Weekend Update

Monday:  AM – HydroWorx 20×60 secs w/30 secs active rest.  25 warmup, 20 cool down                  PM – about 7.5 miles along the Schuylkill River with Kevin Forde

Tuesday:  75 mins elliptical, Louisville KY

Wednesday:  11 miles, Stanley Park, Vancouver B.C.

Thursday:  9 miles, Stanley Park, Vancouver B.C.

Friday:  HydroWorx, 75 minutes easy

Saturday:  Cumberland Valley HS – 2 mile warmup, 2×1000 @ 3:10 w/800 jog recovery, 3×400 @ :70 w/400 jog recovery, 2×1000 @ 3:07 w/800 jog recovery.  1 set stadium stairs.  2 mile cool down.  10 miles total.

Busy week, finally got an uninterrupted week of volume that has eluded me since probably early October.  Spent the first couple days of the week at home, then got a ride over to Philadelphia Monday evening to start my trip.  Before leaving on Monday I was able to get over to HydroWorx for some liquid intervals.  Stuck with the same set I’ve felt good doing the past two sessions – 20 x 60 secs.  The water level was still a little low like last week, so I had some more put in and it made a huge difference.  Gradually increased the resistance and treadmill speed, didn’t get it quite as “tough” as last week due to the deeper water but was definitely stressed for the last handful.  Long easy warmup and cool down put the entire workout right at about 75 minutes.  Felt better getting out than I did getting in, always a good thing…

Got in to Philly that evening early enough to hook up with Greater Philly teammate Kevin Forde for another quick night run followed by a bite to eat near the hotel.  Was good to catch up with him and see how the M48 crowd was making out – he was prepping for the trip out to the masters national meet in Bloomington in about a month, and from the looks of things he’s well on his way.  While he made his way home for some zzzz’s, I got a quick shower and was off to pay the mortgage: Philadelphia – Memphis – Louisville that night, lots of delays made it feel much longer than it actually was.  Thank goodness I was only going to Louisville in the morning, don’t know if I would have made Cincinnati…

Sleet and snow turned into windy and freezing in Louisville, after the double workout on Monday felt fine just getting in a long elliptical session.  Did manage to take advantage of a recommendation to visit the Louisville Slugger factory/museum downtown.  Very cool place, doesn’t get any more “Made in the USA” than that.  My tour group watched the space-aged lathe churn out a dozen bats for Texas Ranger Josh Hamilton, the Yank’s Alex Rodriguez’s lumber was “on deck”.  Hopefully he decides to lift the damn things off his shoulder this season….

Louisville – Memphis – Vancouver that night, was actually treated to some sunshine in northwest Canada.  Got out Wednesday afternoon on the Stanley Park path followed by a little extra along the False Creek waterfront.  The Stanley Park bulkhead along the Vancouver Harbor is marked every .5k with little brass placards, so even though I didn’t have (can’t find) my Garmin watch I was still very aware of the pace and distance.  Was the model of consistency, at one point hitting 13 straight markers within a second of 2:10 (~6:55 pace). Went for 76:00 total, figured it right at about 11 miles.  Felt very easy, the awesome scenery and weather made the time fly by – Vancouver did nothing to hurt it’s standing in my “Top-10 Layover Run” List:

Top 10 Layover Runs

1. Vancouver – see above.  Scenery unsurpassed, traffic free, temps perfect.

1a.  Portland – best trail, hands down.  Coniferous forest, soft groomed trail.  Maintained by the local running club, marked on the 1/4 mile.

3. Los Angeles / San Diego – One in the same.  Sunny and 81 degs every freakin’ day, ocean, sand, implants.  Nuf said.

5. New York – Central Park always a good run, winter can get a little harsh for L.A. types.   With 8 million residents you might actually run into somebody you know…

6. Fort Lauderdale – Spring Break, boardwalk, sun, Spring Break.  NYC got lucky I forgot about this one until now…

7. D.C/Dulles – Washington and Old Dominion Trail – hidden gem amidst traffic nightmare.  Crushed stone converted rail bed that goes for miles and miles and miles

8. Philadelphia – boathouse row on the Schuylkill River pretty cool.  Rocky Balboa added plus, Pennsylvania bias probably worth a place or two…

9. Chicago – lakefront ‘boardwalk’ goes forever, guaranteed to have a huge tailwind at least half way.  Downside to this city is obvious….

10.  Allentown – who’d have guessed.  D&L trail out of Bethlehem – crushed stone through the woods following the Lehigh River.  Can get a little muddy though, see Pennsylvania bias above…

10 a.b.c.d  Denver, Indianapolis, Minneapolis, Boston, San Jose – all close calls.

Not on list – Laredo, Detroit, Grand Rapids, Baltimore, Newark, Atlanta, Manchester, Flint, or Lubbock – not close calls at all.

I digress.  Back out in Vancouver on Thursday (long layover), 60 mins in the rain.  Can’t win them all.  Vancouver – Memphis – Omaha through the night, landed in Omaha and hopped on a flight home via Newark.  Back around 2pm, tired but able to get up to the local HydroWorx pool for 75 minutes of easy mileage.

Which brings me to yesterday.  Finally got out to the track, was undecided between 1000’s and 400’s so I just did them both.  Wasn’t trying to knock one out of the park, just build some strength with more turnover than I’d been getting on my tempo runs.  Instead of 5×1000 or 10×400 I ended up running one set of 2×1000 w/800 jog, followed by one set of 3×400 w/400 jog, then repeated the first set of 1000’s.  Hit all the 1000’s under 3:10, quarters right at about 70.  Felt good to be back out there, and although the last 400 and last 1000 were tough, was able to stay relaxed the entire time which was one of my goals. Threw in a set of bleachers at the end for good measure – workout came in right at 10 miles.  40 laps, left the place dizzy…

Probably something easy today (Sunday), hopefully the pool on Monday, then back to Vancouver Tuesday evening.  Have to fish or cut bait on the Albuquerque trip/race pretty soon – travel plans still baffling me but I’d give it a 70% chance that it’s a “go”.  Field for the race looks pretty strong, would be nice to get in a fast race and see if these old wheels have one more good effort left in them.  Since it’ll be on my birthday maybe they’ll let me win….

About Nick Berra

I am a 45 year old masters runner from Central Pennsylvania. I have been participating primarily in track events since turning 40 in 2009. This season has produced marks that I have not run in several years, I believe primarily due to starting a strength and flexibility program here at Elite Athletic Performance - I've felt stronger and faster than I have in a long time. That, coupled with lots of underwater running, has kept me healthy and fit - at this age those are things I no longer take for granted... I run USATF events with a team out of Philadelphia, the Greater Philadelphia Track Club. They are a great group who have played a big part in making the sport enjoyable for me again. I also run local races for HydroWorx Track Club, supported by HydroWorx here in Harrisburg PA. Their underwater treadmills and training center has proved to be a crucial part of my training, rehabilitation, and recovery programs. I set personal records in the 800m (1:56.06) in 2010 and in the 1500m (4:02:63) and mile (4:23.48) in 2011. Despite the fact that I am not getting any younger, I nearly PR'ed recently and set the M45 indoor world record in the 800 meters at the New Balance Armory in New York City. I ran 1:56.10, besting the 9 year old record by less than a second. I feel like there are still more big things to come... I am married and have two daughters. I am an assistant XC coach at my alma mater, Cumberland Valley High School here in Mechanicsburg PA. I am also a 1991 graduate of the US Naval Academy, currently working as a pilot for FedEx after serving 10 years on active duty flying in the Navy. Beat Army! Beat Army!
This entry was posted in HydroWorx Exercise Pool, Interval Training, Running, Training for Runs, Uncategorized, Underwater Treadmill, Water Running and tagged , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

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