Training, February 4 - 10

Monday: Off - Opened at work and then had to head to Union Station to get on the Amtrak and head home.  Didn't really have time to run, and still feeling worn out and worn down.

Tuesday: 11 AM - 15 miles moderate (on hilly singletrack).
Back home in Springfield for a couple days, hit up the nice singletrack near home.  Unfortunately, the trails were super muddy, which made running a good effort a bit difficult at times.  A lot of ground sliding underfoot, I was a little worried about my Achilles, but it seemed to do all right.  
5 PM - Functional Strength Routine 1 (FSR1).

Wednesday: 11 AM - 10 miles moderate w/ drills and 12 x 100m (reps at 15s, starting on the minute).
It seems I've sort of strained or tweaked some of the small, deep muscle in my groin/glutes area running on all the slop yesterday.  Had to cut the 100s back from a planned 16, because whatever muscle is strained was starting to worry me.  I've had this sort of thing happen before when running on ice and whatnot.  With a little caution, it should go away soon, but sometimes this crap can last months—let's hope that's not the case here.

Thursday: 11 AM - 10 miles easy.
Held off on a longer run due to my groin issue—just being cautious.  No FSR for the same reason.

Friday: 2 PM - 8 miles moderate on treadmill w/ 3 miles at 8% grade.
Ran at 7.5 mph for most of the uphill portion.

Saturday: Off - Didn't run before my 10 hours at the café because I needed the sleep to recover; didn't run after because my legs were shot and I had a long run the next day.  So it goes...

Sunday: 1 PM - ~18 miles moderate-plus on treadmill.
One day off work in a six day stretch here, and the weather forecast ended up being very similar to the stuff I got caught in two weekends ago.  In order to avoid the 30s temps /wind /heavy rain, I went to my old roommate's apartment (he has a treadmill, and I can't get more on the gym treadmill for more than a guaranteed half hour on the weekends).  The calibration was off, so I don't know the exact paces, but I did roughly 16 miles at 6:00-6:15 pace, and then did 2 miles at about 5:30 pace to close it out.  Solid enough.  Not precisely what I was looking for, but little of the training has been of late.

Summary: 61 miles, 1x FSR

Not a great week, things not really going my way the last couple weeks.  But that will change.  Some random bad luck likely won't persist, I'll be done working my way-too-many-hours-on-my-feet job in two weeks, and the weather will start to come around.  Headed to Cali in three weeks for a week of vaca and two races; when I get back, it will be nearly mid-March, and all will be looking up.  I've taken my share of lumps the last year, but that's how it goes sometimes.  Keep your head down and keep working... you'll come out of it.

Recommended Read: Visitor Jacko sent me this great recap of an extraordinary mile run at Morton Stadium in Santry /north Dublin.  (I got to run at Morton Stadium, which is Ireland's National Athletics Stadium, a couple time in the summer of 2008, when I was running with the Crusaders club.  It's a pretty cool place.)  The article is called Summer of '58, and is a neat look at a stellar race from the past. I particularly liked the bits quoting Herb Elliot: "This was it… the gun was fired and Thomas, stubby and compact, nipped to the front like a sprinter… good on you Albie. Push it along son. Make the pace a scorcher."

Finally, I promised I'd put up the two core routines I'm currently doing, so those are below.  Soon, I hope to expand this blog/site a bit and have separate pages for things like this, so it is easy for readers to reference on an ongoing basis.  So here are the routines below and the amount of set/reps I'm currently doing.  These are a work in progress, and I've been rather slow to get after them (especially DSR2) because I've allowed myself to get much busier than intended.  Sorry if the names don't make sense for some of these, but eventually I will either have a description or a video/image for each exercise.  

It should also be noted that I do a dynamic warmup before every single run, which is also posted below.  It also occurred to me that perhaps a better name for the "core" work is "functional" strength rather than "dynamic" because it's not all dynamic, and the aim of it all is functional—to serve the function of running—to make me more efficient/economical and less prone to injury.  

Functional Strength Routine 1
  • pullups (2 x 8)
  • bicycles (50)
  • hamstring curls w/ swiss ball (2 x 20)
  • lower ab hold (45s, each leg)
  • single leg squats (2 x 15, each leg)
  • russians w/ medicine ball (2 x 30)
  • hip raises (2 x 15, each side)
  • back extensions on BOSU trainer (2 x 15)
  • bridges w/ leg lifts (2 x 15, prone and each side)
  • swimmers on BOSU (2 x 15)
  • bicycles (50)
  • pushups (20)
  • eccentric calves (2 x 15, each leg)
  • tibialis anterior lifts w/ resistance band (2 x 15)
Functional Strength Routine 2
  • side-to-sides w/ ankle resistance bands
  • monster walks w/ ankle resistance bands
  • three-point wall touches w/ Airex balance mat
  • rotations on one leg w/ Airex balance mat
  • clams w/ resistance band (2 x 10, 45º and 0º orientation)
  • reverse leg lifts w/ swiss ball
  • hurdle mobility drills (10, forward and backward)
  • Rockys (5)
Dynamic Warmup (pre-run)
  • lunge matrix
    • forward lunges (5, each leg)
    • 45º lunges (5, each leg)
    • side lunges (5, each leg)
  • runner touches (10, each leg)
  • body weight squats (10)
  • jumping jacks (30)