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Pikes Peak Ascent training – week 4

Gator MailboxThe previous week’s log is here.

Week 4 has the same schedule as week 3 – five easy runs and two off days. After this, we get into the different tempo and speed work sessions.

The first part of this week was in Tampa/Clearwater, Thursday and Friday in San Antonio, then the weekend back home.

When I’m in Clearwater, I run the Ream Wilson trail (see map at the bottom of this post), but on this trip it looked like they had finished the hike and bike trail across Highway 60, also called Gulf-to-Bay Blvd. It is probably 6-7 miles across for a 12-14 mile round trip…which is quite a bit longer run than desired 4 weeks into the program. But the part I ran on was a great trail (even though they were still putting some of the barriers and rails up) so I will definitely run it again for a longer run next time I’m back in town for business.

Week 4 schedule:

  • Monday:off day - EASY RUN 4.5 mi in 41:55 9:19 min/mi pace. Ran the Ream Wilson trail east to Hwy 19.
  • Tuesday: easy 5 mi - EASY RUN  5.35 mi in 50:55 9:31 min/mi. Ran same trail, this time to the west to Safety Harbor. One of my colleagues, Kim, was looking for a picture of a gator for her daughter back in Texas. I got this one for her – a gator that I can most assuredly out run!
  • Wednesday: off day - EASY RUN  6.56 mi in 1:03:33  9:41 min/mi. Meant to take it easy, but went to the almost completed hike and bike trail on the bay side of the Gulf-to-Bay Blvd. Even though it was a bit overcast in the morning and it was during rush hour, it was a very nice trail, great run. Getting across to the trail was easy that the one time I had previously attempted it; I’m assuming they have fixed the crosswalk lights now to actually let bikers and runners go across. A couple of photos of the trail below

Gulf To Bay Trail No Fishing From Bridge

  • Thursday: easy 3 mi - moved off day to today, which was a travel day. Late night flight in from Tampa last night, flight out to San Antonio this morning.
  • Friday: easy 3 mi - EASY RUN 4.13 mi in 40:53  9:54 min/mi. Now in San Antonio, ran through MacArthur Park as I usually do. Strangely this time I saw no deer.
  • Saturday: easy 5 mi - EASY RUN 5.32 mi  50:25 9:29 min/mi. Back in Houston. Reviewing the week 4 entry from my last Hanson’s running reminded me about why we do “easy runs”. A couple of quotes from Hanson’s to remind me about the benefits of “Easy Runs”:
    • “To understand why easy running is important, you must consider the physiological adaptations that it stimulates in muscle fiber development, energy utilization, capillary development, cardiovascular strength, and structural fitness.”
    • When you run at lower intensities, you burn around 70 percent fat and 30 percent carbohydrate. With an increase in pace comes an increase in the percentage of carbohydrates you burn. Your easy running days serve as catalysts to develop those slow-twitch muscle fibers and, consequently, teach your body to burn fats over carbohydrates. Slow-twitch fibers are better than fast-twitch fibers at burning fat because they contain greater amounts of mitochondria, enzymes that burn fat, and capillaries.Luke, Humphrey (2014-03-12). Hansons Half-Marathon Method: Run Your Best Half-Marathon the Hansons Way (Kindle Locations 730-733). VeloPress. Kindle Edition.
  • Sunday: easy 6 mi - EASY RUN 6.7 mi in 1:03:46  9:31 min/mi

I must comment on the Podcast I’ve started listening to during running. I’ve always listened to TodayInIOS podcast to keep up with iOS related topics, but Rob from that podcast listed his favorite podcasts, and Hardcore History has become my go-to running audio. Currently I’m listening to his description of WWII, a long four-part series called “Blueprint for Armageddon.” If you like history, I cannot recommend it more highly.

Plan total (5+3+3+5+6) = 22 miles

Actual total (4.5+5.35+6.56+4.13+5.32+6.7) = 32.6 miles, quite a bit more than called for, but I’m feeling good on the long easy runs.

Next week, week five, starts something other than “easy runs” with a Tempo Run on Thursday. It is also the last week with Monday off, and since it falls on the Labor Day holiday, I’m good with that.

Map Of Ream Wilson Trail

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