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Resurrecting Chicago

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Re: Resurrecting Chicago

Post  Mark B on Tue Jun 21, 2011 11:44 am

It sounds like you're having a great time exploring different areas of fitness, too, Tom.

The new bike sounds great. The one-armed push-ups? Not so much.

Jerry: I don't think Eugene has ever sold out.
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Re: Resurrecting Chicago

Post  Jerry on Tue Jun 21, 2011 11:52 am

Cool. Thanks Mark.
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Re: Resurrecting Chicago

Post  John Kilpatrick on Tue Jun 21, 2011 3:13 pm

@Tom H wrote:Well said, Schuey. It seems that a number of us are following that philosophy for a broad spectrum of reasons. For me, it has added a lot more variety and fun to the training, which I am revelling in to be sure. I can already feel different parts of the body getting stronger and find myself looking forward to the days efforts. I actually feel a freedom to mix up the schedule a bit on any given day depending on how I'm feeling - and that is neat. Assuming I can stay off the overtraining train, I have a really good feeling about this roadmap.

I agree with you Tom - I think mixing it up can make working out more fun. I haven't had near the injuries that I when I was mostly just running so I hope the same for you!

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Re: Resurrecting Chicago

Post  Tom H on Wed Jun 22, 2011 12:57 am

Crappy training day. Period. After the brutal Pilates class last night I was not looking forward to swimming this morning, and the first few hundred yards lived up to the expectation. Eventually things loosened up and it started to feel good. Then too many people who don't know the etiquette got in the pool and things came to a crashing halt. I had to bail at 1250 yards because I was getting too frustrated. And that was the good part of the training.

Bad planning on my part put my run in the afternoon today, on the day where it turns out that temps were 14-18 degrees above average. Today's run was planned to be 90 minutes LHR target of 143. That went out the window in mile 1. Temp was 89 degrees and there was not a scrap of cloud in the sky. I downed a pint of water before going out the door and carried 20 oz more, which barely was enough. I tried to stay in HR range but my pace became so slow my gait went south and I could feel the potential for bad things in the ankle and knee, so I ignored HR and just ran at a pace that felt good. During the run I felt like I was really having to work hard and was anticipating seeing some really crappy numbers when I looked a the Garmin download. Actually, I was pleasantly surprised to find my average pace only dropped off by 20 seconds and my HR compared to the same run a few days agowas only 5 bpm above target. Not that this is great, but in the conditions that were present, I think I'll call it OK. But as I type this, I still am still feeling the run. It'll be interesting to see how tomorrow works out.
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Re: Resurrecting Chicago

Post  Julie on Wed Jun 22, 2011 9:47 am

Pilates is so good for you, when I did it I could tell functionally my strength was so much better doing every day tasks. Sorry about the hot run...it's hard to win with the weather, it seems. Either it's icy and snowy or it's too hot to get too far without really being miserable.
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Re: Resurrecting Chicago

Post  Kenny B. on Wed Jun 22, 2011 10:24 am

@Tom H wrote:Crappy training day. Period. After the brutal Pilates class last night I was not looking forward to swimming this morning, and the first few hundred yards lived up to the expectation. Eventually things loosened up and it started to feel good. Then too many people who don't know the etiquette got in the pool and things came to a crashing halt. I had to bail at 1250 yards because I was getting too frustrated. And that was the good part of the training.

Bad planning on my part put my run in the afternoon today, on the day where it turns out that temps were 14-18 degrees above average. Today's run was planned to be 90 minutes LHR target of 143. That went out the window in mile 1. Temp was 89 degrees and there was not a scrap of cloud in the sky. I downed a pint of water before going out the door and carried 20 oz more, which barely was enough. I tried to stay in HR range but my pace became so slow my gait went south and I could feel the potential for bad things in the ankle and knee, so I ignored HR and just ran at a pace that felt good. During the run I felt like I was really having to work hard and was anticipating seeing some really crappy numbers when I looked a the Garmin download. Actually, I was pleasantly surprised to find my average pace only dropped off by 20 seconds and my HR compared to the same run a few days agowas only 5 bpm above target. Not that this is great, but in the conditions that were present, I think I'll call it OK. But as I type this, I still am still feeling the run. It'll be interesting to see how tomorrow works out.

With higher temperatures one would think slowing down the pace to stay in the HR zone we want is the prudent choice. But the problem at times which you faced it it messes with our stride and can make for an uncomfortable run vs. a harder run. If you know what I mean. I rather maintain the good form and gait be a bit higher on the HR enjoy the run work a bit harder then feel miserably uncomfortable.

Seems like a very good run overall for you. Move on!
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Re: Resurrecting Chicago

Post  Mrs. Schuey on Wed Jun 22, 2011 10:35 am

I agree with what Kenny said about slowing down pace, changing up stride. I had the same thing happen to me that happened to you yesterday with the heat. I had slowed down and in doing so, my stride turned more into a shuffle and it felt weird. But, you were smart in slowing it down and I love the fact that you were surprised by the numbers after they downloaded. It shows what good of shape you are in and that is really exciting! Keep up the great work, tough days will happen.

Be a great day!
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Re: Resurrecting Chicago

Post  Tom H on Wed Jun 22, 2011 11:04 am

I have a lot of respect for those of you who live in parts of the country where the summers are hot an long. We are pretty fortunate here to be mild most of time, and that makes it especially bad when the heat does spike. There's not really a chance to get conditioned to it, just BAM here it is. In the back of my mind I'm contemplating doing some number of the later cycle runs midday specifically to get some time in the higher temps as Chicago may have been a 'heated' race in more than one year recently. Does this make sense? I attended a dinner where Arthur Webb spoke (he's a multiple runner of Badwater) and he said that he'd spend a lot of time in the sauna, not running, just conditioning his body, prior to the race.

Today's schedule calls for another 90-minute run, and it is supposed to only get into the mid-80s. I'm still feeling yesterday's run in the legs so not going to go out this morning. I'll save it for this afternoon and, if necessary, will just take a rest day.
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Re: Resurrecting Chicago

Post  Tom H on Wed Jun 22, 2011 5:45 pm

A grinder. Today's run pretty much picked up where yesterday's left off. And then got harder. It was only 9 miles but by mile 5 I could have easily packed it in, but it was an out and back. I thought I had completely rehydrated after yesterday but I don't think I had. 32 oz immediately before and/or on the run and 44 oz within an hour after and failed the pee color test. No running tomorrow, likely just a swim.

Although I was hating it during the last half of the run, it was oddly satisfying. I was really wiped so had the conversation with myself comparing it to the final 5 miles of a marathon when it gets tough. Did an assessment of form and found room for improvement in every area. My cadence had dropped and stride lengthened and when I corrected that alone my HR dropped by 4 bpm. Learning through adversity is new to me in running but will be one way I'll make lemonade out of lemons going forward.

The last two miles I was visualizing the 5-quart pitcher of iced tea on the top shelf of my fridge, something I availed myself of soon after getting home to slake the thirst and cool the core. Tasty!
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Re: Resurrecting Chicago

Post  Mark B on Wed Jun 22, 2011 6:34 pm

Good job on remembering to rehydrate, but BE CAREFUL! You really don't need to push so hard, so early in the training cycle.

(Geez! I sound like Joel did last year when he kept offering up his Cassandra cries. I thought I was listening, but I wasn't.)

If you need to train in heat, all you have to do is head over Altamont Pass into the Central Valley, or head down to Salinas.
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Re: Resurrecting Chicago

Post  mul21 on Wed Jun 22, 2011 9:09 pm

Nice job grinding it out and getting the miles in Tom, but I might suggest a Slim Fast or chocolate milk and some Gatorade to replenish after the run instead of iced tea. The caffeine (however minimal) isn't going to help your muscles rehydrate much.
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Re: Resurrecting Chicago

Post  JohnP on Wed Jun 22, 2011 9:39 pm

Tom, I think the biking and swimming are only going to help you especially since you seem to get the running injuries a bit. A light bike like that is similar to moving off motion control shoes and getting light ones, makes a world of difference. It will be good to see you in the fall, I like your weather request though 40-45 would be even better.
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Re: Resurrecting Chicago

Post  Seth Harrison on Wed Jun 22, 2011 9:48 pm

Tom, just catching up on things here. Lots going on, from your plans for Chicago, the squished squirrel, the upcoming grandchild (the best part of your blog), to the new bike. It made for fun reading! On top of it all, it looks like you're training really hard. Good stuff!
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Re: Resurrecting Chicago

Post  Tom H on Wed Jun 22, 2011 11:13 pm

@Mark B wrote:Good job on remembering to rehydrate, but BE CAREFUL! You really don't need to push so hard, so early in the training cycle.

(Geez! I sound like Joel did last year when he kept offering up his Cassandra cries. I thought I was listening, but I wasn't.)

If you need to train in heat, all you have to do is head over Altamont Pass into the Central Valley, or head down to Salinas.

Mark, you are dead on. I've added in so much this cycle, it is tough to find the right balance. I think I may be overdoing it, and will have to tweak it going forward. Neil Sedaka said, "Breaking up is hard to do"; but from my standpoint, "Backing down is hard to do!"

@mul21 wrote:Nice job grinding it out and getting the miles in Tom, but I might suggest a Slim Fast or chocolate milk and some Gatorade to replenish after the run instead of iced tea. The caffeine (however minimal) isn't going to help your muscles rehydrate much.

Jim, I agree, but that was my visualization. After LSDs I usually use my Magic Bullet to make a Milk/banana/whey protein/Hershey's chocolate smoothie. Today, I didn't have any milk, so did have the iced tea, but also took the time to get out the Hershey's, take a shot of that directly into the mouth, a bite of banana and enjoy. Kinda silly since I did have a quart of gatorade in the fridge, but guess I lived my visualization. And I'm not sure how the Gatorade and Hershey's would mix.

@JohnP wrote:Tom, I think the biking and swimming are only going to help you especially since you seem to get the running injuries a bit. A light bike like that is similar to moving off motion control shoes and getting light ones, makes a world of difference. It will be good to see you in the fall, I like your weather request though 40-45 would be even better.

John, I'd be satisfied with the 40-45, as long as it stayed at 50-55 at the finish!

@Seth Harrison wrote:Tom, just catching up on things here. Lots going on, from your plans for Chicago, the squished squirrel, the upcoming grandchild (the best part of your blog), to the new bike. It made for fun reading! On top of it all, it looks like you're training really hard. Good stuff!

Seth, there is a LOT going on in my personal life this year. Daughter #2 got married in Jan, Daughter #3 got engaged in Feb, I retired in April, I got a great PR in May, "Adopted" daughter #4 gets married in July, Daughter #1 (my fellow marathoner) has a baby in August. Yet to be accomplished, but definitely in Oct, is a NEW great PR in Chicago!!! Training hard, yup. Harder than ever before, but in a very different way. Potentially, I'll actually run fewer miles than I did for Eugene, but overall fitness gains and specifically aerobic gains (non-impact) should allow me to get to Chicago healthy and full of piss and vinegar! The experiment has begun!!
Laughing Laughing Laughing Very Happy

So this afternoon with everything feeling worked to the max, went in for a massage. None of my usual therapists were available on short notice, but I was told they have a new guy who is "really good with athletes". Holy cow, that was accurate. This guy knows his way around the body. Turns out his last gig was working at a physical therapy shop. Strong hands and a keen mind. Not for the faint of heart (although having just gone through multiple Graston sessions, I guess I can handle it!) as he is has no fear of doing search and destroy missions on cranky muscles. For the first time ever, I was sweating when receiving a massage! We talked up front about who I am and what I do, and he clarified how deep he could go on the massage, specifically getting my OK to target glutes/piriformis, etc. The jury is still out, it won't be until tomorrow that I know how good it actually was, but I may have a new favorite therapist!
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Re: Resurrecting Chicago

Post  John Kilpatrick on Wed Jun 22, 2011 11:41 pm

Stick with it, but probably good advice about pushing, but not too hard too fast. Good early going and I hope your cross training will help fight the niggle bug. Be careful in the heat - for those of us in it, I think we sort of get used to it, but if you don't see it very often the body doesn't know how to take it and will protest pretty hard!

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Re: Resurrecting Chicago

Post  ChasMcG on Wed Jun 22, 2011 11:46 pm

Chicago is my favorite place and it's a great race. The best part is meeting up with this group though! There is so much support here and just great friendships everywhere.

Good luck on your journey!
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Re: Resurrecting Chicago

Post  Mark B on Thu Jun 23, 2011 12:42 am

@Tom H wrote:
@Mark B wrote:Good job on remembering to rehydrate, but BE CAREFUL! You really don't need to push so hard, so early in the training cycle.

(Geez! I sound like Joel did last year when he kept offering up his Cassandra cries. I thought I was listening, but I wasn't.)

If you need to train in heat, all you have to do is head over Altamont Pass into the Central Valley, or head down to Salinas.

Mark, you are dead on. I've added in so much this cycle, it is tough to find the right balance. I think I may be overdoing it, and will have to tweak it going forward. Neil Sedaka said, "Breaking up is hard to do"; but from my standpoint, "Backing down is hard to do!"


Hey, don't worry about it too much, Tom. Because if you can't find the edge of the cliff, no worries. It will find you. pale
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Re: Resurrecting Chicago

Post  Tom H on Thu Jun 23, 2011 12:49 am

[quote="Mark B"]
@Tom H wrote:
@Mark B wrote:

Mark, you are dead on. I've added in so much this cycle, it is tough to find the right balance. I think I may be overdoing it, and will have to tweak it going forward. Neil Sedaka said, "Breaking up is hard to do"; but from my standpoint, "Backing down is hard to do!"


Hey, don't worry about it too much, Tom. Because if you can't find the edge of the cliff, no worries. It will find you. pale

And this is you being reassuring right? silent
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Re: Resurrecting Chicago

Post  Mark B on Thu Jun 23, 2011 12:56 am

[quote="Tom H"]
@Mark B wrote:
@Tom H wrote:
@Mark B wrote:

Mark, you are dead on. I've added in so much this cycle, it is tough to find the right balance. I think I may be overdoing it, and will have to tweak it going forward. Neil Sedaka said, "Breaking up is hard to do"; but from my standpoint, "Backing down is hard to do!"


Hey, don't worry about it too much, Tom. Because if you can't find the edge of the cliff, no worries. It will find you. pale

And this is you being reassuring right? silent

Yes. I'm quite confident that you'll come to your senses before its too late. You saw what a whiner I turned into after last summer. Heaven knows, you wouldn't want to go down that path. You'll figure it out.
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Re: Resurrecting Chicago

Post  Kenny B. on Thu Jun 23, 2011 9:36 am

I can't add much to what others have said but you will find your groove soon. Keep track of your runs and how you feel and be flexible with changing it up accordingly. This is not the type to have runs that seem impossible to finish or leave you empty in the tank. It is a long cycle get comfy, settle in for a few weeks and then you will be prepared to tear it up!
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Re: Resurrecting Chicago

Post  Julie on Thu Jun 23, 2011 12:49 pm

Glad you found a great massage therapist! I tried to run in the heat preparing for my Feb marathon in Texas but since heat in Nebraska is 30-40 degrees that time of year it did nothing for me. It does make sense, though, to try to acclimate to a potentially hot marathon. I know it's always hardest the beginning of the season until you get used to is. How many weeks until Chicago? Isn't in beginning of Oct?
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Re: Resurrecting Chicago

Post  Tom H on Thu Jun 23, 2011 1:38 pm

@Julie wrote:Glad you found a great massage therapist! I tried to run in the heat preparing for my Feb marathon in Texas but since heat in Nebraska is 30-40 degrees that time of year it did nothing for me. It does make sense, though, to try to acclimate to a potentially hot marathon. I know it's always hardest the beginning of the season until you get used to is. How many weeks until Chicago? Isn't in beginning of Oct?

You are correct, Chicago is Oct 9 so plenty of time to worry about acclimation later in the training cycle. By that time the average temps will be higher so the spikes won't be so severe. But then again, Mr. and Mrs. Schuey are going to arrange ideal weather for that race anyway Very Happy

So the latest in training events showed up yesterday evening. When I took my shoes off, I noticed what I thought was a black thread laying on my right big toenail. Odd, because my socks were white. So tried to brush it off, but it turned out not to be a thread but rather that my toenail had split from the base to the tip right down the center. This is the toenail I lost just after Eugene, and it was growing back quite nicely, thanks. I'll give it a few days to see if there is any issue (it is not what I would call comfortable right now) or if it just becomes another speedbump on the road of training. And happening right at the time when Wendy is posting on FB that she just had two toenails surgically removed. Maybe it is just toenail issue season?
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Re: Resurrecting Chicago

Post  Tom H on Sat Jun 25, 2011 2:26 pm

I've been quiet for a couple of days now as after the combination of the last two runs in the heat and rereading the article on overreaching/overtraining, I've come to the conclusion (as some of you have been warning) that I've been overdoing it. Resting HR has climbed a bit, overall energy level has dropped and I've got multiple niggles. So, the last two days have been rest except for a Pilates class where we spent a good amount of time on stretching the hammies and back which need it. I'm going to go back and revisit my training schedule and knock down the efforts over the next few weeks, building in a gentler ramp than I currently have there.

I don't know how this type of thing effects the rest of you, but it simultaneously frustrates/depresses/pisses me off. I've got all the drive I could hope for to work hard, make gains, branch out, etc., but the body just can't keep up. So the challenge now is to quit whining and deal with it. As I always told my kids after an injury as they were growing up, "It'll feel better after it stops hurting."

Stupid body.
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Re: Resurrecting Chicago

Post  Mark B on Sat Jun 25, 2011 2:35 pm

Sorry, Tom. But good for you for recognizing that something isn't going quite right.

Avoiding overtraining is part of the mental and physical challenge of training. So don't beat up on yourself (or your body) about this. We aren't equipped with dipsticks, so we have to feel our way toward the best strategy. That you've wandered over the red line was probably inevitable, but will help you learn what truly works for you.

At this point, cut back on time and intensity and let your body reset itself. Pfitzinger has a good prescription for it in "Advanced Marathoning" - as does Maffetone.

Better to hit the wall now than a month from now, when you're deeper into your Chicago cycle.
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Re: Resurrecting Chicago

Post  Seth Harrison on Sat Jun 25, 2011 3:03 pm

Tom, the best advice I can offer for how you're feeling mentally right now is to try to focus on the long view. As frustrating as it is to have back off now, keep in mind that you have a goal, and the goal isn't training. Training is what will get you to your goal, and as we know, training is almost never an unimpeded straight line from start to finish. We're always tweaking, revising, and at times improvising our training based on the signals our bodies give us. Right now you're listening to your body. This isn't failure, or really even a setback. It's all part of the training that will lead to your goal in Chicago later this year.
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