Sunday, April 29, 2007

I'm in Karaganda State of Mind :)

I visited Shanghai for the 2nd time. I love China! All thoughts and impressions about this extraordinary country are out of my blog. I'm here to write about long distance running.
The business trip was tough, therefore i had no time to keep running. As of business in Shanghai, we fulfiled all tasks we had to. Good. Good.
Running wasn't bad. It was worst ever, due to almost no run I did in Shanghai. I did only One 'session' of 5 miles running along Huangpu river at midnight. Why at midnight? Have I tried this to be done couple hours earlier I would be stuck into incredibly eclectical crowd of Chinese, Arabian, Indian, Euro-American tourists, I even heard Russian talks there.
To think - Five Miles per Week only! About 40 min with the Tool, forgot HR monitor.
I'm not trying to create an excuse, but surely didn't feel like running there. Everything is too cheap there, too many things to entertain you, too many choices. Central Asia, Kazakhstan is right what I need now. Simple places which allow me to work and run. Andrew, as long as I get to the lowest possible level now after fantastic 72 miles PB, I really think I shall repeat Week # 4,5 and 6. I can't go to the high mileage activity now, will try to do 50+, 60+, 70+ miles correspondingly.
What else to say? I don't want to go any business trip to China this year. No More. Somebody else who doesn't care about running could do it. What I really want is to go there by myself to Shanghai marathon in November. My preliminary plan for upcoming races / marathons looks like this:
- Moscow, Russia, Sep 2007
- Shanghai, China, Nov 2007
What about Peter (Russian slang for Saint-Petersburg) - I can't do it in the end of June, am simply not ready. Peter is still a big Dream for me. Also Andrew asked me "no marathons till August".
P.S. I have a right to edit and add other weeks to follow, to to my previous post 'Work with Andrew'

Work with Andrew

Mar 07
Week #01 / Sun 18 - Sat 24 / 55.15 mi
Week #02 / Sun 25 - Sat 31 / 65.17 mi
Apr 07
Week #03 / Sun 01 - Sat 07 / 62.06 mi
Week #04 / Sun 08 - Sat 14 / 72.37 mi
Week #.... / Sun 15 - Sat 21 / 40.20 mi
Week in China / Sun 22 - Sat 28 / 5 mi !!!

Saturday, April 28, 2007

I am Back (From Personal Best Down to Personal Worst)

My Dear Reader! First of all, I'm extremely sorry for delay in posting. My ... business trip to China (ahh, Shanghai!) is over - I'm back to Kaz and am back to the track. Going to start doing all again ...

Thursday, April 12, 2007

Good Times, Bad Times

First of all, want to say Thank you Coach and Thank you Guys (and Gals!) for Great support! I move on running and while I run I think about you!!! Olga, you're a truly Great Personality! You know everybody's situation, you're always there. About 90 miles per week you do - unbelievable! I'm not that desperado! But this is my week and it's gonna be a PR week.

The plan I follow is simple.
Sun, 120 min Long
Mo, We, Fr 90 min EZ
Tu, Th, Sa 60 min Hard
'Hard' is defined as: HR between 150 - 160. Run relaxed and in such a manner that you can finish without going anaerobic.
No days off.
Simple Plan ehh? It has to be almost a piece of cake to make it done, Right?
Wrong! At least for me. I finish my 4th week with Coach Andrew and I have to tell ya I never fulfilled a whole week as it was originally planned. For instance:
Week 1 - I was unable to make 60 min Hard run once and did only 40 min (keeping 150 - 160 HR) came home and "Rocky collapsed in the corner";
Week 2 - after winter snowy footing I felt really uncomfortable on the pavement an sidewalks in the park so had a sharp pain and stopped at 80 min EZ, instead of 90 min planned. But I adjusted somehow to new hard footing. I was really lucky and am ok now.
Last week I missed 1 day - Apr 2nd and felt real Guilty. Felt like I was a crime person - guilty and useless for society. Well, at least for running society.
Enough bad sampling.

As a runner I consider my work as a "decent" one. Not perfect but Good one. Coach Andrew thinks the same, he is always there to help and support me. Without him I wouldn't have been able to reach to a "best shape ever" I have now. I'm standing on another, higher level now. Thank you Andrew. You work is invisible but it brings results.

So, I thought this week would be perfect one. Naivety. Failed again. Here's about my attempt to make a Perfect Week in details:

Sun, Mar 8, Easter. My Sweet Lord forgive us, we work and work hard on this day.
Long Run. Supposed to be 2 hours, any pace, any HR. Basically I wasn't satisfied with my previous Long workouts, those walkajoggs .. so I took it serious this time. Also I read One Fantastic report you know guys from whom.
One joke: we all familliar with Connemara now, right? So let's see those places - put Connemara in a search engine of Google Earth to see it. Result: Connemara, Zimbabwe. That was all :)
So, after that impressive rep I decided to make 15 miler.
Thomas: "I’ve been told that it’s best to mentally split such a long race into smaller junks." Good. I made up to spits 5 mi (which is nothing) plus 5 plus 5. It works. My longest run. Wasn't really tough.
Being impressed by Thomas's struggle I just said to myself: "I’m running like a clockwork. Running like a clockwork."
Also I always remember what one Super marathon maniac told me once:
"Don't be scared of 20 miler, bite into it, it's nothing. Marathon at a pace for 3:15 is worth the struggle!"
Bite into it! I do.

Mon, Mar 9, 90 min EZ. About 10 miles with sub 9:00 pace. Routine.
Tue, Mar 10, Had a Fantastic PM Hard workout. It was Hard but felt good. No wind conditions.

Mile 01: 07:12
Mile 02: 07:16
Mile 03: 07:13
Mile 04: 07:10

Mile 05: 07:16
Mile 06: 07:24
Mile 07: 07:20
Mile 08: 07:15
0.26 mi 01:51 (avg.pace 07:03!)

Thomas asked me Why to run sub 7:30 still I don't know what to say. Can I run fast once per week? I have no repeats nor fartleks - they're prohibited at this stage of work. I don't do sub 7:30 every week, last wek I missed it. I have to learn how to run fast!
Simple arithmetic average says that I had 7:15 avg. pace for the whole hour. Technically after first 2 miles I wanted to see each split below 7:20. It sucked at mile 6 as you may see.
'Hard' is defined as: HR between 150 – 160…
I looked at my HR and it was 146 - 149 in the end, I didn't reach 150! And had such a good run. Explanation is simple: I started almost at 10 pm, at my stadium, after a working day - my heart was simply "tired" to run faster. It is always lower in the eves.
See details here

Here’s what Coach Andrew said:
This 1 hour speed will translate into an MP level.
I Hope.
Wed, Mar 11, 90 min EZ. FAILED !!!
Felt really tired. But main issue was a Wind. Great Steppe generate Great wind in April. Yes. After 40 min of slow struggle a trully aggressive headwind almost stopped me.. FFour letter word pronounced, I "pull the plug". STOP.
God Damn it, Son!
This is the only workout I failed this week. Bummer!

Thu, Mar 12, 60 min Hard. I can't repeat my best ever 1 hour run again. Although my good partner - Mr. Wind from the Steppe assisted me, I made it nice with 7:39 avg. pace. Clocked mile seven with 7:10. Good. I like it.

I have two more workouts to be accomplished this week, tonight and tomorrow. I will add one more "compensational" (I failed on Tue) slow running just to put more miles into my bank account. Andrew is a banker, he's watching my deposit :)
As for now I have 45.36 miles for this week.
The deposit has to be better, hope to reach 70 by tomorrow's eve.


Mar 8, Sun: PM, 15.0 miles, 2:08:28, 08:34 avg.pace, avg.HR 138
Mar 9, Mon, PM: 10.4 miles, 1:30:00, 08:57 avg.pace, avg.HR 135
Mar 10, Tue, PM: 8.26 miles, 60:00, 07:15 avg.pace, avg.HR 144! max.HR 149
Mar 11, Wed, PM: 4.21 miles, 40:03, 09:31 avg.pace, avg.HR 124, max.HR 134
(I thought a lot about it, "keep next day in mind" I guess I had overworked in my perfect 60 min a night before)
Mar 12, Thu, PM: 7.85 miles, 60:00, 07:39 avg.pace, avg.HR 141, max.HR 153

So It Goes

Monday, April 09, 2007

Working Further with Coach. 3 weeks Done.

OK. I gave up. I took one day off. There were many reasons for doing that. One of them is the "issue" Mark had recently. This switch from Winter, Snow running into work on pavement is a truly dangerous thing. Watch out!
Did I do something special on my week #3 with Andrew. NOthing, I even didn't make a 8 mile/hour run, all of them were sub 8 miles. But I feel that I'm in truly great shape now. One of the Best ever. Ready to make this week better. Let's see.

Best Moment of my running week: Fri, PM. I run on my Stadium 90 min EZ run which is about 10 miles. Still cold, run without mittens though. But wearing a hat which I used to wear throu all cold, cruel Winter we had here. And when I had couple miles to go, suddenly something unexpected happened. A tree with long branches, without leaves of course was there in the still of the night.. and those branches gently "took" my hat off while I was running along. Turned back to see my black hat lying on the floor. I keep a good pace so no need to make a return for that. I realize then that I Run Without Hat!!! First time this year! I'm amazed.
Warm and fresh air is truly fantastic. Some warm rain didn't spoil my workout. That was Great!
(Little Darling, it's been a Long, Cold, .. aha Winter)
Spring is Here! Thanks Heaven!

Weekly mileage (Apr, Sun 1 - Sat 7): 62.06 miles, pace 08:33 see details here.
It goes right to my Best Weeks "Hall of Fame" : )

Enjoy Running!

Saturday, April 07, 2007

Stats – Totals for March 07 / Welcome to a Decent Club

Back to blogging,
Coach recommended to do so..
First April week is almost over and I will update this stuff soon.

Mileage for March 07: 236.62 miles / avg. pace 8:28
(never been a member of a Club named “200+ miles per single month”) PR

Happy Running to everybody!

Sunday, April 01, 2007

Another week with Andrew. Almost perfect.

Week #2 with Andrew went almost perfect. We've been talking a lot about a possibility of a Day off. But I managed somehow to avoid such a day. Had almost depressing two days somewhere in the middle of the week: Wind and non-stop Snow(!!!) again. I took my thick mittens and a bacalava thinking to my self - How did I make all those runs in Jan & Feb?
It took me some real efforts to get myself together and get back to normal running.
Right in time I got Andrew's "wordy essay" and it helped a lot. Thank you Coach!

Best workout of the week: Yesterday, Sat AM, Hard run 60 min keeping 150 - 155 bpm.
Usually I run in sub 8 miles mode. But yesterday I made up my mind to get to 8 miles "rain or shine"! It means I had to keep sub 7:30 pace! Actually I did it once on the previous week, but that was a PM run, which makes a difference. Splits:

Mile 01: 07:14
Mile 02: 07:26
Mile 03: 07:30
Mile 04: 07:27
Mile 05: 07:43 when i saw it, I screamed "NO!"
Mile 06: 07:33
Mile 07: 07:40 after this mile, Garmin's countdown timer showed that I had 7min17sec left to make a last mile. OK. "All that I've done was a Warm Up and now it's time for real work!!"
Mile 08: 07:08 (at this last mile my HR reached 162-163 I saw it and understood I was breaking a rule of this game, but what a Run!)
129.07 ft 00:14 (avg.pace 10:10!!)

Total for 60 min run:
8.02 miles, avg. pace 07:28, avg.HR 151, max.HR 164

Weekly mileage (Mar, Sun 25 - Sat 31): 65.17 miles, avg. pace 08:33
see details here.