Sunday, August 30, 2009

Good Runs on Thursday and Saturday

Thursday at noon I did an easy 4 mile run. That evening Patty, Larry and I did 2x3 miles of tempo runs. It was pretty humid that day, so that made it a little tough. My first 3 miles I was aiming at 23 minutes, and I finished in 22:57. Then after a short rest and some water, I did the return 3 miles. I was thinking I would be happy with anything less than 24 minutes, but I sort of thought 23:30 would be a good goal. I finished in 23:32. So, my average pace for the six miles was about 7:45. I was pretty pleased. With the warm up and cool down, it was a total of 8 miles for the run - 12 miles for the day.

Friday I took the day off from running. Saturday we had a planned 16 mile fast finish run, and I wanted to be at least a little rested up.

Saturday we were going to run the first 15 miles and the last mile of the Route 66 Marathon course. I got up early and marked the turns for miles 7 to 13 with chalk. It was my first time through the downtown part of the course, and I was a little disappointed. It seems like a lot of the course goes past warehouses and sections of Tulsa that are just not very attractive. At about 5 in the morning, I was going west on 3rd Street, and most of downtown was pretty dark, but there was a pretty bright sign on the right - "Adult Bookstore." That sort of capped off my first impression of the downtown portion of the Route 66 marathon course, and I was pretty disgusted. Anyway, I got back to Veterans' Park in plenty of time to meet the group. I ran the whole way with Eric. We did the first 11 miles in around 8:40 to 8:45 pace. Then we did the next couple of miles in around 8:10-8:15 pace. Then a mile in 8:00 pace. Then a mile in about 7:45 pace. Then we jogged about half a mile and then picked it up to a pretty fast pace and finished with a sprint from Riverside to Veterans' Park. I almost passed out at the end, but it was a really good run. Eric was a great running partner!

While at the park, Patty was wearing her 26.2 necklace, and she told about one time that someone asked if it was a Bible verse. So, I looked up Psalm 26:2, which says, "Prove me, O LORD, and try me; test my heart and my mind." Works pretty good for a marathon verse. A marathon is a pretty good test for the mind and heart. Of course, the real meaning of the verse is for God to test us to see if we have lived with integrity and faithfulness. May we be found to be faithful.

Isaiah 26:2 is also a pretty good verse, "Open the gates, that the righteous nation that keeps faith may enter in."

Thursday, August 27, 2009

Training for the Past Week

noon: 4 miles Fartlek, avg pace = 8:13
evening: 8.5 miles easy, avg pace = 8:30

noon: 5 miles easy, avg pace = 9:12

morning: 12 miles at marathon pace (8:14) plus 6 really slow miles
I was really happy about Saturday's run. First four miles I felt pretty tired, but then I picked up the pace and felt good the rest of the way.

20 mile bike ride, avg speed = 16.2 mph
This was an easy ride south on Elwood to 191st and back north on Hwy 75.

noon: 4 miles easy, avg pace = 8:47
evening: hill sprints plus 4 miles easy
Hill sprints went well. I ran them faster than usual and with shorter recovery periods.

noon: 4 miles easy, avg pace = 8:30
Legs were pretty sore today.

evening: 36 mile bike ride, avg speed = 16.6 mph
First half of ride was pretty enjoyable. The last half was pretty miserable though, because I started having gas pains and my shoulder was giving me problems. My legs felt good though, even when we picked up the pace to the mid 20s.

Totals for the Seven Days
Running: 48 miles
Biking: 56 miles

Wednesday, August 19, 2009

A Little Update

It's been about three weeks since I've updated this blog, so I guess I should put something in writing. The first week in August I spent in Colorado at a Christian camp called Hermit Basin. It used to be a ski resort, but it went bankrupt. The story is that the slopes were built wrong so that snow would not accumulate on the slopes, and it just wasn't a very good place to ski. Anyway, it was a nice place to stay for a week in the summer.

I missed my Monday hill workout, the Saturday long run, and the Thursday night group run, but I made up for it. On Monday morning I got up early and tried a bit of running. Since it was almost 9,000 feet altitude, and since there was no really level ground, I didn't run very fast or very far. I basically just moved and breathed hard for about a half hour or so. Then I ate breakfast and went on a hike. I started up the ski slope and then followed a walking trail that led to a jeep trail, which I followed for quite a ways. Looking at maps, I figure I gained about 1500 feet in elevation before I headed back. Total hike time was a little over 3 hours.

Tuesday was white water rafting down Bighorn Sheep Canyon, just upstream of Royal Gorge. That was a fun day. Wednesday we rode the train through the Royal Gorge. It was interesting to see the rafters going through the gorge, and try to judge the difference between the rapids in the different parts of the river. My wife definitely wants to raft in Royal Gorge next year. Thursday the big activities were bowling and sand volleyball.

I didn't do as much hiking as I expected during the week. However, on Friday we went on a hike up to Horn Peak (about elevation 13,500). It is the tall peak in the picture. We started the hike at Horn Creek, which is at about 9,000 feet elevation. There was a mile or so of hiking on level ground before we started our ascent.

The hardest part was once we got above the timber line. Here is a picture looking up to a little peak that is not too far from the actual peak. It was quite windy up there, and my oldest daughter, Melissa sort of had a panic attack and I had to help her get down back into the trees. I sent my other three daughters on ahead. It took about 2 hours to get Melissa down below the trees and to get back up to where I was.

I didn't quite make it to the little peak before I met my daughters coming down. The wind was so strong up there that they thought it was too risky to attempt to cross the ridge to the actual peak.

Here is a picture of my daughter, Sarah , being blown by the wind. I was guessing that the winds were at least 50 miles per hour, with much greater gusts.

I hiked on up to the little peak, and once I was there, I agreed with the girls.

I tried to take a picture of the ridge leading up to the actual peak, but my arm got in the way. It was way too windy to try to take good pictures.

When we returned to camp, a guy said that in the valley (5,000 feet below) the winds were over 40 miles per hour, so I was probably right on my guess of wind speed. It took us about 8 hours for that little hike. It was a disappointment to not reach the peak, but at least we are alive to hike again.

We drove back to Tulsa on Saturday. Monday I went on business to New Orleans. Ran 14 miles on a treadmill. It was awful. Tuesday I ran for a little over an hour - probably close to 7 miles. Took Wednesday off from running. Thursday I wa back in Tulsa running with the group. We did 9 miles with 2 x 2 miles of tempo run.

Saturday I did the 16 miler out to Sand Springs and back. Most of the way out was a little slower than a 9 minute pace, until Paul pulled a muscle in his calf and turned back. I continued on doing roughly 8:35 pace until I hit the hill up to Gilcrease Road on the way back. That caused me to slow back to about a nine minute pace. I caught up with Paul just before the railroad tracks. Hopefully his injury will heal quickly.

Monday was a hill workout. The group was small this time. Only five of us. We ran easy out to Easton Street and did hill repeats on Easton between Quanah and Yukon. All went well except for the water. I had set out a cooler with bottled water, and in the half hour that it sat there unattended, somebody stole it.

Tuesday I did 5 miles at lunch at a fairly easy pace. Today (Wednesday) I am a little sore. I was going to bike in the evening, but instead I will spend the evening with my wife.

That's all.