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Leaving Neverland

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Re: Leaving Neverland

Post  Michele "1L" Keane on Mon Sep 17, 2012 9:13 am

@JohnP wrote:Don't underestimate what Michele said - iron is critical to long distance runners. I know I have to take an iron supplement as my counts were pretty low, below the threshold. It makes a huge difference in your ability to run.

Mike - I don't like supplements either and I eat red meat, but I still suffer from this deficiency and can't seem to get enough iron any other way. Like I said, you can only eat so many beans and so much spinach Wink .
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Re: Leaving Neverland

Post  Mike MacLellan on Mon Sep 17, 2012 1:53 pm

We did have a brief discussion about eating on the Donner Pass, perhaps not surprisingly.

---

Let's talk DOMF. Not delayed-onset-muscle-soreness, but delayed-onset-muscle-fatigue. Whew. I half-expected this, even though yesterday felt so good and surprisingly fresh. But I wasn't going for 5:30pace intervals yesterday. So that makes a difference.

Warmed up for 3, feeling comfortable again, though not quite as good as yesterday. Then ran 12x 45sec @5:30pace w/ 2:15 recoveries. I took a couple to really dial in that pace, starting around 5:35 and then throwing a 5:20 (oops) for #4. #5-10 were all within a few seconds of that pace except for 1 that I got lazy on and 1 that I made up for it on. Every 4, I made my recovery a bit slower, running 8:0x instead of 7:3x-7:4x. I hammered the last two at 5:18 and 5:19 pace. Then 2mi to cool down.

10.1mi total, 1:15 on the nose.

Two easy days coming up and a progressive long run on Thursday.
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Re: Leaving Neverland

Post  Mike MacLellan on Tue Sep 18, 2012 8:08 pm

Something I love about self-coaching: you can switch your days pretty much at whim. Not that I'd set up 2 hard days back to back, but when you've had a late night and can hardly peel yourself out of bed in the morning, it's nice to swap that 7.5mi run for a 5.5mi one. Besides, after yesterday, the lower miles today felt like the better idea.

So I did 5.52mi in 45min. Nice and easy to let the legs recuperate a bit.
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Re: Leaving Neverland

Post  Mike MacLellan on Wed Sep 19, 2012 2:27 pm

Welp, this week has more or less gone as I thought it would, with that backpacking trip taking over my rest day. Legs are still movin' along, but with no real zip. Fortunately, my speed workout this week was relatively easy, and all I've got left is a progression run, which my legs are much more willing to do.

7.5mi this morning at an easy, putting-in-the-miles effort. After a really slow opening mile (8:40), ran 7:40-7:50 for the remainder, finishing at just sub-8 average. Shrug. I'll take it.

12mi tomorrow. Current plan is 3 warm-up, 4 GA (7:45--->7:00), 2 MP (6:45), 2 tempo (6:30--->6:15), 1 cool.
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Re: Leaving Neverland

Post  Mike MacLellan on Thu Sep 20, 2012 5:51 pm

I'm very happy about today's run. Meaning it went exactly as planned. No, that's a lie. It went better.

For more information:
http://app.strava.com/activities/22624539

That's 3 easy miles, a mile to ease into GA, a pair of GA miles, a mile to ease into MP, 2 MP miles (I guess the last .5mi became tempo?), a tempo mile, a hard tempo mile, and a mile to cool down. Wasn't easy; after all, this is basically a 12mi version of a HH-style tempo. But man, it was rewarding to touch on so many different paces and run every mile faster than the last. The last half-mile was sub-6 with the last quarter around 5:40 pace. There was grunting and teeth gritting involved.

And tomorrow I get to rest. Glorious, glorious rest.
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Re: Leaving Neverland

Post  Mike MacLellan on Sat Sep 22, 2012 2:14 pm

EDIT: I want to expand on all of this a bit.

That was a nice off day. I was able to relax, nap, and stay off my feet for most of it.

In the evening, I went down to the local interpreter group business meeting that occurs every two months. I typically volunteer for this (it's a good way to get recognized in the community as well as get some paperwork for a portfolio/resume). As it's been my goal to meet more of the interpreting and Deaf communities this year, I jumped at the chance to man the food table. See, I'm not good at walking up to people and saying, "Hi, I'm Mike." Just doesn't work. So this way, people can come up to me, ask if they can take food (duh? No, I don't say that...), then we chat briefly (or for 20min) and exchange names. I'm clever like that.

Anyway, the director of my program/one of my teachers was given an interpreter educator award last night. Many people in the community came, told stories about her, etc. It was really neat to see. It also meant that one of my future teachers (who I met and chatted with, as I was working the food table) brought like 300 mini pastries and I ate around 20 of them. Yum.

At the end of the meeting, the president of the organization asked if I'd consider running for the board, since they'll have some vacancies and I'm always around. I don't think I mentioned this, but on Thursday there was a big pro-ASL celebration at the Capitol building, and I worked the SaVRID (our organization) booth for most of the day. That probably helped remind the president of who I am, since I haven't been around all summer. Either way, cool! Going to email her for more info, but I'm glad to see things could be looking up. I also got offered a potential job working with a running group. I think it's more of a couch-to-5k group, but still, interpreting + running? Sweet. Yep, things could be looking up.

---

20 mini pastries + a late night = a tired morning. Isn't this always the case with my Saturday runs? Seems to be. At least I'm used to it, and at least it's only a 6-miler. I'm just excited for it to not be so damn hot. Okay, warm. Sunny. Go away, summer. My neighbor (who lives in Champagne/Urbana) is already posting photos of the caramel apples she's making. It's too hot for those to look appetizing. Hmmph.

Anyway, 6mi at an easy pace - 7:45 average. Just 1sec/mi slower than last week's equivalent run, which shows me I'm not pushing it too hard with my workouts, and I'm recovering well. Good.

Tomorrow, I've got a 10mi run with 12x 1min @5k/2min easy in the middle. Looking forward to that.

---

Lastly, I've got a new post-run meal plan, I think. Throw 1/4C dried lentils in the rice cooker as I walk out the door, run, come back, add some raisins, chopped pear, tomato, spices... Then once it's all cooked up into a thick soup, add a dollop of hummus, a squirt of Sriracha, and mmmmmmmmm. I like this meal.
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Re: Leaving Neverland

Post  mul21 on Sat Sep 22, 2012 2:44 pm

It's perfect in Champaign for caramel apples! I'm headed there for tailgating and football in about a half hour and the high today is supposed to be 60 and lows in the upper 30s. Perfect for football and beer drinking, especially of the pumpkin variety!

That recipe sounds odd to me. A few too many savory/sweet things fighting it out for my liking. Most of the other recipes you've shared I'm totally on board with though!
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Re: Leaving Neverland

Post  Michele "1L" Keane on Sat Sep 22, 2012 4:25 pm

Yum regarding the recipe - add a little curry.
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Re: Leaving Neverland

Post  Mike MacLellan on Sun Sep 23, 2012 1:00 pm

Michele hit it dead on the nose. I did a homemade garam masala made with curry powder, garlic, some extra cumin, cinnamon, and salt. It was delish. Got another batch cooking right now...

Still haven't figured this fartlek/speed thing out, and it's starting to annoy me. I've always done really well with longer intervals (at least 3-5min), but this whole 1min thing is just not working out yet. I can't seem to accelerate fast enough and then hold a steady speed. So, my 12x 1min @5k/2min easy turned into 12x 1min @3-5k/2min easy for the first 9, then I finally was able to reel it in... back to 8k. Felt MUCH smoother and more comfortable at this pace (5:55 vs. 5:30), as my legs were entirely flat for the majority of the run. So #10 and #11 were good, just about on target, and #12 I just hammered for the hell of it.

My next dedicated fartlek/speed workout will probably be 16x 1min @5k w/ 2min recoveries a week from today. Maybe I'll have to hit the track for that one to really dial in the pace.

10.18mi total today.
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Re: Leaving Neverland

Post  Mark B on Sun Sep 23, 2012 1:16 pm

If acceleration is a concern, why not try flooring it on the downhills? I don't know if your route will allow it, but I've found that there's nothing like a slope to make it feel like an F-18 being catapulted off the deck of an aircraft carrier. If nothing else, it might help get your muscles more accustomed to a sudden burst of speed, which could translate back to flatter terrain.
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Re: Leaving Neverland

Post  Mike MacLellan on Mon Sep 24, 2012 2:30 pm

Mark - It's kind of over-acceleration that's my problem, I guess. Plus the Garmin is super laggy in its reaction to bursts of speed, so I never know if I'm on target until about 30sec in, anyway. I did have a few short descents to use as launch pads yesterday, though.

---

I don't know what it is. Some days I'm on; others I feel awful. Today was on. I just cruised an easy 5mi. Dunno. I think it might be mental at this point.

---

Oh, I also discovered orgamic architecture last night. I've made 4 models. (Nerd. What a Face) Might post some photos when they get more complex.
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Re: Leaving Neverland

Post  Mark B on Tue Sep 25, 2012 7:56 pm

Orgasmic what? Oh wait. Nevermind...

You know, if you have premature acceleration problems, a little timed work at the track might help you get a feel for the proper pace. You wouldn't even need to do full laps at speed, as long as you've got the distance correct and know the time you need to hit for the pace you're targeting. Once you've got a better feel for it, it might be easier on the road. Just a thought.
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Re: Leaving Neverland

Post  Mike MacLellan on Tue Sep 25, 2012 9:10 pm

Mark - Whoops, typo on my part, actually! Origamic.* Will work on those pictures. And nice pun transitioning to acceleration... That's exactly the plan. Next speed workout is on the track.

---

7.5mi today. Not cake, not hard. Just putting them in. 7:39 average pace, easy effort. Legs are a little achy.
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Re: Leaving Neverland

Post  Mike MacLellan on Wed Sep 26, 2012 4:51 pm

5mi really easy this morning.

Mentally preparing myself for tomorrow's 2/1/1/1/1 @10k pace. As much as I want to do that first 2 on the streets, I think it's important to hit the track for this entire run to really nail that pace. Next time, when it's 2/2/1/1, I'll do the 2's on the street and the 1's on the track. The last one, 2/2/2 will all be on streets.

With how this week is going, I don't know how easy it'll be to dial in the pace, but I think I can hold it once I'm there. We'll see.
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Re: Leaving Neverland

Post  Dave-O on Wed Sep 26, 2012 5:08 pm

My opinion: Stop worrying so much about the pace on the 1:00 fartleks. Hitting a precise pace isn't the point of the workout. Rather, you just want to force your legs to burst in the middle of a run. The constant pace change and acceleration is the key, not the exact results.
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Re: Leaving Neverland

Post  Mike MacLellan on Thu Sep 27, 2012 1:15 pm

Thanks Dave. I will keep that in mind.

---

And in other news... Yes. Yes, yes, yes. Fucking. Yes.

In a nutshell, breakthrough workout today.

http://app.strava.com/activities/23304293

The "short" version: went out for a 2/1/1/1/1 @10k pace (6:00-6:03) w/ 5/3-4min recoveries.
So my goal splits were 12:06 (6:03, 6:03), 6:00, 6:03, 6:00, <6:00.
Actual splits were 12:04 (6:03, 6:01), 6:00, 6:02, 5:59, and 5:53. Yes, I picked it up on the very last 400m, started my kick at 200m and was absolutely hammering the last straightaway for a 40sec split. The fact that I had that left in my legs and never once felt panicked that I'd fade during the entire run... Man, that felt good.

Took a ClifShot after the 2nd interval (3mi @ pace), which gave me a little bit of an "oof" stomach for the 3rd interval/4th mile. But after that, it settled. Plus it kept me from bonking.

Only niggle to mention is my left calf, about 6 inches above my ankle, inside of leg, just behind the bone. I think that's the soleus? Mark? Any tips for stretching/massaging that puppy?

Ah, a great end to a good week. Just under 46mi for the week.
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Re: Leaving Neverland

Post  John Kilpatrick on Thu Sep 27, 2012 1:35 pm

Hi Mike - lot of catching up to do. Your training looks excellent (no surprise there). Love the pictures too - made me think of my Dad and how much I miss him. Sorry that I have been out of touch and I read up a little on your tough spell, but it sounds like you rolled with a few "punches" and have a ton going for you!

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Re: Leaving Neverland

Post  mul21 on Thu Sep 27, 2012 3:23 pm

Nicely done! And I wouldn't worry much about the soleus. It's probably just fatigued from that much up tempo running where you're much more up on your toes and stressing that muscle a lot more than normal. It should be fine in a couple of days.
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Re: Leaving Neverland

Post  Michele "1L" Keane on Thu Sep 27, 2012 3:41 pm

@Mike MacLellan wrote:

Only niggle to mention is my left calf, about 6 inches above my ankle, inside of leg, just behind the bone. I think that's the soleus? Mark? Any tips for stretching/massaging that puppy?


Use a foam roller or even a rubber ball, lay the calf over the ball or roller and use you other leg to push down, just dig in there and feel the knot release. One other item you can use is a frozen bottle of water to dig into the knot.
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Re: Leaving Neverland

Post  Mark B on Thu Sep 27, 2012 3:43 pm

@Michele "1L" Keane wrote:
@Mike MacLellan wrote:

Only niggle to mention is my left calf, about 6 inches above my ankle, inside of leg, just behind the bone. I think that's the soleus? Mark? Any tips for stretching/massaging that puppy?


Use a foam roller or even a rubber ball, lay the calf over the ball or roller and use you other leg to push down, just dig in there and feel the knot release. One other item you can use is a frozen bottle of water to dig into the knot.

What she said. Very Happy

Also, try standing on a step with your knees locked and slowly let gravity pull your body down and stretch it out. Then repeat, except this time with your knees unlocked.
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Re: Leaving Neverland

Post  Mike MacLellan on Fri Sep 28, 2012 11:36 am

John - Don't sweat it; you've had a ton on your plate this whole year. I hope your recent flurry of posts indicates a more long-term return!

Jim - Thanks! I came to the same conclusion, given that if I intentionally heelstrike it doesn't feel like anything, but if I intentionally toestrike at the beginning of a run, oooooh boy it's tight.

Michele/Mark - Did a bit of massaging yesterday, though it's hard to get to as it's right behind the edge of the bone. I'll see about rolling it; luckily my roommate has a roller she uses for her ITB.

---

Off day today. First one in a while that hasn't felt 100% like a godsend, meaning I can actually stomach the idea of running today. I'm not going to, but I'm glad to see my body's come around a bit and I'm no longer completely pooped on Fridays.

Next two weeks are a bit fudged with the schedule, since I'm flying to DC on Thursday and flying back Tuesday, so those will be my off days. Then a 5k time trial a week from Thursday, an off day Friday, and the usual schedule resumes.
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Re: Leaving Neverland

Post  Mike MacLellan on Sat Sep 29, 2012 6:36 pm

Well, the soleus isn't bothering me at all today, as Jim (and I) suspected. My hamstrings and quads, however, are a bit whiny. Particularly the right hammie. But nothing to worry about.

Knocked out 6.5mi @ 7:30 pace this morning. After a slow first mile - as per usual, 8:30 - splits were consistently progressive from 7:40 to 7:10 or so. Neat. Effort level easy, but hard to tell with the fatigue in my legs. It did feel a little bit harder than easy.

Oh, and I wasn't hungover. Whaaaa? That's right. I did, however, discover a local Mexican food place called Jim Boy's Tacos that has CREAM-FILLED CHURROS. Yes, I looked up the nutritional info on them this morning - they're not that bad - to see how they'd fit into a post-run carb replenishment. Too much fat for that, but I guess they'd be perfect for ultras? What a Face
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Re: Leaving Neverland

Post  Nick Morris on Sat Sep 29, 2012 6:40 pm

Nice run on some tired legs...Glad to hear that the soleus is feeling better.
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Re: Leaving Neverland

Post  Schuey on Sun Sep 30, 2012 12:15 am

Things are looking good Mike! So what's up with the Hammy and quads? Is just soreness, stiffness? What are you feeling and what location in those muscles?
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Re: Leaving Neverland

Post  Mike MacLellan on Sun Sep 30, 2012 1:59 pm

Thanks Nick. I think I've figured out the pattern of how my body works. See below...

Schuey - My hamstrings don't like fast running. Always been that way.

---

12mi fartlek today. I've been trying to figure out what I wanted to do for today/Wed/next Sunday's last speed workouts. I know that Sunday I wanted to do Dave's suggestion of 20x 400m @5k w/ 1min standing rest, so I wanted something to build up to that. Since I did 12x 1min on/2min off last week, 16x 1/2 seemed like a good idea for today, originally.

Really it was Wed that was throwing me, since I wanted to do the 8x 400m all-out, but I'm worried about injury and there'd be no way to stretch that into a 10-11mi run. So I'm holding off on that one for now. Instead, I decided to go with Ben's idea of 24x 200m on/200m off for Wed. This will be on a track.

So, that left today to be a true fartlek, running by effort rather than pace. Split the difference of 12 and 24 and set out for 18x 1min on/90sec off.

First 3 were around 10k effort, next 9 around 5k effort, next 3 around 3k effort, last 3 just plain hurt. Typical Sunday run - semi-flat legs, barely keeping the wheels on by the end of the intervals. Such is life.

I think this one might actually be the hardest I do, since I overcooked a few of those "on" intervals (of course). The track on Wed will keep me disciplined.

Two easy days coming up to lead into that.

---

Oh, and today's post-run smoothie (really sweet, but really good):
1 frozen banana
~1/3C vanilla yogurt
~1/3C vanilla soymilk
~2T protein powder
~1T non-dairy creamer
~1.5C spinach
coupla ice cubes

Makes ~14oz.
To make it less sweet, omit the non-dairy creamer. I just needed more carbs because it was a bit protein-heavy. Yum.
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