Thursday, April 26, 2007

Limiting Factors

Or, Hill Repeats - Day One

In the quest to be better/stronger/faster, I've decided to add hill repeats to my running repertoire. I had been doing the run-fast-up-the-hills, walk-fast-down-the-hills routine around my loop, but felt like I wasn't pushing myself hard enough.

So, this morning, I started by jogging around my 3 mile loop until I got to the Big Hill. Then, I sprinted up the hill, circled the manhole cover at my turn-off and walked back down to the bottom (not slow - 12:30 min/mile pace). I had planned to repeat this hill four times and then complete the loop because I estimated that the hill was 1/2 of a mile and thought that it would add a mile to my 3 mile loop.

Yes, math whiz, I'm not. It made sense to my not-quite-awake mind early this morning, though. Regardless, it turns out that either the hill is not that long or that I didn't start at the actual bottom and so I finished almost right at 4 miles as planned (including walking down the hill 3x). I had to stop after 3 repeats because my heart was trying to escape through my chest at the top of repeat number 3. The legs were rubbery but held out OK.

Until I encountered the knee troubles, I thought that cardio was my limiting factor in the pursuit of fitness. Then, it was my knees. I would have thought that the leg muscles would be the limiter on hill repeats. Glover talks about how your legs should be burning when you finish your hill repeats. But for me, it's the cardio again. Who knew?

And, Doug bought us new Garmins on e-Bay last week so I know that my heartrate reached 183 on my hill repeats today. I think 185 is supposed to be my max but this place says it is 187. Doug is the master of e-Bay. It will be interesting to see how/if the knowledge of my heartrate will help my training. As my Dad would say, "hide and watch!"

In other news, the girls and I went to dinner with my Dad tonight because Doug is in Las Vegas. We had a great time with Dad, but miss Doug already.


Nat said...

All that MHR and Vo2 max stuff confuses me. But you know, it could be that maybe you are getting a cold, jsut not 100% or whatever as to why you felt more winded by the workout. Also, it was a new workout.
At any rate some days --for whatever reason-- I can be more winded than I think I should be For example: on a rested day I can do a 5k in 22 minutes but after a long run 24 minutes can feel like a sprint and nearly kill me.
I bet next week when you do that again you will be stronger and do it better.

Wes said...

All these websites try to help determine your max HR, but good old fashioned exercise is the best way to determine it. Mine is supposed to be like 178 or something like that, but I've hit 182 before in a race, and that is what I use. If I ever see the number get higher, I'll use that, until I can get some actual testing performed.

As tri-wannabe, I know that running in zones is a good way to both pace your workout, and achieve your goals for that run (fat burning, aerobic, whatever). Nice choice too! Those 305s rock.

I was wearing my HR last night for the first time in a while, and while I was waiting for my Garmin 205 to synch up, my HR dropped to 56, while I was standing. That's amazing...

Steph Bachman said...

Thanks Nat, I think it was just a new workout and I haven't really sprinted the hills in a while.

Wow, Wes, 56 while standing is amazing!

Grey said...

Hi Steph.

That is the same garmin I am looking at, so let me know if you think it is worth the price. Also, if you know anyone with a PTree number they aren't going to use, I am looking to buy one (screwed up and missed the application in the paper).