It’s been a while since I’ve given you an update on how my training is going (OK, fine.  I haven’t given you any.), so here goes.

Things have started off very well.  I have been able to get in all the long runs that were on my schedule except one.  I had originally planned to do 15 and 10 miles on 11/12-13, however I ended up scratching the 10 mile run as I was flying to California for business early that day.  Part of me couldn’t deal with what would have been a 3am wake-up call to get the run done.  But the primary reason I ended up cancelling it is that it would have been the second consecutive weekend of back-to-back long runs.  Now the 25 miles combined isn’t a huge number for me (I’ll max out at 52 miles next March), but this is the very beginning of my training plan and I shouldn’t have scheduled the Sunday 10 miler to begin with.  It just wasn’t the smart thing to do.  I have 5 months of training in Project 14Forty and there’s no reason to start ramping up big right from the get go.  I have plenty of time to ease into the insane workouts.

It was easier to back off the mileage on that weekend because I had already messed up my training plan by adding in extra miles the prior weekend.  My 10 mile and 10 mile weekend ended up turning into a 15 and 10 weekend for the simple reason that I didn’t bother to look at what mileage I had down for Saturday.  I’m used to continually ramping up the Saturday long run mileage and since I did 10 miles the prior week, I just assumed that 15 was what I needed to do despite the fact this was my first back-to-back weekend.  It wasn’t until I had finished Sunday’s run that I realized my mistake.  Oh, well.  In hindsight – no harm, no foul.

The one surprising aspect of the first training block is my speed.  With the distances I run, I can typically only cover them at a slow speed.  Ten to fourteen minute miles is what my long pace typically ends up being with the more vertical I do (i.e. 200-220 feet/mile) pushing me towards the higher end of this range and less vertical (90-110 feet/mile) towards the lower end.  My paces so far have been in the 9-9.5 minute range, which is just blazing fast.  While some of this may be attributed to about half the miles being on roads, this doesn’t account for all of the improvement.  I haven’t been doing any speed work or anything so all I can think of is that my endurance base has slowly built up my speed over the past couple years without ever running really fast.  No matter the cause, I will take it.

11/20 MAF test

I’m grading myself an incomplete for last weekend’s MAF test.  I managed to make it to the track and run 5 miles, but other than that there wasn’t much in common with my other tests.  My heart rate monitor was screwy right from the get go and I never got an accurate measure of my HR over the entire 5 miles.  I think my effort was in line with a 142bpm heart rate, however I have no way of knowing this for fact.  I also eschewed a warm-up like I normally do and just jumped right into the 5 miles.  And to top it off there was hurricane-esque winds blowing me up and down the track, which I’m sure slowed me a bit.  My pace ended up being about 30 seconds slower than my last couple, but I don’t think this was an accurate gauge of my current fitness so I’m just going to ignore it for now.  Now if my next test on January 7th confirms this, then I’ll start getting worried.

So all-in-all, a great start to Project 14Forty.

Are you able to ignore workout outliers or do they tend to bother you for some time afterwards?

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