Monday, April 14, 2014

Week in review. April 6-13.

Hmmm...Well it looks like this past week was even more ordinary than the last one I wrote about.

Last week I had 6 workouts planned for 7 hours and 15 minutes.  I completed 5 for just over 5 hours and missed my long run thanks to rain. Obviously, the weather contributed to the less than spectacular training numbers, but that's not much of an excuse.

I got an invite to go running with a friend here in Santa Cruz on Saturday, but when Saturday arrived so did a nasty mix of cool rain and drizzle.  It went on throughout the morning and into the afternoon and we decided that there would be better days (like maybe today) to get out and explore some trail and bagged the run.

Otherwise, all of my workouts were on the order of an hour, easy; with one really good stride session and a faster run on Sunday (weather aided/inspired).

To better describe the stride workout, I run for 20 seconds at about 400 meter race pace, then take 2 minutes of easy jogging to recover, and I repeat the cycle 8 times.  My goal during the 20 second work interval is to have at least 30 left foot strikes - and the goal of the weekly workouts is to turn me from a plodding runner to a prancing one (though it's hard to imagine a 6'1", 200lb Prancer).

Anyway, it'll be interesting to see if I start getting better turnover rates on my daily runs.  I do enjoy the interval sessions, they really help break up the monotony of KM 14, 7 mile loop.

That's about it, given the spectacular weather, I'm going to take today's unspecified "rest day" and get out for 90 minutes or so...

Thanks for reading.

Monday, April 7, 2014

An actual race calendar.

For the first time since moving to Bolivia, I have a calendar of races for which to train.  They're all in Bolivia, but just this morning I discovered the possibility of a 100K in Argentina.  That'd be a backup if the Ultra Trail Tiwanaku turns out to be a mixed Bike/Run event.

For now, I've had 2 very solid weeks of training, nothing terribly long or hard, but no missed workouts. Yesterday featured the Bella Vista road for an hour and fifteen minutes, and this past Friday I found myself way out...somewhere near the end of the road behind my house, somewhere I've never been before.
Cattle Ranch
Near the end of the road
The thing about Friday's run (and something which hasn't been a problem this summer because of the ridiculous rains) was the strength of the sun.  Holy cow did I get dehydrated.  I described it to Nataly's cousin:  pee the color of a rotten orange.

Anyway, my other runs were essentially nondescript: the usual roads, easy miles, one "stride" workout and 1 short run in Vibrams, in total seven hours and fifteen minutes of time dedicated to exercise last week after five very easy hours the week before.

On to the race calendar.  Last September I ran my first race in Bolivia, a 10k which I essentially did as a hard training run (I had all of 2 weeks notice, and really hadn't done any specific prep).  I did nab a PR, but the real benefit was meeting another expat runner who was connected to the race scene.  Via Facebook, she alerted me to a calendar of races in Santa Cruz for 2014.  All 10k or less, but at least it was something.

Then about 4 weeks ago, out leaked info in regard to an actual marathon in Santa Cruz.  Unfortunately, the race organizers decided to provide 2 weeks lead for competitors to get ready, and I didn't participate:  why run a road marathon, out of shape?  I could have finished, but... I gripped on the FB and one of my friends a couple of days later provided me with a link to the "Bolivia Adventure Series".
Oh Happy Day!  

A series of 5 races potentially concluding with an 80k Ultra outside of La Paz in November.  Since then I've been tweeking a training schedule and calendar and I've got it pretty dialed.

Here they are.  A, B, and C indicate whether I am using them as training races, or if there's any focus/special prep for the race.
  • Circuit of the Stations, 8k: C priority, will be using this as a LTHR test.  May 18.
  • Laguna Volcan 18k: C priority, part of the Bolivia Adventure Series.  June 8.
  • Sky Race 28k: C priority, part of the Bolivia Adventure Series.  This race climbs the "Bolivia Death Road".  August 10.
  • Ninos de la Calle 10k.  This is the race I PR'd in last year, and I'll come back to it this year, C-B priority.  If I'm feeling strong, I'll probably ease off the volume for the week and give it a good crack.  September 7.
  • Conociendo a la PACHA MAMA 100k:  This is where things get a bit fuzzy.  This race is the race in Argentina.  If I do this race, it's because the Ultra Trail Tiwanaku is a part bike/part run event and I couldn't convince the race organizers to let me run the whole thing solo.  It would be the end of my racing season. A priority (or not at all).  October 13.
  • Salar 42k.  Part of the Bolivia Adventure Series. B priority (or not at all) October 19.
  • Ultra Trail Tiwanaku 80k.  80 kilometers running around La Paz? Yes please.  November 23.  A priority.  
  • Cotoca 21k December, date unknown.  A or C priority depending on UTT.
There you have it.  I've got training weeks scheduled out to the end of November, the longest individual week will have me at eleven and a half hours.  That should equate to a distance somewhere in the neighborhood of 135 kilometers, which should get me to the finish line of the Pacha Mama.  Last year's winning time was 13 hours there, so it's not an easy race, but the field wasn't exactly from Boulder either.

Anyway, thanks for reading, and check back for weekly training updates as my season progresses (so cool to be able to say that)...
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