Friday, November 02, 2007

Colouring by numbers

I have been trying to spare you all the monotony of detailed daily posts and sticking mostly to weekly updates. But it is hard to resist as the marathon approaches and my body begins to cooperate ... and when I have a run like this morning's.

I happily took a big fat zero yesterday (yaaay .... rounds of applause), though did have a steady 30 min swim and a short sauna (booos....jeeers).

But generally all felt pretty well and I finally felt confident that I could get up early and launch into a 1600 m interval session. I nearly blew it by staying up a bit later than I should have and was in a deep slumber when the alarm went off at 5:10.

Took an easy warmup to Komazawa Park and to the "Start" line. Had a 5 min break, went to the loo, washed my face, had a drink of water, picked my ear wax and ate it ... (Australian political reference!)

Part way into the first 1600 I thought, why 1600? We are trying to build lactic tolerance here, why not push on to 2000? Well, let's see how the heart rate goes and legs are feeling ... so I went through 1600 in 6 min flat and kept running up the damn hill (it is a fairly gentle hill, but it is still a hill) to reach the 2k mark at 7:28 (3:44/k). Heart rate averaged 150 and topped out at 160. But I was breathing pretty hard. I'd have thought I'd see a higher peak heart rate over that distance at that speed and up the hill, even if it was morning.

Took a 3:45 break by which time HR was down to 80.

Next rep (I was pretty much committed to 2k reps now) I went through 1600 in 5:57 and the 2k in 7:25 (3:43/k). HR averaged 151 and hit 161.

Reduced the break to 3:00 with final HR = 83

By 400 into the next rep the legs were feeling heavy and I thought that I was rolling along more slowly, certainly not forcing it like I was in the first rep. However I went through 1600 in 5:54 and the 2k came up in 7:23 (3:42/k). That one felt hard towards the end but still my heart rate was at a silly 151/163 (at least the max was slowly climbing).

I considered calling it at that point, but opted instead to take a 4:00 break, at the end of which HR = 100

The last rep certainly was definitely hard work, and when I went through 1600 in 5:59 I knew that I was well and truly done. Still, despite pushing really hard over the last couple of hundred meters (uphill), my HR still only maxed out at 163 - rep time = 7:27 (3:44/k).

I felt like I was doing it all hard enough, including breathing, to be up near HR max, at least around 170. If I hadn't had a monitor on it would have just felt like any normal interval workout. I suppose the morning start has something to do with it, but actually the HR numbers were not that different to my 1600s at the Palace last week. I hope it's not, and don't think it is, over-training fatigue. I guess I just have to get used to the idea that, as Pete said in his comment to my last post, I am pretty fit at the moment. But robert song, 2:48? Come on, that is just fantasy land. But I have to say I'll be disappointed if I can't break 3 hours this time around, and I accept that all the signs point to a sub 2:55 if the planets come into alignment...still, that is getting ahead of ourselves. Next up, some distance at around race pace on Sunday. Easy day tomorrow.


Anonymous said...

great workout.
Looks like your aerobic system can't be surprised by such speed any more ;-) Good sign, really. You are not over trained. Opposite is the case: you are in great shape for Ohtawara.

Enjoy the last long run lying ahead ;-)


Scott said...

Great Steve

You'd have to be running closer to 7 mins per 2kms to get your heart rate up towards anything near max at the moment. I envy your position.

Still just in case check that the batteries are good with that monitor of yours and have your ear wax analysed it may have some magic qualities!

Ewen said...

Sub-2:50 is possible, but it would take some sort of a commitment to that pacing from the start (84 - 84:30 first half). If you're running at that pace and the HR is 'low', why not? The boost from the taper and recent speedwork should make 4 minute ks very comfortable.

Robert Song said...

I wouldn't be so quick in dismissing the sub 2:50. Remember the results you are getting in training are on the back of 500k months. A good taper will make the world of difference.

MilesandMiles said...

I would have to agree with the comments above... With numbers like that a 2:50 pace (Make that 2:49:59) makes perfect sense to me... you have built up enough strengh that you could still end up with a sub 2:55 if you begin to loose steam in the last 7k... I am sure you will discuss this in details in the next few weeks- Arnaud

2P said...

Cracking pace for 2k reps Steve - nice work mate.