Monday, February 06, 2017


Continuation of my Running Again at Age 80 log now that I'm back at it after 30 year hiatus

September Running Again at Age 80 log

9/1- decided after all to do a 5k road race, this Saturday no less, use it as a training run to push me a little more. Ran a moderately intense 1.11 mile in the hollow in prep. Duration 14:43, pace 13:16, peak 11:14. HR avg 123, peak135. A loosening up workout for the 5K in two days.

9/2- Rest day from training workouts.

9/3- Ran the FCA 5K, official time 43:59, pace 14:10, two minutes plus faster than last 5K race on 8/6. Slight improvement but not what I'm capable of, I think. Faded in the last 2Ks. Stride length is weak re cadence. Polar M400 had me running 3.18 miles, 13:58 pace, max pace 9:40, HR avg 134bpm, peak 174. Disappointed about the fade and weak stride length. Takes work and time. To try out 80/20 method, slow/fast virtually no moderate runs. See

9/4- Ran a slow mile recovery run after yesterday's 5k race which I completed 2 minutes faster than the last 5K on 8/6 - a little improvement, but, faded during the last 2K. So. Research. Been using a short stride, rapid step cadence style, working out mostly at a moderate pace, one recommendation for aged souls. Switching to another training mode -- The 80/20 -- the 80%, longer slow easy paced runs; the 20%, fast intense shorter and interval runs, skipping entirely the moderate runs. Need more distance and speed and stride length and research shows the 80/20 is effective.
Polar M400 data: 1.12 miles, 17:55 duration, 111 avg bpm HR, 15:15 avg pace, 11:47 peak. Considered mild.

9/7- yesterday rest. Treadmill workout today adapting to the 80 of the 80/20 to start that mode. Also worked some on form, foot plant, stride, breathing. Duration re M400: 55:52; avg HR 109 bpm peak 120. Not enough sleep. Definitely thinking about a nap. But I didn't. Instead, a cross-training 20-minute workout: dumbbell front curls/overhead presses and underarm lateral curls, squats, and form walks, four sets of this routine.

Twitter notes -
#RunningAtAge80 - 3-1/2 months into it, switching to 80/20 training - 80% slow distance runs, 20% intense speed & hill work. Continuing strength work. Rugged.
#RunningAtAge80 -Since back at it after 3 decades cut 5K time by 8 minutes in 3 races/months. Age-related: slow from times then.
#RunningAtAge80 -Did 24 10-second uphill repeats on slope in pic followed 10 intense minutes on treadmill at 10-degrees, HR peaks 108 & 123. 30 minute workout

9/7- Did 24 10-second uphill intervals on backyard slope followed 10 intense minutes on treadmill set at 10-degrees, HR peaks 108 & 123. 30 minute workout.

9/8- #RunningAtAge80 Slow 63 minute power line trail run, mind on breathing, ankles, not pace/cadence. HR 114, total ascent 440 ft. Nice.

9/9- #RunningAtAge80 - Did 25x10-second hill sprints (side pic of slope) then 4 sets of dumbbell curls and presses, squats and planks. Whew. Power workout. Tried a cup of veggie broth and pea protein after, like it as a recovery drink (smile) ...

9/10- On the 80 of the 80/20, slow 4.4 miles; avg HR 122 peak 185; pace 16:40 peak 8:03: duration 1:13:04; total climb 1020ft. From Polar M400.

9/11- light recovery workout, 7 minutes dynamic warmup, mostly plunges front side back-angle, leg swings; 21 minutes X-training: 3 sets - of 3-minute treadmill slow; 15lb dumbbells curls/presses and underarm curls, 45-60 second planks.

9/12- Easy 3.29 miles in hollow, 52:49; avg pace 16:03, max last .5 mile 11:14; HR avg 118 max 154 - 10 minute dynamic warmup before. (Riverbend 5K, my first this time around in June, was 52'08", 16'47" mile pace. Okay.)

9/13- Slow 2.28 mile power line trail run, 39:08; 17:08 avg pace, 13:03 peak. HR avg 115 bpm, peak 126; ascent total 200'. Tippy bumpy somewhat hilly surface.

9/14- Slowish 3.13 mile hollow run w/grades, 48:30 duration; 15:30 pace, 12:14 peak; HR avg 123, peak 132; ascent 160'. Not getting the distance yet in lsd but 5k I might run this weekend limited that. Stride still not there, either. Need speed work.

9/15- Ran quick 1.12 miles in the hollow, 14:34; Not where I want be. Avg pace 13:02; Max 10:59. HR avg 126, Max 134. At mile mark ran 12:23 pace, time 13:03. Leg strength and efficiency the key issue. Need those long miles, long sprints and tempo runs.
Now, there's also this, Polar's Running Index. Mine at the moment is 39, considered "very good" for runners 60-65, no scale for those 80, and which suggests the following race time predictors:

I'm surprised - 5K at Max performance and efficiency, say, would be
33:20, avg pace thus 10:43. Not where I'm at yet. Avg RI over three weeks is 33, roughly predicting 40:00 5K.
Been running/training now for little more than four months since resuming from mid '80s.
About Running Index:
"Running Index score is calculated automatically after every run, based on your heart rate and from the speed data collected via GPS or stride sensor."
--Running and redemption--

#RunningAtAge80 -- Running as redemptive persistence despite "old" age -- (I tell myself)
Been running/training now for little more than four months since I resumed after a decades-long hiatus. Progress is slow. I wither at times.

9/16- easy 23 minutes on treadmill to limber up some before the Raccoon Mountain 5K tomorrow- feeling like I should run it, even for training, leaving expectations and goals aside.

9/17- Sure as hell don't feel like running a road race today - Listen to the body. Skipping this one. #Running atAge80 - might do a little training. Run the way I love to.
9/17 again- #RunningatAge80 - So I skip road race, later do 40x10-second hill sprints up slope in pic, walking down. And it's easy. Perplexed. Ran hard, supposed to be difficult.

9/18- Not sure yet about today, now 8:39 a.m. Might need a total rest day, might not. Raining on and off. Logey.
Okay, late afternoon, "mild" 23:34 cross-training effort, three sets 3-4 minute treadmill thigh-ankle strides: 15 lb dumbbell curl/presses and underarm curls; planks with alternate leg lifts; two sets squats. HR avg 96, peak 118. Felt good.

9/19- Ran slow 4.3 miles, upping distance, leg strength, speed and endurance, all gradually improving. Nice. - 16:18 pace, peak 12:23; HR avg 123, peak 142; 1:09:51 duration; Polar RI 42 (elite-??). Total climb 260 ft. OK.

Note: from RW - "Your body has no comprehension of what a mile is; it only knows how hard it's working and how long it's working. Effort over time. The duration of effort is one of the key factors that arouses the biological signals that induce physiological adaptations that will ultimately lead to improvements in your running performance."

9/20- slow 3.28 miles, thinking of it as adding weekly mileage, adding time running. Duration 52:02; 15:50 pace, peak 13:14. HR avg 119 bpm, peak 13:14. Polar RI 43 elite.

9/21- Tapering slow workouts today & tomorrow, trip to NY cabin Friday, planned 5K there Sunday on way to great-grandson's 1st birthday party! First NY run in three decades, the last time I was an active road racer. Homeland.
SPO2 reading this a.m., 97, HR 50.
Light cross-training workout, 32:09 duration. Three interval sets of treadmill strides, Total Gym presses and lateral curls, planks with alternate leg lifts, squats. HR peak 100, avg 89. Light good for today.

#RunningatAge80 -- For people my age who are newly or renewing running, the available training guidance and science is too varied, contradictory and limited. I'm gleaning, testing & feeling the way, fortunately with a background in research, studies and practice. But if one doesn't have that?

9/22- Running is my refuge. How to explain this. It's in each stride on the road, in the progressions, the weaknesses I try to overcome, the challenge unique to me this older human, the measured health gains, the potential pitfalls, the solo, the "second-wind." It's in the mystery of possibility that depends on the will to do it and to understand how, and what story the limitations tell. It's not the race, it's the performance, the spending of myself. The art. A work-in-progress, interconnected with its environment, the path, the hill, the weather, the fatigue, the air, companions, the freeing clarity, the love I carry with me. #RunningatAge80
--Ran a fairly easy 2.21 miles, 33:17 duration, 14:36 avg pace 11:22 peak. HR avg 123, peak 195 (?). Polar RI 43 (elite). Travel to upstate NY tomorrow and Saturday, maybe a 5K race Sunday.

9/25- After two days driving, at our upstate NY cabin, up early and weary from trip after arrival yesterday afternoon. Not going to run in local 5K I registered for but will do a training light run to stretch out my old legs before we head to great-grandson's birthday party this afternoon. It was here four months ago that I decided to resume running again. Home turf, really.
#RunningatAge80 - Two day drive to NY mountain cabin where I resumed running 4 months ago afters decades layoff. Our sweet future home.
Didn't run after all.

9/26- ran a mile+ on rural hilly road by cabin, got hives and stopped, took a Benadryl, and once again reminded I have take care what I eat before running. Implicated this time was wheat in a roll, the worst for me, and mushrooms. Ran less than two hours after I ate. Bummer. Later walked a mile plus on cleared patch of our 5 acres.

9/27- Ran a sweet 4.51 mile Tuscarora mountain steep hilly run on our NY cabin road, aerobic slower pace, so nice to be here - no hives #RunningatAge80 - love it!
Descent/ascent from cabin in longest lap 490 feet. Duration 1:18:48; avg pace 17:28, right for the 80/20 stage I'm at. Avg HR 118 bpm.

9/28- Ran an easy 2-1/4 hilly mile on the cabin mountain road, a light one after yesterday's 4.5 descent and ascent on the steep slopes this old body navigated. Cool upstate NY weather is a blessing. Really like these hills. #RunningatAge80
Duration 36:27; avg pace 16:09; HR avg 126.

9/29- Recovery and strength training indoors, 28+ minutes; intervals with no rest with 15lb barbells curls/presses and underarm curls; leg lift planks; squats; high knee toe raising walks, dynamic stretches to start. HR avg 86, peak 102.
Important perspective--

9/30- Raining hard, hoped to get 2 or 3 miles in, but it's sloppy out there on the cabin road. Up against my age, increased need for recovery, and the desire to intelligently increase my mileage and speed work. Plus we're making family visits that require hours of travel and one two-day overnight stay. Fitting it in fittingly.

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