Sunday, September 30, 2012

Weekly Summary - 9/8 to 9/22/2012 (Smoky Mountain Vacation)

These 2 weeks were our annual vacation, which once again took us to the Great Smoky Mountains.   Last year Debbie only had one week off and the 2nd week was Tom and me hiking the AT (see last years post).

The following are my runs and hikes in the Smokys. 
All time is total time, which includes rest, camera and lunch breaks. 
All runs and hikes were in either Brooks 7 or Salomon crossmax. 
For the first time in years NO foot pain and no bottom of foot soreness from all the pointy rocks!! 
Thank You Mettler Center!!

9/8  Saturday - 1 mile/ 0 running w/  300' elev gain
Travel 8.5 hours to Look Rock observation tower for typical 1st hike,  up .5 mile and down.  Very cloudy today, no views.

9/9   Sunday - 12.4 miles/ 3.8 running w/ 2106' elev gain
8AM - since my favorite easy to get to trail, Chestnut Top, is closed due to storm damage I decided to run up/down Schoolhouse Gap trail.  Its a wide horse trail, former logging road, goes up a little over 500' in 2 miles.   This was to be my main running trail of the vacation.  It was a 15 min drive from cabin.
60min @ 130/153 for 4.4 miles, 3.8 running in 50 mins w/ 622' elev gain.

2PM - Debbie has been fighting a cold so while she napped I hiked up Bote Mtn. Trail 1h23m up then 1h13m down = 8 miles = 1484' elev gain

Nice first day, except for Debbie being sick.  Had great weather.  72 in pm and sun, 55 in am.

9/10 - Monday - 8.3 miles/3.7 running w/ 1582' elev gain
am- run/walk up Bote mtn trail and back down 59mins @ 132/150 w/ 725' gain
pm- drove to Kephart Prong trail for hike of 2h 45 min total which includes rest breaks, camera breaks and lunch breaks.  nice easy hike to get Debbie back from her cold.  she feels lots better.

9/11 - Tuesday - 12 miles/4.8 running w/ elev gain of 3599'
am- 5.4 miles West Prong trail, walk 5 mins, run 72mins out/back, walk 5, gain 1254'
noon- 6.6 miles hike AT at Clingmans Dome go out/back to double springs gap shelter in 5h 6min total, saw many hikers and back packers, so fun talking to all.  the shelter deer paid us a visit.  nice views of NC and TN.  gain 2345'

9/12 - Wednesday - 11.4 miles/ 0 running w/ 4203' elev gain
am - Mt LeConte up Alum Cave trail, our favorite hike, great views
7h 23 mins total, many people on the trail.

9/13 - Thursday - 13.5 miles/4,5 running w/ 2518' elev gain
7am- was going to run up Lead Cove trail but there were 2 bears at the trailhead telling me otherwise, so I when to Schoolhouse gap to repeat Sunday's up and down.  60 mins @ 133/152 for 4.75miles
11:30am - hike Abrams Falls, a moderate hike in 2h 35m @86 HR for 5.2 miles...nice recovery hike after yeasterday.
3:30pm - I hiked up Lead Cove trail w/ good effort for a steep 1.8 miles up then down 1.8 (while Debbie read her book in the woods with the 2 bears!!).   65 mins @ 133/152 w/ gain of 1309'.
Fun day!!

9/14 - Friday - 12 miles/ 0 running w/ 5060' elev gain
am - Mt Cammerer fire "lookout" tower at over 5000'
drive to Cosby campground, hike steep up to AT continue to lookout tower just off AT.  Meet "Hans" from Gemany who was hiking the AT north to south.  nice views down to I-40 interstate.
(Interesting side note: As we drove back to our cabin we drove thru Piegon Forge to buy Debbie a book and got stuck in the "Hot Rod" show along the highway.  There were 1000's of people setting in lawn chairs on the sidewalks watching our Toyota Corolla drive down the road at 5 miles per hour.)

9/15 - Saturday - 7.2 miles/ 6.6 running w/ 1113' elev gain
am - run TurkeyPen ridge trail out/back 3.6 miles, nice solid running the ups and down.  run for 95 mins, heavy sweat but cool.
pm- drove to Fontana Dam and kayak on lake for 2 hours + swimming.  drove the 11 mile/318 curve "tail of the dragon" highway with all the motorcylces.
Feel a cold coming.

Summary week 1 : 77 miles/ 22.5 running w/ 20,000' elev gain
(except for my "cold" I already feel much stronger)

Typical day:
7am up - run/walk 60-90 mins
9am- eat eggs/toast/milk
10am- day hike of 4- 9 hours 4-16 miles
lunch on trail - peanut butter sandwich + protein bar and water
7pm-supper of meat/rice/rolls/juice/veg drinks/popcorn/snack cakes

9/16 Sunday - 8 miles/ 0 running w/ 2411' elev gain
am - day hike ramsey cascades, a nice waterfall over rocks.  meet 2 couples on the hike.  always a tougher hike than you think.  5h 20 mins total....very humid day

9/17 - Monday - 4.3 miles/3.7 running w/  500' elev gain
am - schoolhouse gap, run up 1.7/go down 2
pm-rain day, so go to visitor center,NOC store and get take out food for eating at the cabin

9/18 - Tuesday -  8 miles/0 running w/ elev gain of 1401'
am- heavy rain over night, rivers raised 3-4', drive around Cades Cove
pm-decide to hike in rain at Tremont, middle prong trail up 4 miles to waterfall, very fun, moderate grade going up, found falls, and then started heavy rain, great hike, we have never been on the trails during a rain and the trail/rivers filled with run-off water.  At trailhead we met 2 UT students getting ready to go kayaking down the very rapped middle prong river.  They were having a bad day atschool so decided to go kayaking since they knew the rains would raise the rivers big time.  After chatting, they asked if we would drive there jeep down the 3 mile gravel road to the tremont parking lot so they would not have to hike back up.  Of course we did this.  This water was a  crazy class 4 of 5 rappants.  Hope they made it okay.

9/19 - Wednesday - 16 miles/ 0 running w/ 5186' elev gain, nice weather day
am- hike to Mt LeConte again via Trillum Gap trail (the long way) then down Rainbow.  Debbie's longest day ever 16 miles and 9 hours....good cloudy views and pretty basically go downhill for 4000' in 6.6 miles
We saw the Lama's going down.

9/20 - Thursday - 13 miles/ 1  running w/ 3500' elev gain
am- This was the day I decided to do the "Vertical kilometer", which is going up 1000 meters (3281') in as short a distance as possible.  I got this idea even since I saw you tube video's of these in Europe (see LeFully).  Technically I've done several vertical K's but not hard or as fast as I could.  I did not want to drive far as the distance was going to tak along time any way without the extra driving.  So I decided to start at Lead Cove trailhead, which was only a 15 min drive from the cabin.  Elevation here was 1800' and I would go mainly up Bote Mt. trail to the AT to Jenkins Ridge at approx 5000'+.  This distance per NPS maps is 5 miles.  After yesterday's long day I was not sure how my legs would feel and this trailhead also had bears there twice in 7 days, which I did not want to deal with.

So, at 8:10am I was at the trailhead, NO bears, so i was good to go, but my legs were not fresh so I decided to go as fast as I could without doing something stupid like turn an ankle or completely exhaust myself and be miles from my car and without the possiblity of seeing another person.  I had a rain jacket around my waste and no water ( I knew of a realible spring at 4500')

So, I went for it, hiking hard the first flatest up sections at lead cove, then it gets real steep to 1.8Miles (800'/mile).  I get there 5 mins quicker than a trail run last week.  Not bad.  I do not feel complete numbness in my legs.  The next 1.2 miles is a little flatter for 2 sections, which I try to run, but then gets real steep real quickly (850'/mile).  So far I went 2300' in 56 mins and I felt okay, within myself.  The next section was the easiest, 1.7 miles to the AT, about 588'/mile.  At the AT, at 4.7 miles with an estimated 3300' elev gain, I  had my vertical kilometer, but wanted to do the full 5 miles to be sure.  I pressed on with burning thighs another .3 miles to Jenkins Ridge Trail for 5 miles in 1h 37 min 50 sec w/ 3414' elev gain and a HR avg of 146/ max of 154.

my splits:

Lead Cove TH to Bote Mt = 1.8miles in 32:22 in 142/152Hr
Anthony Creek = 1.2 miles in 23:49 in 147/153Hr
Appl. Trail (AT) = 1.7 miles in 35:33 in 148/154Hr
Jenkins Ridge = .3 miles in 6:06 in 142/153

The trails were peppered with rocks but not the high step type bloulder rocks so it easy to get into a groove speed hiking.

Total:  5 miles with 3414' elev gain in 1:37:50  @ 146/154Hr

This was lots of fun.  On the way down I meet a north bound AT hiker "Ben".  I told him of Matt, from this area who is hiking south bound and to tell him Jeff from Mahomet says "hi".

Note:  it took me 1h 38 min to go down, same as up.  I took it easy going down.  I did not want to hurt myself while tired.

PM - we hiked a few miles in Cades Cove and saw a bear on rich mt trail.  Debbie got her best bear photo ever, she said.

9/14 - Friday - 11.4 miles/ 0 running w/ 5061' elev gain
am - we hiked to Gregory Bald 5.7 miles up to 5000' for great views of Cades Cove.  This was fun relaxing hard/easy hike.  Hard because of steep consistant up but easy because of nice footing with fewer rcoks.  took 7h 9 mins with a nice rest on top.  meet a lone young backpacker and a young newly married couple.  nice talking to them.  easy walk down.  a very nice last hike of vacation.  We sort of do not talk about that.

9/15 - Saturday - 5.6 miles/ 3.7 running w/ 800' gain
8 am- last run at schoolhouse gap run up1.7 in 22:22 at 144/160 and 2miles down in 20:15 in 149 hr.  total of 42:37 for 3.7 miles, 7mins 30 sec faster than at beginning of vacation.

10am- travel home...go by Look Rock for last hike, up .5mile/down

Total for week 2 = 66 miles/ only 8.4 running w/ 18,800' elev gain.

All in all, a great 2 weeks in the mountains.

Weekly Summary - 9/2 to 9/7/2012

9/2  Sunday - 6 miles/2.7 running
am- hilly route

9/3   Monday - 13 miles/ 10running
am - 10 x 1 mile on bike pace (see previous post)

9/4   Tuesday - 5 miles/ 3.1 running -recovery/easy day

9/5   Wednesday - 6 miles/ 3.8 running - easy

9/6   Thur - 10 miles/ 7 running
am - 8xGoat hills

9/7   Friday - 0  miles/ 0  running - go to work early and get ready for vacation

9/8  Saturday - travel day to Smoky Mountains - drive 525miles in 8h 30mins
...see next post for 2 week vacation summary

Weekly totals = 40  miles/ 26 running

tired week after Monday's very hard workout

Monday, September 3, 2012

Workouts: Speed and Marathon Pace

I love to do certain workouts over and over again as a gage to fitness.  One session I have not been able to very often is short speed work, 200's or 400's or even strides.  My feet and knees would rebel.  Every once in awhile I would try a speed session, especially the last couple years as my injuries have gotten better.  Same result, so I would stop.  This was smart.

This last week I was able to a speed session without pain and without pain in the days after.  Then today I did a marathon type workout , mile repeats with 3-4min rest

First, the speed session.  Okay the following workout is all reality as to speed.  For me, its all about FEELING smooth fast and relaxed.  (for the record I used to be able to do 8x200meteres in 33-34sec with 200m walk and as recent as 2003 did 8x.1Mile in 37 sec).  So, on Wednesday morning I warmed up 2 miles then ran 5 x 1/10 mile on bike path in 49-45 sec, about 8-7:30 pace.  Result was good smooth relaxed running and NO pain.  Nice.  I hope to do a simple session like this once a week, either Wednesday or Sat/Sun, with the other days being a short hill session.

Now, the marathon work out today with Gregg.  With Issac's humidity still in the air (dew pt high 70's) I knew the workout would be tough.  Instead of the planned 10 mile cont run at 11:30+, Gregg agreed to my suggested 10 x 1mile at about 11:00pace and faster (according to how we feel). we would rest 3-4mins walking around.  Since the bike path is 3.3 miles out, it makes for nice way to do 6 mile repeats with .1mile between.  The path has easier miles and harder miles, a gradual up and down path, not bad for rolling terrain in central illinois.  It offers perfect footing and accurate course marking every .1mile.

Here's the stats on the workout:  10 x 1 mile in 11:00 or a little faster based on feel ( I wear a HRM but do not use it to guide my work out today, only to record what I did....I like to run a certain pace/effort and see how it relates to my HR)

warmup walk: .4 mile in 7:42 @77 hr average
mile 1 - (0 to 1) 10.24 @ 135avg/143max....3 min rest/walk .1M down to 99- easy effort, down/flat
mile 2 - (1.1 to 2.1) 10.07@142/148...3.08 min rest/walk down to 110 - easy, down/flat, hard to go slower
mile 3 - (2.2 to 3.2) 10.37 @ 148/153.....4 min rest/walk/bathroom down to 126, flat/uphill, good
mile 4 - (3.3 to 2.3) 10.16@ 152/159....3.14 min res/ down to 121....more downhill/flat
mile 5 - (2.2 to 1.2) 10.26 @ 154/159 ...3.06 min rest/walk down to 120...flat/up...getting hot/Humid
mile 6 - (1.1 to .1) 10.50 @ 156/162...3.31 min rest/walk (actaul more like 5mins rest, I talked to a friend and stopped watch) down 123.  This one was mostly uphill and was tough, sun came out.  I noticed I was getting tired in the quads, but not sore.
mile 7 - (0 to 1) 10.27 @ 153/158....3.09 min rest/ down to 123....surprised this fast, next one must go slower.
mile 8 - ( 1.1 to 2.1) 10.47 @ 153/159....3.10 min rest/ down to 121....easier but legs getting tired
Now we turned around so we are heading back.  I must admit these next 2 miles would have been easy to walk, not run, so having Gregg there really pushed me along mentally.
mile 9 - (2.1 to 1.1) 10.48 @156/162 ....3.30 rest/ down to 126...I laid down waiting for gregg(bathroom break)
mile 10 - (1.1 to .1) 10.50 @160/170....Done!!! walked around for 7.42 down to  133

overall average:  10 x 1 mile in 10:33 @ 151hr.....MAX of 170 on last mile repeat.

Felt pretty drained the last 4 miles but this was a good marathon workout.  I have no idea what this means for race pace for shorter races or how this translates to a marathon.  The weather was extreme humidity and high dew point.  I do know the high dew point effected my overall feeling but not sure my times or HR.  A running times article says this on dew point: 
70-74 dew pt= very humid/uncomfortable - expect pace to suffer greatly (maybe the last miles times suffered)
75+ = extreme oppressive - skip workout or alter goal (which I actually did)

These 2 workouts make me feel like a real runner, no matter the pace is so much slower than I used to run.  The effort and the sweat and endrophins are still ALL there.  Maybe I call this a "Special Block" based on the recent Running Times on Kenyan marathon training by coach Renato Canova.

On, my the way, Gregg ran great and his fastest mile was his last at 10.02.  He could have run all of them a lot faster.  He is in good shape.

I have no hard workouts planned for 3 +weeks, just mountain hiking and some solid mountain running as I feel.

Sunday, September 2, 2012

Weekly Summary 8/26 to 9/1/2012

8/26  Sunday - 12.3 miles/11 running
AM - cont long run of 9 miles with gregg on bike path and trails, avg 11:17 pace, good for me, felt easy at start and got harder at end.  I guess thats the way a longer fast run is supposed to be.  PM- ran 2 miles in a heavy downpour, FUN!!!

8/27   Monday - 8 miles/ 3.6  running - recovery day

8/28   Tuesday - 6 miles/ 4.2 running
AM - 4 miles + cont run w/ gregg - okay, 12:26 to 10:48 mile splits, good progressive

8/29   Wednesday - 8.3 miles/ 5.4 running - trying to make this day a short speed pickup day, prefer hills if feet can take it
am- hilly route with 5 x 1 min fast w/ 1 min walks

8/30   Thur - 10 miles/ 6 running
AM - bike path medium to tempo efforts. warm-up 1.7M in 18:48@131 + 3:24 rest walk + 2M in 20:29 @ 144hr.   PM ran early to get back to mow yard before issac arrives

8/31   Friday - 4  miles/ 3.1  running - recovery
AM - ran all of Komen loop at whatever effort I felt like (33:51@136)

9/1  Saturday - 6.2 miles/ 3.6 running
AM- BP loop in 33:40@135hr + 5x .1M speedwork in 49, 47,45,46 w/walk back in 2-2:30.  this felt very good, smooth, relaxed form, never hard, best my legs and ankles felt for this type runs in a long, long time.  we'll see how feel later.

This week I took a couple PM off.  With more cont runs I've been feeling a little more tired.  I'm getting ready for a 10 mile run on Monday so want to feel a little freasher.

Weekly totals = 55  miles/ 35.7 running

August month totals = 283 miles/173.4 running

HUGE month for me, most in a long, long time....I must admit, its too much, but this is the actions of an addicted runner.

ONE week till the mountains!!