Wednesday, November 02, 2005

Back on the hill

My first hill workout of my last hill phase week was today, and it was a bit tough after yesterday's 22 miler. I mentioned the three different hill exercises before; steep-hill running, hill bounding, and hill springing. Nobby mentioned that for a marathoner I would do well to focus more on the first, raising my knees high and powering off of a straight back leg with each short step. Since this is the last week and I've been at it for awhile, I tried to incorporate some of the bounding and springing motions on two of the four repeats. For this I tried to slow down the "loading" phase (when your knee bends as the weight comes down on landing), then springing up fast and high, focusing on ankle extension and raising my center of gravity with each step. If it sounds hard, you're right. I'm trying to get all the benefit out of this phase though, and after three weeks of heading up the hill my legs, feet, and ankles feel strong enough to change things a bit in this last week.

My warm-up and cool-down to and from the hill felt a little labored after yesterday's effort, and perhaps I still have a little of the race left in my legs, though my abductor seems almost completely healed (which is good).

I got a nice email from Nobby (my guardian angel and Lydiard expert), which emphasized taking good care of myself during this phase. He mentions all the good things runners should do-ice, massage, extra rest and easy supplementary runs (to remove waste products that will build with the upcoming anaerobic training), and a healthy diet. He mentioned eating a banana, which was funny as I just started making a smoothie-type concoction after hard runs consisting of OJ, cranberry/raspberry juice, yogurt, milk, blueberries, a banana and ice and was drinking it as I read the email. Haiden gets a small glass for herself and I drain the rest of the blender. She calls it her "delicious milkshake". Kiera won't touch the stuff, she doesn't like to drink bananas. I started craving this yesterday, and I usually try to listen to what my body is telling me. I'm also eating more eggs and fake sausage after harder runs along with some carbohydrate.

Nobby mentioned that it's rather easy to pay attention when things are going wrong with your running, but that runners seldom pay their training the same mind when things are going well. How often do you hear of an athlete turning in a few stellar performances, only to end up injured soon after? I hear it quite a bit, and I blame the siren song of "feeling good" and pushing a little too much. I've done it myself, running hills the day after I caught either a touch of food poisoning or a stomache virus. "Have the courage to take a day off", he says, if the need arises. "You don't want to be the fittest person (in) the stands." Wise words indeed.

Training: 10 miles, 1:24:46, 8:29 pace, 4 hill circuits with 3 minute efforts, 13 minutes a circuit

2 comments:

Chele said...

Mike,

I just discovered your Blog yesterday and have really enjoyed reading it. I'm a huge Lydiard fan and have tried in the past to incorporate aspects of his training. It's worked for me as I dropped my marathon time to 2:56 - not nerely as fast as you, but a large improvement for me. You've inspired me to rededicate myself to training hard - Lydiard style - for a Spring marathon. Keep up the good work, you're going to crush your marathon. I'll be reading...

Paul said...

Crap, you're fast. I just found your site and will put you on my bloglines. I am also following the Lydiard program. It will be interesting to see how you interpret the requirements - I'm an 800m - Mile runner.