Wednesday, February 29, 2012

What to use on boards?

I will only run on a wood track once this year: this Friday at 'ye old' Mason-Dixon Games at Broadbent Arena in Louisville. The 52nd annual.

One of the selling points for this meet is to...
Actually, I'd rather not. These planks are 50 yrs old. Well, at least the turns are banked. Give me a modern rubber track any day.

So... what spikes to use? (see photos below)

Pin spikes seem to be the best choice of spikes, sharp cones also. I will definitely NOT use my new Nike Superfly R3s. I will either use the my old pair of R3s or my new Saucony Showdowns. I like the using the Nike for the crowns - they seem to give me a bit of lift. I wore them at MTSU and they worked ok, and MTSU's track is every bit as hard as hardwood. I've recently coated all the crowns with super glue for durability.

The Showdowns look extremely aggressive with their 10 spike plates outfitted with 1/4" needles. I like that the outside rear spike is quite far back. However, the Saucony's are at least an ounce heavier than the Nikes and don't fit quite as nice.

I guess I will get there early and decide. I really am focused on the first event of this meet, the 200m.

The way this meet is run is unfortunate. On Friday night there will be 400 middle school kids competing alternating with probably less than 50 masters and open athletes. More tomorrow in the pre-race day post.

Stormy Wednesday on the track

With a Tornado Watch in effect, I enjoyed some warm windy winter weather on the track today. It was near 70º but very windy with showers. Big storms on the horizon.

I did an even split 400m and some 200s, taking advantage of the tail wind.

800m warm up, stretches, drills

Saucony spikes on

50m strider

400m event run - 62 (15, 16, 16, 15)

4 x 200 - 27.5, 28, 28, 28

60m from blocks

The second 100m of my 400m I was against the wind. Running with the wind was weird. Kind of like running in a vacuum with no breeze at all.

A little fatigued after my resistance workout yesterday that I did around midnight. Feel ok, not really sore, just a slight tinge of pubalgia once in a while.

Weight is nominal: 139.6 after workout

Monday, February 27, 2012

Monday - back to work

Actually, I have Mondays off from my job, but today it was back to the track on a spring like winter day, low 60sº at sunset.

Since aerobic conditioning is my weak link - requiring almost constant maintenance - and is the first thing to go when not training, I did long sprints today. A pretty good solid and tiring workout. Also, a good day to continue breaking in the Saucony Showdown training spikes.

800m warmup, stretches, drills

800m - 2:27

2 x 300m - 44, 48.5

2 x 200m - 29, 28.5

400m jog cool down

I did not take measured rests but they were about medium, ~5 min or so. The new shoes feel good and will likely be great practice spikes through the outdoor season.

Inventory: Have recovered from the joint pain but still feel it slightly in the hip. Notice a tinge of pubalgia everry now and then, but certainly nothing significant. After a weekend splurge, weight is still nominal: 140.4 after workout.

Indoor 400m strategy: As I watched the US Indoor T&F Championships, I noted that the indoor 400m seems like a different animal than the outdoor. 1) the splits were more lopsided - typically 21.5 and 25. and, 2) 90% of the time, the leader after the break wins. 100% of the time, the leader after the break takes 1st or 2nd. Leads me to take a very aggressive strategy on the first 200m in an indoor 400.

Also, an amazing story about Nolan Shaheed - a fellow musician (jazz trumpet) and masters track athlete set the M60 world record in the 1500m on Sat. The guy flew to LSU to run in a sanctioned meet and spent the night in a hotel stairwell because he didn't want to spend $200+ for a room. He also went without dinner, since the only nearby food was a BBQ joint. I can definitely relate to both those points. One awesome dude.

Saturday, February 25, 2012

Meet report: PR in the 55m

Sewanee Indoor Invitational.

Fastest 55m yet.

7.32 moves me up to third ranking in the USA M50, although this weekend, many more results will be coming in. Beat my best from last season by 0.11.
(photo: I'm in lane 1)

Also improved in the 200m to 25.55 ... not bad for a 160m track. The turns were tight and unbanked.

It was nice to run in Sewanee, actually beat 5 guys in the 200 and a few in the 55. A nice fast track for a 55m. Pretty crazy for a 200. One guy in the lane next to me in my 200m heat took a practice start up to the turn and turned around and said... "Man, I don't know about this." The angle of lean required to sprint these turns was unlike any track I've run. Nevertheless, my time was actually .11 faster than my ill fated 200m Nationals Final.

It felt good. I did feel some joint pain in the left hip and knee in between races. Nothing serious but it got me thinking about what someone said about using up my 'joint budget.' Not sure if I should run 3 or 4 events on Friday in Louisville. We'll see.

These times lead me to believe that I have not yet peaked as a masters sprinter. It is inevitable that I will begin to decline... and soon. What's more notable, as a highschool athlete, I ran 6.6 hand timed at this distance - converts to 6.95 FAT. That means I'm near 95% of my highschool speed at this distance.

Sunday, I think I'll take a day off.

Photo: end of my 200m race, (the college guy edged me out at the finish)

Friday, February 24, 2012

Pre race day: More light sprints and blocks

Test drove the new Saucony Showdown practice spikes.

They're great. Comfortable, durable and an excellent spike plate. Enough room for light socks.

T'was a cool blustery day, mid 50sº, windy and cloudy. I did a good long warmup and laced up the Showdowns.

1200m warmup, dynamic stretches, drills

Saucony spikes on

2 x 100m striders

Long sprints at 85-90% effort

300m - 44.5 (even 15 sec 100m splits)

200m - 28

several block starts
Worked on the blocks again. So many variables. Angle of blocks, distance from line, amount of forward lean, etc... Felt pretty good. My basic foot configuration hasn't changed from highschool, however, now that modern blocks have angle adjustments, thats another variable for experimentation. I do seem to start with a lot of forward lean and weight on my hands in set position. I concentrated a lot today on the alignment of the first steps.

Tomorrow's meet in Sewanee should be fun - particularly since I am NOT running the 400m. I would really like to pop a PR in the 55m. It is a fast surface, but it's a 160m track, not particularly fast for a 200m.

I remain a pound or 2 heavier than ideal, 139.8 after workout.

Thursday, February 23, 2012

New practice spikes

I got these 'Saucony Showdown' spikes to replace my Adidas Demolisher practice spikes.

They had this hideous orange color on sale cheap, so I snagged 'em. Their more popular and better looking green and silver cost $30 more, so I got the ugly ones.

I will still probably prefer the Nike R3 Superflys for racing, especially because I like the risers and they are light. But these Sauconys have a unique 10-spike! plate and are supposed to be good for curves. I may put 1/4" pins in 'em and use them on the boards in Louisville next Friday. I've never seen a sprint spike with 10 removable spikes in each shoe. I really like that the outside edge of the shoe has 4 spikes back to front. The Nikes have 3.

They look a lot like the old comfy Adidas with the zipper flap, and they are supposed to be durable. Better yet, they are a $100 shoe I got for less than $40. The Adidas are beginning to rip out on the outside edge. They've served me well.

Blocks and light sprints

Admittedly, a bit sore from Tuesday's resistance/stairs/plyos, I took Wed off and hit the track today, on a windy but perfect 72º afternoon for some light sprint work and blocks.

Also today, at the urging of Ray and Chuck, I officially joined the Greater Phily Track Club and changed my USATF affiliation to mid-Atlantic so as to be able to compete in the Penn Relays. I also purchased my ticket to Raleigh to compete in the SE Masters Championships in May.


800m warmup, stretches, drills

2 x 60m striders

spikes on

200m - 28

2 x 100m - 14, 13 (one w/ blocks)

5 starts from blocks
I found that I can use my Gymboss timer for block work. I can program it to give me a beep to respond to. If only the stop watch function had a countdown to a beep, I'd be able to time myself for a 100m precisely from a block start to the 0.00th. The interval mode only works in whole seconds but the stopwatch does time tothe hundredth.

With a steady strong 30 mph wind at my back, I ran a 13 sec 100m and let up completely at 90m. Amazing how much the wind can add. With that powerful of a tailwind, I could surely run under 12.

My problem with starting block form is that I sometimes take short and wide (off center) steps coming out. I need to concentrate more on keeping a good line and a long and powerful first step - that's why when training, I center the blocks on the lane line and practice running down the stripe. I'll go out tomorrow and do more block work. I anticipate doing only one more hard workout this month since I have 5 days in between the next 2 meets.

Inventory: Tad sore but not bad. Still a little heavy: 140.0 after workout.

Tuesday, February 21, 2012


Looking for further ways to torture myself, I did some new stair exercises today in addition to the stair sprints.

Today I did double leg hops... not on the stairs or the bleachers, no that would be too easy, I jumped over the bleachers landing each time in between. That motion engages the hip flexors and core much more than running, requiring explosive high knee movement. I estimate that one flight of the stadium doing this is 4x as hard as running the stairs. The first time I tried it, I couldn't make it to the top without a taking slight pause after every 3rd jump. So then, I did what I will call 'half and halves' ... halfway up with jumps, and sprint the rest of the way. After about 15 runs, some 'half and halves', some all jumps and some all runs, I was finished. I felt tightness in the hip flexors and the tensor fascia latae, so I called it a day.

Now cutting out the crap from my diet, have been waking up over 140 lbs - which is heavy for competition season. Past two weeks, been eating more sweets, fat and carbs, can't keep doing that. 139.8 after workout. Back to greens and fish, protein shakes, etc...

I will do the usual resistance tonight and hopefully some starting blocks tomorrow.

Monday, February 20, 2012

400m event run and 200s

What a difference a day makes ... compare this photo to yesterday. It was brilliantly sunny and upper 40sº at Sewanee's Coughlan Track this morning. I did my second consecutive day of track workouts.

I started with a 400m event run with the goal of running even 15 sec 100m splits making an even 60 sec 400. I nailed every split and ran the last 100m hard and finished slightly ahead of goal - 59.5 - a negative split! I could have run a faster 400, but I wanted to save a little for more running. After 5-6 min rest, I did a brief tempo workout of 4 x 200.

Running even 15 sec splits in a 400m is like increasing the effort every 100m to maintain speed .... 80% - 85% - 90% - 95% or something like that. Also, I used my old Adidas Demolisher spikes instead of the Asics Japan Lite-nings I used yesterday. The Asics fit so tight that after running an 800 and 2 x 400 yesterday, my big toe nail felt bruised. They are great light race shoes, but really uncomfortable for training. The Adidas felt 'plush' in comparison.

800 warm up, stretches, drills

2 x 60m striders

Adidas spikes on

400m event run - 59.5 (30, 29.5)

5-6 min rest

4 x 200 - 29, 30, 30.5, 32
(rest intervals 2, 2, 3)
Doesn't look like a very difficult workout but my thighs definitely felt pumped. Anything after a 59 sec 400 will feel hard.

Looking at the Clyde Hart 400m regime, the important things for this time of year - early season - approaching mid season, are:

1) tempo endurance - 100% priority through mid season
2) event runs - increase to 100% priority in mid season
3) speed endurance - increase to 100% priority in mid season
4) strength (resistance) - 100% throughout the season

I wonder if more (daily) but lighter workouts like today would yeild a better result?

Sunday, February 19, 2012

Long sprints in the fog

It was ethereal. Probably some of the worst conditions I've faced on the track. 32º and windy, dense fog with visibility less than 100m, freezing drizzle and snow. At times like this ... Sewanee sometimes reminds me of upstate NY.

I parked my car near the track so I could change my shoes and rest in between reps in the car. The windblown freezing drizzle was pretty horrible down the homestretch. I ran in short tights, long sleeve tech T, and gloves, keeping the sweats on til the last moment.

I did a brief workout. I ran an 800m sprint at near maximum effort today to start, followed by some 400s. I set the Gymboss to pace my 200s: 33, 34, 38, 34 or a goal of 2:19 (67, 72). I came up short, I ran 68, 77. I think I can do better, perhaps in less severe conditions. I did run it as a sprint. All on my toes, and I used my Asics spikes.

800m warmup, minimal stretches

Asics spikes on

800m - 2:25 (68, 77)

2 x 400m - 67. 67.5

about 5 min rest between

Wanted to do more so maybe I'll also run tomorrow.

Saturday, February 18, 2012

Bombshell masters track news items

Two Masters Track bombshells appeared on today.

1) A lawsuit that threatens the Masters Indoor Nationals meet. A judge in Indianapolis is set to hear a case on March 9th that will decide the fate of the meet.

2) Possible disallowance of M50 sprinter V. Barnwell to compete. Barnwell was the '09 World Champion in the 60m and set a world record in that meet. He needs to follow specific procedures that he apparently hasn't yet done to be cleared after a 2 yr doping suspension.

Regarding the lawsuit, USATF IN and Richard Thomas were named in a lawsuit regarding financial records. His comments on the post indicate there was no wrong doing. Thomas, an M45 sprinter, was meet director at the USATF IN Indoor meet I attended last year.

Regarding Barnwell, I hope he can compete. Of course that would make it even harder for me to get into the finals... but what a 60m event it could be! Eaton, World Silver Medalist in the 100m (second only to Willie Gault), Barnwell, Butler, Sullivan, Waller, all these guys run sub-12 in the 100m. (Barnwell and Waller ran 11.3's back in '09). I think we may see faster times in the M50 than in some of the younger age groups.

I can't imagine this meet would be canceled. I imagine if worse come to worse, they'd scramble to find a different venue or some plan B. Maybe the USATF Masters should think about that now, just in case. A lot of people have shelled out $ for plane tickets.

Friday, February 17, 2012

400m event run and full out 100s

Burnin' rubber on this beautiful day. Sunny, upper 50's, perfect day to run fast.

A little intimidated now that I see World Champion M. Sullivan is registered for the triple 60/200/400 at the Nationals. That means everyone will be running for second in the 200/400. (His times are around 23 and 52). Only Eaton can beat him in the 60m. This has to be the most competitive Indoor Nationals in more than a decade in M50. Crazy! Now it truly WILL be an accomplishment to finish in the top 6 or 8.

Today - quality over quantity. After warmup, I did one event run of 400m and 3 x 100m - all at 95% ... or pretty much full out. In the 400m event run, I set a goal of 57.o with splits of 14, 13, 14, 16 (or 27, 30). I almost nailed it. Just a few steps short on the 3rd 100. Conveniently, there are cones at every 100m interval. The fourth split was on target, actually made up a few steps. I then ran 3 x 100s with full recovery.

800m warmup, stretches, drills

2 x 100m - striders - 15, 14

400m event run - 57.5

3 x 100m - 13.5, 13.0, 12.5

400m cool down jog
Next meet is Sat. 2/25 in Sewanee. I would love to turn a PR in the 55m, but it will be hard to run a fast 200m on that 160m track.

Inventory: weight - 140.6 lbs - starting to get under control after falling off the diet wagon. Some minor joint pain in left knee and hip. No muscular issues. My Adidas Demolisher practice spikes are finally beginning to show some wear, may need to replace them soon. Yesteryear's spikes are always a bargain. So are odd sizes. I recently bought a size 14 spike just for the accessory pack of spikes and risers. Originally $90 shoes, they sold for just $4.75... practically giving them away.

Thursday, February 16, 2012

What is it with M50?

Why are there more sprinters in my age group competing in the Nationals than any other age group? With over 21 sprinters registered and still more to come, the M50 age group has about double the number of sprinters of the other age groups. It seems as if there are a number of elite sprinters that will travel a great distance to specialize in just one event, particularly the 60m. Here's the kicker - of the competitive M50 sprinters registered, only me and M. Waller are registered for the 60/200/400 triple.

So far, it looks like just making the finals in the 60m - the most popular event - would be a good goal. Same with the 200m. No holding back in the prelims. Only 6 go to the finals in the 200m. I'd have to be near PR performance to make the finals in these events. (Forget about a medal). Under 8.00 in the 60m and 25.50 in the 200m. Definitely possible on that beautiful super-X Mondo banked track.

In the 400m, there are at least 4 guys who usually run in the 54-55 sec range, so it will absolutely take a PR performance for me to contend for a medal... and it will likely be even tougher, as registration remains open. (Competitors can late register for additional fees through 2/27).

Medals in this age group will be very very well earned.

Wednesday, February 15, 2012

Quantity sprints

Nice to be in Sewanee for a weekday workout. Unlike MTSU, it's quiet, no parking hassles. It was partly sunny, mid 50sº and no one else on the track. Feeling slightly sore from resistance on Tues and also heavy from a big Valentine's celebration, I was slow to warm up.

I wanted to do several 300s at around 45, trying to run even 15 sec 100m splits. (Yea right). I was close on the first 2. After 4x, my rest interval began to slip. It was still hard.

800m warmup, dynamic stretches, drills

Adidas spikes on

7 x 300 - 45.5, 46, 48.5, 50, 48.5, 50, 51
(rest intervals, 2, 2, 2, 3, 4, 4+)

Despite the slow times on the last few, I really did push the last 100m.

Indoor Nationals
Well, it looks like I'm pretty much out of the running for a medal in this year's Nationals unless I deliver a PR performance and the big guns do badly or do not show. This year looks to be extremely competitive. Registration is open unil Friday but already I see on the entry list 3 former world champions, and notably, M50 world record holder in the 60m - V. Barnwell, who is returning from a 2 year doping suspension. I expect to see a whole lot more entries in the next 2 days. Oh well. Hope to make it to the finals at least. The 60m will be exceptionally competitive, especially if both Sullivan and Eaton show up. Doesn't matter how much or how well I train, will never run as fast as those guys, but that's ok.

Tuesday, February 14, 2012

Indoor into Outdoor - looking ahead

Looking to March and beyond ... indoor season goes right into outdoor.

With thriving track programs at TSU, Vanderbilt and Sewanee, I'll really have plenty to do during the height of the college outdoor season which is essentially March and April. This is similar to last years season - 17 total meets, 7 indoor and 10 outdoor. Every one of them (except the Nashville district meet) is FAT timed. The problem with most college meets is that I have to choose between the 100m and the 400m since they usually run the 400m first. Of course, all this is tentative and represents a maximum season. Some meets I may not do. I did 15 meets last year and said I wouldn't do as many this year. (I may end up a liar).


----indoor ----
February 25 - Sewanee, TN: Sewanee Indoor Invitational
March 2 - Louisville, KY: Mason Dixon Games
March 16-18 - Bloomington, IN: USATF Masters Nationals
---- outdoor----
March 24 - Nashville, TN: Vanderbilt Black and Gold Meet
April 14 - Nashville, TN : TSU Boston Moon Classic
April 21 - Nashville, TN: Vanderbilt Invitational (or Sewanee Mountain Laurel Invite)
April 27-28 - Philadelphia, PA: Penn Relays
May 5 - Nashville, TN: Senior Olympics District
May 12 - Raleigh, NC: Southeastern Masters Championships
June 16-17 - Louisville, KY: Bluegrass State Games
June 23 - Birmingham, AL: AL State Games
July 14-15 - Nashville, TN: TN State Games
Aug 3-5 - Lisle, IL: USATF Masters Nationals


Did a brief one set resistance and plyo workout today. Tomorrow - on the track in Sewanee.

Monday, February 13, 2012

Road work

On a gray cold day, I hit the pavement for some fast long sprints with ample recovery. Kind of a 'long sprint endurance' workout. Without much warmup, save for dynamic stretches, I hit it:
Dynamic stretches

800m - 2:32

600m - 1:53

800m - 2:32

600m - 2:01

Strangely enough, the first one felt the hardest. The rest, not so bad. Took several minutes recovery beween and used the Gymboss to help with pace.

Yesterday, I splurged on food. Toast with butter, cookies, chocolate, ice cream! , etc... Ballooned up to 144 lbs by bedtime. No problem, back to a nominal 139.4 lbs after workout ... and a few trips to the bathroom. When I eat like that, I usually 'take the day off' from bad eating the next day and eat light or fast. That's why I can eat just about anything now and not gain weight.

I see long time sprint champ M. Waller has weighed in this season with the fastest time in the M50 200m - pushing my season ranking to 4th. Looking forward to the next 2 meets where I'll be focused on the shorter sprints.

Sunday, February 12, 2012

Rest day, more on the meet

I feel good enough to run, so I may go out on Monday for some endurance running.

Normally, I've taken two days rest after a meet, but my total lack of soreness and my own food splurging tell me it wouldn't hurt to burn some calories tomorrow by exercising the aerobic system. Going to be cold tomorrow, high of just 42º. Good day to run.

On the meet...
Since this was my last home meet, I'm happy with the way I left it. I wish I had run a better 400m, Iska was amused at how far behind the leader I was on the final turn. I finished last, by a lot ... 3 seconds slower than the next slowest guy. However, in my 200m heat, I stayed with the pack and finished just a few meters behind the next slowest guy, actually ahead of 2 others overall. With Coach Kelly and Mrs. Dean Hayes looking on at the finish line, both congratulated me after my race. Coach Kelly even shook my hand, congratulating me a second time. I was happy to speak with Jan Hayes at length about track and the enjoyment of getting to know her husband, the legendary Coach Dean Hayes.

The greater point was that I feel I proved I can run with... or at least, close enough behind the college sprinters to justify my participation. My college competitors seemed genuinely happy to see me out there (no threat!). The only weird and confused looks I got were from spectators, especially parents watching their kids compete, many of which are younger than me. I actually heard one guy mutter to his wife, "isn't that guy kinda old for this?"

Word seems to have spread that I am a masters athlete and am 51 yrs old... some people came up to me to ask about masters track, and ... I did one interview with a Belmont University student sports blog editor who obviously saw me as 'a curiosity.' Because there is no online open registration at MTSU, I am the only guy older than 25 competing, and one of just a few white sprinters (there weren't any in the 55m event). I'm kinda 'unusual.'


Thursday is the deadline for the USATF Indoor Masters Championships entries. If everyone that came last year comes again this year, I'm totally S-O-L for the possibility of a medal. We'll see. Should be interesting.

Just two meets left before nationals:

Sewanee 2/25: (55, 200) ... I may run the 400 too, but it's a 160m track.

Mason-Dixon 3/2: (200, 55, 400) ... hell, I may even run the 800m race just for a workout since it is after all the sprint events, and last year, the M40 winner ran only 2:24. I guess it depends on how much rest I get after the 400m.

The season is going ok so far.

Saturday, February 11, 2012

Meet report: incremental improvement

Slight improvement is better than going the other way.

At MTSU's Valentine Invitational, it took more than 2 hrs for them to post results of the Men's 400m. I had no idea how I did. It felt really slow. I didn't rig up but I felt slow. To my surprise, it was slightly faster than last meet: 57.40. Presently third ranked in USA M50.

I thought about scratching from the 200m race and I'm glad I didn't. It actually felt quite good, and I finally got a decent time, 25.83. UPDATE: It is ranked presently fourth in USA M50. I think I could've run faster if I didn't run it after a 400m. Surprisingly, I actually beat a few guys in the 200m.

The best thing is that there is NO sign of the previous groin injury and really, no strains whatsoever.

More later...

Friday, February 10, 2012

Pre race day - indoor meet #4

Was going to run today but had rain changing to snow and generally crappy weather. Just getting over a cold so I stayed in.
UPDATE: I felt like I needed to do something this evening so I did my dynamic stretches and ran a 400 on the street at 85%. Felt pretty hard. Aerobic conditioning always seems a deficiency for me. Need to keep the endurance workouts.
For this meet, I'll keep expectations low. Not going to worry about my lack of training this week, my weight, or much else. Just going to go out and blast tomorrow night. We'll see what happens. I will try to get a real good warmup tomorrow. Humbling to look at last year's results. - the slowest 400m time was 52.26.

I requested from Dean Hayes to run the 400 and 200. He never responds to my email or confirms, so I just hope to see my name on the heat sheets. Won't know if I'm running til I get there.

This coming week, the Masters Nationals entry deadline is Thursday. It'll be interesting to see the flood of entries coming in. The 60m looks very competitive so far, the 400m - not as of yet. Glad to see Bill Collins is registered in M60. He was ill and out for a while.

Thursday, February 9, 2012

Workout thwarted

I should have gone to the track this afternoon to do a last light workout before the Sat. meet, but instead I went to the indoor track tonight after the basketball game. No dice. The track was occupied by tables and bleachers. I ran a little anyway, but no meaningful workout. Didn't even go through my stretches.

Jogged 2 laps around the outside of the track and then ran 2 laps - about 700m in 2:12 in a sprint jog. Barely enough to sweat.

It's been kind of a poor week for workouts. I didn't realize til yesterday that I wasn't going to run the 55m. Since the TSU meet, I spent 3 days off recovering from the groin. Some decent strength work, but lacking in good speed work. In my first MTSU meet, I felt so 'beat up' by this hard track, I'm a little gun shy. Not real confident. I need to remember to run my race and not take off after the guys who are going to run 48 - 49s ... if I do, I'll surely rig up in the end. I will not do a lot of long sprint training on this indoor track in spikes. Sprinting those corners are just too hard on the knees. Training shoes, ok.

Maybe tomorrow I'll run a little on the street, maybe a 600 or something. The 400m race isn't until 6pm Sat.

Wednesday, February 8, 2012

Starts with the team, meet decisions

Today, I was happy to have time to take several gun starts with the team from blocks. I did my usual warmup drills, and stretches, ran a 250 strider and a few shorter ones. I took about 7 or 8 starts, 4 of with Coach Kelly's commands and gun, along with a full 8 lanes of sprinters by my sides. I got out pretty well.
Felt good, no strains. Stayed with the group for about 20m then, try as I might, after about 25m, they seem to have 'a gear' I just don't have.

The coach was offering advice to sprinters. However, I am completely invisible to the coaches, they are not encouraging, but seem to tolerate my participation. (I think coach Kelly must be about 10 yrs my junior). My interactions are completely different with the other sprinters. They always make a point of chatting and are encouraging, some calling me, 'professah.'

The problem with the way Dean Hayes structures these meets is that he assumes NO 400m sprinters will also run the 55m. So, instead of as in most other meets that have the 55m first, he has the 400m first, and then the 55m ... making a 55/400 double completely out of the question.

So, I have to choose. I've decided I will ask again to do a 400/200 double since I'd rather run a 400m here at MTSU on a 280m track than at Sewanee in 2 weeks on a 160m track, (although I may do it anyway). The way the meet is structured, a triple is possible at Sewanee, but I may save that for the Mason-Dixson in Louisville.

The order of the sprint events in the next 3 meets is completely different for each -

2/11 MTSU Valentine Invite: 400, 55, 200
2/25 Sewanee Invite: 55, 400, 200
3/2 Mason-Dixon: 200, 55, 400

Proposed races:
2/11 - 400, 200
2/25 - 55, 200
3/2 - 200, 55, 400

I ended the day with another 250m strider, fast, about 85%. It felt hard. I guess I just don't really like running in there, the air, the hard track ... don't know what it is.

Note on comments: I had not realized that anonymous comments were disabled. I've fixed that issue so anyone is welcome to comment.

Tuesday, February 7, 2012

300m event runs

Sunny and cold this morning on the track. Temperature 38º at the start of my workout. Past 2 mornings I've awoken with the beginnings of a cold - the foreboding sore throat. So far, it hasn't spread to my lungs, so I'm ok.

My goal was to run 14, 15, 14 splits for 43 sec 300s with the Gymboss timer/beeper. I came pretty close to goal. After running the first in 44 (14, 16, 14), I really stepped it up to try at get them on target.

It sure doesn't look like much in print, but it sure seemed hard.
800m warmup, stretches, drills

Adidas spikes on

2 x 50m striders

3 x 300m event runs - 44, 43.5, 43.5

300m strider - 52
Giving myself generous recovery, at least 4 min, on the 2nd 300, I nailed the first 2 splits but came up 2m short of the last one. On the third 300, again I nailed the first 2 splits and really pushed the last 100m, pretty much an all out effort to finish again, just 2m short. That one dropped me to my knees and I felt the fatigue in my hams. I wanted to do another but I just didn't have it after that. I finished with a strider.

The fatigue may be due to my 'lightness of being' (lack of fuel) - running a little light, just 137.0 lbs after workout.

Looking at my times this week per the effort, it doesn't seem as if I'm getting any faster, so it'll be hard to improve on my times this weekend. Hope to do some starts tomorrow and a light day on Thurs. After this weekend meet another 2 weeks before the last local meet on 2/25, time for a good training cycle.

Sunday, February 5, 2012

Sunday service on the mountain

Felt flat and was still sore this morning in calves and hams. Also, heavy after a weekend of dining out; I probably weigh over 141 lbs. Went to the solitary Coughlan Track in Sewanee this morning for a tempo endurance workout. It was cloudy, 50º... good weather to work. I did have a good workout, maybe not the best effort.

I wanted to run 500s and 300s today with the Gymboss. I was hoping I could maintain 16 sec even splits for each 100m in the 500s. That would be a 64 sec 400m + 16 sec 100m. I probably could have done it once, and again with full recovery, but I came up 4 sec short so I added a second, and still came up short. It went like this:

800m warm up, stretches, drills

Adidas spikes on

3 x 500 - 84, 88, 97 (4 min rest between)

2 x 300 - 45, 47.5 (4 min rest between)

The 300s I tried to do the 14,15,14 splits (43) but came up short. Anyway, I'll try this again on Tues but running faster with just 300s.

That last 500, I was still breathing pretty heavy before I started ... felt pretty rubbery at the 300m mark. I ran the 4th 100m slow and the last 100m with good effort. Still, way short of goal time.

It was a nice quiet Sunday morning, no one on the track, church bells ringing, birds singing making me think of spring track.

Saturday, February 4, 2012

Sewanee meet spectator

I went to the Sewanee indoor track meet to watch today. Weird to be there as a spectator. I saw Don Drummond there from ATC. He is the USATF Indoor M40 champion in the 60m and 60m hurdles. Last year he won the hurdles at this meet and was 2nd in the prelims today. I didn't hang for the finals. Good to see Randall Brady there as the starter, an M65 masters sprinter himself. UPDATE: 43 yr old Don Drummond WON the 55m hurdles event in 7.80. He also ran a 6.90 55m, #1 M40 time this season... go Don!

Today, it was too wet to hike. I'm sore in the calves and few other places from stairs and resistance work. So, I took the day off ... save for 2 exercises that I should do every day:
2 x 2 x 15-20 - adductor and abductor resistance bands
These resistance band (cuff around shoe) target the weak groin and will help prevent reinjury. I still feel a very slight tinge of discomfort in the left groin but only when exercising it. The pain goes away completely after one set of exercises. It was the right decision not to race today. I definitely would like to do the 55m and 400m at the MTSU Valentine Invite next weekend, a rare Saturday evening meet.

Going to be on the Sewanee track tomorrow morning to do some long sprint tempo endurance work. Maybe do some 500s. We'll see. Want to do speed endurance on Tues, maybe some blocks with the team on Wed., and some shorter fast stuff on Thurs. Friday will be off or light. Probably good to have a meet every other week this month so as to make some training gains.

Friday, February 3, 2012

Stadium stair sprints x 20 w/ high knees

Cold sunny morning, 37º at 7:30am.

Today, I did 20 stadium stair sprints, but this time, I concentrated on high knees, arm movement, and good in-line form. These were more exhausting than previous stair runs because of the emphasis on high knees and speed, not just seeing how many I could do. After 10, I thought I was going to fold. I tried to imagine myself running the last 80m of a 400m while doing these.

The groin is better, tempted to race tomorrow, but better not. I think I'll do some resistance and hiking tomorrow; running workouts Sun, Tue, and Thurs. Resistance is the best way for me to target muscle and tendon weakness and imbalance so as to ward off injury.

After eating heavily for a few days, I ate light yesterday and am back to a nominal 138.4 lbs after workout. I think I could live off fish, spinach, and sweet potatoes.

Thursday, February 2, 2012

Resistance and news on the BIG meet

Resistance work tonight:
2 x 25 Bulgarian squats w/50 lbs (each leg)
2 x 15 squat jumps
2 x 15 single leg leaps from box (each leg)
2 x 45 calf raises (each leg)
2 x 45 ham/glute resistance bands (each leg)
2 x 45 quad / hip flexor resistance bands (each leg)
2 x 20 adductor resistance bands (each leg)
2 x 35 abductor resistance bands (each leg)

and ... various upper body stuff.

Tomorrow, I will run the stadium steps early in the morning. The groin strain is just about gone.

NEWS on the Penn Relays:

I talked to the Phily track club guy today. He said I am pretty much assured a spot on their M50 4x400m relay team in the Penn Relays, and a spot in the M50 Masters 100m race (one heat - hard to get in to!). Possibly, also a spot on the 4x100m relay. I just have to change my USATF affiliation to become a member of the Phily Track Club. Three events!

These masters events are on Friday and Saturday, the days with the biggest attendance. And... this is an Olympic year, so some of the big guns will be there.

Running in front of 50,000 people?

Wow... April 27-28, 2012

Wednesday, February 1, 2012

Aerobic foundation work

Adding concrete to the foundation on this warm rainy winter day. It's in the 60's today, and the Dean Hayes Track was wet this afternoon.

Unable to risk running fast with a mild groin strain, I did some 800s today with pacing help from the Gymboss timer. I set the timer to 41 sec, my 200m pace, which would yield a 2:44 800m.

I was over pace a bit everytime, but a good solid sweaty workout.

400m warmup, stretches

5 x 800m - 2:45, 2:47, 2:54, 2:58, 2:53 - 2:51 avg.
(rest intervals: 3,3,3,4)
My weight is nominal: 138.6 lbs.

My average speed for these was pretty decent, better than similar workouts in the past. The groin strain is still there but fading. I expect it to be gone by the weekend.

I plan on doing a some stadium stairs and resistance before my next speed workout which will probably happen this weekend.

I got a mention in the National Master's News Alert this week (emphasis mine):

Indoor Season Heats Up

Houston Masters/ Seniors Meet, Houston, Texas, January 29th. Mitch Maxwell, M35, tripled running 7.40 in the 60 meter dash and also long jumping 5.79 meters (19') and triple jumping 11.45 (37' 6 3/4"). Doubling in the sprints were Rick Riddle, M60, and Ricky Easley, M55. Riddle ran the 60 in 8.20 and the 200 in 26.84 and Easley ran 28.86 in the 200 and 1:04.38 in the 400. In the shot put Tom Carlson, M50, got a season leading 12.45 (40' 10 1/4") and also ran 60 meters in 8.23. In Nashville, Tennessee, at the TSU Invitational, William Yelverton, M50, doubled in the 55 meter and 400 meter dashes, running 7.47 and 57.57. At the Bison Open in Lewisburg, Pennsylvania, Edward Winslow, M40, ran his first 400 of 2012 running 52.08.

No meet this weekend

It's Wednesday and my groin is still slightly sore so I'm not going to compete this weekend in Sewanee. (Shouldn't have run that 200m on Sunday). Don't want to push it. That will allow me to get some good training in before the 2/11 Valentine Invitational at MTSU where I'll run the 55m and the 400m.

Also, as a replacement, I may do the Mason-Dixon Games on 3/2. It's a wood track but it's banked and the 200m is the first event - not the last, as in most track meets. It's a Friday night Masters meet, not competitive but FAT timed.

So, my schedule looks like:

2/11 - MTSU Valentine Invitational (55, 400)
2/25 - Sewanee Invitational (55, 200)
3/2 - Mason Dixon Games (55, 200, 400)
3/16-18 - USATF Masters Nationals

Today, I hope to run some distance, nothing fast - probably 800s, maybe some resistance. I had a student cancel so I only work 2 hrs today. It may seem weird for a 400m sprinter to be running distance but I feel as if I never get enough aerobic foundation work. In the Bill Collins workout grids (that begin in Sept), he does foundational mileage for nine+ weeks.

Despite gorging myself yesterday, I'm still just 139.4 lbs. this morning.