Hellooooo.....it's snowing in Portland! Isn't is supposed to be spring? All the pretty blooms on the trees are flying away as the snow and freezing rain hits them like bricks. This means the gorge is for sure getting covered again instead of melting like it's supposed to making it tough for us to do hill repeats on our usual routes. I guess this could be a good thing, forcing us to be creative and establish some new territory but I would like to get on some familiar training routes.
Spring break is almost over and Alex is hoping for snow days. :) Bill and I headed to sin city for 3 lovely days of eating, drinking, gambling, staying up way to late and taking in the Elton John Red Piano show. It was a blast to hang out in 80+ degrees and do nothing but have fun. Of course what happens in Vegas stays in Vegas but we found we are much to old to get very crazy. We had to come home to detox! Although we were in full, "do whatever we wanted" mode we did make it to the gym one day. We ran and lifted weights but the other days we did nothing but walk a hundred miles. :) We left last Saturday night right after my long run in the gorge where we rocked the trails cutting about 20 minutes off our previous time on the same route. I think the gang is getting their trail legs back and it felt great. So I had no quilt going to Vegas and completely slacking.
This week I had to do a track workout consisting of 2X1000 and 1X1200 meters so I could get avg. heart rate for every 200 meters. There is a reason for this! Scott is going to have me try something new which will simulate the track sessions but on an incline. I think this will be extremely challenging. Since the track sessions are at max or over threshold I will need to simulate that same work load on an incline. Since I won't have any markers like the track we will use heart rate to drive the workout. So........I need to find a hill that is super steep, a knee knocker and run up it like I would run on the track. The total interval time will be somewhere around 5 minutes and definitely not more. At each time interval, like 45 seconds my heart rate needs to match what I did on the track. As I was doing this I was thinking, "Oh my this will be challenging". It's definitely a strength workout for both the muscle and the cardio systems. Driving uphill at near max will most likely feel like I am pulling a truck. But......if I can do this I think I will achieve a new perspective of hills. In addition, it will most likely move my perspective of a hill repeat workout. Here were my numbers. As you would expect my avg. heart rate climbed getting higher after each repeat. The 4:04, 4:00, and the 4:44 were my total times for 1000, 1000 and 1200 meters. Those number are 2 VDOTs higher than what I should have been doing.
Thursday was a tempo workout but no threshold just M-Pace running. My M-Pace is 7:48 and so is Stacey's. We met for the run which was nice because the weather was so crummy and cold I am sure I would have doing mental battles to get my butt out the door. Since Stacey was coming I had no excuses and when we got ready for the tempo portion which was supposed to be 6-7 miles worth we both said, "It's 7". I tailed Stacey most of the time as I watched her surge and slow for 7 miles.....I think she needs a higher VDOT, ha, ha, ha. I felt my Wednesday night leg workout with Mark but was able to get my numbers and better. I kept reminding myself of the lesson I supposedly learned during my OC training.......FASTER IS NOT BETTER! Here are my results. I was happy to get these paces but also disappointed that I couldn't control my workload for this run or my track run. This is so difficult for me. The track workout was way to fast but my tempo was only moderately over pace.
This weekend is my first official back to back that includes hill repeats. Tomorrow is 2X30-35 minutes at AT on an incline and the total run will be 2.5 hours. Sunday is 5 hours in the gorge....Yeah! We are going to try to stay on some of the lower trails to avoid a ton of snow travel....we may be doing some out and backs by the looks of things. I hope everyone is having a great spring break and rocks this weekend!