Monthly Archives: August 2013

Week 32: workouts

This week I managed to get a few good workouts in before I left home for a two week vacation with lots of driving time.  Adam qualified for the USAT age group national championship race in Milwaukee (read his race report here) so we planned to combine that trip with some family visits in (every corner of) Michigan.

Monday morning was my usual lifting routine.  I found the perfect weight for everything but my back with is often a challenge since my forearms tend to give out before my back muscles.

tue-runOn Tuesday Adam ran his pre-race “remind my legs how to go fast” workout.  After an eight minute warm up, he ran a 5k at race pace and I ran 2.2 miles in roughly the same amount of time (19:12 for me @ 8:46 min/mi pace).  One mile into the run my legs found their groove and the running felt really good.  I felt the inclination to fall back into that groove again during my barefoot lap for cool down.  Clearly my legs were prepared to run farther.



Wednesday we were back at Lake Montebello for more cycling.  To prepare for the upcoming race, Adam practiced his transition by repeatedly cycling a lap then running a couple hundred meters.  I didn’t expect to have much time so I opted for a sustained pace rather than intervals.  I did nine full laps (12 miles total) before a cool down lap with Adam.  The effort was moderate with an average speed over 17 mph.


Thursday began the many days of driving and visiting with family so I didn’t complete any more workouts this week, through I suppose I could have done so if I’d make an effort.  After many long months of consistent training, it was nice to have a little break.


Week 31: workouts

This week Adam helped me develop a new workout schedule to incorporate some cycling.  The plan is roughly as follows:

  • Mon – strength training
  • Tue – running  (alternate weeks of 5k and track sessions)
  • Wed – cycling intervals
  • Thurs – running  (alternate weeks of 5k and track sessions)
  • Fri – strength training
  • Sat – cycling
  • Sun – long run

On Monday I made it back to the gym to work on my upper-body strength.  My love for lifting has definitely waned since I started running, but I do miss the muscle tone I used to have when I was lifting five days a week (about two years ago now).  Part of the problem is that I’m being lazy with my warm ups.  I tend to skip the ten minutes of cardio beforehand and the early sets with less weight.  I do this to save time, but the rest of the workout suffers.  I’ll need to get to the gym a little earlier in the future so I don’t feel so rushed for time.  For this workout I did the usual five muscle groups (back, chest, shoulders, triceps, and biceps) and I hit my chest especially well.  My pecs were still sore two days later.

My calves were really sore Tuesday morning, so I took Adam’s advice and let them rest.  I like keeping to a schedule, but I know my body needs time to recover.  No worries.

Wednesday morning I joined Adam at Lake Montebello for some cycling intervals.  The paved path around the lake is 1.34 miles and the bike lane is generally clear of pedestrians, so it’s a good place to go fast.  I did a ten minute warm up followed by three intervals of 10 minutes hard + 5 minutes easy.  The effort was definitely less than running, but it was enough to feel my quads working and my breathing get a little faster.  I’m still working on my bike handling skills, so I don’t like to go too fast.  I covered 14 miles in an hour and considered doing a fourth interval, but opted to skip it since I had a 5k planning for the next morning.  At the end of the workout, I pulled up to the car and unclipped my left shoe.  As the bike came to a stop I felt it leaning slightly to the right and, before I had a chance to unclip the right shoe, I fell on my right side in front of a group of pedestrians.  I couldn’t help but laugh as several people ran over to help me.  It wasn’t my most graceful moment, but I knew it would happen eventually.  Lesson learned – lean to the left!

Thursday morning I ran a 30:08 5k down by Druid Hill Park.  The weather was cloudy with a light rain, but it was still muggy.  I didn’t push too hard and kept an easy pace so I felt pretty good at the end of the run.  This was my first time running since Sunday – a long gap for me lately.  That evening Adam and I rode our bikes down to Mt. Vernon for the First Thursday concert (Brett Dennen!) – about three miles each way.  It was a fun ride that kept me on my toes thanks to potholes and the sometimes unpredictable traffic.  The weather was perfect and the concert was great so I was glad we decided to bike down rather than drive.  It’s not something I would have done a year ago, but I’m definitely becoming more adventurous.

I was back at the gym on Friday for my lifting routine.  Inspired by the good chest workout on Monday, I upped the intensity for the rest of the exercises and was able to really push it for my back, chest, shoulders, and triceps.  At the end of each set, my arms were shaking but I was still in control.  I really got my heart rate up for the shoulder presses, too.  It felt great.

sat-bike-mapSaturday morning Adam joined me for a 14 mile bike around northern Baltimore.  It was relatively easy with some fast downhills in the first half.   Nine miles in we hit Bellona Ave with a steep 800m climb that got my heart rate up to 180 and nearly stopped my in my tracks.  I really had to fight, but I successfully made it to the top.  It took a good three minutes for my breathing to get back to normal.  The rest of the ride was uneventful but enjoyable with the cool early-morning weather.  By the end of the ride I felt like my triceps we going to fall off, but my legs were feeling good.  We finished the 14.4 miles in approximately 1:21:00 with a top speed of about 25 mph.

sat-bike-dataSunday morning I ran a mentally-tough 8 miles for my long run.  Adam and I drove down to Boston Street for this run, and I made sure to drink a glass of water and eat half a banana before the drive so it would have time to digest before the run.  The weather was cool with a bit of wind, but my legs were fatigued from the start so I didn’t enjoy it much.  Two miles in I could feel my stomach rumble, but I thankfully didn’t feel thirsty.  I was having a hard time on that run and it seemed like I was surrounded with people strolling leisurely with coffee in hand.  (I recently gave up coffee so this made me grumpy.)  There were also many more runners than usual, and it felt like we were constantly being passed.  Overall, we finished in 1:23:40 which is a bit slower than usual, but not a surprise given the two extra cycling workouts earlier in the week.  It was a tough workout so I was especially glad to have Adam by my side – some days I couldn’t do it without him.