Miles this week: 33
2015 YTD: 1044
Running-wise / health-wise, I feel like I’m finally back in action.
Guess what else is back – my appetite. Holy moly, I packed on quite a few lbs. this week. Beer will do that. And donuts. And more beer.
33 miles isn’t a huge number for me, by any stretch, but after the ankle issue post-GR Marathon, struggling through a chest cold and crawling out of ‘The Hole‘ I’m finally content with my running this week.
*sigh of relief*
Monday’s run was awesome. I wasn’t expecting clear skies, but the stars were out (sweet!) Not only was I treated to a beautiful sky full of stars, but I saw another meteor (double sweet!). Seeing the stars is one of my favorite things about the early morning running. Unfortunately we’re getting into the time of year, here in Michigan, where it clouds over until April. Better enjoy them while I can!
Friday was supposed to be my first of the weekend double. The weekend double is the biggest difference between training for a marathon and an ultramarathon. When I was marathon training, I loved sleeping late on Sunday. With ultramarathon training I don’t get that anymore – it’s back to back long runs. That is, unless you move the weekend double to mid-week and go to work as a zombie. This is the approach that I like to take, at least some weeks, so I can still sleep late on Sunday. (By late I mean 6:45am today – kind disgusting really …)
Anyway, back to Friday – I was supposed run 12. I’d done some reading recently about HR training and I thought I’d give it a go. Seriously – how slow would it possibly be to run at 146 BPM?
I made a couple of laps around the blocks near here (they’re big – I live in the country) but then I had to bail due to Taco Bell from the previous day’s lunch. Fire sauce doesn’t mix well with ultra running. If you’re curious, that was a 10:25 pace for 8 miles @ 146BPM.
Saturday was scheduled for 14 miles so I took the opportunity to run around Gull Lake. I haven’t done that in awhile so that sounded nice. I took the opportunity to run without a headlamp again for part of the run. It’s very calming and relaxing. Again I went for the HR training and ran at 146BPM. When I say ‘ran,’ that’s somewhat deceiving. There were definitely sections where I had to walk to keep the HR low, but this is a somewhat hilly course. I also noticed the longer I went, the more easily my HR elevated. That got me to thinking why … I don’t have an answer yet, but it’s something I’m going to look into. I finished the run at 10:48 pace. Slower than the first run.
Venus as seen while running w/o Headlamp
Today was the third HR training run. I target 146BPM again and again I was even slower. For 6 miles I clocked a blazing 12:05 pace. WTF is going on here!? Was it the beer I drank last night? The coffee I drank this morning? I don’t know.
What I do know – HR training isn’t for the ego.
I plan to stick with the HR training for at least the next couple of months. I’ll write a post when I’m finished and let y’all know how it went and what I learned. Based on what I’ve seen so far I’m definitely curious about what’s causing the HR to elevate higher than it seems like it should be. I’m also curious to see if my pace eventually starts to drop. That’s what’s supposed to happen.
Aside from the running this week …
I had a wonderful visit with some family I haven’t seen in awhile. While in Columbus I enjoyed some Skyline Chili – my absolute favorite. Damn that stuff is good. I’m getting hungry just thinking about it.
My wife texted me Friday afternoon about a last minute babysitter. Someone was back from college and in need of beer money. I jumped all over that and we enjoyed a very good dinner at Four Roses. If you’re in the Kalamazoo area, check it out. Very good food! I recommend the maple mustard ribs. They also have an awesome beer selection.
Speaking of awesome beer selection, we hit Bell’s Brewery after family photos yesterday afternoon. For anyone who loves IPAs, they have a double Two Hearted Ale on tap at the restaurant. It was fabulous! Their food is amazing too. I recommend their smoked wings and poutine (duck poutine!).
Today we took the girls out for a hike before lunch. Southwest Michigan Land Conservancy does a tike hike once a month in their local preserves. Bow in the Clouds has a creek so my kids were definitely in. That means they have something to splash in and throw rocks in. Score!
Bow in the Clouds Preserve – Kalamazoo Michigan
That about wraps it up – how was your week? Did you enjoy the miles? See anything cool or drink any good beer?