Saturday, October 27, 2018

Aftermath: 26.2 miles around 46

Quite a lot of things happened in the last few months.
As we store the birthday candles and finish the vegan chocolate cake, few thoughts come to mind.
46 is pretty close from a half mark, if you are lucky, which actually sounds pretty good when you realize how much happened in the first half.
The tricky part would be how to deal with aging - I guess, to be healthy enough to keep all those years ahead as exciting as they can be.

As Chris Hauth like to say, in an endurance race, the one who will win is the one that slow down the least. 
I suspect you can apply that pretty directly to life and happiness.
You are there for the long run.

Not getting younger... Now Barnaby is usually behind

Talking about running, the last marathon (Maui Marathon 2018), 4:08 was not a bad one. With the heat and an unlucky 4 minutes bathroom stop, I was hoping a PR. 
Looking at the stats, I started way faster than usual, around 8:30 pacing, assuming I could sustain that. maybe not quite at that level yet, even if the training was overall consistent, dropping 15 minutes after 3 years was a bit presumptuous. The main difference was the decision or inability to go deep into the pain cave. When I hit the wall around 2:30, I did not force it, decided to walk to lower my heart rate and took a huge hit on the pace. I kept it below 170 and perceived effort in the "acceptable" range. It was pretty hard anyway, and I promised myself to not do it ever again.
Never again.

Of course, ten minutes after the race, I was already thinking about the L.A. Marathon next year.

Chilling Before (Wonder who was pregnant at the time)

There are quite other few things that are occupying my thoughts and I still need to lay down the 5+ year plan - we are on a hard highschool timeline - , but one thing is for certain, my running days are not over.
I am eluding adding to my bucket list one of the top 100 miler in the world. Ultra Trail Mont Blanc, Leadville 100, Western States ...
But to even have a chance to go on the lottery for those, you need already a 50 miler and at least 100km in the bag.
As we do not get any younger, a good target for 2019 would be to get the 50 in the bag.
And certainly the LA Marathon as a warmup in April.

Chilling 13 years After. 
Definitively will need a bit of luck to keep this annoying right knee pain out of the way, but if I was able to train for 4 months with it, why not 6 ? or 12 ?
Lot of foam roller, strechting watching TV helps for sure... It just looks like that you whole life circle around running.
You work standing up (to train).
You run the dog, not walk it (to train).
You exercice (to cross train), not really because you like it (does someone do?).
You eat healthy (to be light)(well because it is better for you too).
You don't go out (because you need sleep .. to train more. Is there anyway much to do on Maui at night?)
And to wrap that up, a bit of meditation every day (just because).

Well, at least that the program on paper, starting next week.
Still curious how far that will bring me :)

Saturday, October 13, 2018

Maui Marathon - Ready to go

Starts in less than 20 hours, 5AM tomorrow...
Targeted time : 3:50, for a 8:45min/mile pace, and a potential PR (my best is just below 4h).
I promised myself to not force it (too much) and not hurt myself (too much) and keep extraordinary focus on my form (just have to do it).
Well, at least, there is a plan.

I realized it has been a while since my last marathon , Honolulu 2015. 3 years ! 
Time flies. Certainly injuries did not help, still.
What is weird now, is that I am running faster than before.
Like the good wine, get's better with age....

Now it is time to see if this training block was better ... I was up running 33 hours in September, between 5 and 8 hours a week.
I chosen to train on time this time, instead of mileage, as I focused mostly on trails, and pacing is definitively way slower. That should still cover some sort of 30-50 miles per week, which is pretty decent for a marathon training block, I believe.

The weather is not cooperating - although lack of sun will be very helpful in the last hour of the race, when usually it gets really hot and everyone overheat. With a bit of luck, we should get overcast and run in between the rainfall - the ideal scenario.

Monday, October 1, 2018

Heatlh and Purpose

Maui marathon is 2 weeks away and it is time to start the taper. Volume gonna go down, lots of swimming in perspective. 
I do have a plan - keep it easy - then it will be up to Race day to tell me if I will PR or not. Likely not, I am considering the LA marathon early next year to actually try a PR.
Hawaii is definitively too hot for this competitive spirit. 
Even if the marathon starts at 5:00 AM !

Training strong.

Another hit from Rich few weeks back, about how Irish twins are making a change and reach for happiness.

Unsurprisingly, key for happiness resolve around few core concepts, health, food, movement, community, mission...
I bring it down myself to a duality - Body and Mind, Health and Purpose.
Being healthy impose eating healthy, moving a lot and be close from nature.
Purpose give you a healthy mind. You need mindfulness to achieve this purpose, it give you focus  and the sense of belonging.

Of course, you cannot dissociate body and mind, and I believe you need both health and purpose to reach happiness. Purpose do not have to be this grandiloquent goal of saving the world. A small step in the right direction, could create momentum and the steps could be bigger and bigger.

I am glad with Imbellus I did a small step in the right direction. Some initiatives like 80000 hours give a good taste of what could happen.
Change will not come from politics - the democratic process is failing us. From Yuval or Nicolas Hulot, proof if around you, specially on Twitter.
Milleniums are the key.
Bottom up.

Hopefully, this will come soon enough.

Sunday, September 9, 2018

Running to transcend

Training looking good. Knee pain is mostly gone and under control over the longest runs.
The last one, 3 loops of the Makawao forest, add up to almost 4 hours. Which is awful close from the peak of the marathon training in one month.
Weekly hours add up to 7-8 hours a week, around 40-45 miles.
This is start to sound like serious running.

Last time I ran 3 laps of the forest trail, I was actually pretty slower - almost 30 minutes slower, really. And I still remember it being quite painful.
Add to that, I did a test run 5k, pretty intense. Less than 22 minutes, actually a PR.  this help to run the numbers through equivalence table and measure progress as well as anticipate pace for the marathon.
My aerobic pace went down to a 8:30min/mile, which should be my running marathon pace, i.e. 30s faster than last one and could bring a 25min cut in racing time.
Likely, I will keep it easier than that, I have other plans for this marathon, but that certainly means that will be more comfortable to be under 4 hours this time.
Anyway, the main point is : all the numbers looks pretty good so far.

Aid station,
The nice thing about the Makawao loops is to be able to stop by the car and make a pit-stop every 75 minutes. Coconut water, salt crackers and dried mango slices. I used to go for coconut water as electrolyte drink during the run, but it ends up to be too sugary for the long long runs. Plus, it is lacking sodium, and I blame it for post run headache - maybe electrolyte imbalance. Following Chris Hauth advice, eat solid and drink water  - avoid high sugary sport drinks or - coconut water.

And trees. Because why not.
I usually run without music or talk, but today I was feeling on catching up on some podcasts.

Has been a while there was not a good one on running crazies. Well, 3100 miles. Hard to beat. And suicidal running Japanese monks. Cannot wait this comes to Netflix.
A new comer in my list of podcasts, Micheal Gervais on finding mastery. Goggins is always a killer speaker.

I can't get enough of the trail nation crew. Funny and spot-on, they make me dream of hundred milers. This one pretty cool, maybe a bit atypical.

I don't go to Sam Harris every week, but when the subject catches my eye, I definitively make a stop. That one gave me an amazing dive into the world politics and pitfalls that are facing our civilization. Worrisome but enlightening.

Monday, August 20, 2018

Back to Waiakoa trail

On the menu for this weekend long run, an all time favorite I did 3 years ago.
Pretty technical - across a Lava field - this is definitively a half-walk and half-run thing.
Took me around 3:20 for barely 12 miles.

Poli poli heights at 6:15AM. Worth the early rise.

Views over the other volcano of Maui. Rare to be that clear.

For most of the trail, the landscape is just amazing. 

Very technical part on the lava field. A nightmare to even walk on this thing.
Saw a huge wild pig running from me. Not sure who was more scared.

On the way down, the trail is a more gentle path, and trees provide shade. Nice.
Run was hard, but the cool temperature due to the altitude and the early rise made easier than last week. Lesson learned.
Get up early !