Going with the flow (Kaiser Week 5)

Last week in running & exercise…

Tues: Alternating tempo run + stairs.
Workout: warm-up, 5 miles alternating between 9:10 and 9:30, 5 x Cleveland Cascade, cool-down.
Actual splits: 9:09, 9:25, 9:10, 9:21, 9:08
As you can probably tell, I had a hard time honing in on the slight difference between 9:10 and 9:30.  It was an interesting challenge!  I thought I was handling the Cleveland Cascade well, then I saw people jumping up the stairs one-legged.  Holy cow!  Of course, I’m going to have to try that sometime soon. :)
Before this run, my legs felt OK, so I thought I had recovered from Foster City.  Afterwards, however, it was a different story — my legs felt pretty trashed.
7.2 miles @ 9:35/mile + 5x Cleveland Cascade

Wed: Easy/recovery jog.
Random weather rant: not to complain about beautiful 60-70 degree weather, especially when the rest of the country was in a polar vortex, but it’s been really unseasonably hot and dry here in California.  We’re experiencing a very bad drought and there’s supposedly very little rain in the forecast for the next 3 months.  BOO.
3.7 miles @ 10:37/mile

Thurs: Yoga.
Opted for a rest day.

Fri: Long trail run at Lake Chabot.
With a camping trip planned for the weekend, I switched my long run to Friday morning.  Last week, I signed up for Inside Trail Racing’s Chabot 30K on Feb. 22nd, so I thought it would be a good idea to hit the trails.  I hadn’t gone trail running in over 3 weeks and I was looking forward to it  I also tried out my new Salomon soft flask.  I don’t want to fill my Hydrapak bladder (that goes in my hydration vest) with anything besides water (mostly to make it easier to clean), but I also want to run with a little bit of Cytomax, so I thought a small soft flask would be the perfect solution.  I was able to tuck the flask into my vest’s front pouch without any issues.  It worked well, but I’ll use it a few more times before I officially review it.

The Salomon soft flask is made from silicone and has a bit valve.

The Salomon soft flask is made from silicone and has a bit valve.

My intended route was to run the ITR half marathon course at Chabot (there are 4 race distances on 2/22), which would include some new trails for me.  I was dealing with a lot of little physical issues, that combined with the heat, resulted in a somewhat brutal run.  Oh, and did I mention that the 30K will not only be 5 miles longer, but also have 1300′  more elevation gain??  It was a good and humbling reminder of the task at hand and that I need to go out a bit more conservatively come race day.

View from Two Rocks Trail at Lake Chabot.

View from Two Rocks Trail at Lake Chabot.

13 miles @ 12:00/mile, ~1500′ elevation gain

Sun: Hiking.
We went camping this weekend at Julia Pfeiffer Burns State Park in Big Sur.  Even though being in a drought sucks, I selfishly loved the nice weather and not having to deal with rain while camping.  I’m hoping to write a post just about the epic campsite that our friend CR secured for us, but for now, I’ll just tell you that we went on a hike on Ewoldsen Trail, which was gorgeous and challenging.  My legs are sore today, perhaps from a combination of the long run Friday and the hike.  There was also a very steep hill by our campsite – I was basically a leg workout every time I walked out of the campsite up to the bathrooms and trash can/recycling. 

Hiking through the Redwoods.

Hiking through the Redwoods.

Sidenote: I did some Big Sur Marathon course reconnaissance on the drive back today.  Holy hills!  There’s very little flat — almost all of the course is going up or down.  The good news is that most of it is gradual.  The bad news is the steeper hills are towards the end.

Total (running) mileage for the week: 23.9
After the initial high of racing well at Foster City last week, I started to feel the first inklings of burnout on Tues/Wed.  That’s why I skipped yoga on Thursday, and indulged a bit this weekend with regards to food and drink.  I have a few more months of racing ahead of me for which I need to stay focused, and missing 1 or 2 sessions isn’t going to be the end of the world and may just save my sanity.

One thing I was very excited about this week was registering for the Oakland Marathon, marathon #3!  I originally wanted to run the Oakland Half because I’ve really enjoyed running it the past 2 years, and the start line is only a mile away from my apartment.  But, to be honest, I was also getting a little tired of the course.  Then, a couple of months ago, I had a random thought – why not run the full marathon as a training run for Big Sur?  It made sense since Big Sur is notoriously hilly and there is a long climb during the Oakland Marathon too.  Since then, I’ve actually started thinking about Oakland as the “goal time” race and Big Sur as the “run for fun” experience.  Just to be clear, by “goal time”, I’m thinking more along the lines of going sub-4:30 (my current PR is 4:32), nothing too crazy — there is that big hill up to Montclair to contend with, after all!  Anyway, I’m very excited to run a full marathon through the city I’ve called home for the past 2+ years — and the place where I really fell in love with running and made it a big part of my life.

Plan for the coming week:
Mon:  Rest.
Tues:  Speed-endurance run + stairs.
Wed:  Rest.
Thurs:  Hill repeats.
Fri:  Easy/recovery, rest, or yoga.
Sat:  Long run.
Sun: Easy/recovery, rest, or yoga.

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Howdy! I'm a 30-something recovering former academic living in the San Francisco Bay Area. I like to eat, run, and blog, but not usually at the same time.

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13 comments on “Going with the flow (Kaiser Week 5)
  1. MILF Runner says:

    That Oakland full is a bitch of a course! I’ve run the relay a few times…I always got the hilly part :) Sub 4:30 would be a GREAT time!

  2. Kate says:

    I’ve been wondering how those soft flasks do over a long run. Looking forward to your review!

  3. Hillary says:

    Just stopping by to say, “WHOOP WHOOP!”

  4. Cathryn says:

    I cannot imagine jumping one-legged up stairs. Please try this and take photos and videos for us!! Crazy people. REALLY excited you’re going for gold at Oakland – that’ll be fab! I think you’re right. Big Sur would be hard (not impossible) to PR at…Oakland might be the easier course, although not easy! Good call, if you’re confident you’ll be ready by then!! Yippeee.

    • Jen says:

      I don’t think I could do any selfies while doing one-legged jumps up the stairs. I’m talented, but not that talented! haha

      You raise a good point about Oakland. I’m not actually sure I’ll be ready by then to really go for a time goal – I’ve been so focused on Kaiser that my long run mileage is pretty low considering that Oakland is only 2 months away. I’ll probably wait until after the Chabot 30K and another long run before I make any definite goals for Oakland. Also, having driven the Big Sur route – NO WAY will I be able to PR on that course. I’m definitely planning on relaxing and enjoying every step at Big Sur and forgetting about the clock!

  5. Dominick S. says:

    JFB State Park…the most amazing site on the best coast, very envious. I definitely heard that Big Sur is hilly insanity and becomes even more difficult because although its beautiful, you can see for miles and it seems like you are not moving. Another Marathon, AHH, you’re crazy!

    • Jen says:

      Yes, it’s definitely true about some parts of the Big Sur course. Luckily, the long climb to Hurricane Point is quite windy so you don’t see it all in one go. And yes, I AM crazy!

  6. Amy says:

    Another marathon! Remember when we were all so excited for our first marathons? Look what nutty people we have become :) Both of those sound like scary but amazing races.

    We’re actually having our driest January since the 1930’s (we haven’t had any moisture at all in over a month). Hopefully the rain in California picks up soon because that’s a lot of agriculture at stake if not.

    • Jen says:

      Re: marathons – I know!! I even thought about becoming a Marathon Maniac for a brief second. All I’d have to do is run a 3rd marathon within 90 days of Oakland. But I decided that was *too* much, even by my now crazy standards. Plus, I think the shirts are so ugly!

      I really hope it starts raining, and soon. This is looking very dire for California from all angles – agriculture, water levels, ecology, and economics. It’s freaky – there are actually trees blooming in the middle of January!

  7. […] (or lack thereof), my time goal was to beat 4 hours (13:00/mile pace).  Last month, I had run 13 miles of the course and averaged 12:00/mile, but I also knew that the 5 miles I didn’t run included almost half of the elevation gain.  […]

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