Sunday, October 3, 2010

A tale of two halves... and a 10 x 10

There wasn’t much unusual about the Marg Chennai GiveLife Half. For the uninitiated, GiveLife is double entendre. This time it almost was not. As usual there was no support in the last 7Km – no water / no people support aid stations. And surprise – the police were cheering us. May be the intent was to windup early. And we got a medal and a certificate + a magnetic coaster.

Whilst my training for a  marathon, somewhere sometime this season, was suffering big time, one Mr. Srinath from Chennai Runners came up with the idea of 10 x 10 x 10. 10k each day for 10 days in a chain of runners so that 100 days are covered including overlaps. Ram picked up the idea and started reeling set after set of 10x10.  

I wasn’t very enthused with the idea until suddenly my running buddy had to shift out of town. And lo, we started our tryst with the challenge. Running late into the nights after work et al. And finished in style, though without her. Shame.

The challenge isn’t with the distance itself daily but the discipline that it brings to you. Your mind has to be tuned to the challenge finding that 1 /1.5 hours of time to squeeze in to get it done. After my half on the 9th day, Tiger asked if it helped. Not sure, honestly. But definitely makes you satisfied at the end of it. What more to top it with a finish in ECR 12 run and a medal to go with it. I want to post my set with the Garmin Connect links shortly.

Also, there was this switch from evening to morning that I wanted to make. I wanted to do this in the middle of the set so I could coast to safety as I approached the ECR run which ofcourse was in the morning. I didn’t want to run a half after a night 10K run. So I grabbed the chance of doing the half in the evening before in ECR, a foolish and dangerous proposition with the mad traffic, rash drivers and high beams glaring at you with a dark road when there were no vehicles. I managed to get over that, vowing never to repeat this again. Shahid, the race director gave the medal at the finish with the organizing team and their families cheering me. Worth every pain and risk.

I am glad my shoes, Adidas Supernova 17 is doing fine so far at 450K mark. Time to buy my next however :D I think this is ever so slightly showing signs of starting to breakdown.

My bro finished his first ECR as a Chennai Runner – his second half in an event and his third half finish. I am thrilled to bits to have another runner.

And a bonus – My boss and friend Ganesan Sekar ran a 5k for the first time and was elated with the arrangements. He has been a big supporter of mine. More to come from him I hope!

Saturday, June 26, 2010

Eat what you grow...


Well, not exactly. And not just yet....



But I am hooked. I have just put in 4 seeds of okra in an unused pot. And that is it. Don't laugh. I am starting small. :P you will find more updates interlaced with my musings from now on...


On the running front, It's been a good week followed by a bad week and then a good week... sort of a cycle. I am not able to build on the previous week and the slump is not helping me the next week


The good news is, I am now with a plan and will start next week. As earnestly as possible. The target is a 2 hour half. Hope the training plan keeps me steady.


The plan starts with and easy 3 miler in the first week. There are two parts to it. It says it should be easy, catch is   - in 29mts.That aint easy...!!!!!! Not at my current fitness level... However as a test, I did try and managed to pull it through. Nearly. I agree that I am not ready enough for this experiment fitness wise... but I will give it a try. If I end up with a good time, I will take it...


I am not targeting any specific event but the run will be 12 weeks from now. 


I will post the plan, week by week and how I have done... as diligently as possible....


Tail Note: KK's place where the idea was germinated for the sub 2 half is amazing. We are partners in crime now - missing all of my runs last week. As well, it was fun drawing plans with Tiger, Hari who is still recuperating, Venkat - who will skip this year's Singapore Marathon with me as a protest against the organizers and VPS... and the special guest who "Kalakki"fied us...

Tuesday, June 15, 2010

The warmup...

I was running through Jim2’s page on warm-ups…

 

There are few in the CR group who do not warm up. I don’t! I used to stretch a lot  before running, a lot of them do. I always found stretching after a run more beneficial and effective than before. So much to say, it hurt a lot and I didn’t like them! I sometime felt I ended up with mild niggles that make me uncomfortable to run! I think the body runs best when unstretched – methinks more economical because of the stiffness or restricted range of motion.

 

And then there is this stretching after a warm up and then continue on with an LSD that I started after my first Auroville. Worked well for my long runs! But didn’t make sense otherwise – for short runs and training runs. Just start slow and then do your training.

 

Of late, I had done two 10Ks and invariably I took breaks at the half way mark and stretched. I felt comfortable running back both times!

 

It’s been quite a while since I have done more than 10K, I am excited that training days are be back! KK and I are planning to prepare a plan (yes – it’s that complicated!) for an “under 2 half”. I am not particularly excited about the end result but the training and ofcourse, the planning for the training.

 

It’s going to be demanding since he is a faster runner!

 



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Tuesday, May 11, 2010

Resuming running after a hiatus...

It has been absolutely impossible to run these days - morning or night. It is easy to blame the heat and the humidity. And a long drive to the office and back. You can add family commitments and work - you can get away with it.

Actually, in the contrary, it has taken a toll on body and mind and is making attending to chores even harder. The toll is such that my back aches, I have gotten heavy so my leg hurts. And more than anything else, not running is getting to my nerves.

I have braved all odds and tried to run whenever possible in the last week. Nothing much. But short ones. Whenever I can squeeze in. My target is to beat the last year's May total of 80K this May.

Looks like my odds of Bangalore Sunfeast run are diminishing. That would have been a good motivation. Well, there are a few things in life you have to accept.

Thursday, April 8, 2010

Hills all the way...

It has been hills last week, two sessions of 5K approx each. The run was in Raheja Estate, Powai in Bombay. It’s got a huge incline, a huge decline and two flats. A 1.5K course. It was challenging. More so, I was wondering if my heartbeats and breathing were going haywire on the climb.

All of this week has been very exhausting, the seething heat and hectic work didn’t help a bit. But I have vowed to start small and then do a couple of 10Ks by next week.

Read a book called “Yayati – A Classic Tale of Lust” by V S Khandekar. If you are the type, you will like it. Very good and philosophical.

Tuesday, March 23, 2010

Come Summer...

Come summer cometh the need for motivation!!!

 

What can motivate best is good reads, people… and the best of them all, new shoes :D

I moved out of Nike with some pain… I like Moto a lot when it was good, that is… once it wears out, which happens soon enough, it hits your ITB real bad.

 

I am now in a pair of Adidas Response Cushion 18. No second shoes until I can get hold of a pair of Asics that I can try and wear… I had to give away my pair of Asics Gel 2140, size 10 (my Nike is Size 10 as well) because it was half a size smaller and hitting my middle toe even before the word go. May be I should alternatively have tried 2E toe boxes, but I still feel, there is no substitute to trying before buying…

 

Ashok, my brother has hit 100K under a month since starting to run seriously… Good part is that he is running short distances almost daily… I have particularly asked to not get tempted and go too long too early. Hope fair rationale prevails. What more, he has got a big group running with him, by the sounds of it, thicker than the Alwarpet group, for which we are to be blamed. He aims to run seriously for the Sunfeast World 10K in Bangalore.

 

I took a serious look at my old pairs – photos will follow. I feel I am striking with my heels as I lose form (I presume) and hence the wear in the heels which are deep. A quick research shows I may be overstriding. I have consciously made my stride shorter and furtive and when I intend to pick up speed, I just increase the cadence instead of stride. It feels funny, I have run twice with the new shoes in this fashion. I am not sure I am doing the right thing. But I think I might eventually get used to it. And I have to admit, it is not making an impact just yet.

 

 



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Tuesday, February 9, 2010

Running year long...

Read somewhere for a yearlong training (I badly want to give credit to this one, but copy pasted and stored this is a jiffy, donno where I did from!)

 

Stick to It

 

These four principles should be part of your training plan throughout the year. Tailor them according to your goals, interests, and needs.

 

GET MOVING You don't need to run every day, but be sure to run more days than you don't.

 

GO HARD At least once a week inject speed into your routine. For example, perform four- to five-mile tempo runs or long intervals at 5-K race pace. Mix up repeats by running 4 x 1 mile one week, 5 x 1200 meters another, and 3 x 2000 meters another.

 

EASE BACK Follow hard workouts with at least one easy day and don't worry about how fast you're going. Let your energy level be your guide.

 

RUN LONG Once a week, run 1.5 times longer than your normal run.

 

Mine has been more 3 runs a week with two training runs and one easy mostly. The last two months have been 100+ Kms, slowly bringing some sort of consistency. I am planning to keep it at 25miles/ 40Kms per week and up the ante when needed. I should have been here 6 months ago.

 

The challenge would be to keep the same mileage in the summer and with no events after the first week of March till may be about August.



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