Saturday, June 17, 2006

12 Miler

I finally got my "long" run up to 12 miles. I managed to get my both my dog and myself to the Reach 11 trailhead before 4:45 AM. The sky was just starting to brighten, but there was no sign on the sun looming over the horizon. I got in 4.9 miles before the sun finally showed itself. It was very interesting watching my heart rate monitor through this process. I more or less kept the pace at 9:45/mi through most of the run. Before the sun came up, my HR stayed steady between 128 and 130. All systems were looking good. However, my HR steadily climbed as the sun rose further over the McDowell Mtns. By 10 miles my HR was running at a steady 140. Same speed, no sign of tiredness, but I was exerting much more effort to hold the same pace.

We had a bit more excitement this morning with the local coyote. My regular readers will remember that I had coyote quietly follow me a couple of weeks ago while running is the same area. My dog and I ran into the same coyote this morning (I'm assuming it was the same coyote). This time, I realized that this coyote doesn't like visitors before 6 AM. Instead of quietly following, he got a lot more aggressive and ran along besides us (about 10 - 15 feet off the trail) and howled and bark in an attempt to scare us away. After about a mile of this, my dog, who had been running out in front, turn and charged the coyote.

Seeing a 75lb black lab charging at full speed was more than this coyote had bargained for. My dog chased him around for a few minutes, dodging through mesquite trees until he lost interest in the wild animal. My dog came running back to me at full tilt, very proud of his accomplishment. The coyote kept his distance after that letting out a few yelps every now and again to let us know he was still there.

We must have finally run out of his terretory, because he gave up all together around the 6 mile mark.

Keep running

Training for the week

Sun – 7.4 Miles, easy, 9:18/mi pace
Mon – 6.1 Miles, easy, 9:22/mi pace
Tue - 6.1 Miles, easy, 9:18/mi pace
Wed - 5.0 Miles, Speed Interval, 9:02/mi pace
Thr - Rest day
Fri - 6.6 Miles, easy, 9:21/mi pace
Sat - 12.0 Miles, easy, 9:44/mi pace

Total miles for the week: 43.2 (not too bad)


carmen said...

It's a good thing you had your dog running with ya! I was paraphrasing the coyote experience you had this morning to my fiance' and he asked me what I would have done in the situation. I laughed and said I would have crapped my pants. haha

How early do you get up for those early morning runs and what time do you usually go to bed? I'm doing an early morning 6-mile run tomorrow. I'm not sure what time to go to bed but I need to get up by 5 am.

Man, you're kicking butt with your weekly mileage!

Phil said...

Hi Carmen,

When I'm in Phoenix, I like to run my long runs on smooth trails. Reach 11 has (dispite the stupid name) great trails. Since I want to get a substantial part of the run in before the sun comes up, I get out of bed at 4:15 and hit the trail by 4:45. This morning I got home after my run before anyone else got out of bed. In fact, I cook myself pancakes for breakfast, read the Saturday paper, updated my blog and responded to several posts before anyone else got up.

On week days, I "sleep in" until 4:30 since I only need to walk out my front door to start my run. I don't get near enough sleep. I try to get to bed by 10:30, but often I'm still up at 11:00 or 12:00 depending on how much work I have left to do.

Thanks for the comment concerning the mileage. I've really worked at it over the last 2 months. In April I was averaging 15 to 20 per week. I slowly increased this by 10% per week up to 40+ by doing nothing by easy runs 6 days a week. My daily short run has grown from 3 miles to 6 miles and my long runs on the weekend have gone from 5 to 6 miles to 12 miles.

You can do it too. Just remember, you've got nothing but time. There is no rush. Start increasing your mileage slowly, no more than 10% per week and keep it slow. You want to keep these runs aerobic ... some where between 70 to 80% of your max. This was real tough for me to accept. My macho ego was always driving me to run faster ... looking at a 9 mile pace as a wimpy effort. Mike convinced me that I needed to slow down and get in shape. It's worked great.

Good luck with your long run tomorrow. You'll be up over 10 miles in no time.


Mike said...

My ears are burning. Good miles this week Phil. I posted a description of the loop I discussed after your comment, but if you get down to Tucson and want to run in the canyon just email me, I'm a half mile away (so free parking and occasionally scones). I'd be happy to show you some nice loops, both often and seldom-traveled.

Careful with those coyotes, I hear horror stories about one in heat luring an innocent dog away for an ambush. Sounds like your dog knows how to take care of itself though!