Tuesday- 6 hour drive. Stepped out of the car in to 85 degree humid heat (ugh! Hot weather is the worst training weather), changed in to my jogging suit and ran 12 miles. Borderline dehydrated on purpose because I didn't want to have to stop every 70 miles and pee...
12 miles- 1:15. Max HR 151/ 6:27 average pace. My legs felt horrible and tight and my ass was sore.
We then spent the rest of the evening at a livestock show/ carnival and I got to see old high school classmates. Ben rode his first carnival ride and had his first bite of cotton candy- my all time favorite 'food' in the world.
Wednesday- Track. 8 X 1000 on 400 jogging. No splits, these were run by feel.
3:13 (5:10 mile pace)
3:06 (4:59 mile pace)
2:57 (4:44 mile pace)
I started these slightly faster than goal marathon effort to see how it felt. After #3 I realized that I had been jogging and hadn't started to even breath hard. 4 and 5 I just relaxed and ran. 6 and 7 I relaxed through the 600 then pushed to a solid effort for the last 400. These felt awesome and I never extended myself. I wanted to run well the next day and I felt that I held back.
Thursday- 14 miles. My calves and feet hurt a little from wearing my new Nike Lunaracers yesterday so I opted for trainers for this. I ran a 7 mile out/ back and finally got loose at 4 miles. Then:
10 miles in 57:03 run as a progression. The first few I rolled through right at 6:00 pace then started to work towards marathon effort. The middle ~4-5 miles I saw 5:23-5:32 often on the GPS and felt comfortable. Never felt like I was pressing or felt 'race' effort coming in to play.
I'm extremely happy with the 3 days at lower elevation. I was far from rested going in to it (I was beat down on Sunday) and I ran within myself and performed well in 2 solid workouts. After the 6 hour return drive wearing Skins compression socks under full Skins compression tights my legs feel good.
There is a definite conversion to low altitude in regards to my central governor. Oxygen availability plays a huge role in the central governor and the fact that I was never out of breath- even at sub 5:00 pace- made me feel strong and I never had a mental lag or weakness. Fatigue was never an issue on any of these runs.
At high altitude, after a solid effort, I am wasted for hours afterward. After the track workout I felt energized and had very little fatigue. Recovery is hugely enhanced at sea level so I wonder how much benefit I am getting from the accumulated fatigue at altitude. You carry a workout around for many days so the runs that are performed the day after a long run have training benefits that go beyond the single run. Getting to see how I felt at sea level after immediately dropping down from 8200ft is encouraging. Seeing my numbers from today and yesterday show that I'm not making any huge mistakes with my training.