Fall Season Comes to a Close and Starting Fresh – Fitz’s Training Journal November, 2010

by Jason Fitzgerald

Now, for the monthly training report:

Overall, November was a very solid month for training and racing. I’m pleased with how things went. I had one minor setback (a very tight left soleus) and was forced to take several days off during Thanksgiving week, but training was back to normal within about 5 days.

Fitz at the 2-mile mark at the Candy Cane City 5k

Winning the Candy Cane City 5k

I raced twice this month – the Candy Cane City 5k and the Gobble Wobble 5k – and both races went very well. I won the Candy Cane 5k while coming in 4th in the Gobble Wobble (but running 15 seconds faster than last year!). I set my road 5k PR during the first race in 16:24. It’s not close to my 16:02 track 5k PR, but I’ll take it for now.

With my tight soleus, I was lucky to have a physical therapist in the family. My future sister-in-law gave me two great massage sessions with her Graston tools (check out the link and note the price – that’s low for these tools if you can believe it). If I wasn’t getting a massage, I was religiously using a tennis ball and a foam roller to massage my achilles and calf area.

Here are the weekly summaries:

11/1 – 11/7: 67 miles in 7 runs with a 16 mile long run. I had a great negative split workout on the track this week, doing 6x600m in 1:59, 1:57, 1:55, 1:54, 1:52, and 1:50. Core work was consistent.

11/8 – 11/14: 70 miles in 7 runs with a 17 mile long run. I ran a similar workout this week with 800’s in 2:37, 2:36, 2:34, 2:30, and 2:28. Saturday I won the Candy Cane City 5k.

11/15 – 11/20: 50 miles in 6 runs with a 12 mile medium-long run. This is when my soleus starting getting very tight so I cut my long run on Saturday and took Sunday off.  Big thanks to my sister-in-law for her PT skills! Earlier in the week I ran a great workout: 2 miles at tempo pace in 11:13 (splitting 5:38 and 5:34), then 4×800 in 2:33, 2:30, 2:28, and 2:26.

11/22 – 11/28: 23 miles in 5 runs. This week was mostly recovery with the Gobble Wobble 5k on Thanksgiving. I placed 4th in 16:32 on a challenging course, 15 seconds faster than what I ran last year. I did a lot of strength work this week.

11/29 + 11/30: Easy 9 and 7 miles. I’m easing back into base training now so I won’t do many workouts. My focus now is on building mileage over the next two months to about 85 per week. Spring half-marathon, here I come!

With all those 5k races this fall season, I’m looking forward to taking a break from racing. With four races (three 5k’s and one 8k) in October and November, I need a longer block of training where I don’t have to worry about racing. I mentioned a few weeks ago that my goal is to run a fall marathon in 2011. As preparation, a spring half-marathon is in order.

After seeing so many other runners complete marathons, like Greg, Pete, and Dave, I’m excited about the distance again and to test myself. I have only run one marathon – New York 2008 in 2:44 – and I’m itching to lower that time.

For more detail on my daily training, check me out on Daily Mile. It’s a great online training log and community for runners.

Solving My Shoe Riddle

I may have found a solution to my shoe predicament. Last month I mentioned that I had started to dislike the ASICS Speedstars, which have been my go-to shoe for years. With the 4th iteration, they’re bulkier and the upper feels a lot thicker. The 5th version looks similar.

A reader emailed me (thanks!) and told me to try the ASICS DS-Racer. I’ve used the DS-Trainers before and really liked them so I think I’m going to give this shoe a try. The Racers seem to be a hybrid of the Hyper Speeds and the DS-Trainers – two shoes that worked very well for me. Has anybody worn the DS-Racers and really liked them?

Mileage:

Monthly Mileage: 226

Annual Mileage: 2,739

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Rick

Fitz,
Two 5k PR’s, sit back and savour the moment!!!
as I’ve worked on my running form I’m finding my modified Nike Frees[ zero heel lift, I cut the heels down with a hack saw!] my fav shoe.
I want shoes that move with my feet, that are light weight.
In a nut shell shoes that are an extention of my own feet.
anything that restricts that is a NO NO in my book!

Fitz

Thanks Rick! Just one 5k PR, and it’s specific to the roads (I’ve run 16:02 on the track). I’m still happy with them though!

I’ve been moving to lighter weight shoes too. The Saucony Fastwitch trainers I have are only 7.0 ounces. Their drawback is in a medial post, but they’re light and are working for me.

Greg Strosaker

Fitz, I really like the big mileage you put in even when focused on 5K’s – very inspiring, and the increase in your base mileage during the “tie-over” to spring half-mary training will certainly serve you well. You’ve inspired me to try and keep my mileage high this winter (in fact, I’m considering a February marathon to help motivate me to do so), through longer mid-week runs and tacking a bit more onto the warm-up and cool-downs for the interval and other sessions. Enjoy your December!

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