2020 Training Week 19 (23/11/2020 to 29/11/2020)

Activity Details in Google Sheets

Activity Schedule in Google Docs

Summary of this week’s activities

First, let’s review my activities during this week. I had 4 run activities this week. On Tuesday (24/11) I had an 11K run with the following averages: (11.01 K, 5:51 min/km, 161 bpm, 104m elevation gain). On Thursday (26/11) I had a 14K run with the following averages: (14.00 K, 6:35 min/km, 147 bpm, 102m elevation gain). On Friday (27/11) I had an incomplete tempo 3K run with the following averages: (2.72 K, 5:44 min/km, 157 bpm, 14m elevation gain). On Sunday (29/11) I had a 16K run with the following averages: (16.01 K, 5:35 min/km, 161 bpm, 32m elevation gain).

MondayTuesdayWednesdayThursdayFridaySaturdaySundayTotal
2311K Run2514K RunTempo 3K Incomplete2816K Run43.7 km
10405205883558166017422362000478,614
75.4 kg75.8 kg75.5 kg76.8 kg76.2 kg76.2 kg76.2 kg

VO2Max and weekly mileage

My VO2Max this week in my (Tuesday, Thursday, Friday, Sunday) activities were (48, 48, 49, 49) ml/kg/min respectively. My weekly totals this week were 43.7 km run and 78,614 steps

About individual runs

On Tuesday (24/11): It was supposed to be a general aerobic run (70-81% HRMax) and before the run I decided to have it with a final average pace 6:00 min/km. Immediately after starting the run, I felt that I needed to change my training field again and run in the Langara Golf Course because I was a bit down and couldn’t run in a boring field (my regular training field) for the entire 11 kilometers. While passing the 49th avenue, I had to stop my run two times for a total of 53 seconds and it is almost clear (at least the first stop) in my running heart rate diagram! Running in the golf course with it’s own uphills and downhills, it is difficult to manage your pace and your heart rate so again like in my last run, I decided not to carefully monitor my pace and therefore my final average pace was a little bit faster than my desired pace (5:51 min/km vs 6:00 min/km). As a result, my final average heart rate (86% HRMax) was also higher than the desired range (70-81% HRMax). Therefore, I experienced overtraining the day after this run which I was tired all the time during the day. I postponed my 14K endurance run from Wednesday (the day after this run) to Thursday and on Wednesday I even didn’t have my daily walk. This is why I should really stay committed to my own training plan and avoid overtraining but sometimes it happens and in this run, I really didn’t believe I was running too fast for it! The other thing that I wanted to mention today is about the weather condition and the conditions of the terrain! I usually never complain about the situation, but after this run I told myself multiple times during the day that it is really difficult to stay committed to a training plan in rainy cold days with muddy roads which makes your entire shoes and clothes muddy! I am still grateful for living in Vancouver where I can easily run in fall and winter without too much trouble for it. I know it is almost impossible to run on the roads during the same time of the year on the east coast!

On Thursday (26/11): In my training plan, it was a 14K endurance (74-84% HRMax) run. After overtraining in my latest run, for this run I strictly decided to work with my heart rate and disregard my running pace completely ! I also decided to run in my regular training field (around Columbia park) because it had less uphills and downhills and it was easier to manage your pace and heart rate in it compared to Langara Golf Course. It was a good run until the end of kilometer 5 where at that point, both of my feet started to feel numb and it continued for 2-3 kilometers. After that, fortunately things got back to normal! My final average heart rate was 79% HRMax and my final average pace was 6:35 min/km. I am really surprised how I was able to manage my run that slow such that my final average heart rate was in the desired range! Previously, as long as my pace was slower than a certain one (usually around 6:00 or 6:15 min/km for endurance runs) I was considering my runs safe no matter what my heart rate was, but after overtraining in my last run, I changed my method! In fact after my last run, I decided to strictly stay in the desired heart rate zone so that I would be able to avoid overtraining in the long term! Based on those explanations, it was an awesome run today and I was successfully able to manage my run as an endurance one (a real endurance one actually :D) ! I also want to mention the conditions of the terrain! This time it was way better compared to the last run and I didn’t get muddy at all! It was still a bit cold (average temperature 10.6 C) but no rain during my run!

On Friday (27/11): I started this run as a tempo 13K run and I planned to do it with a final average pace faster than 6:00 min/km up to whatever my heart rate allows me (80-91% HRMax) It was dark at night and the field was not visible properly. Also in my former runs around the columbia park, I had the negative experience of being close to fall down during the day but fortunately it actually didn’t happen. This run the story was different. In the first few minutes of the run I totally fell down on the ground but I let it go and started to continue my run. Again after a little while and for the second time, I fell down on the ground this time way harder in a way that both my hands and a little bit of my right knee got bloody! I made the right decision and didn’t continue the run, particularly because it was a tempo run and it was likely that I would fall down furthermore during the run. I was pretty down that night and partially the day after that but fortunately I quickly recovered. One of my main concerns was to find a new field for my training because there is nothing good around my neighbourhood but I also made a decision on that and decided to take a skytrain for my runs to the seawall and run there. I had the experience of running there for literally thousands of kilometers and fortunately nothing happened to me at all so it’s definitely safe to run there. The only problem is about timing where I have to spend 20 min to get there and 20 min to get back but I guess it’s worth it first and also I have no other option so lets stay motivated for the runs and choose the best field which is along the seawall.

On Sunday (29/11): It was my first run after my injury on Friday. I pushed myself hard to change my training field from Columbia park to a new place and I finally did it. I took the Canada line skytrain to the olympic village station and went to run along the seawall from there. The last time I was running along the seawall was a few years ago and it was such a pleasure to run there again. I believe you would have a better performance by running along the seawall compared to a closed loop like Columbia park because in the seawall you are free to improve your pace anytime you need vs in a closed loop you frequently need to turn and change your direction and that would reduce your speed and your performance a lot. Since I didn’t complete my last 13K tempo run, I was behind my weekly mileage for 10km, so I planned in my mind to have a half marathon in this run instead of a regular 16K run. Therefore, I continued to run along the seawall for almost 11K when I turned back at that point (2x11km~half marathon). I also planned to do a sub two hours half marathon so I tried to keep my pace about 5:40 min/km. After about 15km, I noticed that for a 16K endurance run in my training plan, maybe it’s not a good idea to both run it faster and farther (I was worried about injury and overtraining) so I just decided to keep my pace steady for the rest of the run and instead finish the run after just 16km. I successfully finished the run after 16 km with a final average pace 5:35 min/km and final average heart rate 86% HRMax. Therefore this run was a little bit faster than an endurance run (2% HRMax faster) and in the correct range of a lactate threshold run (80-91% HRMax). As a result, this run would partially compensate for my missed lactate threshold run in my training plan on Friday. Therefore everything was in place for this week’s training except a lack of 10km in my weekly mileage. At the end of the run, I noticed I had a little bit of nipple bleeding from both sides during my run.

2020 Training Week 18 (16/11/2020 to 22/11/2020)

Activity Details in Google Sheets

Activity Schedule in Google Docs

Summary of this week’s activities

First, let’s review my activities during this week. I had 4 run activities this week. On Tuesday (17/11) I had an 11K run with the following averages: (11.01 K, 5:58 min/km, 154 bpm, 65m elevation gain). On Wednesday (18/11) I had a 13K run with the following averages: (13.01 K, 5:56 min/km, 169 bpm, 88m elevation gain). On Friday (20/11) I had a tempo 13K run with the following averages: (13.00 K, 5:39 min/km, 177 bpm, 80m elevation gain). On Sunday (22/11) I had a 16K run with the following averages: (16.00 K, 6:16 min/km, 152 bpm, 137m elevation gain).

MondayTuesdayWednesdayThursdayFridaySaturdaySundayTotal
1611K Run13K Run19Tempo 13K2116K Run53.0 km
11678119241911211749140791414717659100,348
75.5 kg76.6 kg76.3 kg74.8 kg74.5 kg75.4 kg75.4 kg

VO2Max and weekly mileage

My VO2Max this week in my (Tuesday, Wednesday, Friday, Sunday) activities were (49, 48, 47, 48) ml/kg/min respectively. My weekly totals this week were 53.0 km run and 100,348 steps.

About individual runs

On Tuesday (17/11): Another 11K run which completely cleared my mind. It was among those days today that I really didn’t want to run. I dressed up early this morning but decided to have a glass of milk and supplement as I didn’t want to run with an empty stomach and after that, I was feeling a bit tired so I again postponed the run. I wasn’t that tired but still not feeling strong enough to have an 11K run. The main idea about being tired is about my energy level and the quality of my last night sleep plays a critical role in this matter. I really need to have 8 hours of high quality sleep in order to have a good run in the day after and these days for many reasons including having tea late at night, I couldn’t sleep early like always and also the quality of my sleep was also not great. I really need to change certain parts of my life in order to get back to a disciplined lifestyle and being able to have a balanced life which would include all of my necessary activities. The key point for having a disciplined and balanced lifestyle is good sleep and focused mine. I don’t have that much to say about this run as it was supposed to be a general aerobic run (70-81 % HRMax) but before the run I told myself as long as you run it slower than 6:00 min/km it should be fine. My final average heart rate ended up 82% HRMax which make scene for a general aerobic run.

On Wednesday (18/11): Following my concern in my previous run, let’s first talk about my last night’s sleep! I had a much better sleep last night. I found this pattern useful, you either have to have a high quality sleep the night before or if the quality of your sleep is not good, you have to increase the length of your sleep! The quality of my sleep last night was not great, as like always, I woke up multiple times during the night to see if it’s time for getting up or not! From tonight on, I am going to wear my (Garmin Fenix 3 HR) watch at night (without my Garmin HRM Run) to be able to monitor my sleep more efficiently (for both quality and quantity of it)! Like always, when it’s time for working with numbers, I can analyse, manage and solve the issue way easier! As a result, I am going to add another column to my excel analyse file (for my training) called “sleep” and would monitor my sleep accordingly! About today’s run, I had a 13K endurance run (74-84% HRMax) in my training plan today and before the run, I told myself as long as it’s a 6:00 min/km or slower run, it should be OK even though my heart rate be a little bit higher than 84% HRMax. The reason is first, the accuracy of my Garmin HRM Run is not always great, and second sometimes it’s easier to work with your pace rather than your heart rate and third, managing your pace in your run is way easier than managing your heart rate! Based on those explanations, I successfully had my run with average pace 5:56 min/km even though my final average heart rate was 90% HRMax (I still question that measurement as the intensity of my run (what I felt) was just 5/10)! About the quality of the terrain, the road was full of holes filled with water and therefore it was difficult to run on the road, but anyways I am always fully equipped for my training and quality of terrain and weather conditions wouldn’t affect my run that much! In the worst scenario, you and your shoes would get wet, not a big deal!

On Friday (20/11): Lactate Threshold (Pace, Heart Rate)=(5:19 min/km, 180 bpm). I had a very good sleep last night with 85% deep sleep which is kind of weird to me. I usually get up multiple times during the night but last night it didn’t happen. Fortunately I added the sleep column to my training excel file and since two nights ago, I can monitor my sleep properly. I found it useful to sleep a little bit more (particularly for the heavy day workouts like tempo/speed/long runs) where in that case, I would have enough energy for my workout and my daily activities and I won’t experience lack of energy for sleep reasons. That was a serious problem for me in the past! This run was supposed to be a tempo (lactate threshold) run (80-91% HRMax) and before the run I just told myself if the final average pace is 5:40 min/km it should be OK even though my average heart rate would be slightly more than 91% HRMax. 5:40 min/km was a safe pace for this run as my last 13K run’s average pace was 5:56 min/km. I successfully finished this run with an average pace 5:39 min/km as desired and my average heart rate was 95% HRMax. I again want to question the measurement of my average heart rate because what I felt for the intensity of this run was just 6/10 and I wasn’t that much tired after the run. It’s always great to work with both heart rate and pace because lot’s of the time, one is not sufficient to determine how hard you should go for the run! I also want to talk about my stress level before starting this tempo run! I am usually stressful before tempo runs but for this run, because I told myself you can do it with a safe pace (just 16 seconds per km faster than my last run) I was pretty confident about the run. It’s always great to have less stress for the key activities of the week and instead, enjoy the time you spent for your important runs. Ater the run, I worked with my gym ball and foam roller to cool down my muscles! It’s necessary after the SOS workouts!

On Sunday (22/11): Another great run in a new field called “Langara Golf Course”. Sometimes life makes me distracted and long runs are the best for getting back to a focused life, particularly if it is in the great nature of Vancoucer. In the past, I had the experience of running in the same track and field for a long time and after that, I had less interest in running there. Also before this run, because my last run was a little bit intense, I decided to have it very slow with a final average pace around 6:15 min/km. In my training plan it was an endurance run (74-84% HRMax) but like always, I prefer to set a certain running pace goal before starting the run, which in that case things would be more clear to me. Working with a combination of pace and heart rate is always better than working with either of them. Combining those two facts together, immediately after starting the run, I decided to try “Langara Golf Course” today which was very close to my neighbourhood. I have never been there before (just knew it on the map) and I was lucky that I easily found it. Usually I visit a new course in advance before running there for the first time, but it wasn’t the case this time. During the run, I found that the perimeter of the course is 2.94 km . I measured it just once so it might not be so accurate. The course had a few uphills and downhills (the west side had downhills and the east side had uphills) so it was difficult to maintain a certain pace or heart rate during the run. As a result, I just decided to run comfortably there and at the same time, I tried to stay close to 6:15 min/km and stay in the desired heart rate range i.e. 74-84% HRMax. I am somehow surprised that the final average pace of the run (6:16 min/km) was so close to my desired one (6:15 min/km). During the run, I really enjoyed the nature of Langara Golf Course and of course in the future, one of my main options for my long runs would be there (better in the morning to stay safe from people playing golf)

2020 Training Week 17 (09/11/2020 to 15/11/2020)

Activity Details in Google Sheets

Activity Schedule in Google Docs

Summary of this week’s activities

First, let’s review my activities during this week. I had 4 run activities this week. On Tuesday (10/11) I had an 11K run with the following averages: (11.00 K, 5:53 min/km, 163 bpm, 72m elevation gain). On Thursday (12/11) I had a 13K run with the following averages: (13.01 K, 5:41 min/km, 167 bpm, 103m elevation gain). On Saturday (14/11) I had an 11K run with the following averages: (11.01 K, 6:09 min/km, 173 bpm, 103m elevation gain). On Sunday (15/11) I had a 14K run with the following averages: (14.00 K, 6:10 min/km, 159 bpm, 90m elevation gain).

MondayTuesdayWednesdayThursdayFridaySaturdaySundayTotal
0911K Run1113K Run1311K Run14K Run49.0 km
1102319203114821378116044125471550899,588
75.5 kg75.6 kg75.6 kg76.4 kg76.0 kg76.3 kg75.9 kg

VO2Max and weekly mileage

My VO2Max this week in my (Tuesday, Thursday, Saturday, Sunday) activities were (50, 50, 47, 48) ml/kg/min respectively. My weekly totals this week were 49.0 km run and 99,588 steps.

About individual runs

On Tuesday (10/11): Back to run after 7 weeks of rest. Life got busy, I had to change my house and therefore I couldn’t train for 7 weeks. Hopefully I am back to run now. I am still not sure if I want to follow elements of a training plan or just run. The point is following a training plan with it’s desired intensities would make me tired all the time and it wouldn’t remain any room for me for my other activities but anyways my training is something I have to stay with because I need it for keeping myself mentally and physically balanced and also for being happy. About the run, I planned to do an 11K general aerobic run (70-81% HRMax) but my final average heart rate turned out to be a little bit higher (163 bpm or 87.6 % HRMax) That should be OK for the first run. My current plan for the following several weeks is to have 4 days a week run with 50-60 km weekly mileage. Again for the weekly mileage (and maybe for the intensities) I would follow 10K training plan of “Faster Road Racing” book by Pete Pfitzinger.

On Thursday (12/11): Based on my training plan it was supposed to be a 13K endurance (74-84% HRMax) run but again I did it faster (89.8% HRMax) and therefore it was a hard lactate threshold (80-91 % HRMax) run, I intentionally right down these numbers multiple times to gradually memorize them. This is the second time I am running faster than what I was supposed to run and this time it’s not OK. As a result I have to change my next run from an 11K lactate threshold run to an 11K endurance run. The reason that I was running faster than what I was supposed to run is simple, I can not convince myself to run slower than 6 min/km as it’s too slow for me in my prime time but I have to accept the fact that I just got back to my training after 7 weeks of rest and therefore I shouldn’t push myself too much , 6 min/km and slower should be OK for you for the first few weeks. The other point is, the day after this run I was super tired and I slept a lot. This is what happens to me all the time during my training after a heavy workout (particularly at the beginning of my training) and I don’t have any complaints about it. The other thing that I used to experience at the beginning of my training was overeating but fortunately I don’t have that problem right now because I carefully monitor my weight each and every day because I’m on a diet for more than 6 months.

On Saturday (14/11): Lactate Threshold (Pace, Heart rate): (5:28 min/km, 180 bpm ). I had this run in rainy weather but fortunately it wasn’t heavy rain. This was a very easy run for me (4/10 intensity) but for some reason my average heart rate was measured 93% HRMax with my Garmin HRM Run (that I really don’t trust on it all the time). As a result my watch determined my VO2Max 47 this time which again I am sure it’s not accurate. Anyways in this run I am very glad that I had it with a very slow average pace (6:09 min/km) and it would help me to have my 14K endurance run tomorrow with no much pressure on myself. During the second half of the run, my right foot got numb but towards the end of the run it was OK. I was a little bit busy this morning so I had to have this run later at night in rainy weather but in any case I am very glad that I made it ultimately!

On Sunday (15/11): About today it was a relatively warm and sunny day (Ave. Temp. 15.4 C) and it made the run so enjoyable. The data I got from my HRM Run was way more realistic today compared to yesterday. According to my Garmin HRM Run monitor, my average heart rate was 85% HRM Max and therefore as desired, it was an endurance run (74-84% HRM Max). During my run I noticed that my heart rate is slightly getting higher than what it was planned, but because my pace was slower than 6:00 min/km , I was OK with that and I didn’t push myself to keep my heart rate exactly in the desired range. Today, I had a great conversation with a friend of mine Ross who was a former Boston Marathoner. I told him when I’m on my training, I am tired all the time. I was assuming maybe this is the nature of training for a race and pushing your boundaries as it was my experience before and I’d overheard it from competitive athletes. He advised me that you might experience overtraining as it’s a common problem for athletes. I really didn’t believe my problem might be overtraining so from now on (including my run today) I decided to strictly keep my heart rate in the desired range of my training plan!