The good, bad and the evaluation

Well...this week seems to have flown by and despite not taking any time off during half term it feels like I have seen the kids more than ever. One thing for sure I seem to have been eating more crap than I usually do probably because we had trick or treat happening and my wife usually has more sweets in the cupboard than usual due to this combined with making more cookies, cakes etc than per normal as she is on holiday from work. The results of which is something I can definitely see around my waistline despite not putting on a single pound (I weigh myself daily). This should remove itself though after this week.

Luckily then as my wife was at home more than normal it has made getting out the door easier at different times of the day so perhaps finally this was the week where I would finally get over the 50+ weekly miles I am vying for. At the moment I am not running more than 1.5-2hrs for a long run mainly because there is a lot of stuff going on at the weekend (poor excuse of course). However one run doesn't define training and with 6 other runs during the week it's been key to get out as much as I can.

For the past 4-6 weeks I have been averaging around 40-45 miles and my average pace has come down to around 8-8:15 min/miles average pace for an easy daily run. I have been using my heart rate monitor in each session so that post run I can track the effort I am exerting based on the pace. Most of my runs are around 140-155 HR and mostly less than 150 but as I have been running consistently again now for the past couple of months it was about time I did an "Evaluation" run to see how my aerobic fitness was and how fast I recover.

I picked this up from a great runner I know (you check out his great blog Thomas I hope you don't mind the plug :-) ). After a good 2 mile warm up I picked out the flattest piece of road I could find locally. The wind was going to be a factor as it was blowing quite strongly so an out and back 0.5 miles was what I chose to do this. The target HR was 161 (my max being around 190) so this around 85% of max (threshold pace'ish).

The miles went as follows

Mile 1 - 7:12 pace, HR 161
Mile 2 - 7:25 pace, HR 161
Mile 3 - 7:31 pace, HR 161
Mile 4 - 7:37 pace, HR 161

Then I came to a complete standstill to see how long it took for my HR to come down to 130. I couldn't believe it took 84 seconds to do this! Whether that is good or bad I really don't know however ideally I want the recovery time to come down a lot quicker than this. After which I then ran easy back home to complete the run. The next day I was expecting to be a little sore but to my surprise I actually felt really good. So good in fact that I was hitting sub 8 min/mile pace with a HR under 150!!

I am not sure what to make of this however I am taking things as they are as a baseline to compare to when I next do an evaluation run which will be in 2 weeks time. Was a good week overall but perhaps having averaged 40-45 miles a week I need to bump things up a little bit and I desperately need to get some goals sorted as I don't have anything to look forward to at the moment and it is beginning to affect how I feel after each run.

One highlight of this week though that was great fun was jogging on a beautiful sunny day while my 8 year old daughter rode her bike around the local roads. Some proper dad and daughter time. We both really enjoyed it and it will be something we want to make more regular as she wants to keep beating her longest ride distance. 10km is obviously not enough now!

28 Oct
          10 miles , 1:20:34, 8:04 pace, HR 146
29 Oct
          5.4 miles (Fartlek), 45:09, 8:22 pace, HR 152
31 Oct
           8.15 miles , 1:06:27, 8:10 pace, HR 154
              4 miles evaluation
               7:12 (HR 161)
               7:25 (HR 161)
               7:31 (HR 161)
               7:37 (HR 161), 84 seconds to HR 130
              2.15 miles easy
1 Nov
          7.26 miles , 58:36 , 8:05 pace, HR 144
2 Nov
          6.28 miles, 1:00:23, 9:38 pace, HR 133 (Daughter on bike)
3 Nov
          7.9 miles, 1:04:45, 8:12 pace, HR 148

1 comment:

  1. What do they say about imitation and flattery? ;)

    The most important thing about evaluation is doing it regularly and seeing your progress down the line; do another one in 2 weeks and you'll find out more.

    One quick look at the numbers show you slowed down 25 seconds between mile 1 and 4, so there is definitely room for improvement regarding your aerobic capabilities. 84 seconds recovery is excessive - I'm sure that will come down by a huge amount soon enough.

    For the next 2 until the next evaluation keep the training effort easy. Do that and you will see the numbers improve all by themselves.


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