Wednesday, June 29, 2011


*Sigh*. Missed last night's art museum workout. It was Dave's Lions Club installation night and the timing was such that I could not do both. No big deal I thought. I'll just do a hill workout on 8th Street in Media on Wednesday instead. Ahh the best laid plans...

Woke up this morning with a horribly uspet stomach. Actually I went to bed with it. It was worse when I woke up. I went to work briefly to take care of one meeting and then came home and sipped ginger ale and green tea and slept alot. I had small hope to go out in the evening to run anyway. But that didn't happen either. I dressed for running and even went out the door but did not get very far.

*Sigh*. Now I'm still tired and fidgety. The nasea is gone though. I guess that's something.

Monday, June 27, 2011

New running spot

Tonight I met Jen and Mark at Washington's Headquarters in Valley Forge National Park. From there, according to the map we could take a short walk to the Valley Creek Trail or head out on the Chapel Trail. We opted for the Chapel Trail because none of us had been on it before. The trail  more or less parallels Route 23 behind the Valley Forge Chapel along the railroad tracks and river.

The description said large tracks of level trail with some steep hills. There was a lot less level than I expected based on that description and it was awesome. It is a 2.5 mile trail total. We ran out 1.5 and back. It was rocky and full of tree limbs and other trail obstacles and I loved it. I will absolutely go there again.

The really nice part about meeting here is that we could have done either trail. In fact, from there we could have contiuned on the Chapel trail and connected to the River Trail. I wouldn't bring the group here... I don't think everyone would enjoy the trail running and I'd be too worried about folks betting injured. But for the small weekday runs - where it's every person for themselves and not an official USAFit run - it's great.

I can see it becoming a good winter run spot too! It would be easy to put together 15+ miles of trail running from this spot. And if you add part of the Joseph Plumb trail ..well ther is one nice long run spot!

So long story short I had a blast tongiht! Who knew trail running could be so much fun! :)

Saturday, June 25, 2011

Heart Rate Monitor

So using about half a dozen different formulas and calculators my max heart rate comes out to 175. I think I should test it for real some day but since all those different methods came out the same I'm using that for now. My resting heart rate - found by taking my pulse for 15 seconds and multiplying by 4 - is 64. That sounds about the same as when the doc takes it too. I really should test it when waking up in the morning but that means remembering to put the strap and watch on when I go to bed and reading it when I first wake up. I dont think that's likely to happen. So this puts my long run training pace at 130-147.

Today I went out at 6am for a 40 minute run. I can't read the heart rate icon on my watch without my glasses and I am not going to run with my glasses (I'd likely trip over something since I dont need them for much but reading and everything else is blurry) so I couldn't check as I went along. That was good anyway. I focused on running slow and comfortable and figured I'd check the numbers later. I ran just over 3 miles in just under 40 minutes.

At 7 the group met and we headed out for our scheduled 8 miles. I did not wear the watch for this part of the run. Today was 'run relaxed' day as I'm trying to get folks to get less absorbed in the numbers and run by feel. So I set the examle by leaving my watch in the car.

When I got home I checked. The average of the three one mile laps was 144. At the high end of the 'zone' but I think not bad. What I didn't do (silly me) was also note the pace. I deleted it as soon as I looked at it. I realize now that I should track the heart rate, pace and other conditions for awhile and see how things progress or change depending on the workout.

I'll start that next time.

Friday, June 24, 2011

SEI Rush Hour Run

For the 4 years that I have been with Phillyfit people have raved about this race. It's a 5k on a Thursday (yesterday) evening on the same trail where we do most of our training runs. The course is part of the first 3 miles of our runs so phillyfitters are very familiar with this stretch. That's not the part everyone raves about though. For $25 entry fee you get a tech tshirt (nice one too) and a post race party like I've never seen or heard about. Not just all kinds of food but all kinds of drink too! I resisted (not really sure why) but figured I could afford the $25 this year and so many from the group go and we typically run together on Thursday evenings anyway... why not.

I arrived at the SEI complex just before 5. The race started at 6:30 but it didn't make sense to go home first. Slowly other Philyfitters arrived and evenutally 15 of us were there to start. We all ran our own races, the earlier finishers cheering on the ones who came behind. So by the time the last of us finished we were altogehter in a group again to head up for the party.

Tuesday, June 21, 2011

Mick Jagger has Nothing on Me

So these Tuesday night workouts at the Art Museum have the odd combination of making me feel like I’m 100 while I’m doing them. They kick my butt. And when I’m done I feel like a rock star…. just because I did it.

Now I’m not kidding myself. I have a lot of room for improvement. However, I can proudly say I finish every one. One of these weeks I won’t finish last. For now, finishing is a huge pride point. Finishing tonight meant doing one circuit on the ramps and one set of doubles by myself when the group was all done. But I dare anybody to show me the rule that says that doesn’t count!

I was the only one from Phillyfit there tonight. Kristin may have been there (I’ve only met her once so it’s possible I missed her.) but I don’t think so. Here is what my friends missed:

3 sets of singles
1 time around the ramps
A set of singles stopping at each landing for 10 jumping jacks
A set of singles stopping at each landing for 10 squats
2 sets of doubles
3 times around the ramps
3 sets of doubles – 1st set easy, 2nd set @ 50%, 3rd set at full speed.

Ok by this time I only had one speed left but I did three of them.

Now here is a benefit of a public training blog. I wanted be able to honestly say that after doing my ‘make up’ sets I jogged back to Lloyd Hall…. so I had to do it and I did. And in the interest of FULL disclosure, for those not familiar with the area, from the Art Museum to Lloyd Hall is downhill. But still…..

Thursday, June 16, 2011

First official tempo run

Although I'm currently training for my 4th marathon, I've never really done a tempo run. Till now I've stuck to just getting in miles. This time I've decided to try to keep up with all the specialty workouts; hill, speed and tempo. Tonight was the first tempo.

It did not go exactly as planned but I'm still pretty happy about it. The plan was 30 minutes total. 7.5 minute warm up run, 15 minute tempo pace and 7.5 minute cool down run. I went to the Radnor Trail tonight. I've never run here before; having walked it years ago I didn;t recall how it went. Well the warm up run was uphill. This was good though, it kept me slow although I had to work a bit harder than I would have on flat obviously. After 7.5 I went to tempo pace and stayed there for the entire 7.5 minutes. Unfortunatley I didn't feel I could keep it going so I dropped back down to slow conversational pace for 5 minutes and then went back to tempo pace for for the remaining time. I did a cool down walk before meeting my friend Julius for another 30 minute easy run.

Tempo pace for me is 10:28-10:58 (According to MacMillan). I had trouble maintaining the pace. I actually went too fast part of the time. I guess I'll just have to keep practicing :)

Tomorrow is a rest day and then group run on Saturday.

Tuesday, June 14, 2011

Almost 100%

I'm addicted to these art museum step workouts now.

I was so tired after work tonight. I've bailed with less levels of fatigue but I couldn't not go. I'm really liking the challenge. This was our third visit to this workout. It was 30 degrees cooler than day one and pouring rain. This made quite a difference in how I felt after. So far all three weeks have begun with single steps up and down the steps at least 4 times. After that the routine has been different each week. I like that. It helps not knowing what's coming next.

This week I did two pushups shy of 100% of the workout. I was on #8 when everyone else was done (10) and moving on to something else. I did not want to be left behind so I skipped my last two. Still I did the entire rest of the workout. No cheats, no walk breaks.

Tomorrow is rest day and then a tempo run on Thursday.