Saturday, July 12, 2014

Plodding My Return

Ready for some hilarious splits?


Avg Pace

Waittaminute waitaminute!

Lucy! Lemme 'splain.

Before I begin, I need to preface this by saying that I have not really run much since the Rainier to Ruston Team Relay the first weekend of June. The rest of the month was spent whining attempting to get myself together and not be sick, but apparently June was to be the month of sick. Very few work outs, lots of sleeping, and rivers of snot. Post nasal drip, anyone?  Delightful. 

The other day, I came across this very interesting blog post about Low Heart Rate Training. I have heard and read a little about heart rate training but have never really been interested in following a plan like this. To be honest, it always seemed pretty dull, while the articles stating I'd get "Faster and Leaner" sounded much more promising. 

I know. I KNOW.

JBang has harped on me for years to wear my heart rate monitor while running, but the bonus gift of boob chafe has really not appealed to me. I mean, between the boob and usual underarm chafe, it's a wonder I don't bathe in Glide. 

Watch out, guys. Hot stuff running down the road.

Anyways, I digress. Amanda from RTTF does a really concise job of breaking down a number of different marathon training plans,with the LHR plan being one of them. While I am no nowhere near ready to train for a full marathon, I do think there is a benefit to this type of training to help improve my overall running fitness and efficiency. 

Right now, it's H-O-T HOT in Seattle, and the last thing I want to do (Or am actually capable of doing) is run fast in this heat.I decided to use the summer as my experimental period to get myself back into running shape, and figured I"d start off with trying this LHR training method. Today was Day 1, and it went pretty well. I was out the door by 7, and it was already 61 degrees but the air was still cool with a slight morning breeze. There were actually many times I was going too fast over my max heart rate, and had to force myself to walk to get it back down.

Mile 4, anyone?

Accordingly to the plan, my max heart rate is 143 (180 base minus my age), and honestly, it was really tough to stay at this rate. The only way I could stay even close to 150 was to run over 11 min/mile, which was pretty surprising to me. Even running down in the 10's had my heart rate going above the max target. The miles went quickly because I spent so much time looking at my Garmin and trying to regulate my heart rate. The first four miles felt pretty easy, and at one point I caught a reflection of myself in a store window, and I could have sworn I was just running in place. 

I had planned on 4 slow LHR miles, but when I hit 4 and I still had a mile left for home, I decided to pick it up and run fast. It was interesting/alarming to see my heart rate, which had previously stayed around 150-160, jump to 185-193 bmp in a matter of seconds.  At the end of the run, I felt pretty happy with myself and the last mile really gave me an endorphin kick. Plus the last .25 was an uphill I usually try and avoid having to run up (again. I KNOW, guys. Hills are speed work in disguise blah blah) and I motored up that beyatch like nobody's business. Felt good. Damn good.

Heart Rate
Avg HR:159 bpm
Max HR:193 bpm

I'm excited to experiment more with this plan and see if it improves my running efficiency and overall fitness level so that I'm ready for fall half marathon training. 

One more note, today was my first day outside in my Brooks Pure Flow2. They're designed with a low drop, so it forces the runner to land mid foot. The first mile my calves were definitely feeling worked, but it felt good to get my legs pumping, and my lungs burning today. 

Today felt.. really nice.  It hasn't felt good in a while and running hasn't made me feel happy in so long.

Today gave me a small glimmer of hope. 

Plodding. Plotting. Get it...? ..!

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