Thursday, June 26, 2008

Training log: Week total 96 miles.

Monday 9 miles
am) 9 miles easy- no HR/ no watch.. a whole lot of Tool and Zombie.

Tuesday 18 miles
am) Long- 18 miles in 2:05. Avg HR 145/ max HR 151. Swung by and picked up Jeff for a few of the middle miles. Great company. Legs felt fairly good. I wore my Camelbak and drank ~40oz of water which turned out to be way too little. I didn't drink my usual liter of water before starting. But the 40oz still prevented cardiac drift and I was able to hold MAF for all of this with little drop off in pace.

Wednesday 21 miles
am) 9 miles- Avg. HR 150/ Max HR 165. I met up with Alan Culpepper this morning. He got to talking about the next chapter in his life- as he talked, he became more and more excited and his pace would pick up and we ran much of this run well below 6:00 mile pace. I allowed a HR cap of 165 which is approximately my AeT. I was still able complete sentences at this pace so I was still highly aerobic. Remember: MAF is very conservative and teaches your body to burn fat and help keep you injury free. AeT is still highly aerobic and balances you on that edge of equal fat & glycogen burning. Because I have a solid base AeT is of benefit now and will still teach my metabolism to preserve glycogen. AeT = marathon effort.

pm) 12 miles at HR 146 avg.. Super hot and I needed to really pull back on the hills. Being your best is about being disciplined.

Thursday 0 miles
Worked most of the day and rested my foot to try to get the swollen nerve to calm down, last night I couldn't put my full weight on it.

Friday 15 miles
am) Before the sun was up.. 15 miles in 1:35. 6:20 avg pace at MAF HR. I was reminded this morning of the importance of downhill running and the specific strength required to run well downhill. Particularly towards the end of a longer run. The eccentric contraction required to control a descent is something that needs to be trained often and at race specific pace.

Saturday 13 miles
am) 13 miles in 1:22. 6:18 pace with avg. HR 146. I warmed up 4 miles (in 30:00) then ran 8 miles alternating 1 mile at MAF HR/ 1 mile at AeT HR. The disparity between the two paces was small which I think (I'm still learning) shows me that I have a strong MAF fitness and weak AeT fitness. This makes sense because I have concentrated on MAF work for ~18 weeks now. Here is where it gets hazy though, MAF fitness can be developed far beyond what an athlete usually has the patience for. In theory one could develop their MAF fitness to the same pace as their AeT.. I think. I know that when I was training for the Ironman my first few miles of my best MAF tests would be ~5:20-5:30 pace. Better than anything I have seen as a jogger. The problem with this is that my ability to digest lactate is compromised. Lactate Threshold is still the corner stone for a fast marathon. I actually should say that exploiting lactate threshold fitness to it's fullest potential- THEN raising your AeT pace to as close as possible to your LT pace is the corner stone. AeT pace is the physiological limit for a marathon... so if you can get your AeT close to your LT (and have raised your LT effectively) then you are at your best. Elite runners can get their marathon pace as close as 4% below their LT pace. And they have incredible LT's! But I'm rambling now.
I still have a lot to learn about how to exploit my own physiology (and more importantly my mentality) to do my best. A few things I am learning-
I respond well to mileage that hovers around 100 miles. I can run more, but I think I break the law of diminishing returns when I do. I have to learn to temper my passion for hard training, only then will I race well. It's always been my downfall.
I need to include a focused interval phase this year. I can run a 28" 200 anytime, but I can't run a 56" 400. Basically I need muscle endurance. A fast 1/2 marathon would be an example of good muscle endurance.
I respond very well to AeT running. I also enjoy it more than anything else I do. A larger percentage of my long runs need to be at this pace.
And now for the hard part.. I feel that I have become apologetic for being outspoken in my opinion and I have let certain people (groups of people) bring me down with their lack of integrity and respect for others.. all I can say is fu*k that and them. I do all of this for myself and if you don't like what I say or who I am then I would suggest you avoid me- please avoid me. My focus and my intensity is my own and it makes up part of who I am. At the same time- I have a great need and desire to not be angry. I have a lot of internal battles that affect my daily life and lately I have examined those battles closely. Things that are outside my control shouldn't find their way in to my life- but I have let them. My goals of being the best father I can be, the husband my wife deserves, and being completely true to myself are huge components to my happiness. I love running, but if I don't have a true balance with the other aspects then I can't be as good as I want to be, or can be. And there you have it.. a small snippet from my thoughts during this morning's run.
I hate going through this process of trying to re-discover who I am. It's a true battle, trying to be the person that you want, need, and should be. A lot of internal struggle but well worth it in the end.. as most things that are difficult often times are.

Sunday 20 miles
Possibly the best part of today's run was resisting the temptation to run 24 miles for the sake of running 100 for the week. Good run, easy effort. My only goal was to put in the time. No HR monitor but the effort was well below MAF. A run like this has more benefit to my muscles, ligaments, bones and tendons than almost anything else. Plus I am at a point in my endurance fitness that a simple run like this is all I really need. Over time, as I get more and more fit, I will do this same run at a much faster pace and try to elevate my HR to near AeT.
Post run recovery:
Starting with wearing compression tights (Skins from Jeff Keil) and elevating my legs for several minutes while drinking 1 liter of water with 2 svgs of Carbopro 1200 (thanks John- this stuff rocks) plus 2 svgs of Gatorade.
20' post run- a huge bowl of rice krispies and rice milk which are both very high on the glycemic index.
40' post run- 1 very large organic banana pancake.
Research has shown that smaller portions (not my portions) of carbohydrate ingested frequently allows for more effective muscle glycogen repletion post workout. The old school of thumb was to eat ~50g of ChO's in the 20:00 following.. but eating- say- 15 grams every 15:00 over the course of an hour is better. Grazing rather than gorging if you will.


Matt said...

T- Thanks for the hydration knowledge. Obviously, I need to drink more when I'm NOT running.
And no more 1.5 - 2 hour runs without ANY hydration. I look forward to reading the data with more water. We're like the earth!

The Wednesday log rocks. You proselytized well, my friend.

Question: If I decide not to run a 50k this summer, do I just go with the speed work for ~6 weeks (tempo runs/track each once a week with AeT/MAF the rest) and then start all over?

BTW, I'm not fired-up on that foot of yours!

Lucho said...

If you do not race the 50k this summer then take that 6 week block of speed/ strength work anyway. It is still important to raise your top end. I would suggest racing a 5k or a 10k during the 6 week block (or both) and then maybe a 1/2 marathon after the 6 week block (split the 6 weeks in to 2 X 3 weeks with a 3-4 day rest block after each).

I try to proselytize as much as I can because the training works.. now if I could "convert" GZ..
My foot sucks but I'll live. A friend of mine went 10:00 at Ironman Hawaii with out a leg.. what do I have to complain about?

GZ said...


Yup ... wholly agree. I try to make some of my hard uphill runs also runs that include hard downhills. For trails, it as important for me do this not just for the physical training effect, but to "dial in the supercomputer." Specifically, that means getting use to being zippy through rocks, waterbars, roots, etc without falling on my face (well, actually my hands and I often wear bike gloves to protect them from getting ripped up that way).

Of course, when I run up a hill like Green or Bear (2500 up), there are no shortcuts down ... it is still 2500 feet regardless of what trail I take to get back to where I started.

All that said, I'd say that people introduce hard downhill running with an extra degree of caution. If you run hard uphill, you are stressing the cardiovascular at a level way above what you are stressing your skeleton. In some regards, that makes it a "safer" set of running ... When you run downhill hard, the opposite can happen because gravity is helping alot. With this comes an increase risk for injury ... so it takes some build up (like anything) to get to it. The risk of course is still higher on downs, but just be careful in the introduction (probably no different than introducing say explosive work ...)

TL - you carrying that camelback for all these 9+ mile runs?

BRFOOT said...

I for one appriciate your catharic ramblings. I've learned a lot, and it's helped my performance.

Lucho said...

Brfot- Thanks for recognizing the fact that I write to release. There are a lot of things that I longer "bother" my wife with- after 11 years she's heard me vacillate between every decision and emotion. These blogs are a platform to unload baggage. I don't expect people to comment but I appreciate the good word.

Matt said...

After my 5 mile MAF run this morning I thought, again, how grateful I am for all of your help.
Then this post. Wow. It's like good dope. This approach to training is so simple and fundamental it goes against almost everything "the culture" shits out its fat ass. Your enthusiasm for it is responsible. People want to go hard and seeing someone like you go hard while preaching limits and patience can be a hard pill to swallow. I did 20 yesterday - felt great. Pushed it too hard. But today's 5 mile MAF felt even better. Certainly wasn't soft. Seemed to certify what i did yesterday. Like my body was digesting what I'd done and today I was giving it a chance to burn more fat!

Ramble on, Lucho. This recent post is the best kind - what you thought about on the run, the blend of physiology and psychology.

We're learning a lot whether we want to admit it or not.

Ironboom said...

good to see you are feeling better.

Anonymous said...

TL -- as an anonymous non-elite athlete, I read your blog to see
1. what you're recommending technically, 'cause you have some of the clearest explanations around (the one a couple weeks ago about overtraining was painfully on-target, and the hydration post is perfect, especially as the weather warms up), and
2. To see how people who put a ton of time into trying to reach a (to me, nearly unimaginable) athletic goal work to balance that with their families, and the rest of their lives.
Not that you should care if you piss me off, but if you did, I'd buzz off (quietly -- no one is pinning me to my chair while driving my browser over to your site). As it is, I really appreciate getting to read along -- the coach-ly advice is awesome, and I really love that you're carving out time to do what's important with your family, while still trying to reach personal goals. Thanks for keeping the blog!

Lucho said...

Thanks Anonymous- I think the balance between family and training is critical. My athletes know that I focus on the family aspect of their schedules and often prescribe days off for them to focus on the important things.. sometimes I have to "go over their heads" to do so. Type-A athletes (myself included) tend to overlook the strain that we can place on relationships with our obsession for sport. The balance is certainly possible if a little tricky.
Thanks again.

JP Flores said...

Good stuff Lucho. It's your blog...write what you want. I enjoy your posts and learn a lot.

Finding proper work/life/family/sport/whateverelse balance is key and the challenge in all of this. I like everyone, struggle with this on a daily basis...

Quick often do you take your son in a jog you have one that you like?

Lucho said...

JP- I used to take my son a lot when the weather was cooler. It's so hot now that I don't want to do that to him. Plus the sun shade is inadequate.. but if it was adequate it would block the wind too much and make it even hotter for him! I bought a Baby Jogger II from the Salvation Army for $19.00. It's pretty good, although I haven't tried any others. The bigger the wheels the better for sure. Plus a locking brake for obvious reasons. Not sure if there is a good solution to the sun shade or not. I take him more often in my Burley bike trailer which he loves.
The Baby Jogger would be a good training tool I think. Added resistance plus a great core workout trying to steer it and hold on to it.

GZ said...

is that Rocketman as the backdrop to the vomit pic?

Lucho said...

GZ- You're the first person to ask about that.. and it's an impressive guess. Rocketman is one of the songs, along with ~15 others.