July 20, 2014

No Niggles - How Nice!

Week of July 14 ~ 20
67.8km / 42 mi.

Thanks for the comments on the fainting spell, No more problems, I guess it was just a weird, one-time thing.
No niggles at all, which is very nice. Tiredness for sure, but no pains.

Rest after the hard run (21k, lots of ups and downs) on Sunday.

Gym workout, no run.

7:30pm Club track workout. 600, 800, 1000, 1200, 1000, 800, 600.
2:24, 3:05, 3:52, 4:44, 3:51, 3:02, 2:12
Worked hard to stay with my man Padraig, mostly unsuccessfully. Felt "just ok", legs seem to still be a bit tired from Sunday.
26C/79F, very humid

3:00 - 13k with 12k very easy, and 100m x 10 barefoot striders in the middle.Was running in the park, so just took off my shoes and ran back and forth on the grass for a bit.
31C/88F, 70%

11:30 - gym workout
3:00 - 12k again very easy pace. Felt weak, plus it was very humid. I guess I should eat more.
27C/81F, 83%

1:00 - 14k with 4k warmup, 4k, 3k, 2k tempo, 1k back home
Felt quite good!
4k: 17:54 (4:24,29,32,29) 5min walk
3k: 13:05 (4:20,23,22) 5min walk
2k: 8:21 (4:19,02) Decided to push the last k.
Didn't look at my watch for these, just hit the split button.
26C/79F, 90% with dribbles of rain off and on.

2:00 - 14k at very easy pace. Back to legs feeling very tired.
28C/82F, 70%

They say the rainy season is supposed to end on Tuesday, and sure enough, the forecast for Wed,Thur,Fri, Sat is sunny, 31,31,31,32 degrees!

Hope you all had a good week. Now back to watching the athletes I really envy - golfers! They just stroll around and make a lot of money. I refer to the British Open, of course. Love the British announcers. Talking of the South African John Coetzee, who is small and pudgy: "Now here's John, he's got a comfortable look about him. He's built for comfort, not speed."

July 14, 2014

Curious Incident

Week of July 7 ~ 13
69km / 42.9 mi.

The curious incident was not a dog in the night (Sherlock Holmes) but a fainting spell! See Friday.

3:00 - 12k. 6k very easy warmup.
6k in 28:27 @4:44/km
Felt ok after stretching (after warmup), but legs still a bit heavy.
24C/75F, 85%!

Rest. To a hot spring resort with my wife for wedding anniversary. Ate a lot and drank a lot of wine.

7:30pm - club track workout.
1200, 1000, 1000, 800, 800, 800, 400
4:58/3:59/4:03/3:14/3:15/3:09/82 (200 jog plus a bit of walk in bet.).
Felt ok, but just didn't have it to run fast.
Steady rain, puddles on track, but that was not really the problem - just had no oomph.
23C/75F, rain

12:00 - 16k very easy. Legs very tired and heavy. A long, slow run.
28C/82F, 88%

12:30 - gym workout.
Then came home, went upstairs, and fainted! Fortunately my wife heard me fall. I guess I hit the floor hard (got a few scrapes). All I remember is feeling a bit woozy. Woke up with my wife leaning over me with her phone in her hand, calling an ambulance. I went downstairs and thought I was ok, but started feeling woozy again, so rode to the hospital. By that time, I was ok.
Very strange. I think it was a combination of not eating much the day before or in the morning, sitting in the sun for a while, then doing a gym workout without drinking anything.
So I have to eat a bit more, and definitely drink more in the hot weather.
58.6kg - lost 1kg in one day - again, this is measured early in the morning.

Felt fine today, so did a hard workout, but not real fast and cut it down a bit.
11k with 3k warmup, 3k x 2, 500m x 2. (Usually 3k x 3)
14:31 (abut 4:50/k), 14:01 (abt. 4:40/k).
500s in 2:04, 1:59, but it may have been a bit short.
Legs very stiff, otherwise felt ok.
32C/90F, 60%, sunny

12:00 - 21.2km. Went to Zushi beach (below Yokohama) for a run up in the wooded hills with 7 other people. 2:40 running time, total 4 hours with many stops for rest, water, views and to let people catch up. Easy pace the whole way, but LOTS of uphill, including many stairs, stone steps, steep hillsides. Legs were ok, no soreness, but got very tired. Beer and BBQ on the beach afterwards, an enjoyable day.
27C/81F, but quite a bit cooler up in the woods.

The hills in the background are not exactly where we ran, but hills just like that.

July 6, 2014

Fun Event - 3-Hour Relay

Week of June 30 ~ July 6

62.4km / 38.7 mi.

3:30 - 14k with 7k easy in 42:03, 7k tempo in 30:50 @4:24/k.
Stretched after the 7k warmup and then felt ok. Good pace, was working a bit, but not too hard. (which is how a tempo run should be).
I didn't look at my watch each km, which is a new way of running for me, and which I rather like. Run completely how you feel.
26C/79F, 50%, cloudy

12:00 - Gym workout

7:30pm - Club track workout - 14.4k with 1000m x 6.
After a good warmup, 3:46/43/44/44/49/42
(200m in between, 2:50~3:10, 3:48 after 4th)
Felt good, ran well. Had people to follow, except on the 5th one. Worked fairly hard, but comfortable.
26C/79F, 64%

12:00 - 8k very easy - legs tired.
29C/84F, 50%

Rest. No time to run and anyway, a "race" tomorrow.

10km. Summer Festival 3-Hour Relay in a park at Odaiba (Tokyo waterfront area).
This was a fun event where you could enter teams of 2 to 10 people, who run for 3 hours. Each person runs a 2.5k loop, handing off to the next person (or however you want to do it). At least it was supposed to be 2.5k - it turned out to be 1.85k (garmin), which was actually better, as we all ran as hard as we could - "fun" for us turned out to not mean jogging around.
The club had two teams - the Work Team of 5 fast guys (although 2 of the fastest couldn't make it and were replaced with 2 slower guys) and the Play Team of 3 guys and 3 girls, including me.
The Work team came in 3rd out of 110 teams, running 27 laps or just about 50km. The Play team, whose 3 girls were all good runners, ran 24 laps and came in 7th! As a "fun event" there were not many strong teams, but 7th was still a surprise.
I ran loops of 7:01, 7:16, 7:18, 7:14, or about 3:54/k (with 38-39 mins in between). I was really working hard, and fortunately had other runners about the same pace to try to catch or stay with each loop. The weather was off and on light rain, which was actually good - much better than blazing sun.
Interesting relay, first time I had ever heard of that format, and it worked well (needless to say, they used chips to track the teams).
They had food and beer vans at the site, so we had a nice post-race lunch/celebration.
Oh, and the Work team's prize for 3rd place was a very large bag of fireworks - rather strange.

1:00 - Gym workout
3:00 - 16k in 1:31:08 @5:42/k.  Out/back was 47:32/43:36 @5:56/5:27.
Recovery run, felt ok.

June 29, 2014

2 Fairly Good Workouts

Week of June 23 ~ 29
59.3km / 36.8 mi.

2:30 - 5.9k very easy. Planned 8, but got twinges in the hamstring, so stopped. 10th day of running in a row, as I didn't rest last week, although only one of those days was a hard workout.
27C/81F, 50%

12:00 - Weights and abs in the gym.

7:30pm - 5,000m time trial. 5k warmup.
19:41 (3:52/59/59/56/54). Felt good. Ran right behind two guys for 4,000m, then they pulled away. Actually thought I was going faster (just pushed the split button, didn't look at the watch), but I'm nowhere near racing shape. Also it was very humid.
22C/72F, humid
59.4kg (but 58.5 before running)

3:30 - 10k easy in 59:00. Legs a bit tired.
28C/82F, 50%

12:00 - Weights and abs in the gym.
3:30 - 14k in 1:18:20. 41:04/37:15 @5:52/5:19/k
27C/81F, 50%

3:00 - 14k with 4k warmup, 3k x 3, 1k jog.
3ks in 13:49, 13:38, 13:04 (4:17/23/24) 5min walks in between.
Could hardly move the first 4k with heavy legs, but managed to get loosened up.
Planned to be happy with a 4:30/k pace.
24C/75F, 90% (rain before and after)

3:00 - 4.4k easy, then faster. Planned to run 8 or 10k, but dark clouds were rolling in and thunder started at 2k, so turned around. Didn't feel like getting drenched and didn't want to run in lightning. First 2k legs were dead heavy, but picked up the pace and tried to get in an extra k, but rain started after 200m, so turned around. 600 to go, picked up the pace. 400 to go, rain a bit harder, picked up the pace. 200 to go, raindrops getting bigger, sprinted for home. Got slightly wet, but made it - the downpour began 20 seconds later.
28C/82F, 90%

June 23, 2014

No Aches, Pains, Nothing

Week of June 16 ~ 22
70km / 43.5 mi.

After two weeks of pretty much no running, all my aches and pains seem to be gone. Have some soreness in my right glute, but I don't feel it when I walk or run. And as I told Scott Brown, I switched from my bed to a futon on the floor last night, and it didn't hurt nearly as much when I got up this morning. So maybe my old mattress is the problem (it's fairly firm, but I guess not firm enough).
Anyway, after testing the right hamstring with two very easy runs last Sat and Sun, which produced no pain at all, I started in this week as below, albeit gently.

Oh, and I've gone on a SERIOUS diet to come closer to my Kenyan-thin ideal. Cut out almost all carbs, except for some at dinner. By that I mean oatmeal, cereal, crackers, bread, etc. I'm now getting my carbs through lots of fruit (mainly bananas) and vegetables (discovered frozen vegetables, which are good and handy - easy to heat up with tomato sauce). Lots of protein from beans, yoghurt, lowfat milk and protein powder.
Still counting calories (weighing all food, except at dinner and restaurants, which I estimate), which is the secret, I think, to consistent weight loss/maintenance.
And keeping beer/wine to a minimum, 2 or maybe 3 times a week, but only one or two beers, two glasses of wine. (One beer: 130kcal, one glass wine: 120kcal.)
Went from 60kg to 58kg in 12 days. 58 used to be my goal, but now I'm aiming for 57 or less, which will be pretty thin. Thin and fast.
I'm even doing my abs work every night - aiming for the Brad Pitt Fight Club look. (Want an intense workout program? Google (or better, Duck Duck Go) Brad Pitt Fight Club Workout.)

3:00 - 8k in 43:20 @5:26/k. Hamstring ok, cruising easily.
28C/82F, 40%

2:00 - Gym workout
3:00 8k in 44:00 @5:30/k. Easy run.
26C/79F, 50%

7:30pm - club track workout.
Just ran at an easy pace, about 4:45/k. Hamstring was fine.

3:30 - 10k in 56:10 @5:37/k
Felt kind of tired and weak - lack of fuel?
27C/81F, 50%

11:00 - Gym workout
3:00 - 10k in 56:45 @5:39/k (59:22/57:22).
Legs still a bit tired.
28C/82F, 40%

3:00 - 14k with 4k warmup, 3k x 3 tempo, 1k home.
3ks in 13:18, 13:32, 13:22 (13:30 is 4:30/k)
Felt ok, not great. First hard workout in 3 weeks.
28C/82F, 50%

3:30 - 10k very easy. Legs quite tired.
22C/72F, 60% (after rain).

On a side note, I'm in first place in my World Cup pool. I've got Argentina, Columbia and Costa Rica, 6 for 6 so far (Costa Rica - football superpower!). Bought them in an auction, with each person (8) putting in 6,000 yen. Clever of me to choose the South American teams, right? But much to my wife's disgust, I have to cheer for Columbia over Japan. Even though Columbia has already qualified for the second round, I need the points.

June 8, 2014

Race Cancelled

Week of June 2 ~ 8

Not much of a week. Monday and Tuesday were rest days after the 10K race on Sunday.
Wednesday was supposed to be 6 x 1000 on the track, but after two fairly easy ones, the hamstring felt sore, so stopped. A surprise, as it hadn't been sore in the race or afterwards.
Continued to be sore when walking that night and a bit the next day, so rested thursday and friday, as I was supposed to run a 10K leg in a triathlon relay on Saturday.
This was on an island, Oshima, off the coast a two-hour jetfoil (hydrofoil) ride from Tokyo. However, the weather was terrible - strong wind and rain - and after we got there, they decided to cancel the races (relay and an individual triathlon). The third year in a row it has been cancelled! They need to re-think their date!
I was just as happy, since I probably would have had to just run at a very easy pace, letting the team down.
They did have the "post-race" party though, and those triathletes know how to party! It seemed like most of the 6,000 yen entry fee went for beer and food.
Then today was a beautiful day.

So....rest until Wednesday, test out the hamstring and if/when it is completely healed, get back into training. The plan is, from once I start in June, through July, August and September, to train hard and diet hard, getting much thinner and hopefully faster, then race in Oct/Nov/Dec.

Hope you all have a good summer (winter) of training also!

June 1, 2014

43:33 on a HOT day!

Week of May 26 ~ June 1

50km / 31 mi.

10:30 - 8k in 47:26 @5:56
4:00 - 5k in 28:30 @5:42
Legs felt heavy in am, better in afternoon.

3:00 - weight and core workout in the gym.
4:15 - 10k in 56:19 @5:38. Easy run.

2:30 - 10k with 1000m x 4 alone (couldn't go to the track workout at night).
4k warmup, 1000m x 4 in 4:34/31/20/12 (3:00 walk), 2k warmdown.
Very stiff at first. Stretched four times and finally able to run. Getting down to 4:12 was good.

1:00 - 7k in 40:15 @5:45. Felt ok

Friday, Saturday

Munatsuki 10K. 43:33 for 18th overall out of 220 men (no age groups).
This is run on the (fairly wide) path along the Arakawa, one of Tokyo's major rivers. It's a nice little, low-key race. The club had 4 in the marathon, 6 in the half marathon and 5 in the 10k.
The major factor today was heat! It was at least 29C/84F and possibly hotter in the sun. As a result, none of the four finished the marathon (really no sense in running 42k in that heat) and only four finished the half. Us 10k runners all did pretty well. I was happy with 43 minutes and was happy to pass two young guys in the final 3k, who had pulled away from me earlier. Ha! Anyway, I didn't feel too great (I guess no one did), but pushed to the end and maintained my pace pretty well, I think - there were no km markers.
Fellow club member Harrisson and I had a joint birthday party afterwards with 17 people, where we all all stuffed ourselves on a buffet. Serious diet from tomorrow! From right now, in fact.

Most of today's Namban Rengo runners

Cake made by Harrisson, which tasted as good as it looks!