The coach, Steve Sisson, assesses Team Rogue’s Race Prep 3 for the Portland Marathon

August 30, 2009

This is a follow on to my post of my own experience with Race Prep 3, undoubtedly the toughest workout of the season for Team Rogue.

Steve discusses what we thought would be a good measure of a successful workout and also how he felt about his own run.

Also, Damon … one of two people I’ve been running with consistently this season had a tough day but pulled through. He’s just gotten back from a slight injury but he should be good by the time we run Portland in 5 weeks.

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Race Prep 3: Didn’t nail it but I can’t complain too much

August 29, 2009

Today was undoubtedly the toughest workout of the season for Team Rogue. Here is the description:

1.5M Warm-Up
1M Build to Top Speed at Track
2M Recovery
5M @ MGP w/ 3-5 min recovery
4M @ MGP
5 to 6M Hills
6M Continuous Progression Run Track

  • 2M @ MGP
  • 2M @ HMGP
  • 2M @ 10K (26.15)

1.5M Cooldown
Total: 27.5M

After my workouts the few months I decided to drop my training paces from a 2:55 marathon target to a 2:50, which makes each of my paces around 10 seconds a mile faster. Going into today’s run I knew it would be very difficult so anything I could manage once I got on the track without completely blowing up would have been a victory. I just couldn’t manage it once we hit the 10k part, I was just a little slow at the HMGP as well but all in all this is the best I’ve ever run this workout so I’m pleased. My 2:50 target paces are:

  • MGP: 6:30
  • HMGP: 6:10
  • 10k: 5:50

Here’s how it actually went:

Mile on Track: 5:35
5M @ MGP Pace: 6:23
4M @ MGP Pace: 6:27
Track MGP 1 6:27
Track MGP 2 6:33
Track HMGP 1 6:11
Track HMGP 2 6:13
Track 10k 1 6:45
Track 10k 2 6:35

It was amusing, as soon as finished the last mile targeting half marathon pace instead of speeding up I just slowed down. It was really nice to have some of the people not racing Portland on the track handing out water and Gatorade and more than that encouraging us to keep pushing. I could have blown up a lot earlier if Mike hadn’t been there with his spatula threatening to scrape me off the track. Thanks Mike, Ken, Mus, Kristen for the support.

Steve has been running with us so we can’t really complain about the workouts anymore. I recorded a video interview of him after the workout that I’ll post later this weekend.

5 Weeks to Portland, 4 Weeks to Toronto. GO TEAM!


Resetting my goals and adjusting my training for the Portland Marathon

August 18, 2009

I started this season without a real time based goal for the Portland Marathon. OK that’s not quite true … I did have a range of between 2:55 and 3:00 in mind. As I stated earlier in the season my main goal was to get to Portland injury free. My training has been going much better than I expected, both from aches and pains and fitness standpoint. From the first tempo run, to the first race prep and the second race prep this weekend I’ve had good runs even with the heat this summer. After talking with Steve today I’ve decided to change my goal and training for the rest of the season (6 weeks) leading up to Portland in the following ways:

  1. The next four weeks are when the Portland group switches to track work, tuning up and peaking for the race. My original plan was to switch back to a tempo phase, run Portland and then get into Boston training. I’m now going to do the track work and try and peak for Portland.
  2. I’m going to try and run the workouts at paces for a 2:50 marathon instead of a 2:55. That’s 10 seconds a mile faster for marathon goal pace (MGP) and half marathon goal pace (HMGP). That means from a 6:40 mile/min MGP to a 6:30 mile/min MGP

The 10 seconds a mile faster won’t be easy and I’m not sure how I’ll do with all the track work and upcoming race preps. I’ll have to see how things go and set a target time for Portland. There are still a lot of variables including the weather, work stress, and how my body reacts to the stress of the faster paces but given how well things are going I need to try and see what I can do.


A little fun with a video

August 16, 2009

Last week was a down week in my running schedule. One of the reasons was that I was going to my cousin’s wedding in Toronto. Desi weddings (desi is the term we use for people from Pakistan, India, Bangladesh) span a few days. The day of the wedding the dinner/reception is from the brides side, then there’s a reception (on another day) from the groom’s side and a few others. Anyway, for the day of the reception from the grooms side my cousins put together a video for everybody’s entertainment.

Some things to note:

  • Dhulla = Groom
  • Bhabhi is the term used for your older brothers wife … your sister in law
  • Shariq is the actual groom and plays himself.
  • The guy at the end that asks “Are you ready bro” is my oldest brother.

Here’s my new choice for marathon race shorts (Product Review)

August 16, 2009

On Saturday’s workout I tried out a new pair of shorts I bought at Rogue Equipment as my potential race shorts. The Brooks Infiniti Short is a winner. I have a black pair. These shorts have pockets on both sides toward the back and towards the hip which is perfect for carrying GU. I had three GU in each side. While running there was no moving up or down of the shorts and the GU didn’t at all interfere with my stride because of where the pockets are placed. These are now my official choice of race shorts.

You can see a picture below and the Brooks site has a 360 view you can try out as well.

Brooks Infinity Short

Brooks Infiniti Short


2 Soul Busters Down, 2 to Go before Portland

August 15, 2009

Today was our second “key workout” or what used to be called the Soul Buster for the Team Rogue. The last one was a 22 mile run with 10 at marathon goal pace (MGP). Today’s was quite a bit tougher. The total run was between 20 and 24 miles. After a 2 mile warm-up we ran alternating 3 mile sets at MGP and half marathon goal pace (HMGP). I’m aiming for a 2:55 marathon in Portland which puts my MGP at 6:40 min/mile and my HMGP around 6:20 min/mile

Going into today I wanted to start at those places and then run each set 5 seconds faster to see if I can get down to a 6:30 min/mile pace for my last three miles. I think I’m just where I need to be for Portland, as long as I don’t get injured I should be on track for a good chance at a 2:55 marathon. The workout today ended up being:

.            Mile 1  Mile 2   Mile 3   Avg Pace
MGP       6:37     6:33     6:50         6:40
HMGP    6:22     6:11      6:15         6:16
MGP       6:35     6:23     6:34         6:31
HMGP    6:13     6:20      6:12        6:15
MGP       6:23     6:22      6:26        6:24

That’s 2 soul busters down and 2 to go. The next one is one I’ve never managed to complete successfully in previous training seasons so that one will be interesting.


Good workout and some firsts

August 13, 2009

Today was our roller workout, a new route and longer than we’ve done before. The “workout” portion of the run consisted of 5 miles alternating 2 minutes hard and 2 easy, a mile recovery and then 3.6 miles at Steady effort.

I needed some extra mileage and managed to get 14.7 in. Ran most of the workout with Damon. I have to say that I suck at hills. In the 5 miles of 2 on 2 off I just struggle on the uphills. It feels like my legs are pogoing up and down. My heart rate is up but I just can’t push any harder.

The steady part of the run went well. My overall pace for the 3.6 miles was 6:23. I felt good through most of it. On the hills on this section which included Exposition I didn’t struggle as much as the 5 miles of 2 on and 2 off. I think it has to do with when I’m anaerobic versus aerobic. I have a switch somewhere and when I cross that line I’m done.

Today was also my regular massage and there were some interesting firsts (no explanation yet):

  • The leg with the tight calf didn’t have any tight plantar, the leg with the looser calf did
  • Both my legs had identical soreness on the tib (never had the same thing on both sides of the body before)

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