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Friday, March 30, 2012

2012 Training day 77: 12K With Strides

Was up early. I warmed up for 6K then threw in strides on my way back then stretched thoroughly. It went well. I am finally learning how to run fast as opposed to how to run hard. I don't need to recruit my core and upper body muscles to run fast anymore. Targeting my hammies, my calves and ankles seems to have addressed my tight PF.
Now I rest tomorrow.
Progress So far:
Jan_____wk1 N/A
________wk2 20+18+20 = 58Kms
________wk3 16+16+18+20 = 70Kms ..................(lower ankle pains)
________wk4 20(1:50)+20(1:53)+20(1:50) = 60Kms ...(fighting each Km - legs screaming)
________wk5 20(1:53)+10+10 = 40Kms......(Revert to moderate 21K @ Sato - no more fighting)
Feb_____wk1 21(2:05)+11+10(47:56:52)+6+10 = 58Kms (tight hamstrings)
________wk2 21(2:06)+14+12+7+10 = 64Kms...........(first sub 4 mins 1K!)
________wk3 21(2:01)+15+12+12+12 = 72Kms (Malaba, crazy intervals)
________wk4 21(2:19)+16+14+10+10=71Kms (recovering from intervals)
March___wk1 21(1:57:51)+18+11+11+11+11=83Kms (Kampala)
________wk2 21(1:56:39)+15+10+10 = 56Kms (PF threatens-recovering from 83K week)
________wk3 21(1:53:39)+19+17+12+11=80K (bad cold, health scare - tight PF)
________wk4 rest - with a flu
________wk 5 21(2:14)+15+13+16+13+12=90K (Mombasa - recovering and coming back)

2012 NYC Winners.
A

Thursday, March 29, 2012

2012 Training day 76: 13K Easy

Was up early enough today. Did an easy 13K. I want to get fast as I stay between 75-85K per week. I think it is time. Tomorrow, strides.
Here is Reid Coolaset on his way to win Around the Bay 30K. Inspirational guy.
Cheers guys.
A

Wednesday, March 28, 2012

2012 Training day 75: 16K Moderate Effort

Today I was up early and left the hotel room at dusk. Beautiful, uplifting time. My PF doesn't feel that tight. I had decided to push the pace today and sort of make it a hard run. Well, not hard, but fast.
And I did. Some guy passed me at the 5th Km mark and I chased him but he was too fast and yet so relaxed. I didn't figure him out coz he wasn't dressed the part - he was in boots and jeans - and yet I chased him for close to 3Km without success. I never seen anything like that. Most guys with that fast pace are footballers and normally I make a snack out of them after about 2Kms but this guy...
Anyways, After a 40mins tempo, I mixed it up with fartleks back to the hotel.
I am thoroughly stretching my calves and Achilles to address my tight PF and so far, it seems to be doing OK. I want to start pushing myself particularly through April. As I said, I want to keep it 70-80K per week as I increase my strides and push myself during tempos.
Stay active guys!


Cheers
A

Tuesday, March 27, 2012

2012 Training day 74: 13K Easy

I am in Mombasa Continental Resort. I went for an easy 1:22 mins run. I conservatively estimate it to be 13K. Easy. I note that I need to be up earlier tomorrow.
I am working on my tight PF otherwise I am in excellent condition. Er, almost.
This is how I feel right now:
Cheers.

Monday, March 26, 2012

2012 Training Day 72,73: 21K and 15K

I am slowly coming back. This is evaluation week. PF is flaring up so I need to manage it. I am running based on time. By Friday I will know where I stand.
A

Saturday, March 17, 2012

Rest Week

I slept a little in the evening today but I still don't feel ok. The cold has not abated. I feel feverish and stuffed. And the runny nose persists.
So it is with great sadness that I have told my running-mates that I wont make it for the sub 1:50 race tomorrow.
At any rate, I have not observed a rest week since I started my 2012 training even though I should every five or so weeks. So I guess it is about time anyway. So this becomes my cutback week. I have also decided to cut off sugar from now and see how that goes. The main thing now is to observe my diet and get as much rest and sleep as possible.
I am glad I don't have an injury and I have just had a stellar week. I want to come back galvanized and rejuvenated and I am not stopping until sub 1:40. Then I take another break.
Till then folks.
Stay active!

2012 Training day 71: 11k with strides

Through sheer stubbornness and commitment to purpose, I went and did a 11K with strides at the end yesterday. I don't feel so great but I felt I had to do it and give this week a proper closure.
And I did. I felt I needed to do it to keep my legs awake for speed. The results are as below. Not too great but okay.

Review of progress so far:
Jan_____wk1 N/A
________wk2 20+18+20 = 58Kms
________wk3 16+16+18+20 = 70Kms ..................(lower ankle pains)
________wk4 20(1:50)+20(1:53)+20(1:50) = 60Kms ...(fighting each Km - legs screaming)
________wk5 20(1:53)+10+10 = 40Kms......(Revert to moderate 21K @ Sato - no more fighting)
Feb_____wk1 21(2:05)+11+10(47:56:52)+6+10 = 58Kms (tight hamstrings)
________wk2 21(2:06)+14+12+7+10 = 64Kms...........(first sub 4 mins 1K!)
________wk3 21(2:01)+15+12+12+12 = 72Kms (Malaba, crazy intervals)
________wk4 21(2:19)+16+14+10+10=71Kms (recovering from intervals)
March___wk1 21(1:57:51)+18+11+11+11+11=83Kms (Kampala)
________wk2 21(1:56:39)+15+10+10 = 56Kms (PF threatens-recovering from 83K week)
________wk3 21(1:53:39)+19+17+12+11=80K (bad cold, health scare)

Now we need to have our first 2012 race tomorrow. I also feel I should do it despite how I feel because we have been planning it and I need to give it closure. Lets hope I am not burying myself with this. At any rate, I will do a cutback next week. Time to ease off the pedal.

Thursday, March 15, 2012

2012 Training Day 70: 12K on hills - Easy

12K on the road home yesterday. It was okay.
I had a health scare yesterday. I got cold and had a running stomach. I had to go to bed early. I feel better today but not 100%. I had to put off today's run. I hope I can do it tomorrow and bank 80K.
Cheers

Tuesday, March 13, 2012

2012 Training Day 69: 17K in 1:28 - Moderate effort

I had a bad cold yesterday and Today. I was not sure I would run. To manage the cold, I went and saw the doc and got a cocktail of drugs: Listerine mouthwash for my blistering sore throat, Nasal spray for my runny nose, antibiotics, antihistamines and NSAIDs for pain.
I wasn't sure I should run under the conditions. I goggled and got the idea that so long as my chest was fine (i.e. no congestion, asthma or bronchitis) and no high fever, I could still run.
The first 3K were pretty tricky because there seemed to be a cavity in my throat that was dry, raspy and painful. It felt dy but when I swallowed, it felt like I was swallowing acid. It burnt. But at 4K it was gone and I was relatively normal.
These are the splits I got:
Km_1 6:06.5
Km_2 5:49.4
Km_3 5:32.3
Km_4 5:17.6
Km_5 5:16.0
Km_6 5:15.3
Km_7 5:11.1
Km_8 5:06.4
Km_9 5:03.3
Km_10 5:09.3
Km_11 5:10.0
Km_12 5:02.3
Km_13 5:06.5
Km_14 5:01.9
Km_15 4:54.8
Km_16 5:03.6
Km_17 4:45.0

It was pretty good given that I was not putting up a fight. just ran by feel and I am glad to note that I am getting faster. By May, I believe I will be able to return successive 4:XX without a struggle.
Here is Helen Obiri on her way to defeating Meseret Defar.


A

Sunday, March 11, 2012

2012 Training day 68: 19K Easy

I made today an easy run. I decided to make it 19K to start chipping off at my 80K target this week. So that is 40K off in total for this week.
What I did is I made sure it was veeeery easy and my focus was to maintain good form throughout. And it was easy and fun.
The Sunday runs, I have decided, will triple both as an easy run, a recovery run and a Long Slow Run. Either way, it will be beneficial. I will probably gradually increase it to 30K to enable me meet 100K goals later because doing a double is rather tricky.
For now, I just need to rest and ice my legs then on Tuesday, the battle resumes.
Wonderful things are happening at Istanbul, Turkey at the world indoor games. Of interest to me is the 5000m and 3000m. Amazing shit is gonna happen.
Cheers.

Saturday, March 10, 2012

2012 Training day 67: 21K in 1:53:39

Today was tricky. I really, really did not feel like waking up at all.
I did not feel strong or enthusiastic. I felt like I had a lot of accumulated fatigue (mainly sleep deprivation) hanging on me like a cloud.
But I dragged myself out of bed nonetheless. Yesterday I rested so today I had absolutely no excuse to rest.
I stretched. Pain.
I warmed up and hit it. My shins ached. My knees ached. My calves ached.
I didnt know whether to stop and crawl back into bed with my tail between my legs or to proceed into the uncertain dawn.
Then I remembered: Pain is necessary, suffering is optional. Elite training, elite pain.
These were pains from aches, not from injuries so I ran on and after the first Km, they were gone.
This time, I concentrated not on running fast but on moving my legs quickly. Just quick leg turnover. No concern with the stride length, just the quickness.
And it worked!
I kinda slept at the 10th K Mark and at the 4th K.
There are several things that I have improved on:
No more 6:XX.
3 of 4:XX
So next week all I need to do is ensure I don't have any 5:5x and have at least four 4:xx. And maybe shed a Kg. And lose the respect I have for the first four Km hills. Just go hard on them and let the shit hit the fan.
That should catapult me to 1:50:XX.
Hopefully.
I have also decided on a strategy of pushing hard on one week then easing off in the next week using for example: 80/60 and later 90/60. Until I can do 100/70 or 120/70.
This week, I want to do 80K.
Man, let these poor bones and flesh now rest.
Here is how shit went down tadey:
Stay active guys! Stay the fuck active.
Aaaaight?
A

Thursday, March 8, 2012

2012 Training Day 66: 10K with strides - I think I have emerged from the valley

Yesterday I went to the pitch feeling weakish. Sort of nauseous and sort of dizzy. Was I going to vomit on the pitch today? I remembered Ben Moreau's post about Training Hard and Vomiting easy. What I knew is that since Friday is rest day, I cannot piss away Thursday too. Plus, if I vomited or collapsed while training, that would only make my journey colorful and I can one day tell my kids that colorful story about how I struggled against odds, blood, dust, bones, spit, sweat and vomit to be the best runner I could be....
Aaanyways, after changing and doing the other stuff, I went to the pitch. I started by walking coz the garmin delayed to lock on the Satellites. Then I started the watch and decided to make it very easy, like a recovery run. If my legs failed to wake up, I would just make it an easy run and bank it.
My legs pained. My knees felt like they were made of wood that would crack anytime. But I ignored the small snaps and creaks and concentrated on proper form. I knew that my strong quads protected my knees, thanks to the lunges I do almost everyday. I also knew with slow running, my shins and calves could not be busted. So I used slow speed and tried to maintain good form. Plus, Lydiard reminds us repeatedly that even a slow run is useful.
By six Kms, all the pain was gone. I decided to start the strides at the 8th K.
It was great. They were short, between 50m and 70m but I did them and at the end, I felt I could do more. But like an experienced sage who knows that bows that are bent all day no longer shoot arrows with the same force, I warmed down and stretched thoroughly and took it.
I iced my legs at night and I know by tomorrow morning, I should be fine. My PF strain seems to be almost over and I think I have survived it.
Look at the spikes of my paces as I do the strides below. Beautiful. Aint it? Like a comb or a toothbrush.

Friday is review week since my weeks start on Saturday. So my progress so far:

Jan_____wk1 N/A
________wk2 20+18+20 = 58Kms
________wk3 16+16+18+20 = 70Kms ..................(lower ankle pains)
________wk4 20(1:50)+20(1:53)+20(1:50) = 60Kms ...(fighting each Km - legs screaming)
________wk5 20(1:53)+10+10 = 40Kms......(Revert to moderate 21K @ Sato - no more fighting)
Feb_____wk1 21(2:05)+11+10(47:56:52)+6+10 = 58Kms (tight hamstrings)
________wk2 21(2:06)+14+12+7+10 = 64Kms...........(first sub 4 mins 1K!)
________wk3 21(2:01)+15+12+12+12 = 72Kms (Malaba, crazy intervals)
________wk4 21(2:19)+16+14+10+10=71Kms (recovering from intervals)
March___wk1 21(1:57:51)+18+11+11+11+11=83Kms (Kampala)
________wk2 21(1:56:39)+15+10+10 = 56Kms (PF threatens-recovering from 83K week)

Meanwhile, I have been reviewing Ancient Astronaut theory and seeking refutations of the same and I came across this pic of Giorgio A. Tsoukalos which cracked me up pretty good:
Stay active fellas and remember, every day is an opportunity to move forward with your dreams.
A

Wednesday, March 7, 2012

2012 Training Day 65: 10K - I am Whacked Fellas

Wow man!
I am whacked pretty good. I cant believe I am paying for the 80K last week this week. I feel sorry for my legs coz they hurt like hell though it seems I am almost out of the woods as far as the PF is concerned. Man, the answer to PF is tennis balls, I am convinced! But even then, my body is still fucked. I feel like an empty sack walking around.
Anyways, back to PF: Once you understand why they hurt in the morning when you wake up (The PF contract while you sleep because of the angle of the foot as you sleep) and once you have understood that tight calves and tight ankles contribute to tight PF, you use the tennis balls to massage and stretch them as many times as you can and in due course, your PF are flexible and supple. And of course, if possible, ease up on the mileage and intensity.
Aaaaanyways, yesterday I ran home. It was really a struggle coz I had no legs really. But I loved it because I could feel the hills were really demanding hard work from me. Its no wonder they say hills are for strength. I was slow and cleared in about 1:06.
Despite my legs yelling and kicking and screaming, I will drag them to the pitch today and hopefully, do some strides.
I know its all about them. Them legs I mean. Stressing them. Listening to them creaking to life and screaming. Stressing them once again. Watching them explode and bleed and scream. Giving them a small break and letting their tears dry. Then stressing them again. Watching them suffer and putting a stethoscope on them and giving them some ice and compression if the pain is too much. Then stressing them again....
Again and again. This year, I want to have the capacity to comfortably clock 100K per week. But that is for another day. Several months ahead. I am thinking that if I can manage consecutive 80K weeks, I will stay there for a while seeing how to structure my strides and maybe modify the Pfitz 18/70 Training plan to suit my needs.
Then I can have a structured 18 weeks of Training (with a three weeks buffer) targeting Ndakaini as the main race. So that means that I should start four months from September. That is I should start the Pfitz Program from May.
Wow man! Wow.
Eye candy today is Australia's Craig Mottram. Jake and Zhane Robertson are camped in Iten for years trying to be punks.

Don't dream. Train for the dream.

Tuesday, March 6, 2012

2012 Training Day 64: 15K - Beatdown

The great news is that my PF was better today. Yesterday I ran by feel and did 15K then stretched thoroughly. Thoroughly, especially my shins, calves and ankles. Then when resting last night at home, I made my soles rest on the tennis ball.
As I type this, my right shoe is off and the tennis ball is rolling or trapped beneath it.
I think I have a gift for throwing everything at any site that threatens to develop an injury.
I went to bed feeling like I had fought, like 50 guys and they had kicked my ass real good. Everywhere was aching. I felt really wasted. This is what I call beatdown.
This morning I still have aches but I am glad that it seems I will be able to wade out of this PF threat and maybe get away safely. So I want to focus on that. On Yesterdays run, I did one fastish 14th K and my heart rate went up to 175bpm. Today I want to take it easy with a 10K run home and stretching then Thursday I throw in some strides.
Look at the graphs of the workout: I love the way the HRM shows my heart rate spiking at the 14th K.
Stay active!
A

Life!

Strange things happen.
Sunday was a busy day and I had to attend a family meeting, go shopping and see our visitor off. My Plantar Fascia were feeling sore. I bought three tennis balls and rolled my heel on one as I rested. I dont know if it helped but I could feel it doing something. I have been using one in the office too.
By bedtime on Sunday, close to midnight, I had a headache and I muttered to my wife that I could not understand how my body had not had enough water. I took more water and went to sleep. And my sweet wife prayed for my headache to go away. I had a fitful, restless night.
Monday morning I woke up with the headache, some muscle soreness, a slight chill and some fatigue.
In the office, I kept nodding off. WTF?
I decided it must be Malaria. After all, I had traveled to Western Kenya and to Uganda. Some mosquito must have decided that sucking my blood is good and somehow pulled it off.
So I joined the queue of patient Kenyans at a nearby clinic. The doc recommended that the lab does a haemogram, Urinalysis (to check kidney functions), widal test (for typhoid) and blood test for checking Malaria parasites.
After waiting for close to two hours, the doctor tells me they found nothing and that I am just tired. I need to take a rest, he says I rest for two days of one week and I will be fine. He looks around and cant find the sick sheet form and I tell him its okay, I can ask for some days off.
He gives me some painkillers - Betapyn - and calls the next patient.
Hmmmmmm...
I am relieved that I am not sick. I mean, I have always traveled in the past several years - why should Malaria elect to make me sick now - is my immune system weak? Anyways, its not Malaria, so what is it?
What? Over-training? You think?
I pulled out Noakes' book and I can't reconcile what I feel with the symptoms of over-training. My performance on Sunday was the best this year and I have not lost appetite in food or sex and I certainly dont feel depressed or hate training.
Though I feel kinda pensive - but I have a lot on my mind lately. Family, business, money, etc etc.
So no OT - what is it then? And what about this developing injury - what will I do about it?
Is it a good idea to run today? What if I exacerbate this PF strain?
I don't know. I have run through my shin splints. I have also run through my tight achilles tendon and calves. I have also run through tight hamstrings. I have not run through knee pain and a pulled hamstring and its my body that dictated things.
It is my first time to get PF. I know It may be caused by several things that happened last week that I have eliminated: change in running surface, increase in mileage and change in terrain. Those are gone and I am effectively reducing mileage this week by 20K.
So you know what, I will just go and run and see what happens. If it stops me from running, it will have to do that and I will rest and recover but until then, I cannot stop.
I can run and so I will. Heck, I will even probably go hard. I just hope I wont doing the thousands of walking wounded scattered all over the globe. I have no experience with this PF shit so I have to wing it and hope for the best.
The best I can do now is to ensure I stretch my achilles and calves thoroughly after running and do enough dorsi flexing and plantar flexing.
And have the tennis ball running on my heel for a while.

Sunday, March 4, 2012

2012 Training day 63: 21K in 1:56:39

My feet were lighter today. It is true its all about the legs. I had added some weight from the five star hotel meals last week but I still felt lighter. I mean, my feet still felt capable of moving fast.
Upon reviewing today's race, I can see where I went wrong - between 14 and 15Km because of two clouds of dust that two lorries had raised and engulfed me in - I slowed down to let the air clear - and at the 8th K when I went to sleep - though I sorta felt some weight in my legs and even doubted the freshness of my legs.
At any rate, thats it for today. My position has improved and that is all that matters.
This week probably 60K then another 80K next week. Talk about progression. My plantar fascia are tight so I am treading on dangerous ground.
This is how the shit went down:

Thursday, March 1, 2012

2012 Training Day 62: 11k on Treadmill

Today's workout was the best. I even got a roller in the gymn and hit it. My heel has felt kinda tight the last two days so I have made sure I warm up well before I start running. started doing strides from the 30th minutes mark and it went pretty well. Then I did pushups, worked on my quads and calves and my abs.
So whats this weeks mileage:
Jan_____wk1 N/A
________wk2 20+18+20 = 58Kms
________wk3 16+16+18+20 = 70Kms ..................(lower ankle pains)
________wk4 20(1:50)+20(1:53)+20(1:50) = 60Kms ...(fighting each Km - legs screaming)
________wk5 20(1:53)+10+10 = 40Kms......(Revert to moderate 21K @ Sato - no more fighting)
Feb_____wk1 21(2:05)+11+10(47:56:52)+6+10 = 58Kms
________wk2 21(2:06)+14+12+7+10 = 64Kms...........(first sub 4 mins 1K!)
________wk3 21(2:01)+15+12+12+12 = 72Kms (Malaba, crazy intervals)
________wk4 21(2:19)+16+14+10+10=71Kms (recovering from intervals)
________wk5 21(1:57:51)+18+11+11+11+11=83Kms (Kampala)
Now that is amazing shit right there.
Now stay active guys. And dream big.
Or don't dream at all.