Thursday, February 26, 2009

Tooth Talk

12:35 PM - Auburn - 4 miles, 30:00.

Despite the double-dose of drugs the dentist prescribed me yesterday I did not sleep well last night, but thankfully I was able to salvage about two hours of straight shuteye after popping some Vitamin I somewhere around the 7 o'clock hour this morning. I woke up feeling pretty crummy, but have certainly seen some signs of progress as the day has developed. I felt so much better an hour after a second 800mg helping of everyone's favorite over-the-counter pain pill that I hit the roads for some much-needed fresh air early this afternoon. It was euphoric, although that may have just been the meds finally fulfilling their obligation. The good news is the swelling under my lower lip has subsided significantly and as of 7:54 PM I'm feeling a lot better and in a much better mood than I was 24 hours ago. Hooray for Happy Pills!

Wednesday, February 25, 2009


8:40 AM - BSC - Bike, 20:00.
HRM: 125-135 bpm seated, 145-155 out of the saddle.
Full stretch afterward.

6:40 PM - RLTAC - 10 miles.
Track Workout: 3 x [1000m @ 3:05/600m @ 1:48] 2:00 recovery between intervals, 3:00 between sets.
25:00 warmup, 22:00 cooldown.
3:06.64 (1:59.25 recovery), 1:47.99 (2:57.90); 3:05.64 (1:56.31), 1:46.79 (3:05.07); 3:03.89 (1:56.45), 1:48.61.

8:20 AM - BSC - Bike, 40:00.
HRM: 125-135 bpm seated, 145-155 out of the saddle.

In the "How You Don't Want To Spend Your Wednesday Afternoon" category, I had to have an emergency root canal today. An abscessed tooth became infected and needed to be treated before the infection spread like wildfire and my chin "blew up to be the size of a baseball." This was all decided and done within two hours this afternoon. Seven hours post-procedure I'm still in plenty of pain despite a pairing of prescription pills I'm popping every six hours. Here's hoping they work their magic soon so I can get some sleep tonight.

Monday, February 23, 2009

Cu-ed Up

12:00 PM - BSC - Bike, 30:00.
65-70% effort throughout.

6:15 PM - Worcester - 7 miles, 50:00.

Tonight was my first time back to the An Cu in over a year for the weekly City Run, where I saw a lot of familiar faces and faced the old familiar challenge of dodging downtown traffic after dark. Got in a steady 3-mile effort in the middle of my 50-minute Monday run, nothing too hard but just enough to elevate the heart rate a little bit.

Speaking of which, I picked up one of these toys today, and the plan is to use it to better gauge my workout efforts, particularly on the bike. This is an entirely new approach for me -- heck, utilizing cross training as a form of training is still a new approach for me -- so it's going to take some figuring out. OK, a lot of figuring out. If anyone has some insight or advice, I'd greatly appreciate it. Thanks!

Sunday, February 22, 2009

Slow Sunday

8:20 AM - Westboro - 5 miles, 36:00.
4 x 30-second bursts.

9:00 AM - Auburn - 10 miles, 1:13:00.

Don't feel much like writing right now, but my running weekend can best be summed up by saying that I scratched the race and decided to take a couple extra days of easy running to shake what's left of this crazy cold. Finished last week at 46 miles on 6 runs and one whopping hour of cross training. More to come when I start kicking things back up again. Till then, take it easy.

Friday, February 20, 2009

(Don't) let it linger...

8:10 AM - Westboro - 7 miles, 50:00.
5 x 2:00 @ 10K-ish effort w/2:00 recovery.

The idea behind this morning's short session was to open up the legs and lungs a little bit to see if I'm going to be ready for a 25-lap tour of Harvard's fieldhouse on Sunday. I've still got two more days to get healthy, but right now the prospect of 5,000 meters around the indoor oval doesn't look too promising. I feel a ton better than I did on Tuesday, but like a bad Cranberries song, this crazy cold still lingers. I'm hoping that I can shake this sucker soon and give it a good go this weekend, but the last thing I want to be doing on Sunday is hacking up a lung in Lane 1 while struggling to slip under 16 minutes. You can feel like shit and still fake your way through the East Bumfuck 5K and call it a tempo run if things start heading south, but it doesn't quite work that way at the USATF-NE Indoor Championhips. And since the main goal is to get an accurate assessment on the current state of my fitness, I want to make sure I'm operating at least close to 100% before I put on my racing flats and thoroughly thrash myself for quarter of an hour. So at this point, I'm just gonna sit back and see what the next couple days bring.

Thursday, February 19, 2009

Spring Fever

10:00 AM - Westboro - 9 miles, 1:05:00.

Despite the smattering of snow and rain we received last night into the wee hours of this morning, it actually felt somewhat spring-like when I hit the roads of Westboro at the luxuriously late hour of 10 AM. For the first time in about a week my energy levels were good and my attitude optimistic again. Maybe it was the sunshine, maybe not, but it's hard to be happy when you sweat as you sleep, your entire body aches and your head feels like it's going to explode through your eye sockets. Of course, I'm still coughing like a chronic smoker but I'm not sweating through t-shirts and my mucus output has been outstanding the last two days, which I'm taking as sure signs that my body is finally ridding itself of the dreaded disease that's taken up temporary residence inside my respiratory system.

So to sum it all up, today brought about the return of fresh air, good energy, smiles, sunshine and clear snot. Spring is right around the corner!

Wednesday, February 18, 2009

Off Track

8:25 AM - BSC - Bike, 30:00.
Steady 60-65% effort. Full stretch afterward.

6:15 PM - RLTAC - 8 miles.
Track Workout: 2 miles @ 5:15-20 pace, 4 x 400m @ 70-72.
22:00 warmup, 25:00 cooldown.
10:25 - 5:14/5:11. No 400's.

8:15 AM - BSC - Bike, 30:00.

Steady 60-65% effort. Full stretch afterward.

The plague is still present and last night's workout let me know it. When 2 miles of tempo work on an indoor track turns out to be a struggle you probably shouldn't have started in the first place. Well, I stubbornly started, and then proceeded to hold on for dear life on the final 5 laps of what should have been a relatively easy interval before it became obvious that I was finished. Four more 400s would have been futile, so I changed shoes, relayered, hit the sidewalks for a slow slog around the block and then headed home.

The plan is to lay low the rest of the week in hopes of racing at Harvard on Sunday. If the dark green crap launching itself from my lungs doesn't turn clear by the weekend, then fuggedaboutit. I learned my lesson last night: don't f*ck with the flu.

Monday, February 16, 2009

He's dead. He can't talk.

7:55 AM - Westboro - 6 miles, 44:00.
5 x 10-second hill charges.


3:55 PM - Hudson/Stow - 10 miles, 1:10:00.

8:50 AM - Westboro - 7 miles, 50:00.
5 x 10-second hill charges; 5 x 100m strides.

Well, it turns out I'm only mostly dead, which, as we all know, means I'm still slightly alive. I've been riding a rough stretch of sickness since Thursday night, resulting in a bout of reduced training and the subsequent posting that goes along with it. With any luck I'll get back on the horse, and maybe even the track and/or the bike, over the next few days. Right now, though, I'm getting into bed. In the meantime, please refrain from going through my clothes and looking for loose change. Thanks.

Thursday, February 12, 2009

Gentle Joggle

8:10 AM - Auburn - 8 miles, 1:00:00.

Since returning home from my Blue Ridge retreat on Monday night I've been sleeping like absolute shit, and oddly enough the only thing that doesn't seem to be suffering terribly is my running. The rest of my training -- biking, stretching, core work -- has completely gone to shit. I've pretty much fallen off the bike and I fairly confident the supplemental stuff hasn't totaled 10 minutes since Sunday. Need to change that, pronto.

That out of the way, this morning's gentle joggle around town was nothing short of spectacular. The air was mild, the sun was shining and despite my recent lack of Z's, the energy levels were high. One of those mornings where you just want to run all day. My legs showed no ill effects from yesterday's short speed session on the roads, which is encouraging, especially since I haven't done much in the way of stretching and icing of late.

The next few days are pretty involved as far as work and the such is concerned, but the plan is to get in some sort of sustained effort this weekend and kick up the cross training and preventative maintenance measures if time allows.

Check that. I'll make time allow.

Wednesday, February 11, 2009

Fill the unforgiving minute...

8:05 AM - Westboro - 9 miles, 1:00:00.
Fartlek: 15 x [1:00 @ 5K-3K effort, 1:00 recovery]

...blah, blah, blah and you'll be a man, my son. Or something like that. Let me check with Kipling on the specifics and I'll get back to you sometime tomorrow. Right now, I'm off to bed. Goodnight.

Tuesday, February 10, 2009

Inside Plans

8:10 AM - BSC - Bike, 1:00:00.
8 x 2:30 @ 85-90% effort w/2:30 recovery.

I wish I had more to write -- or more time to write, rather -- so I'll get right down to the serious business of training talk and save all the funny foolishness for an entry that may never see the PUBLISH POST button.

Got back on the bike this morning for a solid spin session in an effort to give my legs an extra day to bounce back before pounding the pavement again first thing tomorrow. I have a short session of 1-minute pickups on tap, as Kevin and I chatted for a bit this morning and laid out a primitive plan for the next couple weeks, culminating with 5,000 meters on the track at Harvard on February 22.

That's right, indoor track. I had no designs on racing around the ol' 200-meter oval this winter but both Kevin and I concluded that this will give us an accurate idea of where my fitness level lies, if nothing else. I'm kinda nervous, a little anxious but most of all just very excited to finally race again.

Monday, February 09, 2009

Numbas and pickshaz

3:55 PM - Asheville, NC - 8 miles, 1:02:00.

3:30 PM - Asheville, NC - 12 miles.

Track Workout: 1,600-1,200-800-200-200-800 @ 4:50 pace.
26:00 warmup w/3 x 200m strides in 36-37, 12:00 cooldown.

4:49.97 (10:07 recovery w/4 x 100m strides), 3:36.56 (9:24 w/4 x 100m strides), 2:22.93 (3:18), 33.31 (1:34), 33.72 (2:37), 2:24.11.

1:00 PM - Black Mountain, NC - 8 miles, 1:00:00.

11:00 AM - Asheville, NC - 13 miles, 1:34:00.

9:30 AM - Asheville, NC - 8 miles, 1:00:00.

2 x [4 x 20-second strides]

Nothing but the numbers tonight and a couple of pics to take up some space. Tales of tomfoolery and other entertaining anecdotes from my weekend away will have to wait for another entry. My ass is going to bed. Goodnight.

Me and my amigos at about 5,500 feet.

One of the hundreds of waterfalls in Transylvania County.

Gwyth's Brunch of Champions

Wednesday, February 04, 2009

Bring on the Blue Ridge

10:50 AM - BSC - Bike, 30:00.
4 x 2:30 @ 80% effort w/2:30 recovery.

10:45 AM - Auburn - 8 miles, 56:00.

6:30 PM - BSC - Bike, 45:00.
Spin class, 80-85% effort.

Sorry for the short hiatus, but I've been a busy guy. Seriously. To say I'm not working a lick on my vacation would be nothing short of a flat-out lie, so let's just say I'm staying away from the store and not putting in any hours on the floor. I did stop in for a bit yesterday, but that was just to pick up and drop off product for an off-site customer to take a look at. Of course, there's also e-mail blast drafts to bang out, events to plan and other loose ends to tie up, but I digress. These tasks are much easier to accomplish from the comfort of my own home and away from the constant of customers, anyway.

As far as training goes, my legs just haven't felt right since Sunday's run, a death march I haven't given much mention to yet, but I'll just cut to the chase and say that it didn't go very well. I ran with Ryan, Christy Mae and Sir Bradford for an hour and 36 minutes, but for some odd reason the standard 7-ish minute-per-mile pace we run week in and week out was a surprising struggle and left me tangled in a web of lethargy the rest of the day.

Monday and Tuesday brought on more of the same, with tight hammys and lifeless legs still the name of the game. The plan was to work out with RC at Reggie last night, but a sucky shakeout on the bike earlier in the day and a shitty storm in the afternoon cemented my decision to stay home and give my body a break. I got out on the roads for just under an hour worth of work this morning and later tonight I'm going to attempt a spin bike simulation of the workout Kevin sent me yesterday via e-mail.

And that'll do it for this entry, my last one by way of New England until early next week sometime. Tomorrow morning I'm escaping to Asheville, North Carolina, to visit this dynamic duo and enjoy a long weekend of element-free running on the terrific trails of the Blue Ridge Mountains. Fair warning, I may never come back.

Monday, February 02, 2009

Manic Monday

11:30 AM - Westboro - 7 miles, 51:00.
4 x 10-second hill charges; 4 x 20-second strides.

12:50 PM - BSC - Bike, 30:00.
60-65% recovery effort.
Full stretch afterward.

So much for a detailed dive into this past weekend's workouts or today's recovery run and ride. One would think that without work to attend to, I'd have more time to write, ramble or otherwise keep everyone entertained, but such is not the case. Before I head south for a few days there's people to see, an article to write, laundry to do, bathrooms to clean, new cell phones to consider and plenty of other loose ends to tie up. So sit tight, this space will regain steam soon!

Sunday, February 01, 2009

Course Work

7:30 AM - Ashland/Framingham/Natick - 10 miles, 1:04:15.
22:00 warmup, 15:00 cooldown.
5-mile Tempo Run: (27:15 - 5:38.17, 10:53.07, 10:44.29)

10:20 AM - Hudson/Stow/Marlboro - 13 miles, 1:36:00.

2:40 PM - BSC - Bike, 30:00.
5 x 2:00 @ 80% effort w/2:00 recovery.
Full stretch, pushups & core afterward.

It's just before five o'clock on Super Bowl Sunday and I find myself drinking coffee and killing time on the computer at Panera before I head back to la casa de Carrara in a short while to watch what should be the greatest night of commercials on television this year. I'll be honest, I have little to no interest in the game itself, as I am an admittedly still bitter fan of the team that put a 40-point pounding on the best the NFC has to offer during Week 16 of the regular season. As for the 23-point plastering we received from the our own conference's representative in tonight's game during Week 13, well, let's just not go there.

Another place I'm not going right now is into deep detail about yesterday's workout or this morning's long run. In short, the tempo run went well, the long run not so much. I'll make an effort to ramble on a little more manana, but right now I've gotta make my way over to the Carrara's couch for a few hours of fun, friends, food and football. Take it easy.