Friday, January 30, 2015

Brief speed

Did a brief speed endurance workout today in nice 45º sunny weather at the Dean Hayes track.   I was going to take the day off due to some achy joints, but I went out anyway.   Started with a negative split 400.  It didn't feel all that great.
400m warmup, stretches, drills 
400m - 60 (30.5, 29.5) 
300m - 43 
200m - 27.5
I think I may retire the 400m race for the indoor season.   I have 3 more indoor meets scheduled and may just do the short stuff, 55's and maybe a 200m at MTSU next weekend.  I might run a 400m in Sewanee's last meet on that 160m track, we'll see.  I feel the need to preserve myself for the long season ahead.  Happy with the 400/200 marks, would like to improve on the 55/60 marks.  The 55m is such a fun race and I should be able to run 3 of them in the next month.  Need the quad strengthening band work, especially in these short all out 'drag races.'

Looks like snow this Sunday so will be indoors for some short sprints Sunday night.

I'm in decent shape, 143.9 lbs after workout, and my yearly blood work revealed that my cholesterol dropped 10 points from last yr to 180.

Wednesday, January 28, 2015

5's and 3's

Back on the track today after yesterday's resistance work.   It was a perfect day to train, just warm enough to run in a t shirt, sunny mid 40ºs at the Dean Hayes track.

Did some up tempo speed endurance, concentrating on a good last 100m.  Still sore from the Sunday races.  The left quad has a slight strain and need to get back to the high rep explosive band work to strengthen it.
Saucony Ride trainers on 
400m warmup, stretches, drills 
2 x 500m - 81, 84 
2 x 300m - 44, 44.5

It was hard.  Don't know how I previously managed those 4 x 500 workouts.

Not competing this weekend at TSU, need a weekend off.

Monday, January 26, 2015

Meet report - Emory Crossplex Invitational

No PRs, but good marks.

55.68 - 400m
25.05 - 200m

I think this proves conclusively that I am ... faster.  Like last weekend at Vanderbilt, these times at the Birmingham Crossplex are faster than anything I ran outdoors all of last yr (F.A.T.).   And ... these races were on a standard 200m indoor track.  Also, these times were considerably faster than my times on this track last yr. (56.69 / 25.48), and at Nationals (56.48 / 25.49) ... even faster than my 55.90 that won the Gold in the indoor M50 USATF Nationals in '12.

It was great to race with some of my masters colleagues.  Four elites from my age group were there.  I fared well, only finishing behind M50 new comer D. Jones in the 400m, who ran a WL 54.80.  Masters and unattached results are listed below the college results here.

This meet was primarily a NCAA Div III meet, with a few Div I and II teams mixed in... much less competitive than last weekend's meet at Vandy.  I won my 200m heat and finished 2nd in my 400m heat.

Drew a good lane: 5.  I thought I might be able to win this heat, so I went out pretty hard and probably made my move a bit too soon on the second turn.  I took the lead at the break, and attacked the turn and stretched out to an 8m lead on the final back stretch, with only 120m to go.  I tightened up a bit on the home stretch and got passed, finished 2nd in the heat.  My 200m split was 26 flat which was ok, a tad fast for indoor.   I probably ran a better tactical race last weekend.   I estimate I lost a half second on the final 50m straight, not a total rig up, but definitely struggling.

UPDATE:  On further analysis of the 400m, my splits per 100 were about: 13/13/14.2/15.5  or 26/29.7 ... so work to do on the end game.  I need to bring that last 200 down one full second +.

Thanks to Sewanee coach Jeff H. for the video and these shots:

1) taking the lead after the break
2) leaving the 2nd turn at about the 230m mark.
3) After the race with the scoreboard and competitors.

I wish I had this on video, since it was the first heat I've won in a college meet.   I also raced fellow masters guy, Paul B. (pic below)  I was a little achy after sitting around so long between races.  But I managed to get out well and not rig up.  Happy to have lane 5 again.  I passed Paul in lane 6 very soon after the start, but he hung in there and finished just 0.19 behind.

Here are some of my masters colleagues that ran the 200m.... I'm the old man of the group:

From left: Tecumseh Peete (44), Sean Burnett (34), William Yelverton (54), Paul Brown (52), Marcus Shute (53).

Brotherhood of Speed

Friday, January 23, 2015

running in circles

With the bad weather, I was forced inside to the Sewanee 160m track for a last workout before Sunday's meet.   I rarely workout here, running on a 160m track is like running a constant turn, much more turn than straight.  Long turns, then just 8 or 10 strides on a short straight and another turn.

One good thing is that it's easy to figure out the 160m track for timing intervals.   400m is easily divided into 5 half laps of 80m.  So, 5 x 12 sec 80m segments = a 60 sec 400m, 5 x 13 sec 80m segment = 65 sec 400m, etc...   The only problem is running an all out 200m on this track feels so unnatural, like limping and running at the same time, or having one short leg and one long.  It's just too weird.   I don't think I'm going to race a 200m on this track again.  Never say never.  Hard on the ankle.
Saucony Ride trainers on 
2 x 400m w/ 90 sec rest - 65, 69 
200m - 27.5
The first 400m interval was easy but felt hectic, running 5 turns.   The last 400m gave me a workout, not severe but decent.   I ran a 85% 200m just to feel the turns, and they didn't feel good.  Left me with a sore ankle.   That's why I usually prefer to be outside in the cold than training on these tight turns.  But, it rained all day today and was in the 30ºs.  Should be snow by morning.

Wednesday, January 21, 2015

long stuff

suffering in 'a world of pain'

Beautiful day for some suffering on the Dean Hayes Track at MTSU. Mid to upper 50ºs and sunshine.

Shirtless in January!

I thought about trying for PR 800m today.  I got 600m into it and quit, seeing as I was only at 1:40 and wasn't going to make it.  Went out too fast in 29 for the first 200m.  Wish John W. had come, I would have gutted it out.  I needed a last 200m in 33 to get a 2:13 PR, but I whimped out with no one to push me.  I could really use a coach to bust my balls.

Saucony trainers on 
400m warmup, stretches, drills 
600m - 1:40 (65/35)
(Split 400) 300m - 41.5 / 1 min rest / 100m - 14
200m - 27.5
That split 400 was killer.  I felt it through my whole body, even in my arms.  It was close to race pace, 90%+ effort.  I should have done 2 or 3 of those instead of that failed 800 (actually a 600).

Feeling still a little sore from resistance last night and even still from the meet.  So glad I fixed my hot tub, an essential piece of training equipment.

Felt a little sluggish today and unfortunately, I have to fast tonight for my yearly bloodwork.   I'll take tomorrow off and do a good workout Fri, starts on Sat, meet on Sun.

I have no expectations but to beat my last year's time on this track of 56.49 and 25.48.  I recognize it won't be possible to run consecutive weekends in a 400m and really improve.  Some coaches have written about the fact that running 400m races every weekend is not conducive to improvement.  I would imagine that's especially true of masters.

I'm as light as I've been all season, 143.4 lbs after workout.

Today's quote:
"For what is each day but a series of conflicts between the right way, and the easy way.   10,000 streams fan out like a river delta before you, each one promising the path of least resistance.   The thing is, you're headed upstream. And when you make that choice and you decide to turn your back on what is comfortable and safe, what some would call common sense, well ... that's DAY ONE.   From there, it only gets tougher, so just make sure this is something you want... because the easy way out will always be there."

Monday, January 19, 2015

Monday, back to work

Back on the track today in splendid weather at MTSU, low 60ºs and hazy sunshine, with a breeze.

My legs are fine, the ham soreness is gone, just a little residual post-race soreness in my upper quads.

The workout today was similar to the one last week, but I upped the pain threshold a bit by decreasing the rest interval slightly.  Still, it wasn't bad, hard but not punishing.  Never more than 80% effort except on the last one where I did push hard to bring it in at 48.
Saucony Ride trainers on 
400m warmup, stretches, drills 
2 x 3 x 300m with 1:45 rest -  (47.5, 48.5, 48.5) and (47, 49, 48)

Next meet..

I was so impressed with the Vandy track that I tried to get in their high level invitational meet this weekend but was summarily rejected by assistant coach Humphreys.   I just asked to run one event - the 200m ... sheeeez.   Usually one of the last running events, the 200m gets a lot of scratches.  Seems like they could have considered my request before rejecting it immediately.   So, it's off to the Crossplex in Birmingham on Sunday.   It gives me one more training day this week, so it's ok, even though it's a whole lot more driving.   Plus, I get to be in Sewanee this weekend.

Trying to decide what events I want to run.  Would like to run the 60m, but it's the first event and I'd have to get up early and leave by 7:30 am.   If I run the 400/200, I can leave at 10:00am.  This meet takes forever.  There is almost 4 hrs between the 400 and 200.  I know I won't be able to produce faster times than I did at Vandy, but maybe I can use my last years marks as a reference to measure my progress.

Quote for the day:

“To be idle is a short road to death and to be diligent is a way of life; foolish people are idle, wise people are diligent.”  - Buddha

Saturday, January 17, 2015

Meet report: Commodore Invitational - Faster than ever

55.11 -  400m
24.80 - 200m
7.80 - 60m

Who woulda thought?  Setting PRs in the 400m and 200m, indoors, with a sore ham, and running three races?  The 400m is presently a WL indoor time, in an age group I'm just about to leave. Yea, definitely a fast track.   I really don't think it's possible for me to run much faster this indoor season since there will be no other tracks this fast.  But still, after 4 seasons of masters track, to get faster at age 54 ... soon to be 55, I must be doing something right.  Or maybe it was a fluke?

I really do think the off season weights and resistance work, which I keep doing, has helped.   I raced at 144 lbs today, about 3 lbs heavier than in 2012, and my 400m time was 0.79 sec faster than when I won Indoor Nationals in '12, my indoor PR.  0.37 faster than my '12 Outdoor Nationals as well.   So perhaps there is a lb or 2 more muscle on my frame.  I still think I could be a lb lighter.  

The 60m race was unremarkable, 7.80.  0.05 slower than first meet, but still faster than I ran at Nationals in '14.  An OK start.  I wrapped both thighs for protection because my left ham was still sore from a plyo workout last week.  After the race, I was in the training room with a heat pad on my sore ham.  I actually didn't finish last.  

The 400m went well.  I paced it perfectly so I didn't rig at the end and maintained a good relaxed pace, pretty much running with the pack in my slow heat until the break.   I was 4th out of 5 at the break and we spread out enough on the back stretch so I could run unimpeded in lane one.  The guy behind me made a move to pass on the last turn but I held him off and he faded badly and fell far behind.  Like all good races, I was whipped at the end but not sick and heaving. It would have been really instructive to know what my splits were, but I don't.  I'm thinking 26/29.  I was surprised at my time but a little greedy that I missed "running my age" by 0.12 sec.  54.98 would have been better.  I really doubt I can top this, especially indoors.   After the race, I retreated again to the trainers table for a hydroculator heat pad on my ham.  Again, didn't finish last.  

The 200m was most surprising, considering it was an hour after the 400m, and I was really quite sore.  This race I barely warmed up for and was going to do it just for a workout.  I was in a slow heat and in the inside lane.  The guy on my right was very close to my speed and I fought him all the way to the end, which probably helped me.  He beat me by a 0.10, and I did finish last in this event but holy shit, a PR.  24.80.  This is only the third time I've run under 25 (F.A.T.)... and to do it indoors.  Surprising.  

I'm half inclined to rest and not compete for a while but Birmingham is next weekend, and it's probably the second best indoor track I'll get to race on.  That said, I doubt I can run faster there considering the need to recover and cycle up to another peak, takes time.  We'll see.  Just a workout.  I might see Marcus and Don there, fellow world class masters, so I'll probably go.

Video: 400m start, I'm in the inside lane.   Just one of the boys....

Heh... beat a college guy

Friday, January 16, 2015

Pre meet day

Went to the Murphy Center this evening for a warmup, and a few starts.   I wrapped my thighs for protection and put the spikes on.  The ham still feels some slight soreness but I feel good overall.   Not particularly light but not bad, should be below 145 lbs by race time.

Looking at the heat sheets...

The 60m, my funnest race.  I just hope to survive without injury, time is a crap shoot.  It could be good or bad depending on my start and reaction time.  Unlike the 200 and 400, they put top seeds in every semi heat, so as to weed out the slow guys and allow the fastest to advance to the finals.   So, I get to race against one world class sprinter in my heat, and funny... but Ja'Karyus W. - who has run 6.71, is in the lane next to me in heat one.  It's early in the season but only 11 people in the world have run sub 6.7 so far this yr.

The 400m startlist is daunting.  I seeded myself at 55.90, my indoor PR, and some of the guys I looked up were using their outdoor PRs but even so, there are 25 guys running and 23 of them below 51.  I have the 5 slowest guys in my heat and I think at least 2 of their seed times are ambitious, one is primarily a vaulter, the other a decathlete.  One guy has run a bonefide 51.   My seed time is 3 sec. slower than the next slowest at 52.80.   I'd be happy to run in the 56s for this meet.

The 200m brings guys in the 23-24 second range, so ...even though I'll not be fresh after the 400m, I can chase these guys from the inside lane and not be too far behind... (I hope).

Running in a Div. I meet is a privilege at my age.   Although my first race this season shows I haven't slowed considerably in 4 yrs, I have to think each meet like this one could be my last.  So, a little nervous before this one ... on Vandy's cherished SuperX Mondo track.

Thursday, January 15, 2015

unintended tempo

Today is normally an off day but since it the weather was fair, and my ham was a bit tight, I thought I'd go to the track and screw around a bit.   It was upper 30ºs, sunny and dry, felt amazingly good at the Louisville KCD track compared to what I've seen this week.  I ran in t shirt and long tights after warmup.   I wrapped the ham for security.

After an 800m warmup, the KCD  HS lacrosse team showed up at the track.  The coach greeted me and we chatted while the team ran an 800m warmup.    I finished my drill and the team lined up for a 400m run.   I gave 'em the old line, "can you keep up with a 55 yr old man?'   They accepted the challenge.   We took off and I couldn't get my pace timer set so I estimated a 62-64 pace.   At the end of the back stretch, leading most of the pack by a big margin, one kid came storming by me, but he faded and I passed him on the turn and finished in just over 60 (on the coach's watch).   Except for 2 guys, most of the pack finished 10-15 sec behind.  It was hard but not totally exhausting.  Little did I know he was planning on 3 with 90 sec rest.  Since I wasn't planning a workout, I decided to do one more on 90 sec rest.  I was still puffing when we started and still beat the team in a slow 82.

I would have never run the first in 60 if I knew I was going to go again in 90 sec.   Perhaps this was exactly what I needed.  My lungs felt a burn I hadn't felt in a while.   Perhaps it's this type of work I need to do more of.  I was definitely not down for a third 400m.  There were 2 kids who were clinging to the fence and on the verge of heaving who sat out #3 as well.   Anyway, interesting to see how a little group involvement helped me work harder.
Saucony trainers on 
800m warmup, stretches, drills 
2 x 400m w/ 90 sec rest - 60.5, 82 
400m cool down   

I had read that Jeremy Wariner, in his perpetual comeback plans on running an 800m race this season.  Maybe I should too.  He said, “Now that I’m older, my body can’t do quite what I used to in training and competition.”  Sheesh, he's not yet 31.  Michael Johnson ran his WR 43.18 just 18 days before his 32nd birthday.   In the same vain, Nick Symmonds is making his indoor debut running a 3000m, well above his usual distance of 800m.

Wednesday, January 14, 2015

brief speed work

Was 32º but sunny and calm late afternoon at the KCD track.   I'm amazed at how much better it felt today than Monday, even though the temperature was about the same.  Sunny, dry, and no wind makes all the difference.   Still I wore the long tights.

Did three up tempo long sprints today.  The first one a bit gingerly, then the second one closer to race pace.
Saucony trainers on 
600m warmup, stretches, drills 
2 x 300m - 44.5, 42,5 
200m - 28

Did resistance last night and felt a tiny strain in lower ham when doing high box jumps.   Felt it today but it is minor, should be good to go for Sat.'s meet.  

And... I'm definitely in Saturday's Vandy meet.  I'm on the heat sheets for all three sprints.   I drew inside lane (2) for the 200m and 400m.    In a meet like this, it will be good.  More turn to run, but at least ... as my Dad says, "no one passes me."

Monday, January 12, 2015

2 and done

A nasty day, just above freezing, windy, wet.  I wasn't going to do anything today but I got restless.  So, I hit the KCD track late in the afternoon.  Did a couple long sprints and called it a day.

Saucony Ride trainers on 
800m warmup, stretches, drills 
500m - 83 
400m - 65.5

Felt slow, and made me think I'm not ready to race a 400m, especially in this weekends Div I meet.  Probably will anyway if they let me in.

Sunday, January 11, 2015

2 x tempo

2 short tempo sessions and then some.  In long tights at the KCD school in KY, cold, mid 20ºs but sunny and not much wind.
Saucony Ride trainers on 
2 x 3 x 300m w/ 2 min rest - (48, 48.5, 49) and (48, 49, 50) 
200m - 28.5 
100m strider
2100m total.  The last 300m of each set was 'earned'  while the first was not bad.  Tried to push it a  little faster than when I run sets of 4+.    Tried to keep at 48 but slowed toward the end of the set, still fairly consistent.
Looking forward to warmer weather.   Weather looks bad the next two days but will try to get out Monday.

Thursday, January 8, 2015

starts - indoor

Nice to be inside tonight on the Sewanee indoor track. After a thorough warmup, I did about 10 starts from blocks and about 30 - 40m sprints to full speed.

I did some videos.   Seems like my weakest point is reaction and quickness to the first step.  The bunch start is similar in activity to the squat jumps I do, but I need to perhaps reduce the weight and just work on quickness.  It takes me about 0.4 sec from first movement to first step.  Add 0.25 reaction time and that is the better part of one second to take one step.  Need to be a bit faster, especially for the 60m and 100m.

I wrapped the thighs with 6" ace compression rolls and it felt great.   The compression gives me confidence and protection and I feel fairly invincible to injury when doing full power stuff like this.

I also did a few sets on the glute machine.
600m warmup, stretches, drills 
2 x 40m striders 
Puma Bolt spikes on 
10 x 30-40m from blocks 
Saucony trainers on 
2 x 40 w/ 240lbs - glute machine

Tuesday, January 6, 2015

speed endurance

Long sprints at 90% with recovery at a pleasant day at the Sewanee track.  Just warm enough and sunny with light winds to run in short tights and a T.  I did retreat to track suit and gloves in between reps.  Amazing that just 3 1/2 minutes of sprinting can be this fatiguing.  It was draining.
Saucony Ride trainers on 
600m warmup, stretches, drill 
2 x 400m - 60, 60.5  (~ even split)
2 x 300m - 43.5, 44.5
This will be the last outdoor workout til this weekend due to a cold snap.  Supposed to be below 24º the next 2 days (lows tomorrow near 0º).   I'm planning to hit the indoor facility the next 2 nights.   Tomorrow for weights and Thursday for short sprints.

144.6 lbs after workout.

Sunday, January 4, 2015

300 tempo repeats

I sat in my car at the Dean Hayes track waiting for the light rain to subside on a breezy 45º afternoon.  Today, I did the workout I had intended at the Villages, but this time I paced better and did not get sick.
Saucony Ride trainers on 
400m warmup, stretches, drills 
4 x 300m w/ 2min rest - 48.5, 49.5, 50, 49
The last one was pushed really hard, the others were nominal.  I could not have done another at the same pace with 2m rest.  Overall, not a killer, but good maintenance.

It kills me that my hot tub is out of order this time of yr.   Hope to have it back up later this week or next.

Getting my diet back in order, but a ways to go to get to race weight.  Probably will take all of the next 2 weeks.

146 lbs after workout.

Friday, January 2, 2015

back in TN

Got to the Dean Hayes track at MTSU with an hour of daylight left.   Back from FL, don't know why I left.   It was 45º, damp and dark on a wet track.   Has been 3 days since I did anything but walk so I put some quantity in.   The workout took an unexpected twist.  I did a very brief warmup and hit it, not wanting to run real fast.
Saucony Ride trainers on 
400m warmup, stretches, drills 
600m - 1:44 
500m - 86
5 x 200m - 28-31
Everything felt fine, glad to be rid of knee pain.

Was planning to the ladder 400, 300, 200 ... but, right after my 500m, some guy was asking me to let his daughter in, so I did.   She was a freshman on the Samford (AL) track team, a pentathlete, sprinter/jumper.   Very well built, blonde, beautiful and cocky.   Apparently, she was on the TN State HS championship 4 x 200m relay.   I chatted with her dad who was a few yrs older than me, and was walking the track with his recent new knee.  He complained MTSU wouldn't offer her any scholarship money so she went to Samford on a full ride.   While she was warming up, I recovered from my long sprints and asked her what her workout was.  She said 8 x 200m (she only did 6).   I asked her how fast, and she said 34ish.  Too slow for me so I asked her if I could run behind her, she said ok.   I counted 4 seconds and took off behind her, passing her at the top of the straight every time.   We walked the 200m in between, chatted.  Afterward, I guess it may have been an imposition to run with her but I enjoyed it anyway, nice to see another athlete on the desolate track.

A decent quantity workout.   Happily, not too heavy.  146.3 after workout (but it's 7 pm and haven't eaten today).