Monday, December 11, 2017

Speed in spikes

Warmest day in a while in Sewanee, mid 50s and light winds, sunny.  Today was the first time I put the spikes on in 4 months.  I felt the need to test myself, as the feet were feeling ok.
Hoka trainers on 
400m warmup, stretches, drills 
2 x 60m accelerations 
Puma spikes on 
2 x 60m  
400m - 57.8 (27.3 / 30.5)   
300m - 42.3 
resistance bands - ham / hip flexor
I was nervous before the 400m event run.  I walked around a lot, thinking, doing drills.  I set a goal of 58 (27/31) and beat it by half a step.  I was not sick-exhausted afterward and felt OK.  I rested and ran another fast 300 in spikes, fell short of my goal of 41.  (I had run a 300m faster than this in training shoes).  Wanted to do more but running in spikes is hard on the feet and I didn't want to push it now that I'm on the track every other day.  I finished with some  resistance band exercises - eccentric ham and hip flexor.

Considering I'm 3 months away from Nationals, and weigh almost 147, I'm pretty happy that I can still run fast.  'Running my age' (just barely) today was encouraging.  I have to make a decision on Millrose soon and I'm leaning toward it.  I think I need to work on my short game a bit more so will do some block work this month, probably indoors.  I need more speed reserve and better form, I was far from hitting my 200m in an optimum 26.

Saturday, December 9, 2017

Cold 600s

Coldest workout of the year, wasn't looking forward to this one.  Cloudy and 34º with variable winds at the Sewanee track.  At one point, the windchill was in the low 20ºs but it settled down to a light breeze.
Hoka trainers on 
300m warmup, stretches, drills 
2 x 600m - 1:47, 1:49 
100m - 13.8
This was a test to see if my feet would hold up to one days rest.  After my 300m jog, the foot started hurting but then improved and felt fine after drills and stretches.  I took full rest between 600s.  The wind died down and I ran them in a T shirt.  The first one was more painful than the second and afterward, I was contemplating doing more, but I just ran a hard 100m and called it a day.  These 600s were comparable to a similar workout I did 2 yrs ago in Dec.  So, it's coming along.

Weight is coming down, woke up under 147 for the first time in a while.

Thursday, December 7, 2017

Keith in Kenya

MTSU coach Keith V. sent me this from Kenya... wow, is he well connected or what?  No wonder his XC team is ranked in the top 20 something NCAA Div I and he won a coach of the yr award.

Here's the photo... world class runners training at altitude on a dirt track in Kenya.  The guy in the middle is Asbel Kiprop, '08 Olympic Gold Medalist in the 1500m.

From Keith yesterday in Kenya:

 "Yesterday was an amazing day, I'm staying with a world class Nike runner Alec Rono, (Hillarys brother) he and his two boys picked me up from the airport. I go to the track the girls can run they even talked to me for about 30 minutes. Asbel Kiprop and Eliud Kipchirchir show up on the track to workout. Asbel is the best 1500m runner in the world. Hung out with Polat Kemboi while watching the kids workout, world class 10km Olympian. Had lunch at Augustine Choge house, (Jacobs brother) he's a world class runner as well. Eliud Kipchoge lives right across the drive from Augustine, best marathoner in the world."

Go, MTSU !!

Tempo 300s

Mid - 40ºs and mostly sunny and breezy on the MTSU track, I was joined by Jacob for my usual 4 x 300 tempo set.
Hoka trainers  
400m warmup, stretches, drills 
4 x 300m w/ 2:15 rest - 52, 52.5, 54, 52 (52.5 avg)
Slower than last time, but with :15 less rest.  Ultimately, I need to be 3 seconds faster with :15 less rest by competition season, under 50 avg w/ 2 min rest.  I was doing this ... and then some in workouts 2 weeks before Korea in March.  Need both work on form, fitness, and strength.

The plantar issue seems a little better.  K tape really helps.  Hopefully I can start doing every other day on the track now.   Damn cold weather in store for the weekend, 30ºs and windy on Sat., better by Monday but continued cold afterward, at least no snow.

Monday, December 4, 2017


Back on the track today, last warm day... although at 58º and a stiff breeze, didn't feel all that warm, but much worse is coming.  Felt slow and sluggish, still some soreness from the stadium stairs on Friday.

Hoka trainers on 
300m warmup, stretches, drills 
600m - 1:48.5 
500m - 87 
400m - 64.5

At least I completed the workout.  Last time I tried this about 17 days ago, I bailed on the 500m.   The 600m and 500m were pretty slow but I ran an OK 400m.   2 of the 3 straights of the 600 were into the wind.  I may not be out again until Thurs or Fri.

145.9 after workout.  Watching my diet.

Wore my Spanish singlet I got in a trade with an athlete in Korea.

Brief workout / possible meets

I should have taken the day off as my quads were still sore from the stairs on Friday, but I thought a brief shake out workout would help, plus it was an incredible 68º in Sewanee on this Sunday, Dec 3.
Hoka trainers on  
300m warmup, stretches, drills 
2 x 200m w/ 1 min rest - 28.5, 29.5 
100m - 13.8
I definitely paid it for as my heel plantar was quite sore afterward.  I had done so little that I expected to be back out later today for some foundational stuff, a more substantial workout since I know I can't be out there Tues, and Wed due to weather and work.  Monday is essentially the last warm day, maybe of the month as a very cold airmass is settling over TN the next 2 weeks.  It's not expected to get over 45º for the next week.

Wish I could have raced at Vandy on Sat.  Good to see my fellow masters out there, Duane and Don.

145.7 lbs after workout.

Possible Indoor Season
I won't race at all of these, but only Vandy is the one that I may or may not get permission for.  The others I can get in

Sun. Jan 7 - TSU
Sat. Jan 13 - Vandy
Sun. Jan 21 - Emory Crossplex
Sun. Jan 28 - KMS Crossplex
Sat. Feb 3 - Millrose , NYC
Sun. Feb 11 - Atlanta
Sat. March 3 - Berry, GA (outdoor)
March 16-18 - USATF Masters Indoor Championships, Landover, MD

Saturday, December 2, 2017

Congrats to USATF Masters Award winners! And to a few non-award winners!

Masters Age Group Award winners 2017

 30-39: Sean Burnett, Walter Dix

 40-49: Antwon Dussett, Sonja Friend-Uhl, Allen Woodard, Derk Pye, Jeferson Souza, Latrica Dendy, Eric Cole

 50-59: Khalid Mulazim, Lorraine Jasper, Joy Upshaw, Antonio Palacios, Oneithea Lewis

 60-69: William Collins, Carol Finsrud, Myrle Mensey, Reta Hanscom, Doug Torbert, Thaddeus Wilson Sr, Noel Ruebel, Charles Allie

 70-79: Kathy Bergen, Joanne Marriott, Larry Hart, Gary Patton

 80+: Jeanne Daprano, Gloria Krug, William Bell, Robert Culling, Ian Reed

Kathy Martin, Bob Lida

Yes, there were inconsistencies
Overall, very few awards were given this year.  No one in the M55 group got it.
It's very clear why most of these athletes received this award, less clear why a few did, and why a few did not.  With any type of award that depends on voting, there are always inconsistencies.  What is clear is that the so called "Masters Award point scoring system" was completely ignored.

As a prime example of the inconsistency of this award -

I'm not going to mention any names except for one.  It is completely astounding to me that Karnell Vickers  did not get this award.  He finished with FOUR #1 World rankings in M50: (100m, 200m, 110m H, and 400m H) and won 4 National Championships.  And he did it in what is arguably the most competitive and stacked age group in the world.  What does one have to do?  Contrast this with another hurdler that received the award who won just one National Championship and finish with just a #3 world rank indoor, although he had (one) #1 rank outdoor.  And, a W75 lady won 4 Golds in Daegu.

OK... then a #1 world rank seems like a good indicator.  What about Karnell?  What about Don who finished with #1 rankings in 2 events indoors?  At least one of the award winners was no where near #1 World rank.

OK, then perhaps American records seem like a valid criteria?  Not even this was consistent.  Some American record setters won the award, while others did not, like two who set American records in the 5K and 10K.  The 10K was a WR!  Still, not good enough?

Personally, I think that the point system takes all of these things into consideration... it accounts for both championships and records.  Yet the voting committee ignores it.  In the past years, at the awards dinner, a very clear spread sheet was developed noting the accomplishments of all the award winners.  I can't wait to see the spread sheet on this one.  Indicated by a spread sheet I saw on the '15 and '16 seasons, it seems that the point system was followed somewhat or informally, why not this yr?

In a sport like track and field, there shouldn't be awards given on any other basis than what is empirical:  data and numbers.  Personalities, opinions, cuteness, and name recognition (i.e. those that have participated for many yrs)...  should not play a part.  That is why I think an awards point system is appropriate.  It deals with numbers.  But, even that present point system could be improved, perhaps adjusted to reflect how competitive the championship event is (i.e. number of entries) and World and US rankings.  Not all championship events are equally contested.  For example, one person got the award for '16, winning a World Championship in a fairly low turnout event, and a National Championship where the person was the only entry in the event age group and ran uncontested.  In '15, it seemed that the award required at least three medals:  World Medals of any color, and/or National Championship Gold.  The award criteria has shifted year to year and that isn't consistent or good.

Another argument for adherence to an award point system is that it encourages consistency and participation.  This is the way the professional elite track competition the Diamond League is run.  Why shouldn't masters be run the same way?