Sixty Minute Man
He sent an email yesterday to his acolytes anticipating the cold temps forecast for today and asking us to email him for alternate workouts. Now those who know me know that one of my numerous ideosyncracies is a higher than average tolerance for cold. I don't remember ever modifying a workout due to cold weather, so I email back GP and say that I should be fine despite the cold, and I'll just do my planned workout. He emails me back and writes something to the effect that my thermoregulation will be out of whack and affect my ability to perform optimally.
And I guess that is where we are different. I like his approach to training from a tactical standpoint: building comfort with faster speeds, recovering on the run (so to speak) and the like makes alot of sense to me. However I've always cast a wary eye towards biophysiological justifications of training practices. Whenever I've looked there has been precious little evidence to back up what folks like Daniels and Pfitzinger write. I've been doing this bloody sport off and on for decades now and have developed a pretty good sense of what works for me and what my body responds to. I trust this more than explanations involving mitochondria and the like.
Today's scheduled workout was:
10 @ 60: Lactate threshold run. This is an interesting workout as the pacing is very skillful.
Meaning gun to tape you cover 10 miles in 1 hour. However this includes the warm up, but the longer and slower your warm up, the more you have to make time up, the faster and shorter you warm up, the more the risk of incurring lactic build up which we are trying to avoid, so the run has to be just perfect in its make up.Here we have more physiology. In planning this race I realized I don't think I would recognize lactic acid buildup in a situation like this. To me its basically a fast run without a warmup. Kind of like when I show up at races at the last minute and don't have time to warm up. Doing this never bothered me. Doing ten in sub 60 is a little fast for where I'm at, but I wasn't worried about being able to do it. As for the cold, well that made things interesting.
So I dropped Tony off at school and kept on driving to the Drives. Weather Underground said that temperatures were in the teens. This was enough to make me wear tights, my bulky and ever more raggedy Penn sweatshirt, and a hat and gloves. I figured I'd start at 7 minute pace and head towards 6 minute pace until mile 4, and then figure out what pace I had to run to make it back in under 60 - taking the last six miles as a tempo run.
Heading into the legendary Kelly Drive headwind, I felt comfortable and strong. Mile splits were 6:46; 6:13; 5:55; 5:58; 5:43; 5:46; 5:47; 5:53; 6:02; 5:55 for a total time of 59:58. Cut it a little closer than I had planned, but I love it. Today I'm a sixty minute man! After the first mile into the wind I knew the cold wouldn't be an issue and I wouldn't have a hard time with this workout. I hit the my fastest split, 5:43, right at the half, and tried to gradually ease up the rest of the way. As you can see from the subsequent splits I was pretty successful at this, and I felt in complete control of my pace, only having to push a little at the end to dip under 60.
Oh, and by mile 7 I felt overheated to the point of taking off my gloves and hat to let out more steam.
So my legs ache a little, but lactic acid buildup doesn't seem to be a problem. I also remember reading recently that lactic acid has gotten a bad rap, that there are supposedly benefits to it now. Confused? I guess I am. But today's workout felt right.
10 miles on Kelly & MLK, out and back, in 59:58.
There'll be 15 minutes of kissing[Listen here]
Then you'll holler "please don't stop"
There'll be 15 minutes of teasing
And 15 minutes of squeezing
And 15 minutes of blowing my top
If your man ain't treating you right
Come up and see ol' Dan
I rock 'em, roll 'em all night long
I'm a sixty-minute man