>Racing>Sub 1:30 Half Marathon in 2019
Joe - welcome (back)!!
Rune - hope you're feeling better soon and good to see you drop by!
Keen - wow you just have all the luck. I picked up a light cold from DD that she kindly brought home from daycare but it's pretty minor and pales in comparison to your efforts. And... you can definitely get running in after snowboarding all day but don't expect it to be quality! When we went to Big White last year I generally got 5-6km in at the end of the day, was tough going with hills and snow though. Where are you going snowboarding?
Brent - nice week, hope that cold snap has disappeared. Vacation running is awesome (assuming you are going somewhere running friendly, that is!).
5000m: 16:03 (Dec-18) | 5km: 16:24 (Nov-18) | 10km: 34:08 (Sep-18) | HM: 1:14:42 (Apr-19) | FM: 2:57:36 (Oct-17)
Last race: Waterfront Half Marathon, 14 Apr, 1:14:42 (PR)
Up next: Christchurch Half Marathon, 2 Jun
"CONSISTENCY IS KING"
Aspiring Hobby Jogger
Mark - We're going to Red River, New Mexico. Maybe an 8 hour drive away. I haven't been there since I was maybe 14 or 15, and it's been almost that long since I've skied or snowboarded. It should be a fun trip. It's my family of 5, my parents, and my brother and his wife.
5k: 18:54 9/18 │ 10k: 38:56 4/18 │ HM: 1:28:01 4/18 │ M: 3:04:13 11/18
Upcoming Long Run:
OKC Memorial Marathon 4/28
Tunnel to Towers 5k 8/31
Wurst Race Half 10/5
I have a ski trip coming up soon for Colorado and plan on taking all days off. There is no way I'm combining that trip with running. It's a good opportunity for me to take a breather given the mileage buildup.
Also, apres ski is like half of the fun, so why go running?
5K: 17:51 (5/18) | 10K: 35:59 (3/19) | HM: 1:16:21 (3/19) | FM: 2:44:43 (4/19)
Next Race: Brooklyn Half (5/18/19)
Keen - Red River looks really fun - not just the skiing but also heaps of other fun family activities. The hill looks pretty mellow but some nice cruisy blue runs. One thing I always miss when we ski here in NZ is the trees (all the skiing here is above treeline) which are great fun to play in too.
JMac- where in Colorado? Both CO and NM have had pretty great snow so far this year. My wife and I spent a good part of our honeymoon in Breckenridge but we've also spent quite a bit of time at Copper Mountain too and have done Keystone and Vail as well. You're missing out on a good opportunity for altitude training, I remember in Breck I'd run out of breath walking up the stairs!
Me - now has snow envy. We might look at going again, maybe Sun Peaks, BC, early next year and most likely with the in-laws. I always get quite conflicted about ski holidays with the in-laws. On one hand, it's two weeks with the in-laws (not a bad thing in itself but it's almost inevitable over that period of time there'll be a bust-up or two). On the other hand, free daycare service while I go snowboarding!
RANDOM POST ON RUNNING AND YOUR BRAIN
(sorry for the long post, but hopefully others might find some useful stuff here)
So were doing this course on mental fitness at work today, I learned a few interesting things, but mostly it made me think a lot about the mental side of running - because of course that is more important than applying this stuff at work.
Anyway I haven't really spent a lot of time on this, because in races, I've had all sorts of different thoughts and feelings before the start and for the most part they didn't seem to correlate to race performance - apart from maybe that a bit of excitement/anxiety is good (adrenaline/focus), but not too much (because I sleep badly).
So I went to visit Google and found some good reading in this article. Most of all, I found a few things really interesting:
1. "Runners tend to have an inner dialogue about how well they are performing. You may overanalyze your technique or your pace, continuously compare yourself to others, and constantly project your final time. Such commentary keeps you removed from your actual performance. Focus all of your energy on execution, not self-analysis."
This is precisely what my brain does most of the time during most races. However, on reflection, in my best races, I've had a totally clear head and just focused on execution, keeping the pace dialled in and strong. I don't know how many here remember my RR from Waterfront HM last year, and how I had to beat two guys to take out the series title. One faded early, but the other went out crazy fast and I just sat back and ran my race, remaining confident that I'd roll him in because I'd already done that in two previous races, and I did exactly that again (and ran a big PB in the process). In Dunedin, when I ended up by myself after 7km but was feeling awesome, it was all about just focusing on feeling strong and keeping the momentum rolling.
... that is, do your best in the here and now and resist the urge to criticize the past or stress about the future. Ignore anything that you consider a distraction, such as other runners, inclement weather, fatigue, negative thoughts, or boredom.
We've all thought about most of those things in most races, right?
2. "Most athletes are underactive for workouts ("This doesn't matter") and overactivated for races ("This means everything!"). The next time you're running or racing, ask yourself if your intensity level is too low, too high, or just right. "
For sure I've been guilty of coasting the odd workout, I think I even said that a few pages earlier. I can vividly remember JMac's descriptions of some of his hot weather workouts a few months back... maybe a good example of what we should all aspire to for those really tough sessions.
3. "Mental toughness is built by doing something that is hard over and over again, especially when you don't feel like doing it."
This is the 'pushing through when you're not feeling 100%' thing. Another article actually suggested intentionally training at different times of day to normal and in bad weather.
4. "Research shows that simply holding one's body in confident postures for only a couple of minutes can produce meaningful elevations in testosterone, decreases in cortisol, and increased feelings of power and tolerance for risk when it's needed."
OK this was a goody. I know this, I've just never used it. I'm going to try it on Sunday. Flavio, I think you mentioned how nervous you could be on the start line at times - maybe this helps? Chest out, shoulders back!
5. "Top runners have a long-term memory for success and a short-term memory for failure. Every athlete fails, but the most successful ones do not dwell on the failures."
Because let's face it, we've all had good races and crap ones!
thanks for the nice post Mark! food for thought
Welcome (back) Joe, thanks for the background intro
I noticed that some cold and flu is starting to kick in, hopefully it won't stop us for too long...
brent I hope you are right about the FM. My problem has always been keep up in the last 4-6 miles as I get cramps and have to stop and start walking. This is also why I tried to have so many miles in January.
I have already 4 trips planned in February, the first for a family visit, the others for work (12-14 Italy, 18 London, 20-22 Germany, 25-2 March US - Raleigh-Durham), so keeping up the miles will be tough...
have a good week
PRs since re-started in 2013:
5km: 19:43 (Belfast park run Sep-16) | 10km: 40:16 (Belfast Lagan side 10K Sep-18)
HM: 1:30:09 (Belfast city Half Marathon, September-18) | FM: 4:15:17 (Belfast city Marathon, May-17)
Belfast city Marathon May 5, 2019.
HM in spring (before FM) or summer (after FM) and then in September. Looking for a 10 K as well.
Jmac - No runnable races anytime soon until the summer is over. Yeah, I’m stuck in a rut where I think a race is only worth it if I’m going to PR.
I need to figure out a way out of it. Usually if I can fight for position I can forget completely about times and PRs, but in my current shape I’m not sure I’d get excited for fighting for position 15th on a local 5K.
Rune - hope you get better soon!
JoeD - hey man, it’s good to see you. Weren’t you the one who had a bad fall off of the bike? I may be mistaken. Anyway, welcome back!
Mark - Not me. I actually feel incredibly calm before races. Like I might be nervous a couple hours before, but the last hour I’m incredibly calm and confident.
Mental fortitude also comes from having a not-so-ideal life since you’re faced with having to do what you dislike pretty much all the time.
I'd like to add that mental fortitude is only good when it's aerobic suffering. When it's muscular pain the smart thing to do is to pull the plug and walk away before long term damage to your muscles. Mental fortitude works against you in this case.
PRs: 1500m 4:57 5K 18:05 10K 38:12 HM 1h24 Full 3h15
Looks like several others got sick here too, Corey, Rune, Flavio, Keen, others?. Sucks for sure, seems to be really going around.
Welcome Joe Dumas - I remember you from the RW days, great to see another one of us back here. I remember you were really big into biking, Duathlons.
Piwi - tough game against the Celtics the other day, we never really had control over it. Marathon then retirement?? Yeah/nah man, you're not old enough to retire.
Brent - solid week, way to still get it in.
Keen - if you're like me and fall quite a bit when snowboarding, then it can certainly count as a workout. Have a good time! We usually go skiing 2-3 times per year, but have yet to go this year.
Jmac - we're possibly thinking Vail, CO also for a ski trip, but haven't made it to fruition yet. Have fun.
Marco - wow that's one crazy February planned. Hope you're still able to get your training in.
Mark - thanks for sharing, great things to remember for us all. I have heard about that for simple posture improvements. Stick your chest out and hold your head up high and walk around like a rooster once in a while and that can translate into running success!
I think I'm getting used to these antibiotics. They definitely dehydrate me, so I'm drinking powerade zero all day. Seems the strep throat is gone (at least the symptoms of), but still obviously playing it safe before I return to any Q sessions. Thing is I'm just itching for some good tempos, hills, intervals...anything but what I'm doing lately.
Skiing - I'm actually going to Vail, first time there. Most of my skiing is out here on the east coast, which is pretty terrible. Surprisingly though, many good skiiers come from the east cost because all we do is ski on ice, so when you go to a real mountain, you find it very easy! Mark I can't believe you know about the snow conditions! It does look great right now, every single trail is open which makes me very happy. Can't wait to get out there.
Mental Fitness - interesting points Mark. I actually do think a lot of training we do is mental and not physical. I think it's especially true for marathon training, where you need to learn to deal with excessive pain for long periods of time, but obviously it's true at all levels. I find this is gathered a few different ways: recovery runs (because your legs are so tired to start and you don't feel like being out there), long easy runs (obviously), and finishing reps when you just want to quit. However, there's another thing I keep in mind regarding number 2 in your list: your cycle should have some sessions that don't go well. If every session goes well, you're not training hard enough. If many sessions go poorly, you're training too hard. I also would disagree slightly with Flavio here, but it might just be semantics: most of the suffering in my training is not aerobically, but more that my muscles are just so tired and I don't want to be doing it anymore, e.g. 20 mile long runs. Obviously if you're in muscular pain that's different. Also once again, this is for marathon training. Training for 5K-Half is a bit different since a lot of the hard work you're doing in training is beyond aerobic and it's dealing with the suck.
DJ - Feel better, strong antibiotics can really mess with you.
Me - I tweaked my damn calf on a run yesterday, aka the Piwi Kiwi Owie. So annoyed at myself, I was trying to get by this hobbyjogger that was out there last night (50 degree temps in February bring out all the riff raff with their chests puffed out in comical clothing for the weather) and decided to go onto this uneven dirt/grass section, and immediately felt something weird. I finished the run, but it doesn't feel good. I'm annoyed that I decided to just step off the pavement, but on the other hand, I've probably stepped on stuff more uneven that many times over the last few months and had no issues, so I can't keep myself down over it. I haven't had a calf issue since my first half marathon ever, so it's pretty shocking. Going to see how it does warming up tonight for my Q session, but ready to pull the plug if needed. This cycle has been a disaster from an injury perspective.
Mark (or anyone else who uses the product) - Do you have any experience with expired SIS gels? I bought a box of energy+75mg caffeine gels about a year ago to take before races so I don't have to drink anything, but because of my hamstring injury I hadn't raced or otherwise used them until last Saturday's 5K. The box has a best-by date of end-June 2018. On Saturday it seemed watery, like the liquid had separated from the gummier part of the gel, but for all I know that may be normal, and I didn't have any trouble getting it down. Seems like the caffeine should still work. I asked a chat-person on the company's website and was told the company doesn't recommend using expired product, but that seemed like it might just be an excess of caution - the person didn't say anything more specific. Any idea? Thanks.
Post-1987 PRs: 5K 19:12 (2017); 10K 40:43 (2016); Half 1:30:14 (March '19)
2019 Goals: NO INJURIES, 30+ mpw, Half<1:30, 10K<40, 5K<19
JMac - I get a bunch of snow updates through my Facebook feed for places like Copper Mountain, Breckenridge etc. We did a day in Vail - as a snowboarder I hated all the cat tracks with a passion but most of the skiers I know love the place. We get pretty icy conditions here in NZ a lot of the time too and it definitely forces you to learn good technique and edge control. Bummer on the calf, hope it's nothing major.
DJW - Add me to the list, I had some minor bug as well that DD brought home from daycare, thankfully all it amounted to was a sore throat and a few days of feeling lethargic.
Flavio - Funny you mention adversity, I started listening to some podcasts on some of this stuff, and they actually mentioned a couple specific examples of runners who had a challenging upbringing or tough family circumstances and just how tough it made them out on the course.
James - I'm currently working my way through a box of SIS gels that expired in October 2018. No issues so far! The SIS gels are pretty watery as gels go anyway and the expiry date is probably more of a 'best before' than a 'use by' as I don't think there's anything in there that could actually go off - more just that the consistency or flavour might turn a little weird.
Mark- Thanks. The consistency and taste did both seem a little unusual, but since this was my first packet, I thought they might just be normal for the product. If I don't cramp like I did after eating caffeinated jellybeans before my previous two races, I can live with "unusual."
James - yeah I've found the lemon-lime and orange ones both taste relatively normal, although quite weak/watery. The blackcurrant one definitely tasted kinda weird and I stopped buying that one. The watery consistency is down to the fact that they're designed to be able to be consumed by themselves and don't require you to take on water like most other gels - I guess this means there's just more fluid in the gel itself.
Mark good one. On the memory topic: its far easier for my small brain to retain the few glorious moments as compared to the many crapy ones. This is just a storage capacity thing
I need to start using gels in my long runs, to get more out of it. I did use one on Sunday, but I will need to think more about those...
This week was supposed to be relatively quiet. This morning I managed my only tempo run (10 miles with the last 4 at HM to 15K pace). The workout was not great, i felt fairly tired. Ran 6.07 miles in 51:15 and then started my final 4 miles. In my mind I was running fast, even paster than HM pace, however the first feedback was that I was actually running slow (probably 30 sec/mile slower...) I passed 2 miles with more than a minute behind the pace, but then I manage to put my mind into it and run the last mile in about 6 minutes. I know I was not supposed to run this tempo like this, but at least I got my 28' (still a bit slower than HM pace, but at least I proved my self that I could run faster although tired.
I think the miles are really heavy now. I will try to adapt and maybe slow down a bit in the next couple of weeks in long and mid week runs. i think I planned to start intervals in a couple of weeks.
I think days like this are normal with this type of mileage, but please let me know if I should act/react differently (since you are much more experienced than me on training for long distances
have a good day