Training Log: May 5th 2016


Since yesterday was May the Fourth Be With You, I’m guessing that today is technically The Revenge of the Fifth…right?  An auspicious day to begin this endeavor.

 

Schedule:

  1. STRENGTH – I need to get my butt to the gym this evening and first hit the weights.  I’ll spend about 30 minutes lifting, focusing on my upper body strength.  I want to try to burn out my chest and arms through rapid fire sets.  I’m not going to take much time in between sets at all to catch my breath.  This is going to suck.
  2. RUN – I’ll hop right on to a dredmill after lifting, and I’ll do some interval training this evening.  One minute on and one minute off.  Going to shoot for 30 minutes and going to gun for about 3 miles.  The goal here is to fatigue my legs and upper body before hopping on the bike and pushing the pace a bit.  I want to make myself tired before being required to step things up a bit.
  3. BIKE – 6:30pm Spin Class.  the goal here is to clip off at least 20 miles in an hour.  IRONMAN requires a 112 mile bike ride that athletes normally have about 8 hours to complete.  This means that athletes need to hold a 14mph average for the duration of the ride, and that’s after a 2.4 swim has sucked a bunch of energy out of them.  Hopefully, lifting before the class will burn my arms out a bit and the intervals will sap some energy from my legs.  Then we’ll see how I do on the bike.
  4. RUN – I’ll hop off the bike and I’ll do a simple “BRICK” workout, which means that I’ll transition as quickly I can to running by hopping back on the dreadmill for a messy 2 miles before calling it a night.

 

All in all, tonight’s workout should take me about 2 hours and 10-15 minutes to complete.  My running times should truly suck.  And I should basically feel like mush when I’m through.

Results:

  1. STRENGTH – Burned my arms out.  Big time.  Mission accomplished.  At one point, this dude next to me decides to do something tacky and flex while admiring himself in the mirror. He was working out solo, as was I….so I had no idea who he was speaking to when he began his imitation of pro wrestler Ric “Nature Boy” Flair.  He just decides to yell out (to no one in particular) “WOOOOOOO!!!!!   I’M STYLIN’ and PROFILIN’ !!!!!” I found this amusing.  I think I’ll WOOOOO from time to time, just for S’s and G’s.      woooo
  2. RUN – I hopped on to a dreadmill in the weight room and completed 30 minutes of intervals.  1 minute slow followed by 1 minute sprint.  My 1 minute sprints started at a 10 min pace and I finished up at my Boston Qualifying pace (7:13).  Almost heaved all over my Asics during the last minute.  Decided not to WOOOOO, because a WOOOO may have gotten messy.
  1. BIKE – 6:30pm spin class is awesome.  I felt burnt out from the work thus far, but the music and the instructor can be a rush just when you need it.  Oh I WOOOO’d.  I even got others to WOOOOO along with me.
  2. RUN – I was a sweaty disgusting mess from the class, but I hopped back onto a dreadmill for two slow miles.  My legs felt like crap and my shoulders were a little sore from the weights.  So I now have a little taste of what the beginning marathon miles of the IRONMAN will feel like.  On the THIS SUCKS Scale of 1-10, this was an 8.776 (the French judge decided to use decimals).

 

Totals to Date:

Swim –  ___ yds

Bike – 21 miles

Run – 5 miles

Strength Training – 30 minutes

Cross Training (Classes) – ___ hours

Yoga (yes- yoga.  That’s not a damn typo) – ___ hours

 

 

 

 

 

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Sub 7.


Thus far, I’ve shared with you two of my goals for 2013:
1) log a minimum of 2,013 miles during the year, and
2) drop my weight to 185 pounds in order to improve my running performance.

My third goal for 2013 is one that will take a lot of work to accomplish, but only a single mile to fulfill. I will run the 2013 Fifth Avenue Mile in 6 minutes and forty five seconds or less.

That pace – 6:45 – is one that I have never hit before in my life. Ever. But this is the year that I will make it happen. The way I look at it, if I focus on my first two goals for the coming year, this third goal is very attainable.

For one day, I want to release my inner Kenyan.

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If you’d like some information on The Dream Team Project or would like to make a donation to their amazing cause, please stop by the website: www.wdwradio.com/the-dream-team-project I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again: I really believe in what The Dream Team Project stands for. It raises money for the Make-a-Wish Foundation, helping to grant the wishes of children suffering from life-threatening illnesses. Being s former wish-granter for the NYC Chapter of the Make-a-Wish Foundation, I can tell you first-hand just how much of an impact this organization makes in the lives of children. Please consider donating to this worthy cause. Thanks!

…and if you’d like a bit more information on the WDW Radio Running Team, please check out the Facebook page at: http://www.facebook.com/#!/pages/WDW-Radio-Running-Team/163606410344409

So Now What? I Might Be One Marathon Short….


Marathon Sunday came and went here in New York City, and New Yorkers were really focused more on recovery efforts than anything else.  Runners from all over the globe that were visiting The Big Apple to participate in one of the world’s largest running events decided to help with the relief efforts by bringing needed clothing and goods to Staten Island.  Other runners spent the sunny Sunday in Central Park, hovering around a finish line that felt so close…yet so far away.

 

I realized that, based on my marathon schedule, that the cancellation of this race would leave me one marathon short of my goal for 2012.  11 marathons in 2012 is NOT 12.  I’m no rocket scientist…but that’s math that even a dimwit like me can handle.  So I made a conscious decision to run a solo marathon the following Sunday, November 11th.  That would allow me to finish my 2012 marathon of marathons in Philadelphia the following Sunday, November 18th.  It was a makeshift, aggressive plan – but it would have to do.    

 

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If you’d like some information on The Dream Team Project or would like to make a donation to their amazing cause, please stop by the website:  www.wdwradio.com/the-dream-team-project  I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again: I really believe in what The Dream Team Project stands for.  It raises money for the Make-a-Wish Foundation, helping to grant the wishes of children suffering from life-threatening illnesses.  Being s former wish-granter for the NYC Chapter of the Make-a-Wish Foundation, I can tell you first-hand just how much of an impact this organization makes in the lives of children.  Please consider donating to this worthy cause.  Thanks!

 

…and if you’d like a bit more information on the WDW Radio Running Team, please check out the Facebook page at: http://www.facebook.com/#!/pages/WDW-Radio-Running-Team/163606410344409

 

Marathon #10: The 2012 Chicago Marathon


One week after running the Tower of Terror 10 miler in Florida, I found myself in the lively city of Chicago, preparing for the Chicago Marathon.

 

Chicago is a city that I have come to truly appreciate and enjoy. I arrived at O’Scare Airport on Friday morning and immediately checked in to the Peninsula Hotel. This place is AMAZING. My room was something out of a James Bond movie – the entire room was controlled by a single control panel on my night table. Once I dumped my bag in the room, I set out to the Expo. As I left the hotel, one of the housekeeping staff wished me a good day…and my response was “Kolinsky. Joe Kolinsky”. Oh yeah – I was, in the words of that famous philosopher Austin D. Powers, feeling “completely shagadelic”.

The Expo was incredibly well organized. Buses took runners and their families from different location around the city to the Convention Center, where volunteers used Ipads to check the runners in and issue them their bibs. I had my bib number and all other essentials within moments, leaving me free to wander the vendor booths and check out all of the upcoming marathons being advertised, the various new forms of energy bars and electrolyte drinks, and other various running “stuff”. As an impulse buy, I picked up a pair of Newtons (for those of you wondering – “Fig Newtons? A lost group of refugees from the town of Newton? Sir Isaac Newton’s long lost great great great grandson?”….Google is your friend…) because I know that I am a heavy heel-striker. The more I run, the more I think that I must look like a cross between Alfred E Newman and Lerch from the old Addams Family TV show when I waddle through 26.2. So a pair of Newtons may just assist me with adjusting my stride to that of a normal human being. I made my way through the Expo in about an hour, and then headed to a local Chicago Deep Dish Pizza joint for a lesson in how to carbo-load, Midwest style. I arrived back at the Peninsula a rather stuffed yet happy camper.

 

Marathon morning arrived with a slight chill in the air, cloudy skies and a decent wind. I walked from the hotel along Michigan Avenue to the runner’s village maintained in Millennium Park. The level of organization for this race continued to impress me, as the village was separated into two distinct areas: one section for the runners participating in the first wave, and another section for those of us running in the second wave. In between waves, there was a thirty minute window of time to allow the race to progress smoothly from the start. Before I knew it, the first wave took off and we were being beckoned to our corrals.

 

The course is extremely flat and fast – and that was a welcome change from the various races I’ve run earlier in the year. I have a rather deep, seething hatred for any incline included within any race I run. Chicago’s course, therefore, gave me the warm and fuzzies.

 

I felt fantastic at the start, as I normally do. I controlled my pace and did not allow the runners around me to dictate my splits. Usually I succumb to peer pressure and feel this uncontrollable need to keep up with complete strangers that are running a much quicker pace that I normally do. Even though I’ve been passed by exactly 1,227,567,123 runners thus far in my running career, the general concept of actually being passed by anyone gets my knickers in a twist. So it is extremely difficult to stay under control…especially at the beginning of the race, when I feel like a world-beater. Somehow, I was able to block out what was going on around me and focus on my own race. As a Team For Kids mentor, I try to remind runners that are training for their first marathon to “run your own pace – not someone else’s”. Up to this point – that rule was a solid example of do as I say…not as I do. I was shocked that, on this morning, I heeded my own advice.

 

Nine miles into the race, I felt very positive and under complete control. I continued to clip off miles at a slow and steady pace, hitting the half marathon point in approximately two hours and eighteen minutes. This is the exact point in the race where my head normally begins to lose its focus for a bit – between the half-way point and the mile 17 marker. Unfortunately for me, this morning was no different. I lose track of my breathing. I become distracted with Marathon Math (when a marathoner begins constantly checking his/her watch as they begin to tire, trying to calculate on the fly the “acceptable” splits that they think they’ll be able to maintain through the finish). I also lose the ability to block out some of the negativity begin sprouted by The Tool (and if you haven’t been properly introduced to that tiny 4cm bastard, check out one of my older blog posts for a brief description: ___). Once I lose focus, I find it incredibly difficult to regain that world-beater feeling. I slow down….and then I begin to take a walk break or two. This is exactly what happened during the second half of this race.

 

The support on the course was wonderful. The volunteers were everywhere. There was an air of positivity within the entire city that the runners seem to feed off. The temperature was basically perfect once the race got underway and I began to exercise. There was no pounding sun to contend with. No external reasons for my poor performance. It simply boiled down to the fact that I lost my focus and could not regain it. This is going to be a major hurdle to clear before I can drastically improve my performance.

 

It felt fantastic finishing the 2012 Chicago Marathon. The finish line of any marathon is a special place for a runner – but Chicago is one of the Marathon Majors (Boston, New York, Berlin and London are the other four that make up this sport’s – for lack of a better term – Grand Slam), and over the years there have been some incredible finishes. So being able to cross the same finish line as some of the greatest runners in the world is a privilege that I’ve never lost sight of. However, one thing I keep thinking of is a quote from Steve Prefontaine: “Do give anything less than your best is to sacrifice the gift”. Each time I’ve crossed the finish line I’ve felt like I tried hard…but I have yet to put it all together and run my perfect race. For me, the perfect race is one where I start off completely under control, maintain the exact same pace per mile for 25 miles, and then drop the hammer for the last 1.2 miles, picking up my pace and crossing the finish line almost unable to catch my breath. The perfect race is out there, and at some point I’ll capture it. But until then, all I can do is just keep trying.

 

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If you’d like some information on The Dream Team Project or would like to make a donation to their amazing cause, please stop by the website: www.wdwradio.com/the-dream-team-project I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again: I really believe in what The Dream Team Project stands for. It raises money for the Make-a-Wish Foundation, helping to grant the wishes of children suffering from life-threatening illnesses. Being s former wish-granter for the NYC Chapter of the Make-a-Wish Foundation, I can tell you first-hand just how much of an impact this organization makes in the lives of children. Please consider donating to this worthy cause. Thanks!

 

…and if you’d like a bit more information on the WDW Radio Running Team, please check out the Facebook page at: http://www.facebook.com/#!/pages/WDW-Radio-Running-Team/163606410344409

Turtle 2.0


After taking two straight days off from running in preparation for this weekend, I was up and out of the apartment early this morning to join my team for its weekly long run.  I know I have 26.2 coming up tomorrow morning – but I also realize that it’s early in the marathon preparation season, and beginner who never ran more than 5-6 miles in their lives might get a little discouraged as the mileage increases.  So I don’t want to miss the weekly long runs, because I just want to do my part to help these nuggets complete the goal in November.

 

I remember how I felt in 2007.  It was the first time I ever ran with a team, and I was even slower than I currently am (which is extremely difficult to believe, yet true nonetheless).  When I began running with the group, I realized that almost all of them were faster than me.  They could run longer and harder.  When they stretched, they could actually touch their toes, while I simply had to wave hello to mine from an embarrassing distance.  I felt discouraged.  I didn’t feel ready.  I didn’t feel like a true part of the team because I felt like I held the team back in some odd way.  So….I stopped showing up.  I didn’t quit – I just stopped showing up.  By the time Marathon Week arrived, I was not physically or mentally prepared for the challenge ahead, and I suffered all day long.  Fifth Avenue felt like a death march.  The 59th Street Bridge looked like Everest.  It was a wonderful experience from a macro perspective; however, it was my third ING New York City Marathon and I was still making DUMB mistakes.  Things had to change.

 

So here I am, five years later.  My sixth year with this Team For Kids and my second with The WDW Radio Running Team.  I have qualified to be a Marathon Maniac, and I’m almost half way there to running a dozen marathons in a year.  All of this would not have been possible if I gave up completely in 2007.

 

And – like I said – I was REEEEEEALLY close.

 

Heaven knows I am NOT a talented runner.  Someday, when I grow up, I aspire to be.  However, presently I remain a work in progress.  If my running life were a technology company, I’d be spending a ton of money on research and development in an aggressive attempt to develop Turtle 2.0.  The battery life would be MUCH improved.  Response times would be much faster. And…yes…the product would weigh less and be a bit easier on the eyes.

 

I know how important this aspiration for personal evolution is to me.  And, for me, running is at the core of this process.  If I had quit in 2007 – this evolution would not even be a consideration.  I’d still be running Turtle 1.0…and trust me: that would NOT be a product that many people would find much use with.

 

Maybe there are other runners that just joined Team For Kids this year.  Maybe they are already feeling like I did in 2007.  Maybe they are looking at this marathon training process as the challenge that kickstarts their evolution into Marathoner 2.0.  And maybe…just maybe…this might be the practice where one of them decides to quit.  Well – I don’t want that to happen.  I want to make sure that I do my part to help these nuggets to stay motivated and positively focused on the challenges ahead.  MAYBE – just maybe – I’ll make them laugh a few times and they leave practice feeling in a slightly better mood than when they began their 5 miler.  That could make the difference between them showing up next week – or not.

 

That’s why I run.  That’s why I love being a mentor.  Sure, I enjoy getting in shape and helping my own evolution along.  But the feeling of getting someone through a long run that they never thought they could handle – yet they did – is the good stuff.

 

So today’s 5 miler was fun.  I got a couple of beginners around the 5 mile loop of the park, and we had a few laughs all along the way.  A good way to start the day.

 

Now that that’s over, I need to focus on tomorrow.  26.2 alone, around Manhattan.  I’ve decided to risk it and use the hydration pack – chaffing be damned (my skin wasn’t silky smooth to begin with).  I figured I’d head out my door at 5am, and start near 72nd and the west side drive.  I’ll take pictures throughout the run, and share them with you tomorrow evening.  My time won’t be great because I’ll be left standing at MANY a red light in the morning, that’s for sure.  But I won’t shut down until I hit my goal.

 

Tomorrow will be interesting.  Yet another step toward a turtle upgrade.

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If you’d like some information on The Dream Team Project or would like to make a donation to their amazing cause, please stop by the website:  www.wdwradio.com/the-dream-team-project  I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again: I really believe in what The Dream Team Project stands for.  It raises money for the Make-a-Wish Foundation, helping to grant the wishes of children suffering from life-threatening illnesses.  Being s former wish-granter for the NYC Chapter of the Make-a-Wish Foundation, I can tell you first-hand just how much of an impact this organization makes in the lives of children.  Please consider donating to this worthy cause.  Thanks!

 

…and if you’d like a bit more information on the WDW Radio Running Team, please check out the Facebook page at: http://www.facebook.com/#!/pages/WDW-Radio-Running-Team/163606410344409

Double Duty


Wednesday morning began with a relaxing five mile run that doubled as a test run for my newest running gadget, the Salomon hydration pack. As I mentioned in my prior blog post, I was thrilled at the outcome.

Wednesday evening found me back in Central Park, mentoring marathon hopefuls for the New York Road Runners’ Team For Kids. A relaxed four miler around the bridal path with the beginner’s group was a fantastic way to end my day.

Each time I run with this group of soon-to-be first time marathoners, I get to hear more of their reasons for taking on this challenge. To one runner, it’s a goal that she had set for herself that meant a lot to her. Another runner was so motivated by the scene on Fifth Avenue last year, watching marathoners fight their way through the last ten kilometers of the race, that he resigned himself to stepping off of the sidelines and putting himself through the hazard the following year. Yet another runner wanted to help New York City children live a healthier lifestyle.

Everyone has a story. And that’s what motivates me to keep coming to each practice. It’s feels great to get a moment to ask each nugget (ok – truth be told I’m a Battlestar Galactica nerd – and, for the uninitiated, on the show they use the term “nugget” to represent new fighter pilots. It’s not a derogatory term – it’s just a real nerdy way of saying “rookie”) (doesn’t it sound cool? Say it with me – using a slight Bronx accent – NUGGET. Now remember to curl your top lip juuuust a bit like Elvis whenever he said “The King luvs ya, baby”. Perfect. OK – let’s move on…) “so tell me – what motivated you to take on the New York City Marathon?” I watch their eyes get a bit wider. A smile cracks each newbie’s face as they eagerly share their motivation for this tough endeavor. I get to see how fired up each of them are to attempt this. It’s fantastic to witness.

BUT, even better than witnessing their excitement throughout this training program is the feeling of satisfaction I get as a Team For Kids mentor. Being able to tell them all about my dumb mistakes made during prior marathons in the hopes that they’ll learn from my errors provides me with a true feeling of satisfaction. There’s nothing better than helping someone else achieve a true life goal.

Some days don’t suck at all.

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If you’d like some information on The Dream Team Project or would like to make a donation to their amazing cause, please stop by the website: www.wdwradio.com/the-dream-team-project I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again: I really believe in what The Dream Team Project stands for. It raises money for the Make-a-Wish Foundation, helping to grant the wishes of children suffering from life-threatening illnesses. Being s former wish-granter for the NYC Chapter of the Make-a-Wish Foundation, I can tell you first-hand just how much of an impact this organization makes in the lives of children. Please consider donating to this worthy cause. Thanks!

If you’d like a bit more information on the WDW Radio Running Team, please check out the Facebook page at: http://www.facebook.com/#!/pages/WDW-Radio-Running-Team/163606410344409

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Oh Yeah – I Feel Like Elvis


So I come home from work Tuesday evening…and there it was.  Sitting at my front down.  A small cardboard box.  Oh yeah – my new toy had arrived, right on time.  I had been looking forward to this all…day…long.  CHRISTMAS.

I ordered the Salomon Advanced Skin 5 S-Lab Pack for my Sunday run around Manhattan.  It looked so darn cool in the pictures, I was betting that I’d feel like a rock star in this thing.  I pulled the box apart.  Quickly.  Grabbed the contents and began to examine it.

It….looked….cool.  Small – but cool.  This pack comes in 2 sizes: extra small / small and medium / large.  OK, so I’m usually an XL.  I was worried about this thing arriving and looking like it would only fit one of the Lollipop Kids.  I threw on a technical shirt and put the pack on over it.  It felt snug.  Not tight – just snug.  There were no buckles or latches in areas where serious chaffing could result during a long distance run.  There were several zipper pockets in easy to reach areas, which were big enough to store GU packets.  There were two sleeves on the shoulder straps which could hold 16 ounce water bottles (or an Iphone and/or other small crap I want to lug with me), and the reservoir held 50 ounces of water (or Captain Morgan – depends on my mood).  The design maximizes the available space.  The material is incredibly soft yet it appears durable.  The water reservoir is housed in a very light material which is designed to keep the water cold for a longer period of time.  And there were two small elastic straps that go across the chest to minimize the bouncing motion of the pack while I run.

All that….and it looked cool.  Just really…really cool.

This morning I couldn’t wait to find out how the pack felt while I ran in the park.  So I threw it on and went out for a light five miler.  It didn’t feel like the fabric would irritate my neck as I ran.  The pack was designed to fit snug on the runner’s body so that the water and contents did not bounce around.  After five miles in this thing – I can confirm that Salomon hit a home run with this thing.  It was EXTREMELY comfortable.  The shoulder straps did not screw with the way I swing my arms as I run.  By the time I finished my workout, I felt like buying this product was money well spent.

This damn thing made me feel like Elvis.  I was rockin’ and rollin’ along the bridal path.  One note, however: I only ran 5 miles in it.  I need to put in 26.2 on Sunday, and I cannot be distracted by chaffing under my arms or along my neck from this thing.  So I am worried about trusting this product without first truly training in it.  I am 90% sure I’ll use it Sunday.  90%…not 100%.

I’m sharing this for one simple reason: I highly recommend only going on long distance runs in clothing and equipment that you’ve trained in.  One of my mottos that I really believe in: train it and THEN trust it.

Until next time!  Great long-term habits begin with a simple decision at the outset: the decision to get out there and get in motion.  I don’t care if it’s down the block for a walk or a 10k run in the woods.  Motion creates emotion.  You don’t get today back – so make it count.

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If you’d like some information on The Dream Team Project or would like to make a donation to their amazing cause, please stop by the website:  www.wdwradio.com/the-dream-team-project  I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again: I really believe in what The Dream Team Project stands for.  It raises money for the Make-a-Wish Foundation, helping to grant the wishes of children suffering from life-threatening illnesses.  Being s former wish-granter for the NYC Chapter of the Make-a-Wish Foundation, I can tell you first-hand just how much of an impact this organization makes in the lives of children.  Please consider donating to this worthy cause.  Thanks!

…and if you’d like a bit more information on the WDW Radio Running Team, please check out the Facebook page at: http://www.facebook.com/#!/pages/WDW-Radio-Running-Team/163606410344409