Monthly Archives: June 2007

Back on (the) Track

Start time: 6/29/07, 8:00am
Location: Thomas Jefferson Community Center
Distance: 4 miles
Average pace: 8:50min/mile

Well, I ended up taking several days off—lots of stretching, though, and just taking it easy. My knee was actually feeling better on Wednesday, but I decided not to chance it and took it and Thursday off as well. (I actually got up Thursday morning, decided the weather was putrid, and climbed back into bed.) Today was supposed to just be a 4-mile “EZ” run, so I headed over to the gym a little later than normal and knocked it out on the indoor track, since it was supposed to rain this morning. The run went great (a tiny bit fast actually); only problem I really had was starting half an hour late meant a new wave of senior citizens arrived before I’d finished up, and using the equipment afterwards was no longer an option. Oh well!

Finally With the Group

Start time: 6/24/07, 8:00am
Location: C&O Canal Towpath & Cap Crescent Trail
Distance: 12 miles
Average pace: 9:10min/mile

Finally! I got to actually run one of the weekend runs with my new group; between travel and the achilles mechanism strain, it was a while coming. Fortunately it went really well; we took the first couple miles at a 9:30 pace, and then shifted up to our 9:00min/mile pace for the rest of the run. The six of us stuck together on the way out; on the way back, Dave and Cassie zoomed off ahead, Aaron and I took the middle ground, Laura was right behind the two of us, and Paul decided to take some walk breaks and wasn’t that far behind the rest of us. No problems during the run at all, which was nice.

Frustratingly, my left knee has been sore on Monday and now today as well. I’m trying to stretch it out and hopefully that’s all it needs. But bother, bother, bother. We’ll see if I’m up for some LTRs tonight or not.

Tempohell and VO2 Splat

Start time: 6/21/07, 7:30am
Location: W&OD Trail
Distance: 4 miles
Average pace: 8:31min/mile

Thursday’s tempo run (an 8:30min/mile pace) started out well enough; a bit fast, even, with the first three miles being 8:09, 8:28, and 8:33. Then somewhere around mile 4 I started slowing down bigtime, finally hitting the marker at (oof) 8:51. It was at that point I ended up declaring it quits. I was just tired and worn out; frustratingly because last week’s 5-mile tempo run had gone so well. I ended up walking about a quarter mile back, then jogged the rest in at a 10min/mile pace. Ah well, some runs are good, some… not so much.

Start time: 6/22/07, 7:45am
Location: Washington & Lee High School
Distance: 3 miles
Average pace: 10:00min/mile & 6:00min/mile

Today’s schedule was a VO2 Max run. Now, I’d only ever done one of these before, six weeks ago before the injury. So I knew eight reps was going to be right out. I’d figured if I could do six, though, I’d be delighted. Actual total? Three. It was through the third that I suddenly realized what I’d done horribly wrong, though. I hadn’t taken my allergy medicine (or my multivitamin but that’s not as much of an issue). Which would explain my breathing difficulties. Argh. Oh well, under the circumstances, getting three reps (exactly one mile at that speed) was a victory. Next time I’ll plan this out a little better.

After two great runs in Wilmington, though, two crappy runs? Pretty discouraging. I hope this does not bode badly for Sunday.

Running in the Carolinas

Start time: 6/17/07, 8:45am
Location: Greenfield Lake, Wilmington, North Carolina
Distance: 10 miles
Average pace: 8:58min/mile

10-Miler ViewI was vistiing friends in Wilmington, North Carolina this past weekend, so I tackled my two scheduled runs at a nearby park that had a 4.25-mile trail running around a lake. Well, a lake full of alligators, apparently. That’s an incentive to not stop, huh? The run went well, though. I did have to stop twice, though. It started to rain on me halfway around the first loop, so when I completed the loop I stopped at the car and put my glasses inside because there’s nothing worse than water hanging on the lenses. I also took a quick bathroom break at mile 8, because when you’re by yourself and there’s no one to disract you, it’s two ugly miles othewrise. But a good run, and right on pace. Yay!

Start time: 6/18/07, 8:00am
Location: Greenfield Lake, Wilmington, North Carolina
Distance: 4 miles
Average pace: 8:52min/mile

A pretty unremarkable “EZ” run for Monday. I had no idea if I was actually on pace at first, but thankfully that was the case. It’s hard to tell the day after a long run what’s really going on!


Start time: 6/14/07, 7:30pm
Location: W&OD Trail
Distance: 5 miles
Average pace: 8:28min/mile

I was a tiny bit worried about this tempo run–would I be able to hit my 8:30s ok? It had been a while, after all. Thankfully… no problems whatsoever. Yay! I’m starting to get the hang of this crazy running thing.

That’s More Like It

Start time: 6/12/07, 7:30pm
Location: Thomas Jefferson Community Center
Distance: ~4.25 miles
Average pace: 10:00min/mile & 7:00min/mile

Ok, back to the LTRs. Last week I was supposed to do 8 bursts of 2 minutes at the faster pace; I’d managed four and a half before I gave up. Today was supposed to be 8 again, and I figured if I got 6-7 then I would declare it a victory. There was a huge storm threatening to hit, so I headed to TJ once more to use their 1/8th mile track. I did a warm-up 10min/mile, then went to town. After 6 LTRs, it suddenly hit me that I’d actually be able to do all 8 of them. It’s such a nice feeling to not feel like you’re never going to get back up to speed.

So yeah, a very good time, and on pace for all of them. There was one other guy on the track that was being a bit of a jerk (when I was running my warm-up mile, he shot around and in front of me so close I almost tripped on his heels), but he couldn’t rain on my parade. A very nice time.

That said, after three days of running in a row, it’s nice that Wednesday only had weights and a spinning class planned. Bliss.

Good start to the day

Start time: 6/11/07, 7:30am
Location: Thomas Jefferson Community Center
Distance: 4 miles
Average pace: 8:53min/mile

I got up this morning and headed over to the gym for a combination run/weights day. The run went well; I actually ended up with the exact same finishing time (35:35) as I did the last time I used the track here on Friday. (8:46, 8:55, 9:00, 8:53) I quickly changed and then used the weights for a bit before heading home to get ready for work. I’m quite enjoying the one-two punch of a 4-miler and then weights, I must say.


Start time: 6/10/07, 8:00am
Location: Capital Crescent Trail, C&O Canal Towpath, and Georgetown
Distance: 9 miles
Run:Walk Ratio: 8.5:1
Average pace: 9:40min/mile

Last week I’d said my plan for this weekend was to shift up one group to the 10min/mile group, but I’d found out the day before that a 9:30min/mile group existed. I’d been feeling good, so I decided, why not? Chris was starting to shift up one group as well, and Zack had been out sick so decided to shift down a tiny bit to get back up to speed. We joined the three regulars in the 9:30 group; Ben, Steve, and PWNICR (Person Whose Name I Can’t Remember), who warned us that sometimes their 9:30s were a little… slower. Chris and Zack and I found ourselves continually pulling ahead; the times we tried and stay with the others, we were definitely going a little slower. We finally gave up and let ourselves pull ahead, which worked well since the other three guys ended up turning around early anyway. Once it was just us, though, we hit our marks every mile and took the last mile in fast (per Fred) which felt great. A nice run!

Oh, and for my first time on the C&O Canal Towpath? So far, not a fan. Perhaps it’ll get better/easier, but I don’t like the shifting of the gravel, or getting rocks in my shoes. I know the softer surface is supposed to be good for you, but… hmph.

Next week I’ll be down in Wilmington, but will try and squeeze in my 10-miler down there. We shall see!

Back up to speed?

Start time: 6/8/07, 6:30pm
Location: Thomas Jefferson Community Center
Distance: 4 miles
Average pace: 8:53min/mile

I didn’t run VO2 Max runs on Friday because I knew I wasn’t up for it. Instead I went for what was supposed to be on my “off weeks”—in this case a 35-minute 9min/mile. It was in the mid-to-high-90s on Friday so I ran it on the gym’s track, which worked out pretty well. My splits were 9:01, 8: 50, 8:48, and 8:55. Only the vaguest of soreness, which was a very good sign. I’ll take no chances and this Sunday’s 9-miler will probably be with the 10min group instead of the 9min group, but provided that goes well I should be back up to my full steam next week. Yay!

(Afterwards, I used the weights for a bit and then realized I was running late and that Charlie might possibly make it to the apartment before I did. Oops.)

Back to the LTRs

Start time: 6/5/07, 7:00pm
Location: McLean High School
Distance: ~2 miles
Average pace: 9:30min/mile & 7:00min/mile

The idea on Tuesday was to get back into the LTRs. My schedule said 8 reps, but I ended up doing 4 strong ones and started but didn’t finish a 5th. Considering how long it had been, I was pretty pleased. Ended up walking my cooldown instead of running it, but it was still all good.