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My Prediction…..

 

pain

So last night I tried to do something different and took part in a Prediction Mile hosted by Fleet Feet and Mizuno. The idea behind the run is to guess how fast you will run the mile and then run without using a watch or any other kind of timing device. My goal wasn’t to run an all-out mile, but to try something fun and make it part of a workout. 

My recent races have shown that I’m having trouble with pacing and running blind a little more often could help me to focus on effort and feel a little more. There was a pretty big turnout so we were put in 3 different waves. Running after work is always a bit of a crap shoot, so I took a conservative guess and predicted 6:18 for my time. 

The mile went well. I found a pretty comfortable rhythm after the first lap and after the 3rd lap, I sensed I was running faster than 6:18. End result was a 6:08 mile and my 10 second difference put me just outside the top 10.

 Mizuno-Wave-Sayonara 2

Another perk of the event was the opportunity to test out the Mizuno Wave Sayonara 2. The show is pretty comfortable and a good bit lighter than the Wave Rider. Might have to look at investing in a pair for workouts/races as they felt real good.

Thanks to Mizuno and Fleet Feet for putting on a different and fun event.

 

A small breakthrough…followed by a small break

After getting ridiculously close the last two years, I finally cracked the 20-minute barrier for an official 5k. My frustrations were growing high when in early June I ran a dumb race and finished in 20:03. My training over the winter/spring was fairly consistent- around 25 miles per week with 2 track workouts mixed in. It was a matter of running a strategic race and I know I could easily get under 20.

The June race featured good weather, but a course with some hills, and tight turns. I went out in what felt like a conservative pace, but hit the mile in about 6:04. My training in May wasn’t as consistent as it had been so the quick pace killed my legs. Mentally I was toast that day and as I struggled through the 2nd mile I had a tough time rallying. As I approached the finish and saw the clock, my frustration increased. Even with a really crappy run, I was so close to 20 that I felt like kicking something crossing the line.

The race and an acceptance of where I was with my training made me reconsider plans for doing a 10-miler on July 4th. I decided to enter the 5k instead and my strategy was to go out slow, very slow. So I picked a spot further back from the starting line and waited until we finished the incline to start to pick up the pace. We hit the 1k mark in 4:06 and I thought the shot of breaking 20 was in danger again. I found someone who seemed to be running a good pace and hung on as we took advantage of some decent downhills. The next split I remember seeing was 4k and the 20 minute barrier was still in reach. I was hurting down the stretch, but was able to finish in 19:48 and the realization that there was still work to be done.

But before worrying about increasing anything, I gave my legs a few days off last week. Starting back this week was a little easier after some recovery. Now it’s time to pick things up and getting those miles in….oh and there was no break from donut eating, just a bit of moderation.

Tired of Treadmills

 

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A week of sub-zero wind chill has pushed me indoors. treadmill running is boring and tedious so I’ve tried to make the most of it. For two of my harder runs this week, I’ve done a mile warm-up followed by 2-3 miles of controlled, hard running at tempo pace. It’s helped break up the monotony of the run and kept my legs fresh while still getting a good workout. 

2014 – A Late Start

So this blog has suffered over the last few months, but let’s see if we can change that. Since October, my running has remained steady (around 25 miles per week), as I have transitioned into the Noontime Running League at work. Being on campus has allowed me a more consistent lunchtime regimen and I’ve been able to join a workout group twice a week. The track work has improved my speed and I’m real interested to see what I can do for an indoor 5k. I was disappointed in not getting under 20 minutes in the Fall, and have been training to try and get down to 6:00 mile pace this Spring.

No major running resolutions for 2014. I want to keep progressing, do a bit more racing, and above all just keep enjoying running.

Me and Saku

In about 30 minutes, the Anaheim Ducks will drop the puck against the Montreal Canadiens. The opening face-off will feature one of my favorite all-time Habs, Saku Koivu. The longest serving captain in Canadiens history, Koivu is a beloved player, for what he did on and off the ice in Montreal.  The statistics don’t tell the full story of his tenure. Yes, the Habs failed to win a Stanley Cup during this period, but the determination and leadership of Koivu was still evident in each game.

Casual fans might remember that Koivu successfully fought and beat cancer. The ovation during his 1st game back in Montreal is incredibly moving. Habs fans are an interesting group- incredibly supportive while at the same time full of unrealistic expectations. Despite the lack of team success, they were moved by the determination and spirit of their Captain. 

Tonight is a reminder to me of why sports is such an integral part of my life. I think about the time I was in Montreal in 1996 and during a break in a track meet at McGill, I ran to the Forum to get a look inside the arena and pick up some souvenirs. One of the things I bought that day was a #11 t-shirt and despite it being full of holes from excessive wear, I cannot bring myself to throw it out.  The next time I went back to Montreal, I bought a Habs jersey and had no hesitation when deciding which name and number to have on the back.  

I wish I was in the crowd tonight to stand with the rest of the Habs fans in welcoming our Captain back to Montreal. I sit here wearing (a newer) Habs Koivu t-shirt and I think of the times I celebrated a goal, a win, and of course the emotional return from the battle with cancer. I will be there in spirit, thankful that my team was lucky enough to have had Saku Koivu on its roster for such a long time.

Even though I haven’t seen Saku raise the Cup while wearing le bleu, blanc et rouge, one can still hold on the slim hopes that it will happen. This is why we root, this is why we feel the agony, and this is why even at 40, we act like small children when our team wins.

Thank you Saku!

Merci Saku!Image

Dunkin Run Recap

Saturday was the half and now that I’ve had a couple of days to reflect, let’s take a look back. Heading into the race, I have been hitting just under 30 miles per week so I knew that I wasn’t going to run an earth-shattering race. My plan has been to train through and gear my speed workouts for the Festival of Races 5K next month.

I decided to try and go out at 7 minute pace and see how long I could hold on. What I failed to realize is that the revised course for this year was quite a bit hillier than the usual route. From Mile 5-8, we were going up long gradual inclines.

This was a pretty small race, so at the start I stayed relaxed and intentionally slower. We went through in 6:41 which was faster than I wanted, but there weren’t a lot of people around so I stuck with a couple of others. I missed mile markers 2 and 3, so I was glad to see that we hit Mile 4 in 21 minutes. I stayed with one other guy all the way until Mile 8 when he began to pull away.

I was able to use some downhills and a bit of mental toughness to hold on for two more miles. When we went past 10, other people started catching up and I just didn’t have another gear. I crawled in the final 5k in 23:30 for a final time of 1:33:30.

I was really hoping to get close to 1:30, but with my training, I am pleased with the result. Now it’s a couple of days of rest, a bunch of donuts, some easy runs this week and a couple of weeks of training before the 5k. 

Steak

So for a while I would mess around writing rap lyrics. Back around 99/00, I even had a program called Hip Hop eJay where I “recorded” some of these. Anyway, someone asked about seeing these, so from time to time I will post them to remain in internet posterity for my grand kids to be able to post SMH on whatever they will be doing in 25 years.

This is my ode to Steak- should have stopped after one verse because it got real weak.

Steak

I can eat filet mignon

til the break of dawn

and that’s word is born

steak’s got it goin on

try it and you’ll agree

unless your name is oprah winfrey

cuz ya know oprah wants no beef

but I master tha grill like I was lee van cleef

sneak up on like a thief

snatch the t-bone from your plate

and share it with your date

don’t believe me then ask my man Nate

pass the au jus, let me get loose

and kick this like I was dr. seuss

I eat steak in a boat

and Ill eat steak with a goat

Ill eat steak with sam I am

just don’t bring green eggs and ham

it’s gotta be usda choice

and if you didn’t hear me Ill raise my voice

I need steak

(Refrain)

I eat steak on the regular

I eat steak when I’m on my cellular

Ill eat steak in a cab

I ate steak with Don McNabb

yeah he should’ve won the heisman

but we all had sirloin with my man Joe Theismann

K-Wall and I don’t pack a gun

but I’m always strapped with some a-1

wanna buy me one?

Well you’d better make it well done

I need steak

(Refrain)

I once ate steak with Wayne Gretzky

while we smoked cigars with Joe Pesci

I eat steak when I’m in DC

but I never ate steak with Monica Lewinsky…….