Tuesday, February 28, 2012

Jermaine Wiggins

running today: 11mi easy / 80:25
* * * * * * *
So... former NFL tight end Jermaine Wiggins is a dumbass.

I used to listen to the Felger & Mazz radio show the way some people read JK Rowling or listen to Katy Perry (a "singer" that actually makes my teeth hurt). It's a guilty pleasure. I know it isn't quality entertainment but their heated disagreements are kind of funny, as is their interaction with callers. It's usually worth two or three good laughs every day.

But now I have to vote with my feet and cannot listen to the show anymore because part-time host Wiggins is such a moron. I'm not sure how they got on the topic but today Wiggins declared that "swimming is not a sport." To qualify as a sport, the activity apparently must entail multiple athletic maneuvers of some kind, and a high degree of coordination. In their defense, Felger and Mazz were a little shocked by such stupidity and tossed a bunch of questions at him (paraphrasing here):

So, what about sprinting?
-- Nope. Not a sport.
Usain Bolt isn't an athlete?
-- No.
Carl Lewis wasn't an athlete?
-- Lewis was an athlete, but only because he did multiple events.
What about hurdlers?
-- Yes, because they have to run and jump in coordination.
Are professional cyclists athletes?
-- No.
But decathletes are?
-- Yes.
Marathoners? Is any form of running a sport?
-- Nope. Anybody can go out and run. Doesn't make it a sport.
-- No.
Are you saying Michael Phelps isn't an athlete?
-- Right, not an athlete. Just because the activity is hard

   doesn't make it a sport. Anybody can learn how to swim.
How about figure skating? That requires multiple skills.
-- Yes, figure skating is a sport.

Leaving aside the enormous, glaring logical fallacies in his argument for a moment, the really absurd moment came when Wiggins informed Felger and Mazz that "you guys obviously can't understand my point because you aren't athletes... if you were, you would agree with me. My point about what makes something a sport is a fact, not an opinion."

Ohhh, okay then. So anyone who thinks that swimming IS a sport is either A) not an athlete, or B) an ignorant one. There is a type of person who uses the "you would agree with me if you weren't so stupid" sort of defense. They're called annoying teenagers.

Monday, February 27, 2012


8mi fartlek with 6 x 800m surges, ~2:35 average
full active recovery / 57:00 total running time

Sunday, February 26, 2012


12mi very easy / untimed

Saturday, February 25, 2012


Took a day off yesterday, my first since 1/24/12. If my records are correct I did 269mi in the thirty days 1/25 - 2/23. I don't have an excuse for the rest day other than general fatigue.

today: 15 min warm-up + 13.2K steady-state run / 49:39
total for week = 60 miles even

Thursday, February 23, 2012


10mi very easy / untimed

Wednesday, February 22, 2012

intervals 2/22/12

3 x 1500m / 4:50.0, 4:51.5, 4:52.0
8mi total including warm-up and cool-down

Too fast! I should be doing 1500s in the 4:55 - 4:58 range. The idea behind VO2max intervals is to work at the slowest pace that elicits VO2max and I was definitely beyond that. In other words, "the workout becomes more stressful and the benefits no greater" (JD, 2005). Occasionally pushing into the anaerobic metabolism zone isn't inherently bad, but it is a tool that should be used with excessive caution.

Tuesday, February 21, 2012

shoe hunt 2/21/12

running today: 80 min very easy

Still searching for the perfect marathon shoe. I thought the Nike Streak 3 was it. I wore those for Boston last year, no complaints. My concern this time around is that my third pair was DEFECTIVE. I discovered this in the middle of an easy distance session when they already had 70+ miles on them. My head would explode if the same thing happened during a race. Other shoes I considered and dismissed:

Saucony Kinvara -- great for LSD, horrible for racing
adidas Hagio -- yet again, adidas gets the flexibility all wrong
Asics DS Racer -- 7.9 oz is lightweight? meh

I just tried a pair of New Balance 730s. Oddly enough this is my first experiment with NB. The flexibility and weight seem just about right. I'm a little worried about the heel cushion... 16mm could be a bit too far on the minimalist side. There is one more option I'm going to try, but even as I write this I have a hard time believing it: Skechers GOrun.

The con argument: They are made by Skechers. The pro argument: They are good enough for Meb. Pro argument wins!

Monday, February 20, 2012


4mi easy / untimed

Sunday, February 19, 2012

LSD 2/19/12

18mi easy / 2:06:35
Needed to get in two quality sessions this weekend (tempo and LSD) so MV20 was out. A 20mi race followed by tempo is a bad idea. Using the OFTM as tempo was also out because LSD the day before a 10mi race is just as dumb. There was a 10K yesterday that would have worked but I didn't feel like driving to Plymouth. Pleased with the progress so far... the early 7:15 miles felt like walking. Finished with a 6:34.

Saturday, February 18, 2012

tempo 2/18/12

15 min warm-up + striders + 10K tempo 36:04
total for week = 66 miles

Friday, February 17, 2012


4.5mi easy with 6x200 meter striders

Thursday, February 16, 2012


10mi easy / 74:25

Wednesday, February 15, 2012


10mi uber slow death march / 77:39

Tuesday, February 14, 2012

intervals 2/14/12

AM: 4mi very easy / untimed
PM: 15 min warm-up + 5 x 1K at 5K pace, 600 meter recovery, avg split 3:16.8
Acutely aware of running right on the edge of the abyss during these intervals but, as Coach Daniels says, runners occasionally need to visit the overtrained horizon. Today was one of those days.

Monday, February 13, 2012

recovery day 2/13/12

6mi recovery run / 44min

I logged 37mi in the last three days, and because I'm not fully acclimated to that level of work, this was absolutely a "recovery workout" in the more modern and accurate sense: A routine aerobic session done prior to quality day recovery, with the express purpose of putting that recovery in check.

The purpose wasn't to accelerate my short-term recovery in any way, which is how the term "recovery workout" has frequently been used -- the idea being that an easy session could somehow magically help the body recover. Of course, we now know that is nonsense: Workout stress is workout stress is workout stress. If quick recovery is the goal, don't go running. And that holds true for all of the cross-training twaddle.

The purpose here really was to decelerate my recovery. Sustained recovery is how we get faster. In terms of fitness, the body is always doing one of three things: Improving (recovering from workout stress), holding steady, or declining. So when you are building up to a big race and you sense you are approaching the holding steady phase, you have to beat that shit back into submission.

Sunday, February 12, 2012


16mi LSD / 1:55:50

Saturday, February 11, 2012

2012 ramp-up

first some housekeeping:
2/11/12 - 90 min easy
total for week = 63mi

Been focused on Boston for weeks now but two persistent colds, one in Nov 2011 and another mid-January, put me behind schedule. Base mileage wasn't what I'd hoped for... tomorrow will be the first two hour run of the season. Here is the progression plan:
2/12 - 16mi
2/19 - 18mi
2/26 - 20mi
3/04 - 21mi
3/11 - 13mi
3/18 - New Bedford 1/2 (tentatively)
3/25 - 22mi
4/01 - 22mi (then taper)

Friday, February 10, 2012


15 min warm-up
10K tempo run / 36:45
1mi cool-down

High 40s with a moderate breeze at the start; temp dropped and wind picked up the entire way. But hey it's mid-winter, and I'm getting track work in!

Thursday, February 9, 2012


6mi fartlek / 41:13 --
2mi warm-up + 4x2:20-2:30 surges mixed into easy pace
200 one-leg hops afterwards

Wednesday, February 8, 2012


7mi super slow / 52:10

Tuesday, February 7, 2012


AM: 4mi easy / untimed
PM: 7mi hill workout --
    18:00 easy + 16:00 hill reps + 15:30 easy

Monday, February 6, 2012


30 min easy + 200 one-leg hops

Sunday, February 5, 2012


14mi -- 7 easy, 7 at 6:21 pace

Saturday, February 4, 2012


12mi very easy
total for last 10 days = 85mi

Friday, February 3, 2012


4.5mi easy / 32:20
Wanted to do 2 or 3 more but had two nights in a row of poor sleep. Felt crappy all day and cut it short.

Thursday, February 2, 2012


65 min easy / 9.0mi

Wednesday, February 1, 2012


AM: 4mi easy / untimed
PM: 2mi warm-up + 8 x 300
    52.7, 52.5, 51.3, 50.4,
    49.8, 48.9, 48.9, 49.2

Walkers in lane one... wtf is with the walkers in lane one?? I've been trying to think of an IT industry practice that's comparable to these dumbasses strolling about in lane one. I guess it would have to be developers voluntarily programming in Java.