Tuesday, September 30, 2014

September Summary

Today is a rest day so I can write this up with the risk of the numbers changing.

What can I say it’s all about the run, run and run.

  • 21 workouts, 26:22:59 for 170.50 miles. There is one more run not showing on the graph below which was yesterday, the first run of Week 10
  • Run, well see above basically. Compared to last month that’s 2 less runs and 8.49 miles more
  • Bike zip!
  • Anything else…nope nada!

As I am monitoring the terrain training this is how it’s shaping up.

image As you can see overall a drop in trail running, this is really a function of life more than anything, as you can see Week 7 is over 50% treadmill, that’s just the way it is some weeks. I have a 20 miler coming up this weekend which is the first of many and the following week is the Pt Mugu 18k race, I will have to tack on some extra miles to keep to the plan and it’s only a tune up race, the Marathon is 5 weeks away.

Sunday, September 28, 2014

SCM Week 8 (Step Back)

This week was a step back. It’s pretty standard practice to build for 2 – 3 weeks and then step back to rest and capitalize on the gains. It’s come on the back on a solid three weeks of 40+ miles each and also coinciding with a pretty busy and stressful week at work so it was well timed;

So this is how it shook out;

  • Monday. 5 miles Recovery. I decided to have some fun in my neighborhood

image Round and round and round…

  • Tuesday. Off, check
  • Wednesday. Oops missed.
  • Thursday. 6 miles. Ran my local 6 mile out and back on a teeny tiny single track trail. It was much harder than it needed to be, reflective of bad week at work and not such a clever diet


IMG_0384 Playing with Google Photo Sphere, click on image for link…it’s pretty cool!

  • Friday. 4 miles. Fudged up the first mile with my Garmin and then just muddled through the last 3 miles…really blargh!
  • Saturday. 6 miles. Another run on the treadmill, actually felt good for this one and felt that my mojo was coming back
  • Sunday. 14 miles. After a tough trail run during the week I knocked these out on a local trail. I followed my nose and made up a nice loop with a fair bit (2720’) of climbing

image IMG_0463 And that was the week. Back on chain gang next week. Pt Mugu race in 2 weeks and Santa Clarita Marathon in 5 weeks!

Monday, September 22, 2014

SCM Week 7

This week was basically a rinse and repeat of last week although it cooled off some so I managed to avoid the treadmill with the exception of one day!

  • Monday. 6 miles Recovery
  • Tuesday. off
  • Wednesday. 7 miles. Nice and Easy
  • Thursday. 5 miles. Pyramid run, a couple in the high 7s
  • Friday. 7 miles on the Treadmill, nice Tempo run and back into the mid 7s
  • Saturday. off
  • Sunday. Same route as last week, managed to get out 30 minutes early and it was cloudy! So much better!

 IMG_0305 IMG_0373

Next week is a rest week…phew need it!

Monday, September 15, 2014

SCM Week 6

Another build week. Just racking up the miles. This week the temperature went up a notch, the week got warmer and warmer as we got closer to the weekend! Additionally it was just one of those weeks from work when all you can do is fit stuff in around it, as a result 4 out of 5 runs were on the treadmill!

  • Monday 5 miles. Recovery, nice and easy
  • Tuesday off!
  • Wednesday 7.66 miles on the ‘mill. Started off easy and then picked it up and eased off at the end
  • Thursday 5.6 miles. Hill-work on the treadmill. I used one of the built in workouts and managed 1700’ of gain! The weather was freaky and I was hoping that the rain would last…it didn’t!

 image IMG_0263

  • Friday Pushed today’s run over to Saturday
  • Saturday 7 miles easy
  • Sunday 18 miles. Was good through M14 then got hit with the heat and probably a bit underfueled. I was very happy to have finished my run by around 10:30am…it got crazy in the afternoon!

IMG_0293 IMG_0305 IMG_0308

Onward to Week 7

Thursday, September 11, 2014

Review; The 1929 Bunion Derby: Johnny Salo and the Great Footrace across America

You might think that Ultra Running is a fairly new endeavor but In fact it’s been around for a long, long time. One of the earliest versions was the Trans-American Footrace or as dubbed by the press “The Bunion Derby. The Bunion Derby was conceived and planned by CC Pyle a somewhat flamboyant and flashy sports promoter who had organized the inaugural race the year prior form Los Angeles to New York. A year later, in 1929, the second and final running took place over the reversed route from New York to Los Angeles. This book focuses on the second year of the race 1929 and specifically on Johnny Salo and his competition to the finish line with Englishman Pietro `Peter' Gavuzzi.

The book is well written and engaging and does a great job of describing the day to day activities of the runners and the travelling caravan and convoy that moved from town to town supporting them. In addition there is a great deal of detail capturing the overall feel of the times. 1929 was the year prior to the Great Depression. The Dow Jones Industrial Average peaked at 381.17 in September a height it would not reach again until November 1954 as the country toppled over the precipice of change when Wall Street crashed in October that year. Underfunded from the start Pyle was reliant on towns paying for him to “come through” so he sell tickets to the traveling vaudeville company which contained dancing girls and minstrels. Ticket sales funded the day to day operations of the race.

It’s hard to imagine that this is 85 years ago but the difference between then are now is staggering. The challenges that face long distance runners today are multiplied over and over again. Gu and Gatorade are replaced with Coffee Mate and cold steak. Lycra clothing with wool and flannel and your favorite pair of runners with leather soled shoes and long socks! The race started in March and completed in June, this left the runners running through a wet spring in the East Coast and running through the early summer heat of the West. Without giving the game away, although the result is listed below, the race leaders changed often and it was a race of both speed and strategy. The final day was a marathon race in Los Angeles to determine the winner!

Rather the go into massive descriptive detail here’s a short video with some great coverage from Pathe News, unfortunately there is no audio but you get a real sense of what the times were like

Overall I really enjoyed the book, it’s well written and the pace of it makes you want to turn the page. Unfortunately it’s taken me some time to finish it as life, work, kids, training and all that good stuff have generally y got in the way!

Available on Amazon and other good outlets it’s one you should add to your reading list.

Other praise for this book;

"Charles Kastner is an expert without peer on the great bunion derby races across America. No one knows more about their rich history and these men, who ran extraordinary distances under uniquely trying circumstances. Kastner's book is a fascinating glimpse into the lives of athletes who not only transcended the boundaries of human endurance but remain mentors for all of us who want to achieve more in our lives." —Marshall Ulrich, Extreme endurance athlete and author of "Running on Empty: An Ultramarathoner's Story of Love, Loss, and a Record-Setting Run Across America

"This book reveals how C. C. Pyle and so many others who are part of our strong national ultramarathoning history persevered in such challenging times! Wonderfully inspiring."—Gary Theriault, ultramarathoner and ten-time Kona Ironman triathlon finisher

"It reads like a tale of shipwreck survivors adrift at sea. Yet these men could end their suffering at any time. They chose not to because they saw a better future, a chance to deepen their human experience, or both at the finish line. Kastner’s commitment to accurate historical documentation combined with gripping personal accounts of the race make for a compelling and motivating story."—Kevin Patrick, Washington, DC, reporter and ultramarathoner

A film was made about the 1928 race, here is the trailer, you can watch it for free here, below is the trailer;

Additionally there is a really good talking-book which is based on the TransAmerican Footrace available here

<Spoiler alert> Finnish-born Johnny Salo (1893-1931) was the winner in 1929 in 79 days, from 31 March to 17 June. His elapsed time of 525 hr 57 min 20 sec (averaging 11.12 km/h (6.91mph)), that’s a 8:40 pace in case you were doing the math in your head. It left him only 2 min 47 sec ahead of Englishman Pietro `Peter' Gavuzzi (1905-81). Told you it was close!

This book was provided free of charge by the author’s Publicist. See previous gear reviews in the tab above. If you have a product you’d like reviewed, contact me at quadrathon@gmail.com.

Monday, September 8, 2014

SCM Week 5

A bit of backfill as the blog has been somewhat neglected this month;

  • Monday. 6 miles Recovery. Took Becca out on my local trail…I think she had fun?
    • Tuesday. Rest
    • Wednesday. 7 miles. Nice and steady mid Tempo run.
    • Thursday. 5 miles. Quicker and shorter Tempo run, happy to click of miles in the mid 7s
    • Friday. Missed it and pushed to Saturday
    • Saturday. 7 miles. Very easy.
    • Sunday. 16.33 Miles Pt Mugu recon run. Lots of hills and lots of climbing. Got pooped out around mile 13/14 but pushed through to the end.
    • imageIMG_0220 image IMG_0166

      Much the same next week…let’s get this done!

      Monday, September 1, 2014

      August Summary

      Summer is drawing to a close, at least from a calendar point of view, there is no break in the weather around here although all things being equal we have had a pretty mild summer! Not surprisingly August became a run focused month with my training for Santa Clarita Marathon, starting on August 4. So the tally for the month went like this;

      • 24 workouts in 28:02:27 for 180.61 miles
      • Run 23 workouts 27:02:28, 161.99 miles…yes, there is no rounding up!
      • Bike 1 workout 59:59, 18.62 miles

      Obviously a significant bump in run miles, my previous biggest month this year was 91 miles so I am getting close to doubling it…yeah about that 10% rule!

      In terms of the terrain for the month it broke down as follows;

      • Road; 75.22 (46%)
      • Treadmill; 18.82 (12%)
      • Trail; 67.81 (42%)


      Trail mileage in terms or a percentage was a less than I hoped for, I was really trying to stay above 50% . That being said I did have a great race at the Bulldog 25k. Week 1 was actually pre training plan which skews the numbers a bit but trail miles are trail miles!

      September is really more of the same, three weeks of build and a step back week and the totals should be something similar to August.