Posts Tagged ‘hill repeats’

Killer hills

Thursday, August 12th, 2010

I didn’t run yesterday as I used the excuse of not having any gels to power through a hill repeat run. Well the gel came that afternoon, so no excuses remained. Actually I was fine with that as I knew I had to do some hills to keep on track with my fluctuating quality run plan.

So a note on the gel: I purchased a 26 serving bottle of Chocolate Hammer gel for $20 on Amazon. I use 3 oz gel flasks and dilute 1 to 1 with water. It takes some shaking to get it mixed up, but it is a lot cleaner and less wasteful than the individual servings not to mention cheaper. I really like doing my gels this way. The bottles I have a weird and are rounded so they don’t stand up but feel good in my pockets. I like the diluted gel as well. The chocolate was a little sweet, I have had espresso as well and I thought that was less so.

So in addition to my diluted gel I also brought a pack of Honey Stinger fruit energy chews. They are a bit like Sharkies only more jelly like, sort of remind me of the old jelly candies my Grandma had. They are ok, I don’t think I care for the Honey Stinger product lines so much. They are a bit too strongly honey tasting for me. I had some gels from them as well that I got as samples at the Portland Marathon and they were the same way, like eating a tablespoon of honey. Good but too honeyey. I had maybe 3 or 4 of them on the run to the hills and then the gel halfway through. I felt pretty good energy wise, good combination of gel energy and electrolytes.

So the hills were tough. My hill route I went on today has 10 or 11 hills about a quarter mile long of varying steepness. I zig-zag up and down along this three block long ridge. So down for three blocks, over one, up for three blocks and over one and so on. Halfway through I turn around and go up the ones I went down the first time through. The workout tapers a bit to the mid-way point with the hills getting easier, but the way back is murderous and by the time I near the end of the hill portion, the final two hills are brutal. Here is the run. I felt pretty strong throughout the run and my HR dipped pretty low on the recovery portions (130-140). My max HR was 185 for the run, but more often in the high 170s. It was a good workout and one I feel pretty rested from now that the afternoon has waned.

I missed my rebif injection yesterday, so I did it today after the run. I have been doing the shots after workouts for awhile now and so far I have bot seen any sort of issue with it. I am not sure if the exercise makes it any more or less effective, but there don’t seem to be any problems. Even today when I did my shot into my leg all pumped up after the hill repeats, no issues. I do notice that when I inject in the morning I sometimes have to take ibuprofen in the evening to cull a headache, but it doesn’t happen often. I do worry about taking so much ibuprofen and acetaminophen and its effects on my liver. But I guess I’ll deal with that when I have something concrete to deal with.

Watermark hill repeats

Saturday, June 19th, 2010

I love having one of those runs when everything seemed to go really well. Today my hill repeat run was one of those. I almost wasn’t going to do it. Temperatures seemed like they were rising but actually weren’t. Clouds snuck in and cooled off the afternoon, so I figured I had no excuse for not doing it. My schedule called for a quality run so off I went.

I have found a route that I like a lot that winds up and down the side of this sloped area. It gives me three blocks of varying degrees of uphill followed by five recovery blocks. Basically it zig-zags giving me ten up and downs along it for four miles or so. The uphills at the start (and end) are tough ones with the middle hills being the flattest. Once I got going it felt really good and I did my best to power up the hills. After the first five sets I turn around and go down the ones I went up on and up the downs. I gobbled an espresso gel which probably had something to do with the way I kept up for the second half. The final hill was hard, it is the largest and consistently uphill the entire way of  the series.

The watermark was in my heart rate. Previously my high was 186 which had risen from the estimated 184 I started with. After the first couple of hills I was starting to get pretty high HRs; over 180. I slowed into the high 170s as the hills flattened out. Once my return covered the easy hills my HR rose again. The third hill from the end was the first of the tough ones. I did a good job of powering up it. I didn’t want to slow down too much, I knew I was a bit anyway. As I neared the top my HR climbed over 180, then kept rising. As it got close to 185 or so I felt really strong and kept going. All of a sudden, 188. New Max HR. My recovery was really slow and I was able to bring my HR down to the 130s after my downhills.

The second to the last hill was progressively larger and I powered up with my new HR in mind. With a block to go my pace was ok, not fast but steady. My HR climbed again, soon 188 again. Then right as I neared the top of the hill: 189. Ok, that was it, no more setting Max HR. The last hill was slower, but I made it up despite indecisive drivers. Lastly, a mile back to the house for some proper recovery food and drink. After a whey protein bar and 24 ounces of G2 I felt pretty good. Also, was awarded a year contract with my largest client and invited to a meeting with a Vietnamese business delegation. So my proper recovery was followed with a celebration dinner at our neighborhood spot Toast. Great gnocchi!

I felt really good after this run, much like I have been after the quality runs I do. This run is 6.5 miles, though I think I might have missed a hill after the turn around. 6.5 or 7, either is a good distance. It was sort of nice not to spend a long distance on my feet for this run. I need to get it consistent so I can start comparing them.