Tuesday, June 30, 2015


The old standard 4 x 400m tempo workout with 2 min rest in between.  Waited at the KCD track for the rain to stop, I went out just before dark despite the lightning everywhere, didn't even want to hold on to the fence for my leg swings and stretches.  Spooky.  The rain had cooled down the temperature to about 68º and it was nice.
Saucony Triumph trainers on 
400m warmup, stretches, drills 
4 x 400m with 2 min rest between - 68, 69, 71, 72
A good maintenance workout in my 'long to short' progression as I approach the next race 11 days away.

Watching the USATF Nationals, seeing D. Solomon go out too fast in the 800m final and get 'handed the piano' in the last 100m (...his first 200m was 24.01), reminds me that it doesn't matter how hard one trains, you can't over estimate your ability and go out too fast.   Event runs and more speed work to come.

Sunday, June 28, 2015

long sprints: 3s & 4s

Awesome weather tonight at KCD school.  Low 70's and dry at sunset, felt like summer in Canada.  A good solid workout.  A bit sore after weights yesterday, especially the left tensor fasciae latae, so I kept it to long sprints.  Tempo 300s and a few negative split 400s.

Saucony trainers on 
400m warmup, stretches, drills 
3 x 300m w/ 90 sec rest - 47, 46.5, 48 
2 x 400m w/ 10 min rest- 59 (30/29) 61.5 (31, 30.5)

The last 300 was run turn-straight-turn.  The first 400 felt much easier than the second, even though it was faster.  Fell short of my goal of 30/28 but maybe next time when I'm fresh.  The 300s were hard but not killer.

Humidity will be increasing this week although temperatures will remain good, no hotter than 82º is predicted for the week.  

Thursday, June 25, 2015

2x4x200 tempo +

Good hard one today at Sewanee.  Warm and very humid, low 80ºs by sunset but a dewpoint of 74º made it hard to catch one's breath.   

Was a 1.5 lbs heavier than last workout due to a sushi and ice cream dinner yesterday, celebrating the beginning of my summer vacation and sabbatical.  

Started this first set of 200s a bit too fast, and the second set kicked my butt.  
Saucony Triumph trainers on 
4 x 200m w/ 1 min rest - 28.5, 29, 30.5, 30.5 
4 x 200m w/ 1 min rest - 29, 30, 31, 32 
2 x 150m - 19, 21
This second set of 200s was a bitch.  My heart rate was still 164 over a minute after the last one.  The 150s felt good, first one was rippin' - running at full 200m speed.   The foot is better, hurts less.

Nationals start 4 weeks from today in Jacksonville.   Can't imagine how hot and humid it's going to be there.   I hope they run the meet at night.  

First deadline for Nationals was yesterday.   Looks like a lot of competition in the M55 400m.  Ben, Rudy, and Tyronne all signed up.  It will be a challenge to medal, would have to beat one of those three which will be hard to do since all three have beaten me previously.  Ben ran under 55 last yr.   In both the 200 and 400, some people list seed times that they haven't run in years, (according to mastersrankings.com).  Par for the course.   Both my seed times are current, from this yr.  

Tuesday, June 23, 2015

brief workout

Warm and super humid today at the Dean Hayes track, upper 80ºs with thunder at sunset.  Jacob joined me for a set of 200s.  I had planned to do 4x200 with 1 min rest and 3x150 with 30 sec rest but the storm hit just as we finished the 200s.   The lightning was too frequent and intimidating to make a go of it for the 150s, so I had to walk away.
Saucony trainers on 
400m warmup, stretches, drills 
4 x 200m w/ 1 min rest - 30.5, 30, 29.5, 29
These were faster than my previous set of 200s, each one a bit faster.   I ran them in lane 7.  My foot was hurting a bit but not debilitating.  Felt better afterward.  Probably do a good workout in Sewanee on Thurs and weights Friday night.

Laying under the stadium and watching the rain and lightning after the 200s was a good feeling.

Sunday, June 21, 2015

back to the track

First time on the track for a week.  Humid, upper 70ºs on the Sewanee track at sunset on the longest day of the year.  Kept the mileage low on this one.  Won't be able to train tomorrow so I went out tonight for a light workout.  Foot was ok, not perfect but ok.  These cushy Saucony trainers helped a lot.
Saucony Triumph trainers on 
400m warmup, stretches, drills 
3 x 150m w/30 sec rest - 22, 23, 24 
3 x 150m w/ 250m walk in between - 21, 20, 19.5
Felt good and strong, ran the opposite way on the track starting 50m ahead of the 100m finish line and running to the 100m start in lane 6.  Foot hurt only a little, certainly not out of the ordinary.

Had done weights both Friday and Sat. nights.  Next meet in 3 weeks, IN USATF Assoc.

Saturday, June 20, 2015

not racing this weekend

Have made the decision not to race this weekend.   No point.   I could do it, but it nothing to gain.  Sr. Olympics are the 'minor leagues' ... and I'll go after Jim Mathis's TN records next yr.  So instead, I'll bust my but in the weight room and do some flexibility exercises.  My guess is that there will be no one under 27sec in the 200m in my age group, and I would be shooting for 25.

The TN State Finals are run in bad conditions.   A bad black high school track that is south facing, right into the prevailing winds this time of yr.   Right now the remnants of tropical storm Bill (yes, really) are passing to the north of here kicking up strong winds.   It would be stupid to even try to break a record in these conditions on that track.

Should be back on the track in a few days.

Thursday, June 18, 2015


In the pool today, aqua running.
8 x 90 sec (120 steps per min pace) with 30 sec rest between
Definitely a workout, even for my arms.  Plan is to scratch the 400m on Sat.  Go to the track and do a light workout Sat, see how it feels and decide if I want to race a 200m on Sun... (into the wind on a bad HS track with no competition).

We'll see.  

Wednesday, June 17, 2015


I got the good news that nothing was broken in my foot after Monday's misstep, just a bone bruise of sorts.   Doc Willers gave me a strong anti-inflammatory methylprednisolone 6 day pack which I started this morning ... and I tell you, the results after just 3 pills are pretty stunning.  Just 3 hrs ago I was limping to my car and now suddenly, I'm walking fine.  It's not quite back to normal but I can see some serious light at the end of this tunnel.  The pills make me feel weird, a little high or something.  (Not used to taking drugs, I don't even drink).

I went to MTSU to work out in the pool... and they closed it due to lightning... yes - the INDOOR pool closed ... 'due to lightning.'   What a crock o' shit!   Never heard of such a thing.   I was pissed.   So I stayed and did some hip flexor stuff, quad, hams, adds ...and even some calves.

I'm beginning the think I could race on Sunday.  But 'should I' ... is the question.   I've pretty much ruled out running the 400 on Sat.

I'll try the pool again tomorrow.

Monday, June 15, 2015

screwed myself

Just when I was healthy... I had a minor injury today in a stupid mistake.   Very hot and still at the Dean Hayes track at sunset... 86º.    To protect my sore right ankle, I was running a tempo set of 200s in reverse direction around the track.   Not used to running right turns, my right foot came down on the metal rail on the inside of the track and I rolled my sore ankle outward.   Fortunately, I didn't break or tear anything... it could have been much worse and season ending.   But it will rob me of some valuable workouts this week, and may possibly jeopardize my race this weekend, but I doubt it.  Determined to complete my set of 4x 200m, I limped through 2 more 200s after the injury, so maybe it's not too bad.  Damn... the sore ankle I was trying to protect, I just made it 4x worse.

Because of this ankle I may not run until the meet on Sat., which is very unfortunate.   I really did need a good set of intervals this week.  I feel like I'm in decent shape and very light.  Been upping the resistance work and had a good weight workout in Sewanee on Sunday.

Saucony triumph trainers on 
600m warmup, stretches, drills 
4 x 200m w/ 1 min rest - 30, 31, 31, 31
I'm doing the alternating bucket of ice and heat.   Right now it hurts to walk on it.  Damn.   Will know more in a few days if this will affect me Sat.  Sucks.

141.8 lbs after workout.

It's pretty bad, kept me up a lot last night.  Doubtful for the meet this weekend.  Hurts to walk.   I'm still in denial that it could be bad, but just don't know.  Hard to stomach ....going down like this after all this work.  I remember my broken foot felt so minor at first, but then kept me out for 6 months.   Just don't know.  This is doubly bad because it was a stupid mistake that could have been avoided.

Saturday, June 13, 2015

fast and strong

Finally, speed.   This workout felt great.   Everything in spikes at 90%+.   Beautiful evening at the Sewanee track, 75º at sunset, calm wind.
Saucony Triumph trainers on 
600m warmup, stretches, drills 
Saucony showdown spikes on 
500m - 75 (59/16) 
6 x 40m from blocks on the 200m start  
2 x 100m from blocks on the 200m start - 12.8, 12.8 
200m from blocks on the 200m start - 25.5
I started with a ball buster 500m, fast.  An even split 400m in 59 followed by a 16 sec 100.   I wanted to be fully warm before I jumped into the blocks.

The starts felt just great.... like I could be running the 100 again.  But since I'm not, no point in doing starts anywhere except on the turn, from the 200 or 400m start line.  I alternated between lanes 4, 5, and 6.   After several full speed starts, I ran a couple 100s on the turn in just under 13 sec. from blocks with my 200m race plan in mind.   My problem is that I sometimes have this illusion that I can run a 200m race at 100% the whole way, just because I also run the 400.  So, the second half of the turn needs to be executed with some restraint so I don't rig up toward the end.  I sure felt powerful coming off the turn both times, with no fatigue at all.

Then I finished the workout with a fast 200m, working on form, relaxation and my end game.  I always find it interesting that I feel no aerobic fatigue from a fast 200m, until after I cross the finish ... then I start breathing hard.  Running under 26 at the end of a workout and not at 100% makes me think I could just have a shot at Jim Mathis's TN State record on 6/21 which was dubiously recorded as a hand timed "25" in 1993. (.... not 25.00, simply 25).   The wind will have to cooperate.  Seems like I'm always running into the wind at that shitty black HS track every year for this meet.   I ran 25.29 last week after an exhausting 400, and last year, my worst 200 of the season at 25.71 was on this track, so I know I'm much faster this year and I think I have a shot at it.   Jim Mathis is legendary as a world champion in Masters track and as a coach.  He passed away a few yrs ago.   I always thought his M55 records would be untouchable, but I've run under 25 twice this yr. so we'll see.  Like Mathis's 200m record, his M55 400m record from 1993 is simply recorded as a hand timed "55".  I've not run under 55 this year, but very close: 55.11.    Then again, this is just Sr. Olympics, no competition for me at the state level, ever.  As Paul put it... most Masters elites don't mess with the National Sr. Olympics.   He said, "it's the Minor Leagues".  Then again, there is nothing "minor league" about Jim Mathis and his M55 records - which he set at age 59.

Thursday, June 11, 2015


Very warm and humid at the Dean Hayes track, 85º with a dewpoint of 74º giving a heat index of about 92º+.  Air was almost still.

Ran in lane 5 tonight to alleviate some of the strain of the turn.  Did these at a relaxed, consistent and controlled tempo.
Saucony Triumph trainers on 
400m warmup, stretches, drills  
4 x 200m with 1 min rest - 30.5, 30, 30.5, 30.5 
4 x 200m with 1 min rest - 30, 30.5, 31, 30.5
Could have done more but the groin still a little tight.   I did resistance last night including weighted squat jumps, calves, hip flexor cables, leg extensions and adds.

143.5 after workout.

Track season!
Also, wanted to get home tonight to watch the NCAA Track Championships.  5 meets in 5 days.
This week was heaven for a track fan.  Here's a list of the meets I've watched this week since Sunday, mostly online:
June 7 - Birmingham Diamond League
June 8 - Harry Jerome Vancouver
June 9 - Victoria Int'l
June 11 - Oslo Diamond League
June 11 - NCAA Div I  Eugene
 -- upcoming this weekend --
June 12 - NCAA Div I  Eugene
June 13 - Usain Bolt races at the NY Diamond League Grand Prix on Sat.!

Tuesday, June 9, 2015

speed endurance 5,4,3,3

Warm and humid 80º at the Dean Hayes track at sunset.   I took yesterday off due to a sore L adductor.   But, I did do a good resistance workout on Sunday evening in Sewanee.

All sprints tonight were strong effort 85-90%.   It was tough since I hadn't had a volume workout in a week.
Saucony Triumph trainers on 
600m warmup, stretches, drills 
500m - 81 
400m - 60.5 
2 x 300m - 43.5, 43.5
Just 4 long sprints, 1500m total ... but it was a bitch.   Cycling toward the meet in 10 days, weights Wed., hard tempo workout Thurs, speed on Sat., weights on Sun., volume/tempo Mon., speed Wed., light and tech stuff Thurs/Fri.      Also thinking about trying stadium stairs with ankle weights.

143.2 lbs after workout.

Saturday, June 6, 2015

Back to racing - AL USATF meet report

First race in 10 weeks.   No great times, but good to be back and healthy.   Considering I have done almost no speed work since my injury, it went ok.  No injuries or strains.

400m - 56.22
200m - 25.29

The USATF AL assoc. meet was at Hoover HS at the Mary Birdwell track.  Conditions were tough but typical for summer.  Air temp was in the upper 80ºs but it felt hotter around the artificial turf field.   There was actually an area air quality alert for ozone and humidity.   The track was not real good, a typical high school track in bad need of a resurfacing.

Real happy to have competition, Marcus and Paul were there.  Turns out, we were really evenly matched, made for some great races.

The first 200m felt slow.  I had lane 3 with Marcus and Paul in 4 and 5.  We rounded the last turn and hit the home stretch shoulder to shoulder, with Paul a step behind.  Hard to stay with those guys - (both over 6'4") in the last 100m.   Marcus beat me by a step and Paul out leaned me in a dead heat, ahead by 0.02.

I fully intended to scratch this race because I was feeling soreness in my injury area Friday night, but it felt ok after the 400m.   I got a decent start in lane 3 and passed Marcus who was in lane 4 by the time we hit the straight.  This race was a carbon copy of the end of the 400m.  Marcus surged ahead by a step and Paul (again!) came back and out leaned me at the line by 0.02.   Funny, Paul and I ran faster indoors the last time we raced.

I went to the Sewanee track Friday night and realized I was a bit sore after my first full speed event runs on Thurs.  I probably should not have pushed it that hard for the first time 2 days before a race, but the race itself was good training.   The 400 was particularly exhausting, moreso than usual, probably due to the heat and the fact I didn't sleep much last 2 nights.

Well, next meet is TN State Games in 2 weeks, also on a bad black HS track.  Hope to make some progress by then.

Thanks to Mary Birdwell of USATF AL.   At, 78 ... she's an iron woman, coach, and champion of track and field for more than 50 yrs in AL.   She was probably there at 6:30 am, and sat at that table handing out packets and medals to kids in the hot sun all day long, like she has done so many times before.  Track and field would not be what it is today without Mary and people like her.  Nice to run on the Mary Birdwell Track today.

I didn't collect my medals, more for the kids.

Thursday, June 4, 2015

Event runs

Spiked up today for some event runs from blocks.  A nice warm evening in the mid 70ºs at MTSU with a small breeze.  Played it cautious, long warm up before I let it fly...
Saucony triumph trainers on 
600m warmup, stretches, drills 
2 x 50m striders on grass 
Saucony showdown spikes on 
2 x 50m accelerations up to full speed 
2 x 40m from blocks from the 400m start 
300m event run from blocks, lane 5, 400m start - 39.75 (curve-straight-curve)  
200m from blocks - 25.75 / 1 min rest - 100m - 14 sec 
2 x 50m full power starts from blocks from the 400m start
It reminded me of 'that feeling' at the 300m mark of the 400m.  This was at race pace, full effort.   I think I may have a chance to break 56 my first time out this season in the 400m if I run it correctly and don't go out too fast. This 300m event run, my splits were 25.75/14 ... and the straight was into a slight headwind.   If I could bring it home in less than 16, it would be sub 56.  I was definitely feelin' it at 300m so fatigue would be a factor.  I think I can improve on my present condition with more speed work.   I should be ok to run the 200m but I'll decide on Sat.  If I do, I may take it a bit cautious.  Don't want anything to happen at this stage of the game.    I think my best shot at a 400m PR would be to turn splits of 26/28.75 or something like that.  25.75/29 would do it too.  I really shouldn't expect too much in this first race.

Feel pretty good, sore ankle, but that is all.  Have been very light lately... 142.5 after workout.   About a lb lighter than when I ran my PRs in Jan and March.

Masters events at Rome Diamond League

It's nice to see more Masters events on the international stage.  Such events are often included in the World and National Championship meets.  Usually, it's a generic "masters" event which means 40+.  Nice to see specific age group races for my age group.

In Rome today, there was an M55 200m race - for Italian masters.  25.71 was the winning time, only 2 of 7 under 26.    Wow, not real fast considering the ideal conditions.  Maybe those guys need to eat less pasta.

Gatlin runs the 100m today, scheduled for 2:28 central USA time... stream here

Tuesday, June 2, 2015

same 4x400+

Perfect June weather for a hard workout.   Couldn't ask for better this time of year.  Cloudy and breezy - 67º and dropping at 7pm.   Not particularly humid.  Felt almost chilly with the breeze.

Same 4x400m tempo+ workout as Friday, this time just slightly faster avg. time.   To relieve stress on the ankle, I did more than half of the workout running the track clockwise.
Saucony triumph trainers on 
400m warmup, stretches, drills 
4 x 400m w/2 min rest - 69, 70, 71, 75 
2 x 200m - 27, 28
I realized that the reason my ankle was sore was that I wore my Virratas and Showdown spikes the last 2 workouts instead of the Triumphs.   Triumphs make a big difference, as does running the opposite way.  Probably should have done it all clockwise.

I think I'm in pretty good shape for my first outdoor 400m on Sat., but it's hard to tell with the lack of event runs and fast twitch work.   143.7 lbs after workout.

Monday, June 1, 2015

most competitive Masters World Championships ever?

The registration for entry in the World Masters Athletics World Championships in Lyon, France is closing tonight.

Comparing the number of entries with that of the 2013 WMA Championships in Brazil is pretty stunning.   In the M55 category, there are at least 75 entered in the 400m, and 80 in the 200m ... representing about 30 different countries.   In Brazil, there were 24 in the 200m and 26 in the 400m in this age group.

Lyon is triple the size of the previous WMA Championship.   This means probably faster preliminary heats, because 2/3 will be eliminated after the first round.

There look to be a core group of about 10 in each event that look competitive.  I mean around 25.10 and under for the 200m and under 56.00 for the 400m.  By comparison, in Brazil, there were 2 guys over 57 sec on the medal stand in the M55 400m.   Doubt that will be the case again.