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Days of the Phoenix

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Re: Days of the Phoenix

Post  Mike MacLellan on Wed Jul 23, 2014 12:18 pm

Had a job interview/pre-screening thing yesterday morning, which pushed my run back a few hours.  Fortunately, I've been accepted pending I don't completely bomb the screening.  So that's 2 jobs lined up for DC with 1 more screening once I get there.

Went out for 8mi easy, but with temps already climbing into the low 80s + moderate humidity, I experienced a bit of shock to my system.  HR was high for the pace, but legs were decent.  Finished with 8.3mi.

7mi w/ 3x 3min vVO2max today.  I think I said last time that it'd be my last vVO2max workout, but I forgot I had this one planned.  I tried to hit 5:45 pace (or equivalent, depending on gradient) and nailed it for the first two...  But already knew at the end of #2 that I was gonna hurt in the last one.  Legs fell out from under me and left me with a 6:00 pace for #3.  Oh well.  

Overall, this vVO2max stuff has brought my estimated 6min pace down from a 5:50 to a 5:40-5:45, or 1.5-3% improvement.  Not bad for a month's work.  

Now moving onto stamina and race specificity for the next 10 weeks.
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Re: Days of the Phoenix

Post  ounce on Wed Jul 23, 2014 6:20 pm

That's great news on the job search, even better if two companies are fighting over you.
 Money 

RE the pace improvement, improvement in any form is really nice.
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Re: Days of the Phoenix

Post  Michele "1L" Keane on Wed Jul 23, 2014 10:14 pm

Oh to be young and see a mile with a "5" in front of it.  I ran a 5:25 mile once and a 5:01 1500, but that's it.  I think I was your age Very Happy 

Great news on the job front as it will seem much easier once you move east with things already lined up.
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Re: Days of the Phoenix

Post  ounce on Thu Jul 24, 2014 9:09 am

Michele \"1L" Keane wrote:Oh to be young and see a mile with a "5" in front of it.  I ran a 5:25 mile once and a 5:01 1500, but that's it.  I think I was your age Very Happy 

Great news on the job front as it will seem much easier once you move east with things already lined up.

I'd settle for a "5" for a half mile.   Shocked
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Re: Days of the Phoenix

Post  Jim Lentz on Thu Jul 24, 2014 1:49 pm

@ounce wrote:
Michele \"1L" Keane wrote:Oh to be young and see a mile with a "5" in front of it.  I ran a 5:25 mile once and a 5:01 1500, but that's it.  I think I was your age Very Happy 

Great news on the job front as it will seem much easier once you move east with things already lined up.

I'd settle for a "5" for a half mile.   Shocked
My best mile was a 5:53 about 4 years ago. In grade school I ran a 6:20 and thought I was so fast. I never was in track though.
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Re: Days of the Phoenix

Post  Alex Kubacki on Thu Jul 24, 2014 2:17 pm

I used to just shake my head when my friend would go out and do 6 x 4:50 mile repeats. I can't even comprehend that.

Congrats on the job Mike.
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Re: Days of the Phoenix

Post  Mike MacLellan on Thu Jul 24, 2014 3:23 pm

So THAT'S how I get all your attention(s).  ...That sentence would work so much better if "y'all" was incorporated into my vocabulary.  

I still dream of running a sub-5 mile one day, but I know I'd have to seriously get my weight down for that...  And probably give up a bit of endurance to be able to focus on speed for so long.

---

Thanks for the congrats, all.  Having a couple options will be nice, since DC's interpreting community is set so that we're all PRN W-2'ed employees (whereas in Sac we were 1099'ed independent contractors)...  Just means more opportunities to fill my schedule and find works best for me.  

---

Did 3mi recovery with my dad last night.  Work is still murdering him, and he constantly talks about needing to start running again, so I figured a little incentive via text message would plant the seed.  He ended up half-stepping me most of the way, as I was feeling a bit of fatigue and refused to go any faster.  Oh, Dan.

11mi sorta-long today.  HR climbed noticeably in the last 4mi of the run as temps neared 80, sun was coming in full bore, and the road pitched upward.  Can it be fall yet?
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Re: Days of the Phoenix

Post  Michele "1L" Keane on Thu Jul 24, 2014 4:07 pm

Remember your Dad is the rest of us on the boards, so I'm sure he is actually (deep down) really glad for the opportunity and push to get out the door. The half step ahead thing, well, that comes from us too.  I'm sure you've seen my many posts were I'm pleased to have beat many, many 20 and 30-somethings.  If anything, it keeps me thinking and feeling no different than I was when I trained and raced at that age.  Kudos to you for running with your Dad!
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Re: Days of the Phoenix

Post  Mike MacLellan on Fri Jul 25, 2014 1:22 pm

As long as you promise not to half-step me when we run together, Mom.  Speaking of - PM coming your way.

---

As part of this "crash week.5," my Friday rest day has been replaced with a 4mi shakeout run.  Actually felt pretty good, despite being warm/humid/sunny and me wearing a black shirt.  Derp.  

8/15 weekend coming up.
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Re: Days of the Phoenix

Post  ounce on Fri Jul 25, 2014 2:44 pm

Michele \"1L" Keane wrote:Remember your Dad is the rest of us on the boards, so I'm sure he is actually (deep down) really glad for the opportunity and push to get out the door. The half step ahead thing, well, that comes from us too.  I'm sure you've seen my many posts were I'm pleased to have beat many, many 20 and 30-somethings.  If anything, it keeps me thinking and feeling no different than I was when I trained and raced at that age.  Kudos to you for running with your Dad!

Not me.  I'm the one getting lapped, every other lap.

And Mike, it doesn't take much to say "y'all" as it's 1 word less than 'you guys', although the media tends to say 'you guys', even down here.  You just have to practice it.  One of the biggest things is just spelling it right and you've done that.  I understand that you would have to drive as far south as Richmond to get some Southern drawl, as around D.C., they've forgotten "y'all" and "honey child."

Bless his heart.   Wink
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Re: Days of the Phoenix

Post  Michele "1L" Keane on Fri Jul 25, 2014 3:26 pm

Definitely no y'all in DC as DC is really a northern city.  As for Virginia though, you will here it there, just not int he DC suburbs.  Heck the Mason-Dixon line is far north of there.

Sent you a message back.
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Re: Days of the Phoenix

Post  Mike MacLellan on Sat Jul 26, 2014 1:59 pm

Well, I have a friend currently at Duke, so maybe I'll get a little southern hospitality in Durham... y'all.  What?

8mi today.  Either my legs are coming around and getting used to the high(er) volume, or my body still loves junk food.  Probably the latter, given the 3 pieces of pizza for dinner last night.  Whatever the cause, I was able to slip into a very comfortable rhythm at just a hair over 8min pace (holding MAF HR) after warming up.  I chased a couple bikes on the path (1 guy was riding a recumbent at ~8.5mph) for a fartlek element, and finished up with 4x strides.  

Also, ordered a Nathan QuickShot Plus from RW yesterday.  It's supposed to get here today (gotta love Golden State Overnight), so hopefully I can use it on my long run tomorrow.  I've been getting very dehydrated lately (lost 4lb on Thursday's 11mi) and finally decided it may be time for something.
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Re: Days of the Phoenix

Post  Mike MacLellan on Sun Jul 27, 2014 2:17 pm

Sometimes, a run is going so well that I get chills.  Okay, so it's only happened once, today.  No idea why, but it was kind of cool.

Went out for 15mi on a trail I ran quite often during the summer before I moved to Sac, when I was at my peak running fitness.  A 1.5mi warm-up brought me to the trailhead (including the 75' hill at ~15% leading up to the dirt), and soon traces of surburbia were starting to disappear.  Okay, maybe not that quickly - the first 2mi of trail is flanked by the uber-rich communities made famous by The Real Housewives of Orange County (also, Anaheim Ducks player Teemu Selanne's house is visible from the trail), then one community ends and the other drifts slightly away from the trail as it follows the canyon while the trail stays on a ridge.  I kept things nice and steady, even power-walking the steeper sections of a couple hills, and clicked off miles in the 8:10-8:40 range.  Took a gel at mile 6, got chills at mile 7.5, turned at mile 8 to head back...  And immediately realized that I'd been running a 1-2% downhill for the last 6 miles.  Coming back was a bit tougher, and the steeper gradients were starting to sap my legs a bit, causing my HR to recover a bit more slowly.  Still, managed to post most miles in the low 9's, and made it to the car feeling like I could've pushed it to a 20-miler instead.

I used the QuickShot - it got here yesterday - and it definitely saved me.  Probably consumed ~25oz water during the run, and definitely noticed a difference in my legs and stamina.  

16mi w/ ~1500' gain/loss.
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Re: Days of the Phoenix

Post  Jim Lentz on Mon Jul 28, 2014 9:49 am

Nice run!
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Re: Days of the Phoenix

Post  ounce on Mon Jul 28, 2014 11:54 am

It's good that you're recognizing the sweat and weight loss affects because humidity will make you sweat more than when you asked some girl out for the very first time.

I can consistently lose 5 pounds on a 9 mile run.  Four years ago, I could lose 9.  Welcome to humidity.  I have no idea when the temperatures break in D.C., but for us in Houston, it usually is the 3rd week of September.

Oh, and don't forget about hurricane season!  I don't keep up with the frequency up there, but anything that lands in the Gulf Coast will pretty much have that area to go by and make a rain storm event visit.  Not to mention those that skirt up the eastern seaboard.  Kevin and the others can give much better detail than I.
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Re: Days of the Phoenix

Post  Mike MacLellan on Mon Jul 28, 2014 2:03 pm

Thanks Jim!

Oz - It dawned on me recently that I haven't done substantial summer miles EVER with the exception of my first summer in Auburn, so I've never actually had to deal with water on this scale.  In Auburn, I was doing all my long runs with a CamelBak, so I had 2L water at my disposal.  

Re: weather, Accuweather's averages suggest that September is the beginning of fall, with temps dropping 10 degrees in both Sept and Oct.  I'd imagine it's like Sac/NY was when I lived there - starts to get brisk by October, 1 week of hellish heat out of nowhere, then fall proper.  Aileen has told me it rains quite a bit, though she was never there for a "bad" winter like this last year, so snow was a rarity for her.  Either way, what I've heard/seen is that snow is never really a problem like it is in many parts of the country.  At least, I don't foresee myself in spikes and a headwrap trying to brave a blizzard at -10 (like my brother is prone to doing in Minnesota).  

---

We had a nice dual-family dinner last night with Aileen's parents.  Every time I eat outside at my parents' house, it makes it harder to accept that I'm leaving, since the view really is something.  Everything from the smell of grilled meat to the sound of Sunday baseball at the little league fields about a half mile away to the marching band practicing as high school football starts up (the drumline manages to carry over the 2mi between us and the school)...  Yep, end of an era for all that.  Especially since I'm making good progress in convincing my parents to downsize, get out of the area, and actually pursue their semi-retirement dreams of mountains, a small cabin/house, and lots of time for mom to read and dad to run.

---

4mi recovery this morning, 2.5 of which were with Aileen.  It's very humid (75-80%, monsoonal type weather) and moderately warm.  Thunderstorm weather, but we haven't gotten any here, yet.  Just Venice Beach (anyone hear about that?  1 dead, 1 critical) and east county SD/San Bernardino.  

Another 4mi on the docket for this afternoon.  Legs feel pretty good, considering yesterday's run.  Much less muscle damage than I had expected.
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Re: Days of the Phoenix

Post  Michele "1L" Keane on Mon Jul 28, 2014 3:38 pm

Rain in Venice Beach?  Weird.  But the weather in the eastern MW and New England has been weird lately as well.  There was even a tornado that touched down just north of Logan Airport in Revere,MA this morning and I can tell you that there is wide spread flooding in Cleveland and around Buffalo.  Here just muggy and wet - lots of rain.

I lived in Delaware one summer and it was warmer and more humid there than Atlanta - so I suspect DC is the same.  As for snow, I think they have had their fair share these last few years at least according to Vivian and Chris.  Wasn't the city shut down a bit this year?  I think that snow is becomimg more prevalent.  

It might not be global warming like Al Gore wanted us to believe, but it sure is climate change.
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Re: Days of the Phoenix

Post  Mike MacLellan on Mon Jul 28, 2014 10:16 pm

Weird indeed.  Even a little bit of rain around here this morning, apparently.  I didn't see it.  And flash flood warnings throughout the first 1/3 of our road trip...  Woooo!

No wonder I'm so neurotic about weather; this blog is like a perfect case file for it.

---

4.25mi recovery this evening.  Went around the hilly lake, which seemed like an okay idea given the freshness of my legs, but my calves are definitely on the verge of overworked.  Left one started to cramp up a little and threatened to flare up my now latent shin splints.  Stretching is in order.
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Re: Days of the Phoenix

Post  Mike MacLellan on Tue Jul 29, 2014 1:32 pm

9.5mi trail run with lots of hills this morning.  I had to get this one in just one last time before leaving, so I went and just hoped my calves would suck it up.  They're mostly fine, but definitely let me know they were annoyed when I finished my run.  After some stretching, they feel better.  Nothing notable or impressive from the run - just the feeling of the sun beating down on my back while powering up the biggest hill.  

Just 20 more miles until a much deserved rest day/5-day cutback.
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Re: Days of the Phoenix

Post  Mike MacLellan on Wed Jul 30, 2014 1:19 pm

Went on my last MV bike jaunt (for the foreseeable future) yesterday afternoon.  It seemed like it was about time I actually ride the whole (1984 LA Summer) Olympics route, given I've lived less than a mile from the start/finish line my whole life.  

The route is actually pretty challenging, though there are two long stretches that are mostly downhill.  Ended up working a bit harder than I'd planned, but it felt good to power up some hills and spin out the gears at 40mph.

---

7.25mi + 2x hill sprints + 2x strides this morning.  From the end of the first mile, my legs felt much smoother than normal, so I fell into a good GA groove and kept the effort steady for the remainder of the run.  Averaged just-sub-8s after that first mile and felt it by the end.  Legs weren't smooth for the strides, but the hill sprints were powerful.  

13mi w/ 2x 4mi @ MP tomorrow.  Gulp.
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Re: Days of the Phoenix

Post  Mike MacLellan on Thu Jul 31, 2014 1:12 pm

Ah, that's a confidence booster.  Today marks my last run in California for a while, and the last in a long stretch of 102mi over the last 11 days.  

I wasn't feeling great this morning, after a bit of revelry last night - In-n-Out, a couple (just 2!) White Russians.  My stress, which has been so nicely bundled and dormant so far, hit a breaking point between a few things that happened, and unfortunately, Aileen got the brunt of it, so I was pretty upset with myself/that situation, too.  But frustration makes for great fuel, right?

2mi warm-up was uneventful and a felt a little tough, but after dropping down to MP effort, I got the impression it'd be a good run.  The first couple MP miles were up a 1-3% gradient (average somewhere around 2%), so the times were about 10sec/mi slow, but even easing back the effort once the road leveled out, I easily started to make up for that time.  Did my best to hold back during the next couple miles so I'd have something left for the next 4.  One mile easy went by, well, easily, and it was back to 2mi flat + 2mi downhill.  From the get-go, this was MUCH easier than the first interval, and I clicked off a 7:14 followed by a 7:20.  Heading downhill, I noticed my pace dropping below 7:00 (what?!), so I really held back until the last mile.  7:01 and 6:48 to finish off the MP (okay, the last 1.5mi was like "drain the tank at the end of the race" effort) miles for the day.  2mi cool-down loosened up everything that had started to get tight on me.  

13mi total, 7:47 average pace (?!).
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Re: Days of the Phoenix

Post  Jim Lentz on Fri Aug 01, 2014 12:18 pm

What is your target MP?
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Re: Days of the Phoenix

Post  Mark B on Fri Aug 01, 2014 1:32 pm

Great news on the job front! I see that you have hit the road heading east. It's nice to know there's something waiting for you when you arrive. Make sure to document your trip, and run a little in every state you drive through. Smile
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Re: Days of the Phoenix

Post  Mike MacLellan on Tue Aug 05, 2014 10:56 am

Jim - 7:20ish. 

Writing this from the junction of I-76 and I-80. 1260mi down, ~1500 to go. Have run 14mi Hahahaha. Long trip report forthcoming.
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Re: Days of the Phoenix

Post  Michele "1L" Keane on Tue Aug 05, 2014 12:03 pm

Well, I know you are not at the I76 and I80 interchange that I know in Ohio/PA.  Must be in Nebraska or somewhere out west still.  I just want to make sure you call me or send me a text so I know when to expect you on Thursday.  Hope the ride is fun.
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