Friday, February 27, 2009

Mentally tough

The legs felt a little flat during the 2 x 3-mile tempo workout tonight. It may have been from the combination of miles in the legs (53 miles in the last 4 days) and cycling for 25 minutes on the bike during lunch today. After a 2.5 mile warm-up I went straight into the first 3-mile tempo. The goal was to run at half-marathon goal pace, which I'm considering 5:33-34 pace (sub-1:13). I ran the first 3M tempo in 16:43 (5:37, 5:32, 5:34). It felt like I put in a bit more effort than what the time reflected, maybe because of the windy conditions. The 2nd tempo was much better at 16:35 (5:33, 5:32, 5:30). I honestly thought about stopping at 2 miles on the 2nd tempo because I was feeling tired, cardio-wise and fatigue in the legs. Obviously, I overcame the mental challenge as the last mile was the fastest of the workout. It was a good and mentally tough workout.

Today: Noon - 25' bike and core exercises; PM - 11.2M including 2 x 3-mile tempo (16:43, 1635)
Thurs: Noon - 8.6M @ 6:51 pace; PM - 5.5M @ 7:18 pace
Wed: 10M @ 6:55 pace

Tuesday, February 24, 2009


With a hard effort on last Saturday's race, a 2-hour run on Sunday and a total of 14 miles on two runs yesterday, my plan today was to run easy for an hour. However, about 30 minutes into the run I was quite surprised with how the legs were feeling. They felt good considering the amount of mileage in them over the past few days. Out of nowhere I decided to do a fartlek workout of 1-minute hard/easy. Well, not necessarily out of nowhere as this was really the scheduled workout with the intention of running it on Wednesday. I had in mind 10 reps, but ended up doing 12. I certainly felt like I could do more but did not want to overdue it. Tonight's run was a very easy 5 miler.

On the same topic of running, but different area, I'm playing Agent for my German running friends Jurgen and Silke. I submitted their information for the upcoming world-class event, the Brunssum Parelloop, which is basically in my backyard. I say world-class event because the 10K Top Run, the main event, is an invitation-only event consisting of world-class runners. Sammy Kipketer (2001) and Lornah Kiplagat (2004) have both set world records in the event. Last year, three Kenyans broke 28 minutes with Moses Masai taking top honors. I'm looking forward to this race as this will probably be my one and only elite competition in which I've been invited to run in.

Today: Noon - 10M @ 6:43 pace including 12 x 1' hard/easy; PM - 5.1 very easy @ 7:28 pace
Mon: AM - 9.6M @ 6:58 pace; PM - 4.5M easy @ 7:12 pace

Monday, February 23, 2009

2-hr Language Course

I ended the week with an easy 2 hour run with my German friends. Actually, I prefer to say it was a 2 hour English/German language lesson. On a scale of 1 to 4, Jurgen speaks english at a 3 and Marcus at a 2. On the other hand, I speak German at a 0 (zero). Poor Jurgen ended up being the translator for me and Marcel. He also became the baby-jogger pusher for most of the run. Marcel took his 7-month twin boys out on the baby-jogger to join us. Amazingly they slept during the entire 2hr run. I actually experienced for a few miles what it's like to push a baby jogger. I hope it wasn't a sign of what's to come. We avg'd a nice and easy 7:21 pace for the run.

16-22 Feb

Mon: Noon - 9.2M @ 6:58 pace; PM - 5.1M @ 7:31 pace
Tues: 9.5M including 3 x 2K (6:38, 6:39, & 6:41)
Wed: Noon - 9.2M @ 6:52 pace; PM - 5M @ 7:22 pace
Thur: Noon - 7M @ 7:02 pace; PM - 4.2M @ 7:38 pace
Fri: 5M @ 7:18 pace
Sat: 12.5M including 10K race in 34:15 (5:31 pace)
Sun: 16.8M @ 7:21 pace

Weekly Total: 83.5 miles

Saturday, February 21, 2009

10K Race

Ran a 10k race in Hardt (GE) with my German friend and co-worker Jurgen. The main goal of the race was to run hard and determine where I'm at with my current fitness. I was actually unsure whether I should even run the race because for some reason my right hamstring was very tight and feeling problematic on Friday morning. It seemed as if there was a knot in the middle of the right hamstring. At lunch time I went for an easy 5 miles and the hamstring felt okay, but certainly not 100%. Thanks to my massage therapist, who managed to squeeze me in her schedule for a 30 min massage, the hamstring felt much better and I gave the race a go.

This 10k race in Germany has a history of drawing some fast runners within the area. Looking at past results the top 10 runners consistently run sub-35. So, I definitely knew there would be a good group of runners for me to run with. The gun went off and my speedy friend Jurgen immediately took off like he was shot out from a cannon. Noone dared to follow him. Jurgen ran alone the entire race finishing 1st in 31:50.

I hit 1K in 3:15 (5:14 pace) with a pack of 9 runners. It must have been a bit too fast for all of us because we decided to pull back on the pace hitting 2k in 6:42. At 5k, which I came across in 16:56, the pack was down to 6 runners. The pace seemed to be slowing around 6k. Feeling pretty good at this point I decided to move to the front and push the pace a bit. I led the pack through the next 2.5k's. I'm not sure if this was a smart move on my part because at 9k the guys picked up the pace and I was unable to respond. I finished in 7th place overall with a time of 34:15. Despite the course being well marked, I did not take down my splits, except for the first couple kilometers and the 5k mark. Overall, I am quite satisfied with my performance and finishing time considering the ups and downs of training and being injured. Afterall, it is a 10k PR for me.

Wednesday, February 18, 2009

10 points

I got shit on, literally, while on my run this evening. I was trotting along at a nice easy pace when, just as I ran by a tree, I felt something drop on my head (was wearing a beanie). At first I thought it was a drop of rain or water from the tree, but then I thought it can't be rain or water because it didn't rain at all today and it shouldn't feel that heavy. I then swiped my right hand (using gloves) on top of my beanie; when I looked at my glove it was bird shit. Couldn't help but laugh. I was just glad that I was wearing my beanie and gloves. There really wasn't a choice because it was 30 degrees. On my way back I made sure not to run under that same tree. That darn bird was probably planning on dropping another bomb on me. I'll give 10 points for a direct hit.

Today's Run: Noon - 9.2M easy @ 6:52 pace; PM - 5M very easy at 7:22 pace
Tues: 9.5M including 3 x 2000m
Mon: Noon - 9.2M easy @ 6:58 pace; PM - 5.1M very easy @ 7:32 pace

Tuesday, February 17, 2009


Ran at the track tonight with my friend Paul, who had 3 x 3000m on the schedule. I really didn't feel like running that long of intervals, so I decided to do 3 x 2000m instead. I ran with Paul for the first 2000m, my first repeat, and then we ran on our own for the remainder of our workout. The plan was to run 6:40 for 2km or 80 second laps. I was pretty much on target as I hit the workout in 6:38, 6:39, & 6:41. I was quite happy with the workout considering I ran a total of 18 miles on Sunday and 14+ miles on two runs yesterday. I plan to run a 10k (or maybe a 5k) on Saturday, so Wed-Fri will be easy running.

Sunday, February 15, 2009


It was a good week of training and I'm starting to feel like my body is back to its normal self with no persistent pain (knocking on wood). Was able to get in 3 key workout days for the week. Tuesday was 15 x 1' hard/easy, Thursday was a 6-mile tempo run on mixed and rolling terrain of the Brunssumerheide, and today's workout, sort of a combination of Tuesday and Thursday's workout, was 4 miles easy then 15 x 1' hard (5k pace)/easy followed by 2 miles easy and then finishing off with a 2-mile tempo. I was quite happy with today's workout and my feeling afterwards.

Since I'm not training for a marathon I've decided to take a different approach to my Sunday long runs by incorporating some fast-pace running and not going too long. I'll keep the long runs somewhere around 13-17 miles. Here's how the last two weeks of training went:

9-15 Feb

Mon: Noon - 9M easy; PM - 4M easy
Tues: 10M including 15 x 1' hard/easy
Wed: 10.1M easy
Thur: 8.2M including 6-mile tempo in 34:23 (5:44 pace)
Fri: 10.7M easy
Sat: 8M easy
Sun: AM - 13.3M including 15 x 1' hard/easy and 2-mile tempo in 11:14; PM - 4.7M very easy

Weekly Total: 78 miles

2-8 Feb

Mon: 8M easy
Tues: Noon - 5.2M easy; PM - 7.8M including 1 x 3000 (10:10) and 5 x 400 (72, 72, 71, 73, 71) w/ 200 recovery
Wed: Noon - 7.3M easy; PM - 6M very easy
Thur: 9M easy
Fri: 8.7M including 3 x 1-mile (5:45, 5:36, 5:25) w/ .5M easy
Sat: 6M easy
Sun: 13M including 10.8K race on tough and muddy conditions

Weekly Total: 71 miles

Friday, February 13, 2009

Is this thing on

Sorry that it has been such a long time since I last posted. The motivation to write about my running just wasn't there. In fact, there hasn't been too much to write about anyways. I took an entire week (3rd week of Jan.) off from running as I continued to experience some problems with the right achilles tendon. It was a smart decision and the legs feel much better.

Last Sunday I did a 10k race, actually turned out to be 10.8K, to see where I was at with my fitness. Despite making the same mistake of wearing the wrong shoes, road shoes on a muddy course, the race was a good effort and hurt aerobically, which I really needed. Placed a respective 10th overall in a strong field of Dutch runners.

Due to the inconsistent training and recent injuries over the past 6 weeks, I've decided to skip out in running the Rotterdam Marathon in April. Instead, I'll focus on the shorter distances (5k - 1/2 marathon). I'm looking forward to racing more and hopefully update the list of PRs.