Friday, March 30, 2007

Friday 6 Miles

I ran the same 6-mile route as a few weeks ago but the weather was much nicer!

This gives me 55.5 miles for the month of March which met my goal (50 miles)!

Weight = 187 lbs

Thursday, March 29, 2007

Thursday Circuits

Chris taught Circuits today. It was a good class as always.

Chris had us do this thing that reminds me of the statue of liberty. Holding a weight in one arm straight up, you go from standing to lying down, still holding the arm up. Then stand back up again, all the time keeping the weight (I used 15 lbs) above your head. Alternate arms and repeat.

The next station that I haven't described yet is bench press, with dumbells. I used a 30 lb dumbell in each arm.

Weight = 188 lbs

Wednesday, March 28, 2007

Wednesday Speedwork, Cut Short

I joined Matt, Curt, and Kevin D today for speedwork but I had some important issues on my mind and could not focus.

I ran 2 good repeats and gave out during the 3rd one. My splits were 2:54 & 2:55.

Total distance 3 1/2 miles

Weight = 188 lbs

Tuesday, March 27, 2007

Tuesday Circuits

Matt led a tough circuits class today, lots of cardio with push-ups added in, and then some challenging squats. Just when my legs started to hurt, he would call out "hold it" and then "lower." Also some calf-raises were part of today's program.

From where I left off last week, the next 2 stations were:

Lying Triceps Extension: Lying on your back, hold a weight straight above your head, then lower it towards the top of your head, then raise it again. I used a single 17.5 lb dumbell for this but probably could have used a little more weight.

Step Up (both feet) With Weights: Step up onto a step (like used in "step" classes), holding a weight in each hand. I used a pair of 20 lb dumbells. I'm not sure if I'm doing something wrong, but this is always an easy station for me.

Weight = 189 lbs

Sunday, March 25, 2007

Sunday 6.5 Miles

The weather is beautiful and I enjoyed it today during my run. This is my first outdoor run from home this spring. I ran 6.5 miles, through my neighborhood and the next development over. The wind was out of the south but not too bad.

I saw my sister-in-law (driving), but that's not that surprising as they live just 1/2 mile from us. In the neighboring development I did see a family from Luke's soccer team, playing outside in their yard. Then right before I got home I saw fellow pizza driver Mike.

Total miles for the week = 24.5 miles.

Friday, March 23, 2007

Friday 5 Miles (Name That Course)

I've found that many runners like to name their favorite training courses. Growing up we had the "hill block" that I would run with my brother. It was actually 2 blocks but we always knew what we meant.

In college we had "Shaker Lakes", "Fairmount", "North Park", and "MLK." These were mainly street names but they also described the course.

The fitness center where I train now is no different. Today Peter, Milica, Vicki, and I ran the "Homeless Run." Legend has it that whenever some old-timers would run this way, they always met a few homeless people. Now I've only seen one in the year I've been running this way, but maybe I'm just not looking close enough.

Anyways it winds down through the flats, along the riverbank for a while, and back up "Commercial hill." Yeah, runners name their hills too!

It was a nice easy 5 miles and, as expected, my knee pain from the last few days is pretty much gone.

Thursday, March 22, 2007

Thursday Circuits / Knee Pain

I did circuits class today. We had 12 students. Chris was the instructor. We seemed to be spending less time at the stations and then we did some extended group stuff (hand-walks, crunches, planks) at the end.

Continuing around the room to describe the stations:

Mountain Climbers / Push-Ups: Alternate between mountain climbers and push-ups. Mountain climbers is an exercise where you get down on your hands and feet (like push-up position) and then lift your butt in the air and then drive your legs, but keeping your hand down. Kind of like running in place but all bent-over.

Front & Lateral Raises: Lift both arms straight up in front of you, then back down to your sides. Lift both arms straight out to the sides, then back down. This seems to be one of my weakest muscle groups. I used a 12 lb dumbell in each arm.

Barbell Curls: Biceps curls with a barbell. I used a 50 lb barbell for this.

Now about the knee pain.

My knees were achy yesterday and today, mainly my right knee. Several years ago when I was a member of the Northeast Running Club, an older runner named Jack suggested to do leg exercises (extensions and curls). Now a few times each year when my knees start to hurt, I just do 3 sets of 10 leg extensions and leg curls, with light weight, and usually my knee pain goes right away!

Weight = 190 lbs

Wednesday, March 21, 2007

Wednesday Speedwork

I got a new laundry bag today!

I don't know if I mentioned this before, but one of the great things about our fitness center is that they do my laundry!

Once you go at least 9 times per month for 2 months, they give you a locker and a numbered mesh bag. After you are done working out, you put your dirty clothes in the mesh bag and toss it in the laundry bin. The next day when you show up, your clothes are washed and back in your locker. This is included in our membership fees of $6 per week!

Well today, for the 2nd time in about 2 weeks, I started getting dressed and realized I only had 1 sock. I went to the lost and found and, just like last time, there was my sock, clean and on the top of the pile. I checked my laundry bag and sure enough, it had a hole in it that was about big enough for a sock to fall through. So I exchanged my bag for a new bag.

But enough of that, today was speedwork day. We ran the same course as last week and there were 4 of us today: Matt, Curt, Kevin D, and myself. This time I was able to do the first 4. I took a break and then did 2 more. Curt had a slight injury so he only did 4 and Kevin D is still ramping up so he did 6 as planned. The last one was just Matt and I (his 7th, my 6th).

My splits for the 1/2 mile were: 2:47, 2:47, 2:56, 3:12, (skip), 3:10, (???). Thanks to Kevin D for wearing his watch and calling out my times. Kevin D went back after 6 so my final repeat was untimed.

Total distance for the day was 5.5 miles.

Weight = 185 lbs

Tuesday Night Running Club - 4.5 Miles

Tuesday night is my night to run with a few members of my family and friends. We have been doing this for several years. We meet about 8:15 at the bike path in Oberlin. This path used to be a train track so it is straight and flat, and fairly safe to run even in the dark.

Some of my family are dairy farmers so we can't start much earlier than 8:15, but we meet here every week for a 4 1/2 mile run. It's a central location, about half-way between where I live now and where I grew up on the family farm.

In the warm weather we get popcicles afterwards.

Last night there were 5 of us:
  • Ken, my brother-in-law, a long time high school cross country coach and one of the top 60+ runners in the area
  • Greg, my brother, who has run over 25 marathons
  • Randy, a friend from church, who ran his first marathon last year and is currently training for Boston
  • Keith, my nephew, a former All-Ohio miler and current track & cross country coach
There are usually at least 3 of us, and in the summer months in the past we have had as many as 13 runners in our gang. It's really a nice run with a great group of guys, and something we all look forward to.

Monday, March 19, 2007

Monday 3 Miles

I ran 3 miles today on the Precor C964 treadmill in our company fitness center. Finished in just under 24 minutes. I started at 6.8 MPH (8:49 pace) for the first 1/2 mile, then bumped it up each half mile until I got up to 8.7 MPH (6:54 pace) for the last 1/4 mile before slowing down.

I didn't run at all over the weekend but I thought about it both days, which is a step in the right direction. I just got too busy. This is a bad sign as we are in between basketball and soccer and Saturdays won't get much freer than they are right now.

Weight = 189

Friday, March 16, 2007

Friday 6 Miles (Cold Snow)

I ran at lunch to day with Vicki, Peter, and Milica. We ran along the marginal and then added a little bit down East 9th and around Jacobs Field. Vicki said it was 6.5 but when I mapped it on Gmaps it only came to 6.07 so I am calling it 6.

It was a strange day as the wind was swirling but mostly out of the east. There was a cold snow and the running into the wind with the snow in our faces was absolutely miserable.

Spirits (and the effective temperature) lifted considerably when we turned around and headed back west.

Thursday, March 15, 2007

Thursday 3 Miles

I am starting to get more serious about my training, and we didn't have soccer practice tonight so after the kids were in bed I ran an easy 3 miles on my LifeFitness treadmill.

Our treadmill is in the basement and of course in view of a tv so I was able to watch the end of the VCU - Duke game and the start of the BYU - Xavier. I picked Duke but my son picked VCU and he needed the pick more than me so I didn't mind seeing Duke lose.

Anyhow I ran a fun workout that I've done many times on the treadmill, that is, run easy while the game is on and then run fast during the commercials. There weren't many commercials and I ended up averaging around 8:20 pace for the 3 miles.

It was my 2nd workout of the day and my first run after yesterday's speedwork so I'm happy enough.

Thursday Circuits

Today was circuits class with Chris. I expected my legs to hurt after yesterday's speedwork but they don't. They do feel a little heavy but other than that I feel pretty good. Next week I will have to try to do the full workout.

Continuing around the room explaining the circuits stations:

Biceps Curls with elbows in, palms out. I used 17.5 lb dumbells in each arm.

Side Planks. The picture on the right explains this station. I did about 20 seconds on each arm, alternating.

Dynaband Row. There are 2 bars running around the room, a high bar about 3 1/2 feet high and a low bar about 1 foot high. At this station there is a wide rubber band draped over the low bar. You sit down with your feet against the wall, and pull back on the rubber band in a rowing motion.

Chris came up with a new exercise today to end the class with, Basically, in a push-up position, with your feet as your pivot point, you moved your body 180 degrees, by walking on your arms. Basically if you started with your head to the east, you rotated until your head was in the west. Now do a push-up. Now rotate back the way you came. Now do another push-up.

Chris tried to have us do 15 reps of this but then stopped it because the room was too crowded. I got 4 in before it was cancelled. We then switched back to the old standby of 10 push-ups, 10 dips, counting down to 1 push-up, 1 dip.

Weight = 190 lbs

Wednesday, March 14, 2007

Wednesday Speedwork

There is a group from the fitness center that has been doing speedwork on Wednesdays for a while. Today I joined them for the first time. We did a 3/4 mile warm-up, followed by 1/2 mile repeats with 1/4 mile recovery jog, and then ended with a 1/2 mile cool-down.

Curt was out of town today, Rick is injured, and Kevin D had a meeting. So that left only Matt, Troy, and I. Troy wears a Garmin Forerunner 305 which uses GPS satellites track time, distance, and pace.

On the first repeat, I felt like we were going easy. I was out front but stayed with the group most of the way. On the 2nd repeat I went hard and was a little ways ahead. On the 3rd repeat my arms were feeling tired so I stayed with the group again.

Since this was my first week of speedwork I skipped the 4th repeat. On the 5th repeat I again was just a little out front. On the 6th repeat I was really feeling it and stopped about 2/3 of the way through. I walked for a while and then joined in again when Matt and Troy came around for the 7th and final repeat.

I didn't time my 1/2 miles but according to Troy they were in the 2:45 - 3:00 range.

In all I did 4 full repeats and 2 more half-repeats for a total of 2.5 miles of speed, 1.25 miles of recovery, .75 miles of warm-up and .5 miles of cool-down. Total mileage for the day is 5 miles.

Weight = 186 lbs

Tuesday, March 13, 2007

Tuesday Circuits - With All New Stations

Classes at the fitness center run for 6-8 week sessions. Most classes keep the same format and schedule from session to session, and you don't have to "enroll", but the session gives the staff a week (or half week) to not teach.

The circuits class changes the stations for every new session. Today was the first day of the new session, so we had all new stations. Matt was the instructor (as has become the pattern for Tuesdays).

I started with "wall sits with a weight over your head." Basically sitting against a wall in a squatting position, this stresses your upper legs and abdominal muscles.
Holding the weight (I used a 15-lb dumbell) above your head works your abs even more.

My next station was one-legged squats. Picture a flamingo going down and up on one leg. We are allowed to hold onto the bar while we do this.

I don't remember all the stations, but I'll be doing this class twice a week for the next six weeks so I will try to describe them as time goes by.

Weight = 189 lbs.

Monday, March 12, 2007

Monday 4.5 Miles Solo

I ran about 4 1/2 miles today at lunch. I expected there to be someone to run with from the fitness center but Rick hurt his leg and none of the other regulars were around. Maybe they are ashamed to show their face after Chris beat them at St. Malichi on Saturday.

So I ran a loop I've run many times, out past Cleveland Browns Stadium, behind the Great Lakes Science Center and the Rock & Roll Hall Of Fame, onto a path that runs alongside Burke Lakefront Airport, and then back on the South Marginal past the muni lots and through public square.

No the muni lots don't actually have a webpage, that's a link to a Cleveland Browns fan forum that I found while checking to see if they did.

Weight = 189 lbs.

Friday, March 9, 2007

Friday 3 Miles

I ran an easy 3 miles today (2.895 according to Gmap) with regulars Kevin D, Milica, Rick, Vicki, Pete, and newcomer Dan. The pace was relaxed and we stopped about the 2 mile mark so that Kevin, Milica, Vicki, and Pete could pick up their race packets for the St. Malachi race tomorrow.

The talk of the run was whether or not they all could beat Chris, one of the instructors at our fitness center.

Weight = 186 lbs.

Thursday, March 8, 2007

Thursday Circuits

There was a group going to run outside but it was too cold, plus there was the option of circuits. I did circuits class again today. Taught by Chris. Chris is younger and a little more focused than Matt.

It was a good class but sparsely attended. Only 8 participants including the instructor.

We finished up with a group exercise of 10 push-ups, 10 dips, 9 push-ups, 9 dips, and so on counting down to 1. This is a staple of the class whenever Chris teaches. Today's twist was once we got down to 5 push-ups, we were supposed to do push-ups with a clap in between. I tried but I cannot do this. I think I got 1 clap but then I fell to my elbows, couldn't get my hands back out quick enough.

I'm going to have to work on this.

Lots of people from the fitness center are running the St. Malachi 5-Mile Race this Saturday. Good luck to them.

Weight 185 lbs

Tuesday, March 6, 2007

Tuesday Circuits

I went back to Circuits today. Matt taught again. Here are the stations as best I remember them:
  1. Dips
  2. Bicep Curls (8 top half, 8 bottom half, 8 full)
  3. Squat Kicks
  4. Bent-Over Row
  5. Ladder Agility Drill (like running through tires in football)
  6. Front Raises with Body Bar
  7. Pushups with feet on bar (raised)
  8. Lateral Raises
  9. Calf Raises
  10. Alternate Run In Place / Jumps
  11. Seated Military Press
  12. Incline Bench Press
  13. Side Bends (with weight)
  14. Alternate Squats / Wall Sits
  15. Squat Thrusts (with a pushup and a jump)
  16. Crunches with medicine ball over your head
  17. Stationary Bike
  18. Decline Bench Press
  19. Alternate Leg Lifts / Crunches with legs raised
Now of course each class you may end up starting at a different station, but unless you rotate backwards (like we did today), you will do the stations in this order.

Weight = 187 lbs

Saturday, March 3, 2007

24 Hour Treadmill World Record

Congratulations to the guys from Team Good River for smashing the world record for a team of 12 guys running the most miles (261.75) on a treadmill in 24 hours!

Friday, March 2, 2007

Sore Calves

I took Thursday off but my calves are still very sore from Tuesday's circuits class. I am probably taking Friday off also.