Running longer and faster… a few thoughts…

Archive for January, 2013

Wow, I’m impressed!

Aaaaaand one more day of rest. Sounds like it is becoming kind of a routine, isn’t it? 😉 Today felt fine actually. Had a great night’s sleep (with left leg up all night so you can imagine how uncomfortable it could have been and still slept like a dormouse!). Had high heels at work and strangely it seemed that the legs felt better (and I am both sitting and standing throughout the day in front of my desk). Did some toe exercises (without my heels!) but the left calf did not really like it so did not push (well, more correctly: did not do more than 10, which felt sufficient). Not much to eat during the day, but got loads of fruits (bananas, apple, clementines…) and as usual lot of water (Yaaaa, I know, cannot get enough of the rain apparently!)… to drink!

Great day at work, despite the rain. Happiness is in the air 🙂 Not everyday is birthday time (not mine yet though!). Hugs, singing and kissing on the top of a home-made chocolate cake “French style”… as I said: a great day 🙂 All the people involved in this brilliant day will recognize themselves (once again, in spite of the drizzling skies being there all-day-long… 🙂

Lots of energy, evening celebrating at the restaurant (grilled chicken Italian style with chanterelle sauce and potatoes + little coke), ending at home with once again my terrific chocolate cake (thanks E for your recipe!) and time for bed for the small ones. Took advantage of the not too late hour for reaching the mat for a great Core&Stability workout:

3* [Jörgens transverse muscle 15
single leg lowering,
+ both legs lowering
+ straight legs]
2* [single leg push press *10 each side
+ “walk on the mat” *10 each side
+ regular hover w/ bottom lift *10 each side
+ side hover w/ arm+leg raise *10 each side
+ Triceps press sitting *10 rep]
2* [back extension*10
+ “table abs – 2 legs” 10
+ bench dips on low table *10]
2*[“walk with ball” *20
+ Swiss ball superman *12]
2* [S’s program incl “1/2V” 5*10sec” – excl. hover
+ Ball bridge 10]
2*30sec Swiss ball lower back stretch

workout cut into small series to do twice+ included 2 additional ex (“walk on the mat” + “1/2 V”)
5-10sec between each exercises or rep
1 min or so between each serie

Crazy, right? But was actually planning a short version and the feeling being so great I did go through the whole thing… Now a short shower, cooling of my favourite calf and eventually time for bed… Still raining outside!

Pain could have been avoided for this stupid calf and will definitely learn to listen more carefully to what my body says! But now trying to enjoy the rest, continuing to keep the mind focus to the race, thoughts are wandering from time to time (as long as it keeps me happy that’s fine, right? the mood ain’t low as expected due to this compulsory rest, on the contrary… Have to keep up with whatever I am doing!)

Night night! Sleep tight!

When rest rhymes with pest…

So was one more day of rest… The calf feels better, kind of. Just in the back of the knee, the feeling ain’t the best… Have worn compression socks all day long without really thinking if that could help, but when the mind’s at rest, the body should follow, right? 😉

Will continue the cold treatment and legs up. Hopefully improvement will be noted tomorrow… Have no problem with resting, although it does not fill one’s day… especially not when there are 16 days left before the first marathon of the year… And receiving all advices of all kinds for every one worrying or caring… (from massage, to cold, to warm, to rest, to move, to skip the race and I skip some funny ones here!) Not optimal start for tapering before the race really. Thanks anyhow for caring, really 🙂

Lonely bridge missing its runner tonight!

The view of the bridge in the night lights was really nice. Temperature fine, little cool air, just ready for a run…

Just forgot: in the meantime, keep being careful not to get sick or so, especially after the start back to school and work. Cleaning clinically my hands so many times everyday… getting close to sickness, really! Taking also advantage of the “no-running-time” for resting (= sleeping) as much as I can. Unsure whether it makes a difference in the long run (ha ha ha!) especially as the race in still in three weeks…

Little core cannot harm anyone, right?

Today is a rest day, but a little core exercises cannot harm, right? Slept quite fine even though waking up early. Took a light breakfast and decided to go for an easy core&stability workout (see below). You’ll maybe notice that it is not the usual order for the exercises. Decided to wake up the mind and challenge it a bit by doing the workout the other way around as well as dividing it into small series to be repeated twice (except for Jörgen’s transverse which were done 3 times). Felt really good to wake up the body. I added as well 3 exercises (the hovers and back extensions), which for the former felt quite tough in the second repetition, but still really bearable.

3* [Jörgens transverse muscle 15
single leg lowering,
+ both legs lowering
+ straight legs]
2* [single leg push press 10 each side
+ regular hover w/ bottom lift 10 each side
+ side hover w/ arm+leg raise 10 each side[
2* Triceps press sitting 10 rep
2* [back extension 10
+ “table abs – 2 legs” 10
+ bench dips on low table *10]
2* [S’s program excl. hover
+ Ball bridge 10]
“walk with ball” *20
2* Swiss ball superman *12
2*30sec Swiss ball lower back stretch

5-10sec between each exercises or rep
1 min or so between each serie

Nice tea after that and work before the monsters arrive home for their day off from school. Calf felt fine this morning although still feeling it a bit. Did take out any exercise which would use it even closely (therefore no lunge). Will see to have it this way for the next few weeks, slightly more on the arms as well (which are – have to recognize it – a bit weak).

Now rest day (from running).

17 days to go before Dubai!


So that’s how it feels like…

Terrible days in any context have a positive side: can only be better! After a great night’s sleep, up for breakfast (oat porridge, blueberry, light milk), took a couple of hours rest, to feel if I should get along with my long run plans. Drank as before marathon, 1dl water every half hour. Wondered a bit whether I could do some core & stability exercises, but choose to skip them and focus on the run.


Yummy breakfast

All geared up, had a great 32-33km mix run planned, starting with 10km easy pace. Went fine, stopped at 8.5K to buy some energy gels (only had water in my camelbak + Dextrosol tablets). Choose 2 orange, 1 lemon and 1 coke, although my plan was to take 2 Dextrosol tablets with water @ km 10 & 15, and then a gel +water at km 20 & 25, and depending on the feeling, Dextrosol @km 30 or so.
Finished the first 10 km in XX min, 5minutes pause for the gel purchase.

Then next 10km planned every second km fast, and then slow. The first 4 km went fine although slightly difficult to reach the middle range for the pace. But considering the feeling in the right calf, decided to skip aiming for it and have a good fast and good slow… By the 3rd iteration, I was not able to keep up the pace for the fast one so, still while considering the options… Just aimed for maintaining under 5/km. Then 2K easy and start again w/ fast km, easy km for 6km and thereafter1km easy followed by 2+km with fartlek. Could not maintain the pace from my program, but still able to get a fast pace despite the terrible pain I felt from km16-19. Then easy pace until km33.33 (cool number 🙂 )

Great to have met PB during the run as it gave some strength for continuing really. Otherwise, was seriously planning to cut the run at km20. This workout was really about mental strength (and a touch of stupidity for not stopping when the calf started to be painful…). Do know that I can get out 15km more at a quite decent pace even after 18km already run and with the last 4km of those ones being really painful.

Did notice that running fast made the calf less sensitive. it started again to be painful when running slower…

All-in-all, made a 33.33km in 2hrs40min (pace: 4:49/km) which is quite an achievement when thinking of the pain I felt during the while in the middle of the run. Now it is full rest for the day and tomorrow hopefully will be able to get a massage. Might do a light core&stability session in the morning, without the exercises using the legs…

Dinner this evening: sushi, miso soup and gree tea. Time for bed shortly!


Yummy sushi

Little note: noticed that during my long runs I loose between 2 and 3% of weight, despite the drinking during the run… (e.g today was 2.3% loss). Which accordingly to the books, it ain’t good for efficiency. Any tips?

Another day in pain…

Following yesterday great run, my right calf felt not too good. Massage, Salonpas, anti-inflammation pill… Not really helping, making the night pretty tough despite cozy evening. Lack of sleep once more, although could jump like a goat in the stairs this morning.

So went on for a run with compulsory slow pace. Set my virtual partner to 5:30/min and changed to 5:40 at km3. The calf felt really bad and tensed. Tried to stretched but made it kind of worse. Managed 9,5k though, even if the pace was slightly faster than planned. Would need a pacer for such runs really.

Back home, recall lunch had been forgotten, took a vitargo yellow after the run and applied cold 10min on the calf, followed by hot bath 15 min. After that just fell on the bed and slept for 1,5hours.

Now it is late and have been “carbo loading” for long run tomorrow if my calf is fine: spaghetti with chicken/garlic in oat cream sauce 🙂 plus B&J ice cream … Have also massaged my calf with the Thai liniment and feeling us great. Time for bed now!

Back to basics (just faster…)

Following the terrible morning feeling from yesterday, I skipped the evening run and went to bed at 6pm and slept like a stone within minutes after reaching my pillow. Awaken at 8:30pm when my neighbor decided to drill a hole in his wall… twice! Up then, did a bit of tidying and then relaxing in front of TV for a while. Then back to bed and… slept like a stone within minutes after reaching my pillow… Great night, awaken at 6:30am, did some core and stability workout (short program as felt a bit tired anyway – but great afterwards! Maybe should try to shower first and workout after!):

S’s program excl. hover
Ball bridge 2*10
Ball pikes 10+5 (difficult to maintain the stability)
2* (“table abs – 2 legs” 10 + bench dips on low table *10 ) (alternated together w/ table abs)
single leg push press 10 each side
+ “walking on the mat” 10 each leg
+ lunge 10
Triceps press sitting 2*10
Jörgens transverse muscle 15
single leg,
+ both legs
+ straight legs


Spooky road indeed!

Full day at work, back home and ready to hit the pavement this time. Decided to either run the short one (12K) or aim for a longer one (14K) depending on the feeling at 5K… the two first km felt light light light really, ran through the city park (felt like a “Jack the Ripper-atmosphere” there… foggy, silhouettes in the dark appearing here and there… glad not to run longer there actually!).

By km5, the pace was faster than planned and the feeling definitely greater than expected! So aimed for the longer workout. km6-7 are generally a bit tougher as this includes crossing road, uphill, downhill, uphill… But I reached actually my fastest pace during this km! Thereafter just put on automatic driving and aim back home. The last 3km though were pretty tough (OK, have to recognize that I pushed more on those ones as well!).

Ended in 14km @ 4:32min/km, which is the fastest I have run so far such a distance (if recalling correct! This corresponds to my 10K pace for the race I ran almost exactly a year ago!)… Now, showered and well fed. Relaxed evening in perspective (and weekend after that!)

Oh yes, almost forgot: back thigh still slightly painful while running, but after the run I stretched a bit too much my right calf and now it feels a bit too stretched. Massaged it with HEAT Aloe Vera… will see how it goes later on!

Boring morning ain’t for running…

One day rest after the great interval workout of Tuesday. Body and mind were fine as it also was first day back at work – easy. But today was not starting well. Slept max 5hours, up @2:45am due to heavy rain on the roof, half awaken for an hour, really awaken the hour after. Decided to go up and drink a warm oat gruel. Did not help that much so @6am decided to go running instead.

Light rain outside, not much people, body tired and not really willing to cooperate AND no music (T needed her mp3 for her trip…). Unsure what was the reason, but the run felt heavy, dull and boring. Nice feeling only for the light drizzling on my face. Heavy legs, pushed myself really to get along with 6km and back home to shower and get ready for work. Breakfast taken (banana, toast with pâté, fruit juice and oat milk+chocolate).

Boring morning really – no optimal running, far from that. Calm day at work should make wonders – or I wish it will! Hopefully more energy will be later on. Well, actually at the moment I do have energy, and probably thanks for the run…

Have a great day anyway!

First Run of 2013 – sweat and pace!

And 2012 had just time to close its eyes that 2013 was there and with it all new challenges and hopefully fun! Awaken a bit early, tea and cereals/banana then rest again. Game with the kiddies and then aimed back home and took an afternoon snack (oat porridge w/ blueberries and oat milk) and watched a bit tv. As my feet were really cold, I had a wheat bag warming them for a while, so that they would be fine for a little run.

1,5hr after my snack, +6ºC outside and nice blue cloudy skies: just perfect for my run: 3*5K (@23:00-22:00) with 5min rest. Started easy warmup of 3km, a bit feeling my backside of left thigh (again!) but decided to go on and see whether after warming up and stretching it became better. Well, it did so started my intervals and it was a real bless! The first interval was a bit heavy in the legs but ended in 23:06. Quite satisfied, I jogged a bit and stretched during the rest and off I went for the second interval. Night had fallen down already and dark it was. A bit chilly in the air when passing by the sea but so nice to see the colours in the skies changing (until a plain dark it became!). Ended in 22:41 which was really satisfactory. Then stretch again and a bit of walking aaaaannnnnnd off I went (again). This time I pushed a bit and really enjoyed the feeling. Breathing felt light and easy, despite the pace. Ended in 22:15. Great last interval, followed by easy run back home.

Today‘s interval was the first run of the year and it definitely boosted my confidence. Sweat indeed, even feeling the saltiness on the skin (like after Sunday’s long run). May the temperatures remain as well as the weather until I leave to Dubai and everything will be just all right!