Why it’s that hard for professionals to get back to their focus when they are being disturbed!

berlin-marathon

“Why it’s that hard for professionals to get back to their focus when they are being disturbed!” (Sep 28 2015)
Last Sunday, it was Berlin Marathon and the importance of that event is obvious for all who enthusiastically follow running news. In the past 12 years, marathon world record was improved just in Berlin Marathon, in particular in 2013 and 2014 it was improved to 2:03:23 and 2:02:57 respectively.
When I read the news of Berlin Marathon I noticed no new world record was exchanged this year. At the same time when I looked at the shoes of the winner of Berlin Marathon at the finish line, I was surprised maybe we have a new development in the running shoes but the story totally different.
“Eliud Kipchoge won the Berlin Marathon on Sunday in 2:04, but the insoles falling out of both of his shoes for most of the race stole the headlines” wrote runner’s world about the event (http://t.co/6WjR2GQ2QX) “There are blisters on the left foot and my big toe is cut, with lots of blood,” Kipchoge said, after the race. I was thinking what was the reason he didn’t take out the insoles in the middle of the race, it wouldn’t take him more than a few seconds and instead he won’t be bothered for the rest of the race. Jos Hermens, Kipchoge’s agent said “He didn’t take the insoles out when they started causing problems because he didn’t want to disturb his rhythm and focus.”
Yes, and it’s all about the focus and keeping your rhythmic. For all the professionals, Keeping focus is the most important thing in their career, and it’s extremely hard to get back to your focus when you are being disturbed. It’s as hard as Kipchoge prefered to run more than half of the run in that situation rather than taking a few seconds and took the insoles out of his shoes.

2015 Training Week 16 (21/09/2015 to 27/09/2015)

Activity Details in Google Sheets

Activity Schedule in Google Docs

04

Summary of this week’s activities

First, let’s review my activities during this week. I had 3 run and 1 hike activities in this week. On Thursday (24/09) I had a 13K easy run with the following averages: (13.03 K, 5:47 min/km, 152 bpm, 112m elevation gain). On Friday (25/09) I had a 12.5K easy run with the following averages: (12.50 K, 5:45 min/km, N/A bpm, N/A elevation gain). On Saturday (26/09) I had a 22K run (tempo 15K) with the following averages: (22.00 K, 5:01 min/km, 169 bpm, 74m elevation gain). On Sunday (27/09) I had a Grouse Mountain BCMC hike with the following averages: (3.87 K, 28:25 min/km, 853m elevation gain) and the return trip with the following averages: (3.87 K, 4.3 kph).

MondayTuesdayWednesdayThursdayFridaySaturdaySundayTotal
219K walk2313K easy run12.5K easy runTempo 15K runGrouse Mountain-BCMC Hiking return47.5 km Run 3.8 km Hike

VO2Max and weekly mileage

My VO2Max this week in my (Thursday, Friday, Saturday) activities were (51, N/A, 50) ml/kg/min respectively. Also my weekly mileage in this week was 47.5 km run and 3.8 km hike.

About individual runs

On Thursday (24/09): It was my first run after five days rest for my cold and you can imagine how happy I’m about it. I finished my medication after seven complete days last night. Everything was good and something funny happened after the run. My hands were so tired and painful after the run just because of holding them up during the run and the reason seems clear to me. My entire body was so weak because of my cold and the medication that I took and the process of recovery for lower parts of my body was much faster than the upper part. Therefore, however I was so comfortable to have a 13K run, but after that my hands were as weak as it was a bit difficult for me to shift my right hand up and open the entrance door of the building with my keys!

On Friday (25/09): Again watch didn’t save the activity, It was restarted during the run. I restarted it, canceleled the current activity and sterted a new one, turned off the watch and again turned it on … none of them worked. I guess the key point is to have the watch fully charged (this time it was 40%) and also clear the memory all the time. One point that I forget to mention last time is about gaining wait immediately after you stop training for a few days. After my cold when I stoped training for about five days, I was gaining weight for about 3 pounds. That’s interesting to me and I found it multiple times. It’s not weired cause your body used to traing 70-80km/week and then you suddenly stop it for a few days, then you are welcome to gain weight. You can neglect the effect of your cold cause I experienced the same thing even when I wasn’t sick.

On Saturday (26/09): I was a bit anxious in my run today, partially because I was checking my watch too often, and the main reason for checking it is because I decided to have my splits every 3 kilometers (to make sure I’m running in the right pace every single moment) and because of the inaccuracy of the GPS in computing the average pace of a lap in the first kilometer, I had to check my watch and adjust my pace too often which was taking a lot of effort from me, both physically and mentally. Instead, when I decided just to listen to the rhythmic of my body, adjust my pace that way and run in the pace that I am more comfortable in it, I got the desired result for my tempo pace and I also had a very comfortable run. That method worked because I have already selected the right pace for my tempo runs and the whole experience shows the importance of having a good understanding of your current limitations, selecting the right pace for your goal, and also understanding your pace just by your body and without looking at your watch. Five seconds back the schedule in the entire 15km tempo run (70 min) was the result of my training today which is perfect. I also had depression for one or two days due to this heavy workout, that’s a symptom of overtraining and as a result I should adjust my tempo pace from 4:40 to 4:44 or my marathon goal from 3:17 to 3:20. 3:20 is consistence with my half-marathon record and like always I was trying to push myself too much by setting in 3:17 for my marathon goal.

2015 Training Week 15 (14/09/2015 to 20/09/2015)

Activity Details in Google Sheets

Activity Schedule in Google Docs

04

Summary of this week’s activities

First, let’s review my activities during this week. I had 3 run activities in this week. On Tuesday (15/09) I had a  speed run 4×1200 with the following averages: (13.43 K, 5:12 min/km, 158 bpm, 80m elevation gain). On Wednesday (16/09) I had an 8K easy run with the following averages: (8.01 K, 5:34 min/km, 148 bpm, 80m elevation gain). On Friday (18/09) I had a  20K long run with the following averages: (20.10 K, 5:45 min/km, N/A bpm, N/A elevation gain).

MondayTuesdayWednesdayThursdayFridaySaturdaySundayTotal
14Speed run 4×1200-400 recoveryEasy 8K17Long 20K195K walk41.5 km Run

VO2Max and weekly mileage

My VO2Max this week in my (Tuesday, Wednesday, Friday) activities were (N/A, 52, N/A) ml/kg/min respectively. Also my weekly mileage this week was 41.5 km run.

About individual runs

On Tuesday (15/09): One day recovery was good enough for my Sunday long run knee issue and I didn’t have any knee or other problems for today run. My body is adapted to 80km/w run but it’s still struggling for the recovery of 30+km long runs as I was a bit tired yesterday in the sense that I wasn’t fresh enough to run up the stairs and my brain sent a huge amount of negative impulse this morning which indicated I am still tired from last long run which wasn’t true and I was also a bit depressed. They were both my brain’s way of trying to get me to stop from having my regular workout. The first key point is to have the long runs with the right pace (1min/mile easier than the race goal) and also having regular 8 hours sleep after the workouts. This article was pretty useful in this matter: http://www.runnersworld.com/for-beginners-only/how-slow-should-my-long-runs-be

On Friday (18/09): Apparently the activity was not properly saved in my watch so I have to upload it manually here. I got cold yesterday so I couldn’t make the tempo run yesterday and instead today I had long 20k which has the same distance as the tempo run but with an slightly easier pace. One issue for my morning run when I am sick is, when I get up in the morning I am usually too weak because of my cold and it takes me more than an hour to get into the situation that I would able to run, that would disturb my daily plan. The other issue is, I would not go for the speed, tempo runs because I am a bit weak and also because of sweating a lot in those workouts usually in the rainy weather of Vancouver these days, I am really scared of having a bad cold after speed/tempo runs.The solution is to try to keep the weekly mileage around 80km/week having the long 30k runs in your plan and continue your regular plan after you got better from your cold.

2015 Training Week 14 (07/09/2015 to 13/09/2015)

Activity Details in Google Sheets

Activity Schedule in Google Docs

04

Summary of this week’s activities

First, let’s review my activities during this week. I had 4 run activities in this week. On Tuesday (08/09) I had an 8K easy run with the following averages: (8.00 K, 6:07 min/km, 139 bpm, 68m elevation gain). On Wednesday (09/09) I had an 11K easy run with the following averages: (11.00 K, 6:35 min/km, 130 bpm, 123m elevation gain). On Thursday (10/09) I had a  5K tempo run with the following averages: (5.01 K, 4:54 min/km, 160 bpm, 36m elevation gain). On Sunday (13/09) I had a  30K long run with the following averages: (30.00 K, 5:05 min/km, 164 bpm, 199m elevation gain).

MondayTuesdayWednesdayThursdayFridaySaturdaySundayTotal
7Easy 8KEasy 11KTempo 5K1112Long 30K54.0 km Run

VO2Max and weekly mileage

My VO2Max this week in my (Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday, Sunday) activities were (51, 51, 51, 51) ml/kg/min respectively. Also my weekly mileage this week was 54.0 km run.

About individual runs

On Tuesday (08/09): However I had a race on Sunday and I should rest for three days, but I have read in lots of different articles that complete rest may not be the best option if you wanna train immediately for another race and you might try to have easy runs in that period instead, that’s why today I had a very relaxed run with average pace 6:07 min/km Also after the race, I have a bit of pain in my lower left leg and the place of my previous injury 3.5 years ago. It’s not serious and I guess it should be OK by gradual training but I write it down here to have it for my records just in case.

On Thursday (10/09): I wanted to have my 13K Tempo run today but I was so tired and my legs were so heavy still from the race on Sunday that I decided to stop running at 5K. I thought if I complete the tempo 13K, then I have to sleep for the rest of the day. I was able to continue running up to 13K but not with the tempo pace , with a pace slightly easier like 5:00 min/km or 5:10 min/km.

The other issue is about the right spot that I can train for a long tempo run. Maybe the best place for me would be the sea wall , but anyways small environments like streets are not appropriate for long tempo runs and it’s also dangerous specially cause you want to run fast and you are also tired while crossing the street. However it was such a heavy workout for me today that I wasn’t able to complete but after that during my day, I feel so good and much better than yesterday and the day before. Maybe because the three recovery days of the race is gone. I have no backache today (compared to yesterday that I had a bit early after my workout) and much less pain in my legs.

On Sunday (13/09): It was a windy day along the sea wall especially up to lions gate bridge and it was acting almost like hills for runners, after that from lions gate to Coal Harbour and Canada place it was pretty warm, in general it was a pretty tough day. About my knee issue today, after 16km I felt my knees are improving by having a tiny small pain in both of them, after 22km the pain was more severe again in both of them and after 28 km , my left knee was hurting too much. Fortunately in all of the run, my knee condition didn’t slow me down even in the last 5 km I was running faster than my average and I really did a good job in it ( last 5k pace is 4:47,4:47,4:45,4:59,5:00 I decreased the speed in the last two km cause I found my average HR is 164 and I didn’t wanna push myself too much like a race to keep my pace remain high mainly because of the fear of having three days rest after the workout) I had 1.5 L water during the run (two water bottle) Mainly started drinking after 15km and finished the first bottle at 21st km. I had no other nutrition during the run. After the run, my knees were really hurting, but fortunately it didn’t disturb my sleep at night. Having one day rest after this run seems necessary to me mainly because of my knee condition

2015 Training Week 13 (31/08/2015 to 06/09/2015)

Activity Details in Google Sheets

Activity Schedule in Google Docs

04

Summary of this week’s activities

First, let’s review my activities during this week. I had 5 run and 1 hike activities in this week. On Monday (31/08) I had a 12K long run with the following averages: (12.14 K, 4:52 min/km, 165 bpm, 127m elevation gain). On Wednesday (02/09) I had a speed run 8×600 with the following averages: (15.06 K, 5:13 min/km, 160 bpm, 61m elevation gain). On Thursday (03/09) I had a 9K easy run with the following averages: (9.03 K, 5:34 min/km, 144 bpm, 81m elevation gain). On Friday (04/09) I had a 11K run (tempo 8K) with the following averages: (11.00 K, 5:05 min/km, N/A bpm, N/A elevation gain). On Saturday (05/09) I had a 16K hike with the following averages: (16.16 K, 10:42 min/km, 77 bpm, 166m elevation gain). On Sunday (06/09) I had a 21K run (half Marathon race) with the following averages: (21.11 K, 4:33 min/km, 178 bpm, 64m elevation gain).

MondayTuesdayWednesdayThursdayFridaySaturdaySundayTotal
Long 12KTest WalkSpeed run 8×600-400 recoveryEasy 9K runTempo 8KPacific Spirit Regional TrailHalf Marathon-New Record68.3 km Run 16.1 km Hike

VO2Max and weekly mileage

My VO2Max this week in my (Monday, Wednesday, Thursday, Friday, Saturday, Sunday) activities were (51, 51, 51, N/A, 51, 52) ml/kg/min respectively. Also my weekly mileage this week was 68.3 km run and 16.1 km hike.

About individual runs

On Monday (31/08): 6am run in a windy, cold, rainy morning, but who cares, it’s my daily schedule! I should specifically work on my cadence as it’s still too low (175spm vs 180spm that it should be) I should put the priority of my run on monitoring cadence and adjust other factors (HR and speed) afterwards. Usually cadence would directly impact on both of HR and speed and if you keep speed steady and try to increase cadence then your Ave HR would definitely increase and also if you try to increase cadence while keeping HR steady it would definitely decrease your speed. That analyse is specifically important while in the last 10K-5K of the marathon you are extremely tired, you possibly won’t have a perfect run and you should know how to manage the situation. That’s what I still don’t know how to manage it!

On Thursday (03/09): As I am increasing the intensity of the SOS runs, it’s mandotory for me to have a very easy paced run for the easy run. Usually when I get out for a easy run I would start having a relaxed run run with ave. pace below 5:10-5:15. By experienced I’ve found that with that approach I would get too tired in a couple of weeks and therefore I would adjust the SOS workout. It’s also mentioned in the Hanson’s training schedule that easy runs should have a 5:30-6:30 pace, so based on my experiences I asjusted the easy run to the appropriate one after the 4th km. The other point is after the hard workout of yesterday, I had a very deep sleep last night as I was too tired, but it was interesting that during the day I didn’t feel tired at all. and finally mornings are getting colder and colder, but it’s just for the first min that you get out of home and during the running it doesn’t bother at all.

On Friday (04/09): Watch didn’t work!

On Sunday (06/09): My new Half-Marathon record. I guess the whole idea of training hard 80km/6 days a week is to keep yourself mentally prepared for the last 5k/10k of the half/full marathon to keep running with your desired pace and not to give up,cause everyone knows the real race just starts at the last kilometers.