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


olga said...

7:15 pace for 8 miles! Holly crapola! Man, this banking pays off nice dividents:)
You are doing awesome, don't worry about lil' things that stop you, just don't look back and don't make it a practice. Hope the weather finally starts warming up.
I plan to come home in late fall. May be faith will let us meet?

Andrew said...

A well trained runner will run a marathon around 80% maxHR. The aerobic threshold is generally defined as the pace one can run for 1 hour. This is also considered 90% maxHR. So as you can see, you are conditioning your body on your "hard" days to run between 80% - 90% maxHR or perhaps "slightly" faster than MP. Here we are learning to burn fuel efficiently and also some mechanics of running at a healthy tempo for quite a period of time.

The easy days are just as important. They serve as the balance between resting the muscular system from undue stress while promoting aerobic improvement through additional mileage. Also, they tend to condition the body to withstand the additional skeletal stress of high mileage and teach the body to burn fat.

As you race day nears, we start to put the two approaches together with the final combination happening in the race itself (speed with distance).

After weeks and weeks of this type of training you will find your ability to run "hard" becomes easier and your mileage will increase on its own.

Just remember the real goal now is to improve your cardiovascular system otherwise known as aerobic capacity. Workouts that include too much speed tend to work counter to this since they stress the muscles to the degree that the muscle needs to "repair" through rest.

So Thomas is right. No need to run sub 7:30 now unless it comes relatively easy given your heart rate. You know best - so you make the decision. I particularly like how you run a little fast maybe on one hard day, and then run a little more conservatively the next.

You're doing great and obviously doing hard work. You must be feeling the improvements already. It is good to see so many people supporting you!

Ruslan said...

Thank you Guys for comments. Olga - Holly Crapolly coach's deposit is so profitable! But as you see I have to take less profitable one - main idea now is "improve your cardiovascular system / aerobic capacity". Andrew - thanks so much for thorough analysis, there are a lot of materials to think about. This Sat or Sun I leave to ... damn business trip to China - Shanghai and other places. Be back on Sat 28 or 29. I'm afraid I will have to repeat Week #5 (what I do now) and week #6. I'll talk to you separately.
Olga - meeting with great Ultra - it's time for me to pick up the race - me and Andrew decided that I'm not ready for Peter 07 on June 30 (it's still a big dream for me), so I think of Moscow Sep 07 (MMMM07 - eto ne pro piramidy:) or it could be Vilnus. Hey, why don't you Back & Run in USSR ?

Ruslan said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Ryan said...

Rocking week, Ruslan. Thanks for visiting my blog. It's been 11 days since your last post. What gives? Keep plugging, mate!

olga said...

Are you still alive? The weather bar seems to be good out there.
Moscow marathon is nice, but September is "back to school" for kids, can't miss. Lets think of something else. Find me a trail ultra:)