and also making sure I brought my right knee through low, but that didn't eliminate the discomfort. Stretching periodically (every few km at the end) helped a lot. Hopefully this won't worsen as I train more over the next few weeks.

I'm not too sore now; just a little bit as I'd normally expect. Maybe this week won't be so bad?

Garmin data here.

Monday, October 01, 2012


My coach changed my workouts to make them easier for a few days so that I could recover better. Good timing, too, as I got another cold virus; this time a minor one, but still enough to slow me down a bit. I've got a minor sore throat, some congestion, and tinnitus in my left ear.

Today I had cross-training (instead of the originally planned 10K fartlek). I opted for 30 min on the elliptical plus biking up the big hill to work (~21 minutes today). I'll bike to the kids' school this afternoon to get them and we'll do some skating practice I think.

Oh, and yesterday was a rest day.

I feel pretty good today - the soreness from Saturday's 15K is pretty much gone, so I think I'm ready for 15K tomorrow.

Saturday, September 29, 2012


Good thing my coach is so good. He knew today would be tough. I was assigned 20K, but he told me on Thursday that if I didn't have it not to do the full 20K, and that it wouldn't matter much for the 30K race. Well, he was right, and it was really hard today. My legs were still very sore from Thursday's workout, and by 6.5k they were not only sore but really tired, too. I still managed a better pace than Tuesday's 12K, so it could have been worse! Plus, it was a lovely morning (50F or 10C to start, sunny, clear) and it was SO nice to be outside. I enjoyed that much even if the walk itself really hurt. I *could* have done 5K more, but with the week ahead...yeah, not a good idea. It would have really hurt - I was slowing down quite a lot and my legs were done.

5K splits: 31:38, 32:07, 32:53 for 1:36:38; 6:27/km average pace; ave HR 138.

Garmin data here.


Yesterday: cross-training (elliptical), abs/core/stretching with Lisa, plus biking to work.


Also of note - my mom was hiking yesterday in Little Cottonwood Canyon with my aunt, who's visiting from Dallas, TX. My mom fell and fractured her tibia badly; it took the paramedics almost 8 hours to get her down from the trail. They were on the Red Pine trail and were several miles from the trailhead when she fell, and she had to be carried down since she couldn't walk (of course!). She had surgery at 3:30 am this morning and is doing OK now. She'll be in the hospital a few more days, so I'm off to visit her soon.

Thursday, September 27, 2012

10K kickdown

The first week back in training continues to be painful, as expected. Today's workout was a 10K kickdown, and I drove to the track with some apprehension. To make things more complicated, the high school cross country team was there for part of the time (up until about 5km of my workout) and I had to RW in lane 2 for a while because they were doing 400m intervals. Bummer. At least the weather was good; it was lovely at 57F (14C) and clear and calm.

In the first 400m I knew I was in trouble today. I was really stiff and sore, and felt I was walking through mud, with heavy, tired legs. It a lot of concentration to maintain 3:10/500m (6:20/k) to start, as my coach and I had agreed upon. I did 15:44 for the first 2.5km, 6 seconds under the goal of 15:50. Then I had to really focus to speed it up to 3:05/500m. I pulled a couple 3:06s and a 3:05 and then a 3:10 and I groaned inwardly and tried to refocus. I'm ashamed to admit that I nearly quit the workout at several points today. Mentally, I was not in the zone at all, and I kept doubting myself. Why did I need to do the 30K? I could just quit now and spare myself all the hard training, which might go all for nothing again like the 40K. Similar thoughts bombarded me and I couldn't push them away effectively. I finally told myself to take it 500m at a time and just go from there, and managed a 3:01, but I was still only halfway through the workout. The second 2.5km was 15:30, 5 seconds slower than the goal.

Somehow I kept going and managed to go faster. I told myself I could quit if I still wanted to when I got to 7.5km. I did 3:01, 3:01, 3:01, 2:57, and 3:01 for the next 500s, getting to 7.5km in 15:01, only 1 second shy of my goal. I stopped for about 30 seconds to give myself a pep talk and to mentally refocus, as I was doubting everything so much. I don't know how I managed to start again, but I did it, and oddly enough, when I asked for leg speed, there was something there! Strangely, the last 2.5km wasn't so terrible. I felt lousy, true, but had some strength despite that. It was weird. I managed 2:54.0, 2:52.5, 2:54.7, 2:55.2 and 2:51.3 for a last 2.5K time of 14:27.7. That is not even close to my best, but you know, considering how lousy I felt today, breaking 14:30 felt like an amazing accomplishment.

Finishing was the real accomplishment today, though. I felt so mentally weak, and it actually scared me a bit. Time to firm up my desire and motivation and picture some positive results from all this hard work. That's difficult to do following a bad race, but it's what I need to do if I'm going to do well at the 30K. So much of this is in your head.

Total time: 1:00:43

Garmin data here.

Wednesday, September 26, 2012

10K w/2x5' @20K pace

Today was better. Not great, but better. I could tell in the first few steps that it would be better - my hamstrings didn't seize up! The weather was lovely at 54F (12C) and calm and clear.

I got to 5K in just under 31 minutes, which is slower than usual for this route, but only by 30-45 seconds. Not bad, given the muscle soreness.

My two 5-min bursts were starting at 2.5km and 6.5km. I did both in 2:54 for the first 500m, which is pretty close to 20K pace. Slower than the effort that it took, though! It felt a lot harder than that. My legs were pretty heavy, as you'd expect.

Tomorrow is a 10K kickdown...that should be interesting...

Garmin data here.

Tuesday, September 25, 2012

slow 12K

I knew this would be hard, but I didn't think it would be THIS hard. My legs (hamstrings and glutes) and abs (obliques mostly) are SO very sore from yesterday's track workout.

When I woke up it was dark (yes, back to working out in the dark since it's fall) and it was raining. Funny, I didn't remember much rain in the forecast. At least it wasn't too cold; it was 54F (12C). I wore shorts and a T-shirt with my rain jacket and baseball cap. Not sure the rain jacket actually did too much, as I was completely soaked when I got home, but it did keep me warmer than without it. I kind of wished I had capris on instead of shorts, too.

The first few steps were painful! For about 10 strides I don't think I could fully straighten my legs, and my hamstrings were screaming. After that it got better, but I was (predictably) very, very slow. Despite what my coach said about this being a hard week, I still had to keep pushing out the negative thoughts, "You aren't going to be ready for 30K in 5 weeks - are you crazy?" was just the starter. I tried to shut them up and to be positive and think of something else, but it wasn't easy. Logically, I know that this week will be tough but that I have a good base and that my strength and endurance will return quickly. However, on an emotional level, it's not so easy.

Though tempted to cut the workout short, I didn't. I did the whole thing. My left hip gave a twinge or two, as did my right hip and right IT band, but nothing serious I don't think.

Yeah, this is going to be a long, hard week of racewalking. But I'm tough enough to stick it out.

Total: 1:20:20 for 6:42/km with ave HR 139.

Garmin data here.

Monday, September 24, 2012

catching up; 5x1km

It's been 10 days since I've posted. Yikes! Well, all I've been doing (mostly) is cross-training, though I did walk last Sunday. I did 6.3km around Liberty Park in a nice fast 37:45 (6:00/km). I was pushing a little, but it was mostly easy and an enjoyable walk. (Garmin data for that here).

So, catching up:
Friday the 14th - 10K with Kelly, then biked to work
Saturday the 15th - elliptical
Sunday the 16th - RW around Liberty Park 6.3K
Monday 17th - elliptical, biked to work
Tuesday 18th - biked to work twice (went in early to do some stuff and decided to bike extra instead of elliptical)
Wednesday 19th - elliptical
Thursday 20th - elliptical, biked to work
Friday 21st - elliptical, abs, biked to work
Saturday 22nd - elliptical, then biked 10K while Kelly walked (I took video of Kelly for Jim)
Sunday 23rd - rest day prior to starting hard training again!


Today it was time to start training again. I was NOT looking forward to it at all. Training after a layoff is hard, and I feel like I'm just regaining my equilibrium after doing the 40K and then having 2 weeks to get my life back in order. I do want to do the 30K, though, and so I have to train. Fortunately it's only for 3 hard weeks and 2 medium-easy weeks. Coach thinks I can break 3 hr for the 30K *IF* all the stars align and everything goes just right. Attainable, but with some luck and a very good race day. I'll be happy with a good race where I feel strong to the finish, unlike the 40K. I may or may not get that, but here's hoping.

Knowing it was going to hurt, I drove to the track. At least the weather was nice - 63F and 63% humidity. Perfect. (Threatening rain - fall is here! It did rain on me a tiny bit on my subsequent bike ride up to work). I warmed up and felt pretty smooth for having had a few weeks off. I did my warm-up 1600m in 9:27 with 2x100m strides. After doing my dynamic stretching, I got started on the workout, hoping it wouldn't hurt too much. Ha! But you know, for 2 weeks off, it wasn't so bad. It felt bad, and I was slower than I have been, but it wasn't deathly slow for the most part.

Here were my splits: 5:27.2, 5:24.4, 5:26.5, and then it hurt more... 5:37.4, 5:34.4. On the last one, I just made it my goal to try and go faster than the 4th one. I did that by 3 seconds, but it was really hard. HR was up in the low 170s at the end of the last few.

Glad it's done. Next week's workouts will be a bit better I'm sure. My coach called me after the workout and I was glad he did. I needed the pep talk. He was happy with this and thought it was faster than he'd expected, and pointed out that fast twitch muscles lose it pretty fast, but come back pretty fast as well.

Garmin data here.