Thursday, February 11, 2010

Confidence boosting tempos

The start of the taper is tough on me. I feel like I am not doing enough. I have said before that I use exercise not just for the physiological aspect but for the psychological as well. On top of all of this I am trying to maintain my weight and the reduced activity does not help.

I did a swim on Tuesday morning and then some treadmill intervals that evening. The intervals were not too hard – but I did cut them short. I was on the treadmill and I planned on doing 10 x ¼ miles at faster than 6 minute miles. I started the intervals with the treadmill set at 10.5 miles per hour (5:43 minutes per mile). I did five intervals and they were not a problem. However, my evening hard running gastrointestinal pain returned. Having a belly full of food (from eating throughout the day) really starts to jostle around. The discomfort was not unbearable but that was all that it took to call it a day. If someone would have been playing racquetball or another game I doubt I would have given up.

On Wednesday I only got a morning swim in – but it was a great swim. Not because it was terribly long or that it was astonishingly quick. It was just a solid swim that I enjoyed. It was a good pace and a good distance. I did a ladder up and down. It was not as structured as I have done in the past. The paces were about the same for all of the legs so I did not get the full benefit. I did 100 / 200 / 300 / 400 / 500 and then down back to 100. A total of 2500 yards – the longest since ironman. I was not over extended. Once again it felt solid.

That was it for the day. I had hoped to get some time on the bike trainer but it just did not happen.

Thursday morning brought a tempo run. It has turned cold here in Mississippi and I headed to the gym. Funny how a little bit of rest and the legs are no longer tired. I do not have the crazy legs that I sometimes get – my legs were just just there. Not roaring to go – not fatigued – just legs. That is a funny feeling.

Although I know that the treadmills are all over the place when I t comes to pace I have to believe that they are fairly close. I remember when I used to run with my Polar footpod that the treadmills were close. I do not remember the pluses and minuses but it was close. There is also no wind on the treadmill. I do however, always set the incline to 1 (whatever that means) to simulate the outside.

I did an easy warm up for a mile and then I decided to run the tempo. I was not sure of the pace I wanted to go. I did not want a super hard work out where I might blow up – I did not want the frustration. At the same time I wanted a challenging workout. I turned the treadmill to a 6:40 minute per mile pace. This is the pace that I ran the Steam Whistle 12K at the beginning of the year. That was a hard 7.45 miles. That was the ‘hardest’ race that I had run up to that point. I was pleased with the results. My heart rate averaged 181 beats per minute. I remember pushing hard for most of the race.

So this should be a solid workout – pushing hard. I did the warm up nice and easy and just set the treadmill and motored though. The workout felt easy for the first few miles. Well, not easy but definitely not hard. I was able to click off 6 miles at the 6:40 minute per mile pace without ever having to push to redline. This was a real boost to my confidence (which had deteriorated the last couple of days). I also cooled down for a mile and finished the 8 mile run in just under an hour. The average pace for the working set was 6 miles in 39:48 @ 6:38 pace with an average heart rate of 168 beats per minute. I have really increased my LT level these past 2 months!

Summary 0:59:33 @ 156 beats per minute

- - - - Time- - HR Ave
01 - 0:09:49 115
02  - 0:06:40 154
03  - 0:06:38 165
04  - 0:06:37 168
05 - 0:06:37 172
06 - 0:06:37 174
07 - 0:06:39 175
08 - 0:09:52 149


Ron said...

Hey man sounds like the swim AND run is going well. I heard you say Treadmill and I thought may be this chart would be handy. See if that pace/incline combo gives you the effort you are trying to produce. Check it out and tell me what you think!

TRI-james said...

Interesting chart - I always thought that an incline of 1 was to get you on level ground. Looking at the chart I might have to bump the incline.

Jon Gilchrist said...

awesome work my man...sounds like the confidence boost was sorely needed. U are rockin!

Happy Feet 26.2 said...

yep, the taper is the hardest part for me. Nice tempo!