The limit of today (5k time trial)

I went out early today – in the forenoon not long after breakfast. It was a little slippery so I choose a little different route than usual, but I still had the wicked slope in the end πŸ˜‰

This was the day I was going to proove myself. To see what boundries I had crossed and what heights I had reached. Early on it felt good, but after a couple of k’s I realised I had went out a little too tough and that it would be a little difficult to keep up the pace all through.

So, below you see the limit of today. I can honestly say that I couldn’t have done better than this. Let’s see what it leads to in the future πŸ˜‰

Detailed Garmin data

Day 5, build up
5K time trial

Lap Distance Time AvgPace AvgHR MaxHR Cadence
1 0.994 3:47 3:48 168 196 91
2 1.00 3:49 3:49 178 186 93
3 1.00 3:49 3:48 183 191 94
4 1.00 3:52 3:51 188 194 94
5 1.00 3:52 3:51 188 194 94
TOTAL 5.00 19:09 3:50 181 197 93

Not quite the 4k time trial I had hoped for

I’m onto something new. The past couple of days I have started charting all the things I stuff into myself. I weigh it and I calculate it and I also put it into a homepage (Swedish unfortunately, but there must be something similar internationally) where all the fats, proteins and carbohydrates gets counted. There I also fill in my personal data – gender, age, weight, height – and what I normally do each day and for how long I do it. I can also choose if I want to remain at the same weight, increase or decrease it. One last thing is to also write in how I want to divide every days Kcal intake. The ideal for a distance runner is Protein 15%, Carbohydrates 60% and Fat 25%. Then, at every day it shows how much I’ve taken in of each of these and how high the goal is.

For a control freak like me it’s pretty neat! If not to control the weight, so for the joy of knowing how much and what exactly you stuff yourself with. It has a link to the Swedish food department (Livsmedelsverket), so you can also get stats of all ingredients other than the three accounted for above.

Todays 4k time trial started out great. It was -8 degrees and rougher in the air than what I’m recently used too, but I felt strong, ready and able. I went out.. And after 2k’s my system said no (the digestion problem).. But I persisted and continued the whole way, even though the rest was a total plague and at many points I thought it was going to end really really bad during the last kilometer. On the way home I had to stop and walk several times to struggle against it (noticeable on the garmin data, I believe) – it all felt very humiliating. Good thing it was dark outside :S

In spite of that “trouble” I am satisfied with my time trial, because I felt during it that I could have done much better in other circumstances. That feels promising and relieving actually as I might run my first race next Saturday – not totally sure yet about it. But if i do I really hope that I won’t suffer from the same thing as today. πŸ˜‰

Detailed Garmin data

Day 19, sub 40 program – 2nd round
Race day up to 15K , 4k time trial

Lap Distance Time AvgPace AvgHR MaxHR Cadence
1 1.00 3:49:42 3:49 159 171 93
2 1.00 3:57:85 3:57 171 175 94
3 1.02 3:59.13 3:56 177 183 94
4 0.98 3:46.93 3:52 181 185 94
TOTAL 4.00 15:33.33 3:53 172 185 94

Having hard anticipating the slopes (4k time trial)

I don’t know what it was – the fact that I started out so early in the morning, that I threw myself a cup of coffee just the moment before, that I didn’t have sufficient energy in my body yet or the fact that I started going tough after too little warm-up..

In an hour from now I am going to help some friends move. And since I had my 4k time trial today I wanted to spend some energy on that, so I ran it now, early in the morning. I ate a little something an hour before, but maybe that wasn’t enough time for it go into the system..

It was 3 degrees warm when I started my warm-up, but I noticed quite soon that there were cruel winds. After a half km I decided to tap on the laps button. 1 km into it I felt a little fatigued in the legs. I thought then I wouldn’t manage with good result. But it went away. However, first half of the time trial I had an occasionally tough head wind, making it hard to maintain pace. I know that I at some moments were over 4:00.

Another thing I realised was that I early in the run have hard to anticipate how hard the slopes with feel for the legs later on in the run. It’s the same in races, I’ve noticed. To tackle the lost pace in the slopes one need to keep a higher avarage pace.. It even feels like the higher pace you gain down hill isn’t as high as the pace you lose up hill..

Well, it went fine, and I am pleased with the result, in spite of everything πŸ™‚

But as always, I believe myself it’s a result with modification when running after a watch’s pace.

Detailed Garmin data

Day 19, sub 40 program
Race day up to 15K , 4k time trial

Lap Distance Time AvgPace AvgHR MaxHR Cadence
1 1.00 3:49:58 3:49 169 176 94
2 0.997 3:49:13 3:50 176 182 95
3 1.00 3:50:06 3:49 184 188 96
4 1.01 3:51:38 3:50 189 195 96
TOTAL 4.01 15:20:15 3:49 180 195 95

A packed day (5k paced run) (more photos)

It’s been a very stressful day. But we kind of like it that way. We started by making whole wheat scones and strawberry jam for breakfast. The strawberries was from the freezer – we picked them last summer (I don’t know how it works everywhere else in the world, but here in Sweden there are many strawberry self-picking fields). After that we watched Biathlon, went to the dump, made a Swedish pastry called Semlor. It’s a kind of cardamom wheat bun with marzipan and cream as filling. Very tasty! I even did the marzipan myself. Since a year back I’ve been very back to basics. Me and my wife are tired of all the junk they put in the food we buy, so we want to do as much as we can ourselves. For example, we almost never buy bread anymore. It all takes a lot of more time, but it’s worth it. Nothing can compete with home made bread, jam, pastries – well, all kinds of food.

A little picture of my and Emmas saturday-evening sweets, the Swedish pastry "semla"

Later I did my 5k paced run. Against better knowing I did it outside instead of a treadmill. It was around 0 degrees. Almost everywhere I got grip, but I did have to be cautious all the time..

I only tried to make it below 20 minutes. Afterwards I felt that I could’ve done a little better, but hey – compared to how it went on my first time trials two weeks ago it’s quite ok πŸ˜‰

When I got home I made Spaghetti and meatsauce. My wife is very close to delivery right now, so I must do as much as I can to relieve her – which I gladly do! (just in case she will read this ;)) Also, both our girls are sick, which leads to them needing more attention than usual..

Take care, and good luck with all the running out there πŸ™‚

Detailed Garmin data

Day 12, sub 40 program
5K paced run – aim sub 20:00 5k

Lap Distance Time AvgPace AvgHR MaxHR Cadence
1 1.0 3:57 3:57 159 169 91
2 1.0 4:00 4:00 169 174 92
3 1.0 3:49 3:49 174 179 93
4 1.0 3:52 3:52 177 181 93
5 1.0 3:52 3:52 181 184 94
TOTAL 5.0 19:32 3:54 172 184 92
Emilia Schmeikal baking scones 110122
Emilia baking scones 110122
Clara Schmeikal is baking assistant 110122
Clara is baking assistant 110122
Kittie the cat
Kittie, our cat
Cleaning out Christmas 110122
Cleaning out Christmas (Don't mind the psycho, he wouldn't hurt a fly :)) 110122

Taking cover from the force of nature

Winter Running
Winter Running

Today I thought about running all day – until late in the evening. But.. I didn’t dare. Earlier during the day I had fallen on the solid ice that now covers most of the ground here in this part of Sweden. Not too speak of the 10-15 times I’ve almost fallen, but in the end managed to keep myself on two feet..

It’s really awful when it’s like this. I don’t mind if there are tons of snow – as long as it keeps that way. But when it thaws, becomes slush and then freezes to thick ice, it’s not as funny. And it seems it will be like this for a while. In the weather forecast they speak of just a couple of plus degrees for every day the coming week, meaning it will will take long, long time for the ice to melt.

Analyzing yesterdays performance I think I could’ve done better if I had started out at a lower pace. I recognize from before the fatigue that appears when going out too tough. I’ll try to follow my own advices the next time (which I managed to neglect in my blindness of greed for way too rapid progress).

Now I hope that the sub program approaches. I’ve asked TheEd (coach) about it and if he’s positive it will start tomorrow. The programs are best to start on at Tuesdays so that the tough runs comes during the weekend. He’s feedback on the 4k yesterday was that he didn’t seem to think that less than 4:00 min/km was that bad.. Well, I wish I could be as positive in this case..

Now I’ve got the new digital camera going also, so there will hopefully be more photos on the blog πŸ˜‰

Looking forward to tomorrow and a fresh new start with boundaries to cross!!

Take care!

Went out tough and went down hard… (4k time trial)

Hmm… Don’t really know what to say. Hybris.. Or maybe just idiocy.

As you might have figured out from my title of this post the 4k time trial didn’t quite go the way I wanted. Before I went there I weighed myself on my Beurer body composition scale just for fun – and a little for statistics, which I’m also very fond of. πŸ˜€

Phsycial condition (Measured with a Beurer body composition scale)

Weight Fat % Body water % Muscle % Bone mass (kg) Basal Metab. Active Metab.
66.9 10.0 65.7 45.7 10.6 1678 Kcal 3107 Kcal

I started out with some minutes of warm-up at low speed. Then, like I wrote yesterday, I intended to start at a pace of 3:40, which equals 17.65 km/h… or.. Now I recall that they had written the pace conversions on the treadmill, which wasn’t similar to the ones I had calculated on a website.. I just looked it up on another site – I started out way too tough!! Maybe I did anyway, but the wrongly calculated paces I started out at was actually around 1.30 km/h faster than what I thought – That equals a pace of 3:24!! I thought it felt fast – And it was!! Way faster than I’m used to start out at..

Anyway, to continue with the time trial.. I started out at pace 3:24 (then). I felt the fatigue come very quickly and realized after a little more than a kilometer that I wouldn’t be able to complete. At 1.5 km I pushed the stop button.. The lactate had built up without mercy in my muscles. Then I thought I was just going to turn around and leave..

..But, like I’ve told before I am a little stubborn πŸ˜‰

So I thought I at least had to complete the 4k’s of running, even though I had failed with the time trial the moment I pushed the emergency stop. I jumped on it one more time – now with a more modest pace at 4:17 (14 km/h). At that speed I believed I could manage to complete the 2.5 km that was left. I also did complete it and just to convince myself that I could push myself a little more I raised the pace to 4:08 the last 100 m (quite an achievement, isn’t it? *ironic*).

If I was to complain about anything other than myself (Shame on me!) it would be that the ceiling fan (no joke, there were no A/C) which opposite to me didn’t run at a too high speed, didn’t give much comfort in the struggle I had put myself in.

Detailed Garmin data (Here you can see that my Garmin and the treadmill don’t agree on how long I’ve run, and therefore my Garmin gives a lower pace than what I would’ve got if I only followed the treadmill. I’ve tried to end every lap at exactly the 1k or 0.5k mark of what the treadmill showed)

If the paces doesn’t match the ones I’ve written above in my telling of the run it’s because the ones in the table is calculated from the time of the Garmin and the k indicated on the treadmill. I hope they still are somewhat truthful to how it went, else I believe that the treadmills distance indication isn’t very good.

Day 20, build up (In the Total I’ve subtracted the data from the resting lap)
4k time trial on treadmill

Lap Distance Time AvgPace AvgHR MaxHR Cadence
1 1.0 3:34 3:34 176 186 93
2 0.5 1:52 3:44 187 189 94
Rest 2:28
3 0.5 1:52 3:44 166 175 92
4 1.0 4:20 4:20 181 187 96
5 1.0 4:16 4:16 191 197 98
Total 4.0 15:55 3:58 182 197 95

Compare with the Garmins total, which differs:

Lap Distance Time AvgPace AvgHR MaxHR Cadence
Total 4.38 (diff)
15:55 3:38 (diff)
182 197 95

Thoughts about tomorrow’s 4k time trial

Maybe it really isn’t much to speak of – such a trivial thing as a time trial. It’s only to have something to test my current fitness and adjust the upcoming paced runs after.

Well, to me it is a big deal. I have been running slow, easy runs now for over a month, which makes me feel uncertain of my abilities. Sure, I do rely on the coaching I get and that the easy runs lays a good foundation for the coming race training. But something in the back of my head still nags about me not being able to run as fast as I did (39:47) in the Kretsloppet 10k race in August.. At least not until I’ve proved otherwise, anyway πŸ˜‰

So tomorrow will be an important test for me, other than something to base my paced runs upon. If it shows that I’m in greater shape than I think, it will boost me to continue struggling – and if it tells me that I’m not in as great shape as I used to be, I will try even harder to get back there and over it all.

I believe there’s actually a possibility that my fitness has gotten worse. But to lay a good foundation to reach even higher maybe that was a necessary evil πŸ™‚

Anyway, my plans for tomorrow will be to start out at 3:40 for around 1k, and then take 3:30 pace for 2k’s and end with the last k at 3:20. Don’t know if I will manage, or even get close to the goal, but that’s the plan!

  1. pace 3:40
  2. pace 3:30
  3. pace 3:30
  4. pace 3:20

This will leave me at an avarage of 3:30, which means a total 4k time at 14 minutes. It might be a little high aimed, but I like it that way. I think it’s still reachable if I haven’t lost it all…

Soft on my knees, but I might need to strap myself up a little harder

It snowed all night and most of the day too. Made a soft and nice coating on today’s run. I still feel something in my left knee at some of my runs (don’t really know why, but I try to work it away with my strength training), which hopefully got a little better caring today when the ground was soft as wool πŸ™‚

One thing that nagged me though, was that my Garmin was playing games with me again. It was ok most of the run, but during the end it started dancing around again :S

You know that when your heart rate start jumping 5-10 beats up and down at a time while keeping a steady pace, it’s either time to see a doctor (or maybe a Shaman) or your gear is trying to make you nuts for some reason.

It seems it usually happens when it’s around 0 degrees outside.. Might be a coincidence. Another thing might be that I strap the heart rate monitor too loose, because when I pressed it against my chest today it got much better immediately.. I’ll try to strap me up a little harder in the future πŸ˜€

About the time trial on Saturday I’ve been adviced by TheEd to do it on a treadmill instead of slippery surface. Don’t know how to lay it up yet, but… Maybe to start out at 3:40 the first km and then try to increase.. Well, we’ll see about that πŸ˜‰

Day 15, 2nd build up
1hr easy and totally relaxed – at ease through out

Lap Distance Time Avg Pace Avg HR Max HR Avg Cadence
1 10.99 1:04:40 5:53 133 164 89

PS. Today I bought a new Olympus system camera, which hopefully will be put in use soon so that I’ll get some more photos up here.

Day 19 / sub 40 – race day (training) 10k

Today in the morning before I was about to take the run I wasn’t up for it at all. The ground was packed with snow and the temperature lay around -8 degrees Celsius.

Snowy street in bolltorp, AlingsΓ₯s 2010-11-27

I knew that my racing time wouldn’t be accurate, so the whole thing felt a little futile. The reason for that is that I haven’t got a measured track on plain ground to run at here in AlingsΓ₯s so then I have to rely on the garmin watch footpod’s accuracy, which I from before know to have faulted a little too much – even in summertime. And when the ground is a little slippery like it was today the little kinetic sensor in the footpod will be even more unreliable.

Earlier this year, when I ran at kretsloppet the watch showed 10.45 km and that I ran with an avg pace of 4:48. Since I ran after the pace of the watch that lead to me thinking I did a better race than I did. :S

So – never rely on the accuracy of the pod. I haven’t calibrated it, but sometimes it shows 0.5k wrong in both directions, so that shouldn’t change it that much.

But… I ran a good training race today and even if it later shows that I didn’t ran exactly 10k I’m satisfied. It was cold as **** and more than half of the time I had head-wind, which made the freezing wind even more evil πŸ˜€

For fun I weighed myself before and after. I’ve never done that before.

Christian Schmeikal in the snow outside home in Bolltorp 2010-11-27
Me in the snow outside home in Bolltorp 2010-11-27

Weight before: 66.5 kg
Weight after: 66.1 kg

So I lost 0.4 dl of fluids during the run.

Here’s the data for the training race. And remember – the distance and pace may not be totally accurate πŸ˜‰

Total distance: 10 km
Total Time: 38:37
Avg pace: 3:52
Avg HR: 176
Cadence: 93

For those interested to look closer at all the detailed data and graphs visit my garmin page:

Data from my 10k training race at 10-11-27