December 29, 2007

Holiday Week

Bredesen Park

Been an up and down week as far as training goes:

Mon: Maiden voyage on snowshoes for an hour.
Tues: easy 6 mile X-Mas run.
Weds: nada
Thurs: planned day off
Fri: strength training, then 1 easy + 2 tempo + 1 easy
Sat: snowshoeing at Bredesen again

Discovered that the battery to my heart rate monitor transmitter died, which is a bummer since I was curious what my heart rate would be on snowshoes jogging vs walking. I still find jogging on snowshoes to be very inefficient - I feel like I'm actually faster walking. Oh well...

I am in the transition between early and late off season, which means:

-strength training is progressing to slightly heavier weights/ fewer reps.
-still incorporating single leg exercises to improve static and dynamic balance since we are only in contact with 1 foot on the ground at any time while running.
-adding tempo runs 1 day/week while continuing to increase long runs at an easy pace.

At this point, my first race of 2008 is shaping up to be Trail Mix 25K, but that may change depending on what we figure out for the MN Trail Running Series!

December 25, 2007

December 24, 2007

Snowshoeing Finally!

Had only 1 client this morning, then free at last! Got in a quick weight lifting session since I was at the gym anyway, then decided to try out the new shoes. Perfect weather for snowshoeing: 10 degrees, no wind, about 4 inches of fresh powder snow, sunshine....went back to Bredesen Park for my first ever snowshoe venture.

The first task was just getting them on - getting straps cinched and tucked out of the way with gloves on (then gloves off). After that it was pretty easy. Walking anyway. Jogging felt very awkward and less efficient than just walking....I think I was slower trying to run! It will take a little practice, but it was fun.

Anyway, it was a perfect winter morning to be outside playing in the the white fluffy stuff - I ended up sharing the park with a few cross country skiers. I even saw a wild turkey (never saw one here in winter before).

December 22, 2007

Let It Snow

Nine Mile Creek - Bredesen Park

Still haven't tried out the new snowshoes, but I did get a little hike in this morning at Bredesen Park. I'd originally planned on getting up early to run with Carl at Lake Harriet, but never set my alarm clock and woke up at 8:30! Peering out my window, everything had a fresh blanket of heavy wet snow, but the ground looked a little slushy.

I decided to lace up my Gortex trail shoes and try a run at Bredesen, which is just a block away from home.

Access trail to Bredesen Park follows Nine Mile Creek through a tunnel under Gleason Ave.

The main trail gets plowed regularly and turned out to be pretty icy, so I headed for the interior trails which are left alone. There were some fresh ski tracks and a few inches of snow - too deep to really run very well. I think this would have been a good test for the snowshoes! Anyway, my run turned into a hike, but it was still fun and very pretty. I can't get used to seeing snow covered cattails.

Earlier this week:
Tues: easy 3
Weds: planned off day
Thurs: 1 easy + 2 tempo + 1 easy
Fri: strength training
Sat: snowy hike

December 18, 2007

Bad Air

It's been a little tough the last few days - been fighting off a bug. I'd planned on a 7 mile run Saturday, but felt pretty whipped after only 5 (usually easy) 10 minute miles so I bagged it early. Sure enough, had a splitting headache on Sunday and sore throat on Monday. After taking those 2 days off for a pity party, I did an easy 3 miles on the treadmill today. Then turned on the noon time news to learn that most of Minnesota is under a poor air quality alert until Friday.

December 14, 2007

Busy Week

It's been a very busy week! Not so hot for training, but I did get some "other stuff" done:

Sunday: 7 mile easy run and a mega shopping spree at Penzeys. If you like spices, this is the place for you! Definately sensory overload, but lots of fun - and I found a few new recipes to try :)
Monday: Finished X-Mas shopping, got all the gifts wrapped & mailed. It took All. Flippin'. Day.
Tuesday: Strength training.
Wednesday: Easy 3 miles on the treadmill. I would have gone longer, but new flooring was being installed at our condo complex and I got kicked out of the exercise room.
Thursday: B-Day celebration.

Tried a new roasted sweet potato recipe:

Cut up a sweet potato into bite size chunks.
Mix a pat of butter, some olive oil, garlic powder, Lawry's seasoning salt, black pepper, and Chesapeake Bay seasoning (from Penzeys of course). I don't like to measure - I wing it.
Stir the sweet potato chunks into the seasoning so that they're coated evenly.
Bake in a 375 degree oven for 25 minutes.

Served with a New York strip steak and a blend of asparagus, pasta, cauliflower, broccoli, carrots, shrimp, and balsamic vinaigrette. Washed it down with Summit Extra Pale Ale.

I normally don't like sweet potatoes, but this was pretty good! I'm having more tonight with salmon.

I also picked up my new snowshoes from REI this week, but haven't had a chance to try them out yet. Snowshoeing sounds more interesting than running on the treadmill right now...perhaps I'll give it a go on Sunday.

Gotta go lift weights and get a run in.......

December 11, 2007

December 8, 2007

Nose Hair Awareness

Yep, it's been chilly around here lately. How chilly? Well, you know those mornings when you can hear the snow crunching under your feet and become acutely aware of your nose hair freezing as soon as you step outside? That kind of weather. On the upside, the ticks and mosquitos haven't been bad ;) Not that it matters much when you're a weather wimp and run on the dreadmill.

I didn't accomplish as much as I'd hoped to this week, but it wasn't a complete wash out either:

Mon: strength training + bike (intervals) for 30 min
Tues: treadmill run 3.0 miles
Weds: nada
Thurs: nada
Fri: very short strength circuit + 4.0 treadmill run
Sat: barefoot kettlebell circuit

Planned for Sun: 7 mile run
Hoping that STS-122 space shuttle Atlantis launches if they can get the bugs fixed.

Also did some X-Mas shopping this week - mostly online. In case you didn't already know, REI is offering $20 off purchases over $100 until 12/24. Coupon code = HOLIDAY7

December 2, 2007

Weather Wimp

I must confess - I've been a weather wimp this week. Not just yesterday when we got lots of snow and freezing rain, but the whole flippin' week. All of my runs were done on the treadmill, which I find incredibly boring, especially at this time of year when I'm just doing easy stuff (10 min/mile at 1% incline). Yesterday's 6 mile run seemed to take an eternity. I kept trying to visualize my favorite trails while I was running: the roots and rocks of Superior, the rolling prairies at Hyland, the vista from the top of the campground trail at Afton. I've got a couple more weeks of that until things get more interesting: hill repeats, tempo runs, etc. Part of the reason for the TM is that I've been doing some of the runs after strength training and it's easier to just jump on and go rather than go home, gear up, and go out again. Getting dark at 4:30 ish doesn't help either.

I will be more inclined to get outside again when I get the new snowshoes I ordered from REI in a couple weeks (Redfeather Pace on sale at REI Outlet with an additional 20% off coupon - cost less than $90). I've never even tried snowshoeing, but I think it will help my running, will be more fun that the treadmill, and it will get me outside ;)

Today is an off day, which I spent working on flexibility (I am about as flexible as a redwood). Self myofascial release using a biofoam roll followed by some active stretches. Especially tight areas today were soleus, medial gastroc, and lats. IT Band and quads are usually zingers, but not too bad today.

Self myofascial release of IT Band using biofoam roller.

Time to watch some football and snack on Adam's awesome barley shrimp salad :)