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 J's exercise log

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Jay
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PostSubject: Re: J's exercise log   Thu Aug 04, 2011 4:41 am

Did a 2/2 for 6 miles on Monday. The thinking being I could run with more intensity if I had a bit longer rest inbetween each bit of running. And indeed that's how it worked. Today I shot out like a bullet but after about 2 minutes of each run my endurance wasn't so good. Still set another PR 25:07 for a 3/1 5K.
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PostSubject: Re: J's exercise log   Fri Aug 12, 2011 6:52 am

Today ran a 3/1 3 miler in 25:18, which was 11 seconds slower than last week. This week on Mon and Wed I had ran 3/2's for 6 miles each. The week before I had run 2/2's for 6 miles. I think perhaps 2/2's are better than 3/2's, although it could be more complicated than that.

This week I felt as if my intensity was less on the 3/2's. I finished both of them much easier. Could have gone farther. 3 minutes is just too long to run really hard it seemed... So instead my intensity came down. And so today I didn't effortlessly shoot out like a bullet. Today my body was used to running a bit slower and today's run was not fun at all. Bit chilly also which was quite painful on my throat and sinuses.

I had been expecting very good things from the 3/2's, had been expecting to break 25 minutes finally. But no. So next week back to 2/2's.

Probably shouldn't time the 5k every week also.

Actually timing myself for the 5k is easy compared to 2/2's for 6 miles. But mentally it's a PITA giving such a hard effort for 25 minutes hoping to shave a few seconds off. Would be better to time it every two weeks and possibly shave off more than a few seconds....? Although if I had run 3/2's for 5 runs I might have been quite annoyed at having wasted two weeks....
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PostSubject: Re: J's exercise log   Thu Sep 01, 2011 7:05 am

Been doing 2/2's up to 8 miles now. Last week 21 total miles worth of 2/2's. Another 8 on Monday. And I'm getting pretty sick of 2/2's. Today I did a 3/2 for just 6 miles in 57:11. Think I'll do 3/2's for a while. The thing is to do my next time trial as probably a 5/1. Going from 3/2's to a 3/1 time trial isn't any good. Did run the first 3 minutes today a bit farther than I ever have. Still not half a mile in 3 minutes (although this is slightly uphill). But if I had really just killed myself I might have come pretty close. If I had just run it out, maybe between 3:10 and 3:15.

Also today I did some weightlifting for the first time in many months. Just arms and shoulders. One set each. Shouldn't give me insomnia. Although I made sure to do it when I have the next day off and I'm being cautious.

I am getting increasingly cut with all this running and also eating a bit better now. Don't want to lose anymore weight though. Was surprised to see I only weighed 202 pounds the other day.
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PostSubject: Re: J's exercise log   Thu Sep 08, 2011 8:28 am

Came a bit close to insomnia. But not quite, will have to be careful.

After that first tiny bit of lifting, my next run was a 3/2 for 8 miles and I did the first 6 in 60:00 which was almost 3 minutes slower. But then today I did a 3/2 for 9 miles and the first 6 in 56:59, which was 3 minutes faster and a pr by 12 seconds. So my body quickly adapted to the extra bit of muscle I guess. Have added one legged partial squats at the end of my runs. That may also help I guess. Feeling very good.
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PostSubject: Re: J's exercise log   Thu Sep 08, 2011 8:35 am

It sounds like you've been doing really well lately. A steady improvement. Obviously you're going to have peaks & troughs, but you seem to some real understanding of your body & what it's telling you (if only we all listened as carefully to our bodies!).
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PostSubject: Re: J's exercise log   Fri Sep 09, 2011 1:49 pm

Thanks. I am pretty happy with how things have been going lately. Which this is an important time to remember what I'm doing, as opposed to taking things for granted and then slowly sliding back to a more typical level of health/fitness.

Most important thing to remember:

There is no willpower at all involved in what I'm doing at any time. I'm eating things I like. I'm doing exercise I like. This isn't hard work. This is wanting to feel good in the short term, which just happens to coincide with the long term.
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PostSubject: Re: J's exercise log   Wed Sep 21, 2011 9:31 am

Continuing 3/2's for 9 miles twice a week. First 6 miles recently I've improved from 55:45 down 55:00. And this last time I did the 9 miles in 84:45, although occasionally running a bit beyond 3 minutes. Think I'll start alternating between 3/2's and 3/1's, which I expect will slow down my progress. Which may be a good thing. Too much faster and faster running for long distances may increase chance of injury. I'm curious to see how much farther I'll manage with a 3/1 now? I'd guess about 3 minutes although perhaps not? Shall see.

Have to give up overhead presses because I'm starting to wake up at 3Am with lower back pain. Although haven't had any insomnia. Adding in close grip benches and pulldowns now. Weight is around 205. Think that one scale earlier that said 200 was off.

For the first 3 miles, my 3/2 pr is down to 26:25.
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PostSubject: Re: J's exercise log   Mon Oct 03, 2011 10:44 am

Adding some continous running basically because I want to get up to 15 mile runs so I can go on a run that's less monotonous but that unfortunately is only adequately marked at 7.5 miles out.

So last wednesday did my first 3 mile continous and managed 24:06, On friday did it again in 23:08, which is a nice improvement. Did 24 miles that week which is also high.

Today I did 6 miles continous for first time and managed 50:31. Followed by 6 miles of 3/2 intervals. Total time of 1:49:46. I guess it was nice to continously run that far and not feel like a snail. But still will be getting much, much faster, barring any injuries...

It would probably be more useful if I just continued doing nothing but intervals for now, but 50% intervals is still a hell of a lot of intervals. Still far more than it seems just about everyone advocates.

Close grip benched 110 for 10 reps (about failure). And widegrip (remembered the hard way that close grip makes my neck hurt) pulldowns 120 x 17, (not really even close to failure). Then a few additional things with virtually no intensity. Did do 40 sit-ups and 50 each partial one legged squats as usual.

This thursday I'll almost certainly break 50 minutes for 6 miles. Well, I guess I might not.
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PostSubject: Re: J's exercise log   Mon Oct 03, 2011 11:27 am

Nice going mate - onwards & upwards Very Happy
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PostSubject: Re: J's exercise log   Mon Oct 10, 2011 6:39 am

Thanks. Smile So then of course that last monday I got some insomnia from the weightlifting. Then had an awful run on Thursday. Crashed and burned 7 miles in. This Monday though did a 7/2 for 12 miles in 1:46:42, (basically 9 minute miles) which I guess isn't too bad. A PR like every week! Long way from 6 min miles though. Maybe next year.
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PostSubject: Re: J's exercise log   Wed Oct 26, 2011 8:59 am

Found this new route to run which is a very refreshing change. Very peaceful. Not keeping track of times. Just doing 2/2's twice a week. Feeling extremely fast. Shall time myself for 3 miles in early November. Counting the walking... I'm doing more than 20 miles a week no problem now. Each interval session is almost 2 hours now and I'm not even feeling tired. Not really slowing down as I go. Wondering if I ought to just work up to three hours??? Don't want to lose intensity but really I haven't been for these almost two hour sessions. Think I'm going to hit a huge PB for 3 miles in a week or two.

Also, surprised myself and close gripped benched 110lbs for 18 reps on Monday. Other lifts had similar improvement. Wonder if all these 2/2's are strengthening my arms even.

Got out the jeans for the winter. They're all way too big around the waist. Need to buy a smaller size. They're a 36 inch waist. I might be down to a 32 at this point.
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PostSubject: Re: J's exercise log   Thu Oct 27, 2011 4:25 am

Skinny fit Twisted Evil
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PostSubject: Re: J's exercise log   Tue Nov 08, 2011 6:11 am

Last 2/2 on Thursday I started running with an elongated stride and caused my back to hurt and my right knee. Today my back is finally feeling back to it's norm. Knee still a bit off.

But, today 3 mile time trial in....

....22:24! New PR. Old was 23:08 last month. The 2/2's certainly work.
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PostSubject: Re: J's exercise log   Tue Jan 31, 2012 5:58 am

My knee was hurting there for a bit and so I did some slower running for a while. Had a couple of weeks where I did two 16 mile runs each week, still interval style. 2:15/1:30 walk. Shorter rest breaks really slow me down and I'm strongly to the conclusion that longer rest breaks are better. The shorter the rest break, the less and less it's interval training and the more it's just a run. And one's conditioning only improves so much. 2 minute rest breaks are IMHO, really important.

So now my knee has been much better and I'm cautiously back up to faster running. 2:30/2:00 intervals for just 100 minutes twice a week. Being careful about my form especially at the end of the run, as when I'm fatigued my form can break down and that's when I'm more likely to tweak my knee. I was worried that as I get faster I'm just going to keep on having knee issues. But perhaps it's anerobic running, where I'm straining more, swinging my arms, etc around more and just not as fluid, that is more likely to cause issues.

Haven't done any time trials since November though. Probably will do one in a couple of weeks.

Decided to get back into a bit of heavy lifting. Just one heavy set of overhead presses followed by a set of dips once a week. And then 3 days later a set of pull-ups. I actually got to BW+120lbx3 on dips that way years ago. My first set of dips was laughably awful. Just 6 measly reps and I felt like I was going to rip a chest tendon. I'm sure that will improve though.

Feeling really good.
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PostSubject: Re: J's exercise log   Tue Jan 31, 2012 7:30 am

Glad to have you back posting on your log! I was worried there had been a problem with the knee or something.
Dips take a while to adapt to if you've avoided them for a while for a lot of people, 6 is an ok start to work up from, it's best to start moderately. I've met people who've started back training & worked out so hard they could not train again for weeks or even hurt themselves thinking they could go back to their old weights first session! Slow return & consistent training is the goal.
I recently read a book that had a really awesome tip for tracking training. Simply that 80% of your training should be 'ok', not 'awesome', not 'terrible', but 'punching the clock', the other 20% should be split between 'above average' sessions & 'below average' sessions. The simple idea I'd never thought of was to write this down in your log. Simply write 80% +10% or -10% the goal is to aim at mainly 80%ers & +10%ers, when you find a string of -10% popping up you can go & look for a cause as something is going wrong. I think that it's actually stringing the 80%ers together consistently that allow gains, sure you use the +10% days when they come along & ride out the -10% sessions when they come around (& they do for everyone), but keeping the 80% sessions chugging along will keep the gains coming in the long term. Also not dictating your training by those very rare stellar sessions. The amount of guys I know who once pulled 2.5x bodyweight once & now work out all their training on that is amazing - base your training on those 80% or 'average' day & you'll do so much better, stick to that & keep those gains plodding along & in time they mount up. This is the major change in my 2012 log, it should allow for easier tracking & let me see much easier when things need to change.
I actually wrote a blog post about the book here it hasn't got the best name ever (lift, run, bang), but it was a really useful read for that one tip!
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PostSubject: Re: J's exercise log   Mon Feb 20, 2012 12:09 pm

Yes, whenever i have a really really good workout, I try to temper things by thinking this means I'll probably make up for it with a subpar workout next time. Also i try to not get discouraged by remembering that if I got measurably better everytime (at lifting) I'd be benching 3000 pounds by now, etc.

Doing a mini-Casey Viator at the moment though. (When he had to take time off because of an eye injury and then made absurd improvement in a month.) My single weekly set of dips has gone: 6, 9, 12 and today 14. Overhead presses went 13, 15, 17 and then I switched to sitting down as standing caused excessive arch I guess, resulting in back pain, sitting I've done 15 and today 18. Wide grip pullups has been 6, 8, 9, 10.

A few months back I ran half a mile in 3:02. This was when i was riding the exercise bike really hard twice a week after running. That wasn't fun though and i finally convinced myself to stop. And now I'm definitely slower. So adding the bike back and also have added sit-ups, as I really seemed to have run faster when I did those too.

I switched from 2:30/2:00 intervals to 4/2 intervals as my back was stiff a lot in the early morning. And my right knee was starting to bother me again. I've found both issues go away wtih slower running. I'm hoping though it's more a matter of more aerobic running (less torso twisting/arm swing/anerobic running) as opposed to this just being what happens when I go faster. So 4/2's for ten miles twice a week. Did first one in 92:58. Second one in 92:20.
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PostSubject: Re: J's exercise log   Thu Mar 22, 2012 5:08 am

Been all over the place lately and hard to summarize.

few things though: did a continuous 12 mile run in 117 minutes. Then did a 6/2 run/walk 12 mile run in 108 minutes. 4/2 run walk is very slightly slower than 6/2. So, still very much run/walk faster for long distances. This is normal for being a somewhat slower runner.

My running just hasn't improved much lately, I think because I haven't been doing shorter intervals, which I haven't done because I keep getting right knee and lower back pain. Need to find a way to get some shorter interval work in though. Trying now to do just a bit at the beginning.

BTW, one set of dips each week I went 6, 9, 12, 14, 16, and then started continuous running and running 4 days a week, going for a bit more weekly mileage and did ....only 12 dips and they felt awful. This caused me to start switching all kinds of things around which I don't care to explain.
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PostSubject: Re: J's exercise log   Thu Mar 22, 2012 8:53 am

You shouldn't go too crazy after one bad workout, especially if you've been upping the mileage, as the body is sometimes slow to adapt to increases in energy expenditure. If you had a good session the time before bear that in mind as the body has an automatic 'back-off' system. "Every peak is surround by two valleys" is often true even with slight increases sometimes. You'll have a good day, then one that really sucks. This doesn't mean that you're failing, it is part of the adaptation process. I now use the 80:10:10 rule for training - 80% will be average, 10% will be awesome, 10% will suck. If I get a 'suck' session, I let it go, if I get a few suck sessions in a row THEN I start to consider what I'm doing wrong? I may need to back-off for a bit, change the training or whatever, but several suck sessions & you know something isn't right!
That is how I generally work it anyway, in your case things might have been different, but I thought I'd mention it.
As a side note I have have a lot of suck sessions lately, but I'm still coming back from a very bad illness (lost over 1 & a half stone in under 2 weeks!), but I'm just playing it by ear on this one. I may be stuck doing 'pink dumbbell' style workouts for a bit, but it's getting back there slowly!
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PostSubject: Re: J's exercise log   Fri Mar 23, 2012 4:33 pm

What you say is definitely good sense but I must admit the single suck session did still cause me to make changes. Not so much because I got weaker for one workout but that just got me thinking about it harder. On the overhead presses I tweaked my neck that last workout which hurt for a good week. Felt like I was going to rip a chest muscle on the dips also. Both of these may have been related to the extra running. But still, such high intensity workouts do increase injury risks. And also I've just been dreading lifting weights. Really not enjoying the workout.

Anyway for quite a while I've thought for both endurance and strength, high freq is the ideal way to go. The problem is that it means less intensity and it's harder to get the intensity just right, and I for one, really hate going off into overtraining, as for me especially, it means insomnia.

Anyway though I've gone off to higher freq with much less intensity. Just a few exercises done quickly each day. Very cautious rep/poundage increases. As the intensity is quite low, it's impossible to gauge progess really. Usually what happens is intensity starts creeping up, without one realizing it. Then bamm!

Insomnia.

Anyway for running just read a great article:
'Intervals, Thresholds, and Long Slow Distance: the Role of Intensity and Duration in Endurance Training'
2009 vol 13 article from here: http://sportsci.org/

Really want to add some easy runs to my two weekly interval sessions. Previously reading some Arthur Lydiard got me thinking that way, but then I quickly strayed. This article, going on about an 80/20 split, is going to get me to stick with it a bit harder. I find those easy runs day after day quite boring. But then life is mostly actually quite boring. I manage eating, work, repetitive interactions and so on more or less. And I'm listening to audiobooks.
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PostSubject: Re: J's exercise log   Fri Mar 23, 2012 5:49 pm

I'll have to take a look at that study later on. If you feel you're near to overtraining then backing off is probably best.
Had so much on this week with a few new companies supporting VBB, articles to get done, the new picture contests on the VBB facebook group to design & get off to the company to make sure it's ok with them & a guest blog to sort out doing I've had no time to do anything other than sift through research about beans (they are awesome - even the so called bad things in beans aren't actually bad at all. It's weird how great beans are for your health!). Anyway, if anyone is interested the full piece should be in the next semi-vegan magazine (yes the name is rubbish, I have mention that to the publisher before!).
Right I need to sleep right now!
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PostSubject: Re: J's exercise log   Tue Mar 27, 2012 6:37 am

This is the direct link to that article about the 80/20 basic intensity split:
http://ww.sportsci.org/2009/ss.htm

Also just finished Run Faster from the 5K to the Marathon: How to be your own coach by Brad Hudson
which talks about how important it is to do hills/hill sprints, tempo/threshold runs (hard for 2 to 6 miles), intervals, and slower longer runs. I basically have been doing only intervals. Trying to do all these others at least once a week now, and slower easier runs as often as I can manage with my 15 hour grueling workdays.

Today I did 2 miles in 14:29, then two easy miles and finally 2 more miles (somewhat uphill) in 16:09. My low intensity/high freq strength training is consisting of a set of overhead presses, close grip bench presses, tri pushdowns and a set of chinups. Very low intensity. Very afraid of insomnia.
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