All in all this week was very good. It was my fourth consecutive week of training which is very rare. I usually complete three weeks and have to bike the next due to sickness, vacation, stress, or fatigue but not this week. However, I had one "red" day this week. I use a color coding system that I learned from reading a training article by Andy Jones Wilkins. Basically, you have three colors: green indicates the workout was executed perfectly, you felt great and could have ran harder. Yellow is a borderline color. It indicates you completed the workout but you were very tired and struggled to get through it. Red is a bad color. You don't want many red days. Red is for a failure to complete a workout for reasons such as: fatigue, injury, equipment malfunction, etc. I put a colored square on every calendar day, this makes it easy to distinguish any trends in my training, such as over training. It is okay to has some yellow days, as its normal to be very tired after previous hard runs; however, to many yellows days in a row can be concerning. Red days must be taken care of immediately. Thursday was a red day, so I listened to my body and took Friday off.
Sunday (2/02): 6 miles
Easy six miles on the flat. These went by fast. Every now and then you get one of those amazing runs were everything feels right and goes right. I was easily dropping low and sub sevens, feeling like I hadn't ran twenty miles the day before and sixty miles the previous week. Barefoot drills/strides and core work at home.
Monday (2/03): 10 miles
Two mile warm up. Speed workout on track, 12X400s. Averaged 71 secs/repeat. Very happy with this workout. I also think my times would have been faster had there not been a soccer game going on. I kept having to swing out into lane 5 and 6 on the back straight away dodging unaware high school kids and soccer balls. Two mile cool down.
Tuesday (2/04): Day off.
Wednesday (2/05): 11 miles
Two mile warm up. Seven mile tempo. Two mile cool down. Splits: 5:45, 5:52, 5:53, 5:55, 5:55, 5:53, 5:44, total: 41:03.97, Average Pace 5:51 min/mi. I started this workout feeling terrible, very tired and sore from Monday's effort; however, after hitting three miles only twenty seconds off my current PR, the miles started getting easier. This workout was a big break through for me, as all my miles were under six minutes especially considering the footing was sloppy from all the rain.
Thursday (2/06): 5 miles
Terrible run today, definitely a red day. I guess I ran too hard yesterday and Monday. So no core work and no drills as I was just too tired. I tried running in my new New Balance 910s, they felt fine the past few days walking in them but today around 4 miles I could feel the blisters forming on my heels. WTF?! I thought everything was healed up but I guess not. I'm really unsure about what to do at this point as I have gone through three different brands of shoes over the past two weeks and nothing is fitting properly. So, I think I'll be returning the New Balances soon.
Friday (2/07): Day off.
Today I headed up to Clear Springs, MS in the Homochitto National Forest for a weekend of trail running. I arrived early enough to get in a late evening run but after Thursday's affair, I decided to listen to my body for once and take an extra day off using my time to gather firewood while it was still daylight instead.
Saturday (2/08): 22+ miles
I couldn't decide what shoes to use this day. My old Salomon Sense Mantras fit fine with no rubbing but they are significantly worn out and offer little protection at this point. So, I used my new Scott Sports T2 Kinabulas recommend by a really fast friend, who knows what he is talking about. I was worried at first as I have only ran warm ups and cool downs in them but after two hours of running in them my feet felt great so I figured why stop there, how about another two hours of running? The first loop consisted of running from our campsite, running a small portion of trail along the lake then running Tally's Creek with Kyle Cassidy and Grits. We ran back to the campsite where I got a snack, refilled my bottles, dropped of Grits, and left Kyle and everyone else for their trail work day while I headed out for some more single track. This time I ran to Richardson Creek and completed that trail; however, I got a little lost at an intersection and ran about twenty-five minutes extra on Mill's Branch Trail. Finally 3:49.27 later I was back at camp. I'm estimating my distance to be 22 miles but in actuality it was probably a mile or few longer, but 22 seems a safe estimate. While the distance was pretty short compared to the time spent running, I still achieved my main purpose of getting some time running. I also realized that a sub 4 hour 50km here is really going to hurt! Time to start cranking those hills. Very happy with this run as I originally had 16 miles planned and was only going to do about 12 if I was having shoe issues.
Weekly Total: 54 miles