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Training Log Entry 21: October 23 - 29, 2023

Monday October 23


Tuesday October 24

To start off this week, I decided to do a new route that I’d been wanting to try out. The route followings Mine 2 Road, an old logging road that is a mix of pavement and dirt, and has very little traffic.

This run turned out to be very enjoyable. While the road is almost never flat, aside from one long and steep hill, it wasn’t overly hilly. At about 1.5km before the turnaround point, the road changes into a forest road, with a narrower and rockier path. My only complaint about this route is that, in this forest section, a portion of the road is flooded, which forced to to frequently slow-down or walk to avoid the water.

Despite all these things, I felt great throughout the run. My legs didn’t feel particularly amazing at first, but they gradually warmed-up, and by the end, I had a good spring in my stride.

The total volume of the run was 11.7km with 130m of elevation gain.

Wednesday October 25

I didn’t know what I wanted to for this workout, given that I have a hard hill session scheduled for Friday and I didn’t want to overexert myself. What I ended up deciding on was a fartlek of 6x(3’ on, 2’ float).

Unfortunately, this workout ended up being quite frustrating due to issues with my breathing. During the float after my 1st rep, I experienced a minor chest spasm, which luckily subsided quickly. I continued on with the fartlek, however, the same thing happened again at the beginning of the 3rd rep, causing me to stop once again.

Luckily, for the rest of the workout, my breathing was much better. The splits for the fast reps were 4:12/km, 4:16/km, 3:55/km, 4:01/km, 4:08/km and 4:07/km, averaging 4:06/km/ The splits for the floats were 4:40/km, 4:32/km, 4:36/km, 4:42/km, 4:48/km and 4:42/km, averaging 4:40/km. Although my average paces were spot on, I am displeased with the inconsistency of the hard efforts.

Given that the first two reps were much slower than the rest of the workout, I wasn’t the pacing that caused the breathing issues. I suspect that the issues may have stemmed from taking too much time stretching after the warm-up before getting into the hard effort. To prevent this problem in the future, I plan to adjust my warm-up routine a little.

Including the warm-up and cool-down, the total mileage for the day was 13.4km.

Thursday October 26

Both my breathing and legs didn’t feel good going into this run. I didn’t have the energy tackle any hills, so I frequently walked and took breaks throughout the run.

I had to make some detours, so my route ended up being all over the place. Nevertheless, I managed to get 8.1km in for the day.

Friday October 27

For this hill workout, the plan was to do 7 hill loops, matching the most I’ve done in a single session. It had been over a month since the last I’d done a full long hill workout, since the last attempt was cut short, so I was eager to get a lot of volume in. However, given my breathing issues during the previous workout, I wasn’t very confident going into this session.

Overall, this workout went relatively well. From the start, I could tell that my legs weren’t entirely fresh, and my right hip felt particularly tight. I managed to complete the first 3 loops continuously before taking my first break. At that point, I realized that 7 reps was a bit too ambitious, so I adjusted my goal down to 6 reps.

By the 4th rep, my legs were getting heavy. While my aerobic strength was decent, my legs were struggling to keep up. Because of this, for the last two loops, I changed my strategy, and power-hiked some of the very steep sections of the climb. There are two short sections where the grade is about 20%, so I opted to hike at those points. This only amounted to about 30 seconds of hiking within the 5-minute uphill interval, so it didn’t significantly take away from the overall workout and I was able to complete my goal of 6 reps.

Including the warm-up and cool-down, the volume for the day was 13.6km with 340m of elevation gain.

Saturday October 28

My legs, especially my right hip, were quite sore after the hill session. Despite the soreness, I still managed to get through this run fairly well. I gradually loosened up over the course of the run, and the 5x100m strides I did afterwards had some pop to them.

The total distance of the run and strides amounted to 5.8km.

Sunday October 29

My goal for the long run this week was simply to hit my weekly mileage target, so I didn’t concentrate on pace and focused on finishing the week feeling good. I still had some concerns about how my breathing and legs were feeling, so I focused a lot on staying controlled.

I started the run feeling pretty good. I had worked on the hip that had been bothering me before the run, and it was moving much better. After starting conservatively for the first few kilometers, my legs started to feel really good, especially on the uphills.

Once I settled into the pace, the entire long run felt effortless. My stride was compact and smooth, and I made a conscious effort to relax my shoulders, which I believe made a significant difference. My pacing remained consistent throughout the run, and I managed to not push too hard at the end, to maintain an overall moderate intensity level.

After the run, I felt exceptionally good. Although I don’t usually track my heart rate closely, I was surprised to find that my average heart rate was about 20 bpm lower than during a typical long run.

The total distance covered during the run was 17km, bringing the week’s total to 69.5km with 730m of elevation gain.

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