This year is going by quickly! I just sailed by the halfway point and beyond and needed a moment to look back and reflect on where I'm at and where I am going.
At the end of June:
Swim: 29 mi
Bike: 631 mi
Run: 516 mi
Fitness: 17 hours (Spinning, TRX, kayaking, strength training)
Events completed so far (End of July)
Postal Swim: 1 hour TT: 2950m
SFR Point Reyes Populaire: 75mi 7:15:00
SFR Pierce Point 200k: 12:14:00
Kaiser 5k: 21:45 (2nd AG)
Oakland Running Fest Run the Town Challenge 2015: 21:08 5k (PR!), half 2:13:38 Total 2:34:46
Cinderella Challenge: 86 miles, 7:27 moving time, 8:28 elapsed time
Grizzly Peak Century: 7:56 moving, 9:33 elapsed time + 1 hr to get to start
Bay to Breakers: 1:11:10
Golden Gate Trail Run 50k: 8:04:00, 6320' elev
SF Marathon 5k: 21:39 (2nd AG)
Biked Mt. Tam and Mt. Diablo
The swimming is pretty sad, but hard to keep that going with all the other mileage being put in on land. I hoping to catch up when I do my tri-training which will be swim-specific. I achieved my running goal of doing at least one 50k this year so now I'm going back to strength training for the next 6 weeks before embarking on tri training. In addition to TRX I started doing HIIT and Plyo at the gym and will be spinning again to get ready for Tour de Tahoe. I've dropped almost 10 lbs doing the HFLC diet and feel ready to keep on going.
|The Starting Line|
I didn't have that much time after my 50k to do many track runs, so I just did a few short and sharpen tempo runs here and there and TRX and saved something for race day. I was relying on my springtime speedwork and was curious to see how the hilly 50k trail training with no emphasis on speed affected that. I also wanted to see what a cyclical carb cycle on a high fat low carb diet might have done to my 5k. My legs felt good, not much soreness or pain and I had alot of endurance. I'm even able to run in my New Balance Minimus again. More time to improve anaerobic system would have helped, because in my last 5k/PR with a lot of preparation I averaged 74% of maximum heart rate on the race. On this one, even though I could do my 5k pace, I was working harder at 94% of MHR and felt my legs started to buckle a bit. Compare this to the Kaiser 5k when I was running at 97% MHR having just started the speed sessions. I'm curious to see how my 5k will improve as my body comp gets leaner.
|The elite group of Wave 1|
MY STRAVA >>
Great ride this weekend up to Mt. Tam! We had to make several stops in the beginning to make adjustments to Mike's new bike fit. I didn't really feel ready for all the climbing but by the time I got to Fairfax I was warmed up and just took a leisurely pace. Mike sprinted then took breaks to wait for me. It took a couple of hours but we got to the top eventually! It is a beautiful climb from Fairfax around Alpine Dam with quiet shady roads and manageable grades. It is a long one and I had to stop and take breaks near the end. Once we were at the top on Ridgecrest, we had more rolling climbs over the Seven Sisters. It's like riding in the sky! The beach town of Bolinas is way down below. A fun addition to the ride might be a lunch stop there.
The downhill was fun and fast. We had to be careful in the afternoon with a bit of traffic.
It went by quickly and pretty soon we were back on Shoreline near the Bridgeway bike path. We stopped at the gas station to get water and salted cashews. I had taken 2 Endurolytes before the ride and 3 scoops of Generation UCAN chocolate protein drink made into a gel and had every 90 minutes. It was really hot this weekend! After burning almost 3,000 calories we had a carby feast of watermelon and deep dish pizza at Patxi's for my once a week carb load. The night before I had a sweet potato with coconut oil and cinammon.
My Strava >>
Coastal Trail Runs Golden Gate Trail Run 50k. Soaking my feet in some ice water as I write this. The important part of being ready for this one is the hills: 6,320 elevation! It really does zap you but the views are absolutely amazing! I didn't take any photos because I just wanted to enjoy the run without stopping. My phone died and I didn't care. I was only focused on finishing the run, which is a great feeling to be so focused and in the moment for a long period of time, which is why I dubbed this, my Run-cation!
I went to the doc and had a checkup before the race. Blood pressure was 105/55. I noticed that over the years as a runner these numbers keep getting lower. Instead of gaining weight for a race, I'm down about 5.5 lbs since my last 5k.
The long runs on the trails are the key to improvement. I kind of pushed up the mileage quickly. I just wanted to run my legs off. Looking forward to the next challenge!
Ultra-running magazine: Fat-burning, a how to guide - Good article, I would add in more good fats! I only do a small amount of the complex carbs at night if needed and after the workout.
|Farm Fresh to You|
Recently for ultra training I decided to do something different. I would focus more on nutrition. I dropped the sugar again and also started playing around with cutting back the carbs. I didn't change my calories, just flipped the macros around so that the carbs switch places with fat. Fats are at least 60% of the diet now and carbs are 15% or between 50-75 grams. This may not be ultra low carb but for a runner it is. It is basically 1/2 to 1/4 of the carbs runners are recommended to eat. I dropped the honey, bread and whole grains for a few weeks and immediately lost 5lbs. The carb source is mostly vegetables, with a little bit of fruit and dairy. For carb loading I may have a little bit of sweet potato or half a banana. I keep the fruit low and timed to activity. The fats are from avocados, olive oil, coconut oil, grass fed butter, nuts, seeds and full fat yogurt. The protein is pretty much the same as it was before, but I go for the fattier versions and more eggs. The focus is on whole natural foods. This is very filling and surprisingly doesn't lead to weight gain. Sometimes a calorie deficit is achieved by accident because I'm not feeling that hungry. This has a great anti-inflammatory effect on the body and I'm able to run an hour per day on hilly trails and bike commute using this ratio. Recovery time is great! The sweetness in natural foods is much more pronounced and I can enjoy homemade sugar-free desserts.
|Weekly Mileage buildup on low-carb diet.|
For training, I try to avoid energy gels. I had built up to running long with very little need for carbs or "runners candy". I tried the Generation UCAN superstarch and that worked well. I ran a marathon distance with 2 packs of that, some electrolytes and just some bonk proof coffee for breakfast. I did not get shaky or cold sweat from sugar crashes. I broke my weekly mileage record to 62 miles. My skin feels better too. After 6 weeks of training low carb, now I feel more confident about being less dependent on carbs for training. I am using carbs a bit more strategically, targeted around the level of activity I'm doing. My carb cycle follows my training cycle, so I will put a high carb day on a heavy training day on the weekend, so I don't feel deprived. I can enjoy the carby foods that I miss on that day and indulge in a 300 grams of carbs binge! This is followed by a rest day, which has less calories, less carbs, less fat and more lean protein. I noticed a big improvement in recovery in doing this cycle. On medium training days I might go up to 30% carb or about 150 grams. It just makes much more sense to change it up a bit instead of doing the same thing every day. Everyone is different and every day is different. I think flexible dieting can yield positive results. I'm focusing more on nutrient density instead of carbing out all the time, which makes me feel better in general. I can customize my farm box delivery to get exactly what I need. I eat vegetables with every meal and I make that the center point of menu planning, which is pretty simple:
The don't count calories or macros method:
Two big fist full of vegetables* + 1 palm of protein + 1 or 2 thumbs of fats
For carbs: Add 1 cupped hand of healthy complex carbs or fruit*
Another rule for me is to eat at least 1/2 - 1 avocado per day. They have a lot of potassium, more than bananas!
And now for the food pics! Click on info for details: