Thursday, September 22, 2011


I told a friend today that as far as running speed, I'm at "dead" and hoping to get to "slug" before Disney. This years speed work consists of Yasso 800's. Named for Bart Yasso who came up with the idea, I've been using it off and on for quite a long time but about nil the last few years. (Remember that smashed ankle thing?)
Simple: Wanna run a Marathon in 4:00 hours? Run repeats of 800 meters (yards will do but meters is just cooler) in 4:00 minutes. Start with about four or five and add one a week till you hit ten the hold it there. Last Yasso workout 10 to 14 days out.
As of today I'm at 6 Yasso's at 3:50. Now I have NO intention of actually trying to run The Disney Marathon in 3:50 but I like a cushion and 3:50 for 800 is comfortably hard for me right now.
And yes, while you're thinking it...Mary Lou and I are returning to Disney for the 7th straight year to run...Her the half and me my 7th Goofy. Keeping the streak alive!
Despite being a drippy, sloppy mess by the end (70* and 90% humidity) I felt good and was able to get in a bike ride later this afternoon.
Next week ...7.

Tuesday, September 13, 2011

Pinning on a number...

For the first time since January I had the joy of pinning on a race number last weekend for a half marathon. The Parks Half Marathon here in the MoCo...actually the first time I've run the bloody thing. Signed up twice before but hey, life happens!  No speed work of late and no racing so I had NO idea what would happen. Confident with my return to running since "The Ankle" and "The Knee" it was time to wind one up and see what's what...
It's a great race put on by my local club, The Montgomery County Road Runners. My ESSWW...the Extra Super Special Wife of the World, Mary Lou, drove me to the start area near the Rockville Metro at  5: 30.  The usual trips to the porta -john, sip on fluids and just hang.  Really, I just watch...people watch. It's one of the reasons I love to go to races early. The nervous people who are loud and obnoxious. The nervous folks who are loud but funny. (much better) Folks who don't know where the start is and someone who insisted a half marathon was 13.3 miles and would believe it wasn't. All shapes. All sizes. All speeds. The skinny folks who are slow, the heavy ones who are fast. The great egalitarian sport.
I jump in the corral with the 10:00 minute mile runners not sure what I'll do but I just couldn't bear to go slower... Race starts at 7 and the corrals move up every few minutes and at 7:10 my bunch is off.
It's a nice course... a little lumpy but not bad. I spin out the first miles in 9:15 and they just keep coming which is cool. I sweat like a...well I sweat a lot. Soaked by mile 4 I'm sucking in the fluids as best I can but know I won't be pretty. 65 degrees and 90% humidity. Things get a bit narrow in places and are slowed up  by really slow folks who weren't honest about what corral they should start in. I pass a ton of my pace that's a good indicator a ton of folks are slow, slower or slowing. Have run here before, training, and am not really focused on the scenery. Just moving along.
The knee and ankle hold up well under the abuse. The most they have had since Disney's Goofy Challenge in January. (biking hundreds of miles doesn't count. It's not load bearing) Mile 10 rolls up and not to my surprise, the wheels come off and I slow. Only three left and they go by sorta fast and through a tunnel and then dumped into the middle of Bethesda. Mary Lou is there and we meet up and leave. Yes, there is some big party and lots of cold pizza and a good band playing Jethro Tull, but I want a cold soda and don't feel the best. Feel good about the race though and it gives me a good bench mark. Glad I did it.  2:11 finish time, my slowest in years at almost exactly 10 minute miles. I remember Yogi Bera: "It's not the heat it's the humility.' Now...on to some more fall fun!