Sunday, April 19, 2009

Training in Virginia

Great Falls
Sun, April 19: Today was an awesome trail run in River Bend & Great Falls state parks just north of McLean, VA. Who’d a thought that something so awesome as these parks exist in this extreme urban area. Miles and miles of single track through beautiful woods with singing birds, abundant wild life, and sections of steep hills; it was spiritual! At the end of 23 miles I was feeling so much energy and joy from this run I didn’t want to stop. However, the reality of risking overtraining and the fact I was out of water made me decide to end the adventure. It was truly an awesome run!
Sat, April 18: Started the day with indoor cycling at the McLean Racket & Health Club. 1 ½ hours of sub threshold intervals on one of those stationary bikes with the big fat saddle. Man those saddles are uncomfortable. After the bike workout, ran in River Bend & Great Falls on the recommendation from a colleague at work. Had planned on doing an easy 5 mile recovery run, but the trails were so awesome I couldn’t stop exploring. I finally called it at 7 miles. I am definitely coming back tomorrow for more exploring!

Fri, April 17: Got up early before work and ran through the neighborhoods near the hotel. Nice rolling hills with some pretty impressive houses. The streets are lighted enough to be like daylight and there’s no traffic this early in the morning. This whole area is old wood forest and the houses are built without taking down all the trees. As the sun comes up the birds are incredible. Its like a concert put on by nature. What a way to start the day! 1.4 hrs and 9.5 miles.

Thurs, April 16: Easy five mile recovery run before work through the neighborhood near the hotel. Legs were feeling pretty beat up from running so much pavement yesterday. Just took it easy and even though it was raining, still enjoyed the magic of night turning to day. After work went to the gym for a full body strength workout as well as a 1 hour spin session. Our spinning class included some eight very tough 2 minute Vo2 max intervals. I had a couple minor problems in that I’m still not used to those big fat saddles and when we were going really hard, I pulled my foot out of the pedal a couple times. Good workout though considering I’m here without a bike.

Wed, April 15: Got up at four AM to run a paved trail (W & OD) not too far from the hotel. It’s a pretty nice trail and I just ran a steady pace in the dark for a little over six miles before turning around. What was really cool about this run is the sounds of nature all around. The trail travels through marsh areas, old forests, golf courses, residential areas. Throughout the run there seemed to be massive amounts of birds singing, crickets chirping and other sounds of nature. It was like running in a concert. I felt great the entire run, but a little beat up from the pavement at the end.

Tues, April 14: Went to the gym and participated in a spinning class or as the instructor called it, indoor cycling training. The instructor is a cyclist and doesn’t teach spinning. The bikes are the spinning type bikes with the strap on pedals (that keep coming un-tightened) and BIG FAT SADDLES. Those saddles are intimidating! We had a good workout though, with a thorough warm-up then a series of sub threshold intervals. Actually the perfect type of training for me right now, under the circumstances.

Mon: April 13: Flew to Washington/Dulles then drove to the hotel. Found a gym (The McLean Racket & Health) club less then two minutes walking distance from the hotel. The hotel has a membership so guests can use it for free. Excellent! Went over and did a full body strength workout, focusing on core. Also picked up a copy of their spinning schedule. Gonna make this work!
Total for Week:
Bike: 3.6 hrs, 52 miles
Run: 8.8 hrs, 57 miles

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