Tuesday, 31 March 2015

Week of training Monday March 23rd - March 29th

What's up everyone? Did most of you get after a race last weekend? Or at least watch some running? We are full on into the spring season and this kid is pretty pumped about it. On Sunday I went and got my long run in then got back home as fast as possible to check on Around the Bay 30km. After that was done I got Flotrack fired up to watch the races that went down Saturday night in the states and by that time Carlsbad 5000 was on. Holy crap, this is my favorite time of the year and things are just getting going. Wait until some of the big meets start going down. Mt. Sac, Stanford Invite, Oxy, Payton Jordan.....then the diamond leagues.....I should stop here as I don't want to start drooling on my keyboard as that's a very real possibility.

I won't ramble on too much but I'll touch on a couple things and then wrap up my training which is going great.

First, lets start with World XC. Love watching it, and I wish it was getting more coverage and having more emphasis put upon it. Anyway Kamworor's performance was incredible. This kid is a special talent man. He knew he had to make it honest and that he'd better drop Alimirew and Edris the fast 5000m men early or they would eat him alive in the last couple hundred meters so he took it to the field and made the pace spicy from the gun. What we can glean from this is that the 22 year old is still discovering what he is best suited for. He ran 58 high for his first half but hasn't been able to put a good marathon together. (Good is a relative term, he's run 2:06:17 but that's nothing for a 58 minute half guy). His agent said he would focus on Worlds for the 10000m. When asked what he would do against Mo's finishing speed his agent said he would turn it into a 26:40 race. Robert "ROJO" of letsrun.com then said "But Mo can run that pace and close hard". To that the agent responded by saying he will have to earn the win and be at 100% to do it then. This was music to my ears. I wish guys would try to take it to Mo. I'm really excited for this show down.

Now, Around the Bay 30km. Wow that was a deep field. I've never seen so many fast times on that course. I heard they took the big hill out (Correct me if I'm wrong folks, I've never actually ran the race), but even so there was some blazing fast times. Paul Kimugul is a beast man, for him to gap so many fast guys is pretty redonkulous. I plugged his time into a pace chart and it gave me a 63 half performance so it tells you the dude is fit. He ran 62 at a half in BC last year either BMO or Scotiabank so the dude is right where he was last season. And HUGE shout out to Dayna on taking the women's tittle. I'm so stoked for the season shes starting to put together. I think some people might be forgetting just how good Dayna is and how much talent she has. Back in 2011 not only was she beating everyone on the roads but she was the National 10km road champ and ran a 1:11 half. She's several years younger then our other top girls running fast at the half and full so don't sleep on her. Big season coming.

In the 5km we saw Olympian Alex Genest dust the field in 14 mid and Genevieve Lalonde took the women's tittle in 16 mid. Shout out to by boy Rob on running a solid 16:02. He's been in Kenya for the last 8 weeks. Look for him to be running mid 15's in no time.


My week in training

Monday

11 miles easy at 6:16/mile pace - AM
OFF - PM

Tuesday

Workout - 20 minute tempo on the treadmill at 4:43/mile pace. Now full disclosure. I'm running these with 0% incline. The goal is to feel smooth running with fast turnover and still work the threshold. There is a conversion chart I use to figure out my actual efforts that can be found on hillrunner. My pace on the treadmill was 4:43 but the actual effort is worth 4:55. I felt really good about this session and I'm starting to run more relaxed at paces that I used to find frantic.

5km warm up + Drills and Strides, + workout + 6.5km cool down - AM
OFF - PM

Wednesday

10 miles in 62:11 or 6:13/mile pace outside - AM
5 miles easy at 6:22/mile pace - PM

Thursday

12 miles steady state 5:37/mile pace + 10X100m strides - AM
OFF - PM

Friday

11 miles easy at 6:21/mile pace - AM
OFF - PM

Saturday

Workout - I finally got outside for this one and did it on my road loop. It was nice to actually get the feel of cruising some decent splits on the road again. The workout was a 2 mile, 2.5km, 1 mile and an 800m with 2 minutes recovery between everything. I went 9:42, 7:33, 4:43 and 2:15. I was pretty happy with the session. Coach wanted the first two intervals a little faster but I was finding my rhythm and wasn't off by that much and I progressed from there.

5km warm up + strides and drills + workout and 5km cool down - AM
OFF - PM

Sunday

Long Run - 16 miles easy at 6:19/mile pace - Lunchtime
OFF - PM


Well folks that's one more in the books. I'm seriously excited to get the racing going. I just confirmed with Calgary for the Half Champs the weekend after the 10km Champs in Ottawa. I've never raced in Calgary so I'm excited to go out there and mix it up. A huge thank you to Donna the Elite Coordinator for bringing me out and putting me up, I'll do my best to run fast on May 31st! :).

So here we are, I'll be doing a 5km here in about 10 days and then it's go time for the races on the mainland. I'm feeling like the 10km is really where my fitness is best suited for right now. I had a great session today where I did a 10km treadmill tempo at 4:48/mile pace so basically 30:00 for 10km. Granted, again, it was on a 0% grade so it equates to about 31:30 but it felt super smooth and like I could have run for another 20 minutes if need be. Anyway I'll wrap this up and just leave you guys with a couple shall we say progress pics in the various disciplines of life in general.

Alright, that's all for me folks, I'm out. Have a tremendous week and stay hungry!
Dave


Today's 10km tempo (the extra 15 seconds was the treadmill getting up to speed)


Flow update, things are progressing nicely, Hilary doesn't seem to think it's working for me but I disagree...ha


Friendship update, I make sure to run with the biggest legends around town at least once or twice a week. So my friendship run game is on point as well. From left to right. Jamie "I got it on sale" West, Jon "Living the dream" Lodge, myself and Sheldon "Garnish" Marsh




Tuesday, 24 March 2015

Week of training Monday March 16th - Sunday the 22ed

Hey friends, how was everyone's week/weekend? We are now officially into the spring season. With the first weekend of outdoor track in the NCAA last weekend and some spring road races underway in Canada this is an exciting time of the year. Shout outs to my Saucony teammate Kelly Wiebe on defending his Modo 8km tittle this weekend out in Vancouver for the first race of the CRS circuit. Lanni took the women's title in fine fashion so congrats to her as well! Sunday also saw the running of the Lisbon R&R half marathon. We were treated to an epic race by Mo Farah and Micah Kogo with Mo just edging him out for the win in a blistering 59:32. What's just nuts to me is the type of range Mo has, he runs 59:32 only four weeks after running an 8:03 indoor two mile. Someone on letsrun.com also talked about how he was the only person on the top 50 performances list for the 1500m and half marathon simultaneously. In my mind his best performance in his career thus far was that 3:28.81 1500m. Like if we really sit and think about that time for a minute.......that makes him the 7th fastest man in history and up until that point we thought of him as basically a 5k/10k guy. He can't be touched on the track this year for the 5 and 10km at worlds. I think anyone who follows track closely and understands the magnitude of an athlete with the speed of a 3:28 and the strength of a 59:32 would agree. What I hope to see is someone try to make the race fast on Mo and see just how quick he can run over the 5 and 10. My guess is he might have the ability to run 12:39-12:42 in the 5km with rabbits under perfect conditions and 26:20-26:25 for the 10km. I think the records are out of reach but it would be interesting to see what he can do in an all out effort.

Alright I'll end my rant/Mo fanboy ramblings ha. I'll keep this post really short and just recap my training from last week which went supremely. I'm really excited for the season. I've got full confidence I'll run 30 minutes for my first 10km baring an injury just based on workouts but it's going to be great to get away for some races and just jump in and mix it up with some of the best guys around. Obviously I can't compete with the very top guys and I'll be getting myself dusted by a few super fast dudes but I love just getting into a rhythm and chasing after people and running hard. That's what's so awesome about this sport. We all have our own goals and we can chase them together in the same races.

Lastly, before I get into my training recap I wanted to apologize for a comment I made last week in one of my points about training. With regards to the LSD style of long running. To begin with the founder of the Running Room, John Stanton didn't coin the term LSD running he simply uses the term in his training plans. It was wrong of me to mention him at all in a negative context surrounding running as he has done so much for the sport and community of running. So my apologies if I offended anyone who follows his approach. I actually volunteer and help out with events at our local shop here in St. John's and have helped pace some fun runs so I wanted to clarify that I have nothing but respect for the organization and it's founder. Writing is not my strongest skill as I'm sure many of you can pick up on. I'm a science guy so sometimes I write exactly how I talk. I'll be sure to be more careful about how I put my thoughts down. Please, leave me a comment below or send me an email if you guys have any issue with something I say! I'm not the type of person to take offence and I value the input/thoughts of everyone!!

On to the training.

Monday

11 miles easy at 6:26/mile - AM
OFF - PM

Tuesday

Workout - This was my first session back after taking a week off to let the body rest after a fairly long training block. The workout was 20X1minute on/1minute off. I was going on feel but ripped the first one way to hard and ran a 60 second 400, I knew if I didn't dial it back I was not making it through the session. My coach wanted it at 70 second 400m pace so 4:40/mile effort so that's what I was trying to run. It's hard as we had a snow storm Monday and I was doing this on an indoor track but the workout went really well and I left it feeling good.

5km warm up + drills/strides, Workout + 6km cool down - Lunchtime
OFF - PM

Wednesday

10 miles easy at 6:30/mile pace - AM
5 miles easy at 6:17/mile pace - PM

Thursday

12 miles steady at 5:41/mile pace - AM
OFF - PM

Friday

10 miles easy at 6:22/mile pace - AM
OFF - PM

Saturday

Workout - I was indoors again on the indoor track for this one. Hopefully the weather breaks soon so I can get after some outdoor workouts. Anyway it was 3X2miles off a 2 minute jog recovery. I felt super strong during this session. I started with a 9:42 then went 9:37 and 9:37. I wanted to let loose on the last one but coach gave me strict orders to hit 9:40. This workout was about 10km goal pace so I guess it was far better to feel good and end feeling like I could have done another rep or two if need be.

5km warm up + drills/strides, workouts + 5.5km cool down - AM
OFF - PM

Sunday

16 miles long run at 6:20/mile pace - AM
OFF - PM


Well that's a wrap for this week. I hit 91 miles and felt really good in the process. I've got a few topics I want to talk about but I figured this would be a long enough post for today. I'll jump back on to talk about stuff like World XC, 2015 outdoor season and do a couple recaps when I get some time.

Anyway, thank you all so very much for stopping by, if you can send me some good weather so I can get out of this cold/snow that would be greatly appreciated and happy training to you all.

Keep your stick on the ice,
Dave



Tuesday, 17 March 2015

Back to training and some thoughts on running.

Hey friends, I trust you are all getting super fit and looking forward to your upcoming spring races. I enjoyed a little downtime and have now started back on the way to some spring 10km's in Van, T.O and Ottawa. I wanted a little break so I wouldn't burn out early in the season. The fitness is right where it was before taking a week off as I killed a workout today and started it off with a 60 second 400 doing 20 X 1 minute on, 1 minute off. Anyways we are back on the horse and the grind is on. I'll do a local 5km in a month from now (Boston Pizza Flat Out 5km) as a tune up for three 10km's I have planned away this spring. There isn't any point of doing a full training recap of last week as I started up again on Saturday but I'll post my runs for both Saturday and Sunday. But first I'm going to list some of the most important things about running/training that I've learned since starting this sport in 2010 as a 20/42 minute 5k/10k runner. It's inspired by a blog post my friend Dan Way wrote a while back. Dan's a far better writer then me so I'll link to his post here - http://danwayday.blogspot.ca/2015/02/138-simplest-thing.html . Dan works for Canadian Running and is the brains behind their race guide. So be sure to check out his posts. He is also a super good runner so lots of great stuff comes from his ramblings!


Things I've learned about running through trial and error.


Before I get into this, let me first say I'm not an excersise physiologist. I did a BSc (BioChem) and a Masters in Healthcare Managment and Administration so most of what I learned is from reading and studying what professionals do and some trial and error on myself. When I started running at age 23, four years ago I had no idea what I was doing. I jumped into a 5km and ran 20:04 at 200lb's as basically a hockey player/weight lifter. But since then I've gotten down to a fitness level of a 14 minute guy so I have some idea as to what works and what doesn't. I'll just hit things in point form as I go.


Consistency/long stretches of uninterrupted training - This is the single most important thing besides staying healthy that will determine how good you will get. You need to adopt a plan of attack with your training that is repeatable long term. Not just put in a block of 8 week of crazy mileage and intensity. You need to think long term. Continually progress and add overall volume, intensity and specificity to your training. Rome wasn't built in a day. From my experience there are those out there with the talent to run a good 5km off the couch but these people are very few and far between. Be diligent and patient with your training and approach your goals in a seasonal/yearly fashion. 

Mileage is HUGELY important - Now don't take this as me saying start from 0 and jump into 100 mile weeks. There needs to be progression. And I believe that it's best to do the least amount possible to still see improvement and then add volume. But in an aerobic sport like running the larger the aerobic foundation that is laid the better off the athlete will be. If you don't believe me go read some Arthur Lydiard literature.

There is no "off" season - What I mean by this is there isn't a time in your training where you should be running without purpose. Every time you go out the door you should ask yourself "What is the purpose of today's run?". You should be able to answer it. There are different times of your season with focus being put on different energy systems and there are even times to take breaks after heavy training/racing seasons but don't ever run without purpose or a goal. In Newfoundland we are the worst for this. I'm lucky I only wasted one year of my running career listening to people who I thought knew what they were talking about and took about 5 months of the year to run half hazardously. I see so many people locally wasting most of their year "building their base". Basically what this means is they run easy every day. No steady state running, no hill work, no lactate development, no purpose driven long runs and no strides which leads me to my next point.

Strides......DO THEM - Why oh why do so many people not do strides, like it's only going to take 5-10 minutes after your run 3-4 days a week. And the benefits are super high for such a simple habit to form. What's worse is people who think strides are a 100m dash.....no dude, sorry. You do strides to reinforce the feeling of good biomechanics and to focus on fluidity and running relaxed and fast. Start a little slower and accelerate as the stride progresses. This is super simple and something we should all be doing more of.

Tempo running - Tempo running is one of the most important runs in any training plan and it's something I'm still working on getting right. Your tempo needs to be a controlled effort. It's not an all out effort. You want to finish a tempo feeling really strong and confident. Obviously the goal is to run at lactate threshold and to push the line down over time to where your velocity at lactate threshold pace is closer and closer to your velocity and VO2 max. Obviously there will always be a big gap there as there should be but great runners have this energy system developed supremely. I also think this is what enables some older runners/masters runners to produce such great times as they get older. They have a tremendous ability to buffer lactic acid. I saw on a post that Steve Boyd posted on trackie that he ran a 65 minute half as a masters runner. That's incredible and for sure with the nature of a half marathon he had to be tremendously strong in his threshold running.

Hill work - every runner who is serious about performance should have a healthy diet of hills in their routine. Not only does it reinforce proper mechanics but it also builds the muscles that makes our strides powerful. If you look at the training of world class 1500m runners you will see lots of hill sprints and intervals. 

Train at current fitness NOT goal fitness - This is something I still struggle with but having a coach to keep me accountable has really helped. Let's say you are a 35 minute 10km runner and your goal for the season is to get your personal best down to 32 minutes. This is a decent analogy as some cross country guys who aren't super accomplished on the track and are trying to make their university squad face this situation each fall. You need to train at paces of your current fitness. Sure, you might be able to hang with 30-32 minute guys for intervals and tempos but you certainly will be putting forth a way harder effort to do it. This will lead to burn out and you also will be using different energy systems to hang with the 32 minute guy and be missing the point of the workout your coach prescribed, therefore, not getting the correct stimulus and thus you will be missing out on the adaptation from said workouts. So keep it simple, keep the ego in check and stick with your own paces.

Easy days should be easy but not a jog - I used to run my easy days at like 7:30-8 minute pace most of the time even when I was at a point where I was somewhat fit 15/32 minute 5km/10km shape. At that pace I'm not getting any aerobic benefit from my easy day at all. The only thing I was doing was burning calories and wasting my time. A good place to run your easy aerobic runs are 90 seconds/mile slower then 5km pace. Obviously some days after a workout you may back off a little but not much more then that. Currently my 5km pace is between 4:40-4:45 depending on the road or track so I need to be 6:10-6:15. That's a pace where I'm not killing myself but I can't get lazy and just have a chat with my training mates either. Again, like I mentioned before there needs to be purpose during each and every session. If you are coming from a point where you run slower on easy days like I was. It takes about a month to adapt, you will be pretty beat down at the end of the week for the first month or two but after that you will feel great.

Long runs are NOT to be LSD runs - LSD meaning Long Slow Distance. I mean if you run for fun or for your health then by all means give er' at whatever pace that tickles your fancy, but if you want to improve your long run needs to be run at an honest pace. If you are a serious marathoner you need to treat this as a workout and make sure your hitting marathon pace on tired legs during your long run. As for the pace at which you should be running for these long runs I'd go with the 5km + 90 seconds rule and even pick it up the last half if you can. If you are in a place where you are sacrificing the quality of your long run in favor of squeezing 1 more workout into your week I'd cut it back to two quality sessions and a strong long run. You'll develop a lot of aerobic fitness and strength with taking this approach.

Don't race workouts or your training partners - This is another one that I learned the hard way. My first season of running as a 20 minute 5km guy I started training with a 16 minute 5km guy and was trying to match him stride for stride and we would even get competitive. This doesn't help anyone. If you don't have the type of relationship with your training partners that you can't run without one stepping each other then train alone. Hit your own paces and keep things civil in workouts!

Practice running fast but relaxed - This is something that my friend Mike Greene would always tell me in emails and it's only now that I'm realizing how important it is. We must focus on staying relaxed and holding good form even when we are tired. Lately when I'm at the end of a hard interval I'll always just keep telling myself to stay relaxed, through my face, hands, every part of my body just focus on floating along and not working harder, when you try to tell yourself to just work harder then you tend to get tense, or at least I do. So when I'm ripping out really fast workouts now it's all about running relaxed and thinking about the frequency of my turn over.





Anyway I'll stop there, I'm sure I will think of about a million more points to make but this is what I can come up with right now. How running is, we are always learning from trial and error. I'm sure this time next year I'll have other things that I'm questioning or thinking about. 

I should clue this up as it's starting to get a little long winded but next week my post will resemble all of my other ones with a little rant at the beginning about the world of pro/collegiate running and then my weekly training recap. I'll save my break down of the CIS champs, NCAA champs and the NYC half for that post as well as my race recap which I talked about last time. 

So like I mentioned I started back on Saturday and just got an easy 10 miles in a 6:19/mile pace and did the same on Sunday with the average being a little quicker 6:11. Not exciting but I'm back at it hard this week and crushed a workout today. I'm feeling fit and ready to roll. Bring on the season!!

Thanks for reading and stay frosty,
Dave

Tuesday, 10 March 2015

Rest week before gearing up for April/May and some pro running talk.

What's up running friends. I never know how to start a blog entry as I always feel like I'm saying the same things haha. But I genuinely do hope you are all training hard and dialing in on your goal races with race pace specific work and things are coming along nicely for everyone.I'll keep this post brief as I'm taking a scheduled week off until Friday but after that it's right back to business. After my 5000 I just want to get the body back to 100% and feeling fresh before starting another cycle of training and adding more stimulus. I just got the rest of my training for March from JJ and things will be ramped right back up so I'm super excited to get things going. I've got all my travel and accommodations nailed down for Vancouver and Ottawa. A huge thanks to the Elite coordinators for looking after me. I'll be looking to run something in the 30's for my first 10km this spring and then see where the fitness is and how the training is going leading into the national 10km champs in Ottawa on May 23rd. If I can use a road qualifier I'd love to race our Track and Field Nationals in the 10000m but that's not something I've talked about with my coach yet, just something I'm pondering.

CIS/NCAA indoor championships.


This coming weekend is a huge one for track fans. I'm super stoked to watch both. For us up here in Canada be sure to tune into Trackie.ca for all the live coverage. I'm especially excited for the 1500/3000m. After the drama that went down in the 3km at OUA's it just makes it all the more interesting to watch but I've got to go with my boy Chuck. Ross is a BEAST no doubt but I just feel like this is going to be a low 8 minute race and off that kind of pace as long as chuck is at least feeling decent (I hear he's running 4 events) he can close faster then anybody. The 1500 will be a close one. In the 1500 anything can happen, I mean we see it all the time at global championships, if you make the final, have some decent wheels, your in the mix.

Then we have the NCAA D1 champs. Oh man, this is where I get like a kid in a candy store. The talent in the mile, 3k and 5k is just redonkulous. Oregon basically has a whole crew of distance guys who can run under 4, 7:50 and 13:40. I mean it's just silly. Eric Jenkins is in the shape of his life, and King Ches is just nails. I can't bet against that guy, but there are some schools out there with some guys who could upset the big dogs. Stanford has a good squad, Colorado too are stacked, they don't have guys with that crazy speed but lots of good 3k/5k runners and then you have the nomads like 3:55 man Soratos. I'm EXCITED.

Happenings on the road.


This weekend we also have the always tasty and satisfying United Airlines NYC Half Marathon. I love this race, first off because it's in one of the greatest cities in the world and we get a glimpse of the fitness that the big boys are bringing into their spring Marathons. Last year we saw some drama with Mo Farah going down and then Mutai seeing it happen dropped the hammer and just splintered the pack with only 26:52 man Stephen Sambu hanging on before eventually getting dropped and passed by Mo who was closing hard. I know I'm going to be tuning into this one. Shout out to my boy Dan McDonald who is going to be racing this one. Dan just moved back to town and has been training well as he builds for Boston. Dan ran a debut of 2:33 for the full and this time will be looking at going under 2:30 in Boston. I expect he should run 1:10-1:12 if all goes well in NYC for the half. Dan is more of an endurance based guy so he doesn't need to be running 1:09 to break 2:30. His speed is coming along well too. I helped him out with a 5km about a month ago and paced him to a 15:40 during a heavy training week. We also had a nice session where he was clicking off some 3:00 minute K's so good luck to Dan. 

I'd be remiss if I didn't mention Stanley Biwott's 59:20 half marathon last weekend. Yup, that's blazing fast. But then again, Stan is a stud. He's been in the mix at Majors in previous years at NYC and London and will be returning to the Virgin Money London Marathon in April. I'd say to his competitors to be ready to race as this shows he is in fine form, but his competitors are Kimetto, Kipsang, Kipchoge, E. Mutai, Bekele.......yeah, they won't be shook seeing a 59:20, but it's a great sign for Stanley for sure.


I'll leave you with a clip of a guy setting the 95+ 200m record.




Anyway folks, I just wanted to check in and ramble a little. As I mentioned I'm taking the week off until friday then training is going to get really nasty in a hurry so stay locked, I'll also jump on a do a race recap with my next training post for my last race so there will be lots to talk about.

Until then, run hard and stay hungry,
Dave

Tuesday, 3 March 2015

Week of training Monday April 23rd - Sunday the 1st + Zealot Review.

Hey everyone, how goes it? Well, here we are, into March finally. That means indoors is coming to a close soon and the spring road and track season will soon be upon us. I'm getting pretty amped up. The fitness is certainly leaps and bounds ahead of anywhere I've ever been so I'm looking forward to getting after some good 10km's on the roads. I came off my 5km road race and workout pretty well from the previous week. And the more I looked at it I was very happy with 15:17 given the snow, wind and cold. Things are right where I want them so I'll have to be careful to stay injury free and as long as that remains the case I'll be running my goal times this spring.  I'll do my best to keep this post as quick as I can. But I do want to touch on a couple things before I get into my week of training and my review.

USATF Indoor champs and the Chili Half.


Last weekend saw the hosting of the USA indoor champs. I was pleased to see a lot of high profile athletes show up. Sometimes with no world indoor team to make you see some of the top talent skip the meet in favor of training for the outdoor season. Especially with an outdoor world champs team to make this year.

The USATF changed things up in terms of the distances that they ran where they didn't have to select a team for indoor worlds. Normally we see the 400/800/mile or 1500 and the 3km but this year they went with the 600/1000/mile and two mile. I thought this was kind of fun and made things interesting in the 600/1000m especially. I won't recap all the races as not everyone who reads this is as big of a track fan but I'll highlight what the major take aways from the meet were.

1 - Alysia Montano is back after her pregnancy and ready to take some names. Many who follow track may have remembered at the USA outdoor champs last year into her third trimester of pregnancy she ran the 800. I'm a big fan of Alysia, she tends to attack the 800m and run from the front as shes a more speed oriented 800m runner with great open 400m speed (52.01). I've seen races where she ran 1:57 low leading wire to wire. So I'm stoked she is back. The US is really strong in the 800 with Montano, Wilson and Martinez all being 1:57 girls under the age of 30. 

2 - Robby Andrews is back! I love Andrews man. When I need motivation for a workout I put on the video of him winning NCAA outdoors in 1:44 coming back to take down Charles Jock with one of the best kicks ever. The 1000m is a great race for him and I'm anxious to see what he can do now that hes back with his old coach and training 100% for the 1500m.

3 - Centro shows he's the best miler in the states and always gets it done. Great race by Centro and an awesome race as well by Blankenship coming back after the two mile. He showed some class too letting Centro out of being boxed in hard with two laps to go. He could have kept him in there and then kicked for home but he moved all the way out into lane 3 to let him out and try to beat him fair and square. That's a dudes, dude right there. Respect Ben!!

4 - Ryan Hill can close like a beast when he gets a clear path. He took down some big names in the two mile and ran 25 high for his last 200m. I know the pace wasn't super hot but it wasn't a jog either. He should be a lock to make the 5000m squad this year going to Beijing. 

5 - Shannon Rowbery is in the form of her life. She pulled off the mile/two mile double in fine fashion and showed her vicious closing speed. At 30, under Salazar I think she is best served staying with the 1500m. She's run under 4 minutes and in a tactical 1500 anyone with closing speed has a chance to medal if they make the final. That's not the case in the 5000m. The top women are running 14:20-14:35 in sometimes unevenly run races. She can't hang with the very best in the world over the 5km, but can certainly hold her own in the 1500m. Interesting to see what 2015 brings for her.


Lastly I want to touch on the Chili Half Marathon. I'm super stoked for Reid and Krista getting the wins on Sunday. Reid, (my CEP Canada teammate) ran 63:38 on a super cold day wearing a half zip and long tights, solo I might add. So you have to think he is in 62:30 or better shape which is basically his PR for the half. I'm looking forward to seeing what he can do at Rotterdam. Reid has been good for so long man. I'm sure he will hit the A standard and run on the streets of Rio for the Marathon in 2016. Krista, (my Saucony Canada teammate) ran 74:01 which is only about a minute and a half off her PR on a record eligible course so she is in fine form as well. I've got faith that Krista too will run the A standard and be representing us proudly in Rio. Two shout outs go to my boys Nick Senseri and Dan Way who also ran strong at the Chili Half!


My week in training.


Monday

10 miles easy 6:17/mile pace - AM
OFF - PM

Tuesday

Workout - 7X1km off 60 seconds recovery. I did this session on the indoor track. I had some problems finding a good rhythm for some reason. Like, I was hitting the times I wanted to at the end of each rep but it was really uneven pacing and didn't feel smooth. But I guess sometimes that happens. I started at 2:54 and stayed there for the first 4 before getting down to 2:51 high for the last one. I had my buddy Jason join me for this session. All in all this was a good one.

5km warm up + strides/drills, 7X1km + 6km cool down - AM
OFF - PM

Wednesday

10 miles easy 6:22/mile pace - AM
OFF - PM

Thursday

OFF - AM
9 miles easy at 6:14/mile pace - PM

Friday

9 miles easy at 6:26/mile pace - AM
OFF - PM

Saturday

Workout - 25X200m with a 200m jog in under 60 seconds continuous. I averaged bang on 30 seconds per 200m and was just focusing on running fast but relaxed. Once you get into a rhythm running 200's you can just keep it going all day. This workout left me feeling light and fast so definitely a good one.

5.5km warm up with drills and strides, 10km of work including jog rest and 6km cool down - AM
OFF - PM

Sunday

9 miles easy at 6:17/mile pace with some strides at the end - AM
OFF - PM



Saucony Zealot Review



As I mentioned in an earlier blog post I've been running in the new shoes that Saucony has released this year. The last two reviews I did were the Triumph ISO and Breakthru. This time I'm looking at the all new Zealot. This shoe is a plush, lightweight, 4mm drop daily trainer that features the new ISO technology with a built in booty and cage lockdown system.

I've heard from some of the higher ups at Saucony that even tho the Mirage 5 just came out and there was a recent update on the Cortana 4 that this shoe will be taking the place of both of those moving forward. Now I run daily in the Cortana 4 and I'm going to miss that shoe big time if it goes away. But the new Zealot is just such a cool shoe that I don't think I'm going to mind.

Starting with the upper you can tell that this shoe is designed to really fit the runner snugly and be an extension to the foot. You put it on and it disappears. The ISO lockdown "cage" or "fingers" really lock the foot in place and with the inner booty it just fits really well. If your in a size 10 in a current saucony shoe then this fits true to size. I always find that throughout the lineup I can count on sizes running true. I do however order down .5 in a racing flat but that's just personal preference.

Anyway on to the outsole. Saucony gives this shoe their new PowerGrid+ which you also find in their other premium shoes the ISO Triumph and ISO Hurricane. What you get is a 33%  softer ride but it's still really responsive. On the bottom of the shoe you find IBR+ blown rubber for incredible durability.

Those are the specs and what's going on with the shoe but you really have to get into this to know what it's all about. It just feels so light weighing in at 8.3 ounces but you get SOO much cushioning with it. I'm finding I can run in this 7 days a week. If I had to compare it to anything I'd say its a slightly firmer version of the Kinvara with regards to how it feels on contact. But on foot it resembles the ISO Triumph.

Either way you look at it this is a game changing shoe. An incredibly light shoe that delivers great responsiveness and superior cushioning. I'd highly recommend this shoe to anyone who loves the Kinvara or any of the other neutral daily trainers from Saucony.



Saucony Zealot in the back. (Type A6's left, Fastwich 7 right)


That's all for now folks. I've taken enough of your time. But I wish you all a great week in training and I hope your weather is starting to take a turn for the better.

Keep living the dream,
Dave