Sunday, January 2, 2011

2010 in review and plans for 2011

2010- year in review.

I haven't posted in here in a while. My computer I fear is on it's last legs and I spent a good month recovering after the Worlds. So, it's been pretty quiet around here. After the Worlds, I took 5 days off and then began doing long, brisk walks followed by walk/runs when my legs were up to it. I didn't start running w/o the walk breaks til day 9. I'd rather take my time recovering than end up w/ a nasty injury from starting up too soon. After about 4 weeks, I started getting my legs back-albeit very slowly. I tried a fartlek at the indoor track and although endurance was still there, speed was just in the toilet. A week later, coach had me do a dozen 400s-not killer but just to try and re-stimulate those now long since hibernating fast twitch muscles. Ok this was embarrassing- cutting them just under 90 seconds proved a chore but I felt like I could do them like that all day-just not any faster. Lovely. At the beginning of week 6, Coach entered me in the 3000 at the CIS Masters Championships(Russia,Ukraine, Belarus,Moscow,St Pete, and a team from Tatarstan showed up). I thought he was out of his bloody mind to have me to a 3k after and ULTRA! I said well I'm sure as hell not going to bust out a 10.50 and I probably won't even break 12 my speed is so far in the toilet! Well, I ended up2nd overall in the 3000 and won the 35-39 division, but, yeah the time aint'fit to print-all endurance and zero speed. Bloody hell! 3 days later, we did another speed workout- 10x300 200 100. Wooo hoo I think my legs are finally beginning to wake up after 6+weeks of recovery. This went halfway decent 300s were coming out just over a minute 200s in 40-41 and the 100s 19-20 sec. Remember that fartlek just a couple weeks earlier- we threw in 25 100m pickups and I struggled to run 23sec-OMFG how a 100k just KILLS your speed!  3 days later, I ran the mile. OK if this isn't the antithesis of the kind of runner I am nothing else is. Hell's bells- I hate short stuff largely because I just SUCK at it. Speed still in the gutter I feared I'd be lucky to break 6.30 and put down an career worst.  I ran the 2nd 800 faster than the first and ended up 30 seconds better than that projected 6.25-30. I suck at the mile. In the summer I can get them down to 5.30 and that's about it and I never train for them, I do LONG intervals and prep for marathons and longer races. A week before the 100k, I did a 3k on the track as my final speedworkout and my 1600 split was 5.40-yeah speed is coming back but still in the gutter!  Things are geting better. Today, I did a 30k puckup run. Started at 5/minkm finished under 4.20-just hammered the last 10k. 20k easy paceabout 8 min miles 5/min k then 20-25 I dropped to 4.45/k 25-30 4.20 or faster(finishing about 6.50 milepace). It was actually not that hard. Coach has had me do the short speed stuff to get my legs moving again. I'm actually good to race again, but going to wait for now. I'm sitting on the fence as to whether or not to do the winter marathon for fun in St Pete on the 30th of January. I skipped it last yr w/ the idea of being fresher for the season, but hell if I go up there and run totally easy -like the 3:20 is range on snow it's not going to hurt me. I did that in 09 and had a great run in Riga 3.5months later and in 08 did the same and won the Chicago Lakefront 50k 9 weeks later. 

Plans for 2011-
I'm looking at a spring marathon either mid April or mid May. Something tells me it's going to be mid may because logistics are easier that the April option and the course is faster. After that, I need to focus on getting my butt in gear for the 100K Worlds again this yr which will be in Winschoten in September. I'm told this is a fast course and I do want to get my 100K time down. Additionally, there will be a World Cup 50K in Daugavpils July 11th. This would be a good opportunity to go after my 50K PR provided it's not 35C again all summer. It's 8 weeks from the Worlds and I need to watch out for recovery since this bugger will be on PAVEMENT. 50k on trails takes little out of me especially when I do it wasy as a training run, but pavement means I'm going to need to recover a little after regardless and don't want to jeopardize my 100k. After the 100k, I'm just going to have to recover and see how I feel, but I doubt I'll be doing much racing til into November and there's not much going on then. 

I was offered a slot on the Latvian Team in the 24 hr Worlds too(still waiting for a date but it's usually mid May) but willl likely not go simply because I know it would have me sidelined most of the summer recovering after and I want to focus on the 100KWorlds. This isn't ruling out that I wouldn't try the 24 hour in the future. Hell, I dream of doing Western States someday and still have the 100miler on my To Do List. I just want to do it when I feel ready.

Monkey wrench- 
I had an offer from Vitargo for sponsorship if I come in for a North American ultra. I found out about them through Todd Braje and decided to try their product while I had the chance to buy it in the US in October.It was sold out online so I had to hunt for it at the GNC's.  It's a great product and doesn't bother my stomach either. I'm working on trying to get some from a distributor in Lithuania for the rest of the season. I had been using Sponser products, but they aren't in Russia anymore as of late spring:( so if I'm going to switch why not go w/ Vitargo. I'd be willing to forego my spring marathon to fly in for a US ultra. The Chicago 50k is March 26th and it's still cool weather then. Ice Age 50mile would be fun too in May. Problem is, I simply can't afford a spring trip to the States now. I'm still recovering from the October trip. Russia is shut down for the holidays til the 11th afte which I'll call Delta and see if by a snowball's chance in hell I can use a mileage ticket. I'm trying to save $ to go and do altitude training in Kyrgystan for a month before the Worlds. I'll have to see how recovery goes after the 100k and maybe consider smthg in November. I very much miss ultras in the US and trail running in general. It really is fun.