Tag Archives: High Country Soccer Association

Swim lanes and soccer games

I had a very eventful week on several fronts. From a cross training perspective I was able to swim without a pull buoy and even hopped on a spin bike for a few sessions without pain. Although cycling doesn’t seem like much it was a positive development as it does put a bit more pressure on my stress fracture than swimming and to feel zero pain means it’s healing!

Also, I changed my locale for a few days to Chetola Resort in Blowing Rock as the heater on the Boone Wellness Center pool had broken. It was a nice change of scenery as I attempt to constantly keeps things fresh! Check out a few pictures of my pool sessions Esther snapped during the week:

Fish status.

Fish status (with belt).

 

Circles for dayzzz at Chetola Resort.

Circles for dayzzz at Chetola Resort.

From a coaching standpoint last weekend was the season ending Autumn Blast tournament hosted by CVYSA in Hickory, NC. In all, 9 HCSA teams competed in their various age groups, including my U12 boys and U14 girls teams. Both of my teams have been developing and learning a lot over the course of the Fall season and this tournament is always a great way to cap off the season against some teams from other parts of the Southeast that we may not normally play against during the regular season.

The weekend was very successful for both teams. On Saturday my boys won 8-1 and 6-4 while my girls won 4-0 and 8-1 which secured a spot in the semi-finals for both. On Sunday, both teams won their respective semi-final matches and so it was on the championship games. Unfortunately, both teams were unable to pull out victories and both of my teams ended up as Runners-Up for the weekend.

Although many, many tears were shed on both teams, the final games didn’t put a damper on a very solid weekend. Both teams made big strides forward and it was an exciting and educational experience for all involved (players, parents, and coach). GO HCSA!

HCSA U12 Boys Navy

HCSA U12 Boys Navy

 

HCSA U14 Girls

HCSA U14 Girls

Lastly, Thursday November 5th marked 100 days until the Olympic Trials Marathon in LA. The race organizers sent all qualifiers a card to take a picture with and post on Twitter. Since both Esther and I are qualified we took our picture together. Enjoy!

Thursday makred 100 days out from OTM.

Thursday marked 100 days out from the OTM.

Thanks for reading!

Here is my last week of training (11/1-11/7):

Sunday: OFF (travel back from IN)

Monday: AM: 1hr 45min swim/jog

Tuesday: AM: 1hr 45min swim/jog

Wednesday: AM: 2hrs swim/jog  PM: 30 min spin

Thursday: AM: 1hr 40 min spin  PM: walk

Friday: AM: 1hr 35 min aqua jog

Saturday: AM: 1 hr spin  PM: soccer tournament all day!

Total: 0 miles run, 4 swim sessions, 3 spin sessions

Advertisements
Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

My last week of training (10/25-10/31)

I will be very brief this week as I have been busy spending time coaching and getting in my lengthy cross training workouts. As I mentioned last week I have been using the Boone Wellness Center for my pool sessions which have consisted of a combination of aqua jogging and swimming. This is slightly different than past injuries as I usually spent most of my time either using the elliptical or just aqua jogging. Right now my foot is not quite ready for the elliptical and I don’t feel like the aqua jogging always gets my heart rate as high as I’d like. I’ve found that adding in a swimming component to the aqua jogging has made the sessions more challenging but also kept me more engaged and not as BORED!

Essentially, the goal of cross training is to attempt to get your heart rate as high as possible to simulate what outside running does for you aerobically. There are certainly many ancillary benefits of spending time in the pool such as blood flow to the injured area without the pounding of the road while also keeping other muscles in use and strong, but aerobic maintenance is the number one reason to cross train!

There may be runners out there who say they LOVE to aqua jog or swim but I’m not one of them. It is a boring and tedious activity that is only tolerable if you constantly remind yourself that the time spent in the pool will make the return to running much easier. Luckily, Esther bought me a waterproof iPod Shuffle and that has been super helpful in keeping me motivated and focused on the task at hand.

To be honest, there are days that I am amazed to look at my watch and see that I’ve just spent nearly two hours splashing around in the deep end of a community pool. Non-runners may think the same is true about a 2 hour run but I’d take an outdoor run in the beautiful Blue Ridge Mountains over a pool session any day!

So what exactly have I been doing in the pool? Well, I thought it’d be cool to share some of the workouts Pete has had me doing since I found out I had a stress fracture. Enjoy!

Sample workout 1: Lap swim to pool run…12 lengths medium / harder / all out x 4 cycles then 30 sec sprints x 15 (each with final 5-6 sec holding breath) – do 6 sets of this !!

Sample workout 2: Pool run – 15:00 warm – 20/20 power sprints x 15 – then 2:00 rest after #15 / then 90 sec snowball intervals x 9 (each w 30 seconds rest between and each with final 8-10 sec hands out of water holding breath) – then 2:00 after #9, before – 45/15 x 10 – 2:00 rest then 30:00 lap swim with intervals of choosing

Thanks for reading! Check back next week for more exciting tales from the deep end!

Here is my last week of training (10/19-10/24):

Sunday: AM: 1 hr 45 min aqua jog/swimming combo

Monday: AM: 1 hr 30 min aqua jog/swim

Tuesday: AM: 1hr 30 min aqua jog/swim

Wednesday: AM: 1hr 40 min aqua jog/swimming  PM: 30 min bike

Thursday: AM: 1 hr 30 min aqua jog/swim

Friday: AM: 1 hr 30 min all aqua jog  PM: travel to Fort Wayne, IN

Saturday: AM: 1hr 20 min aqua jog/swim

Total: 0 miles, 7 pool sessions, 1 bike session

Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

My last week of training (8/30-9/5)

Another step forward this week! I had an exciting week on several fronts with Esther arriving home on Tuesday from her month away while also getting in my first short workout in over 8 weeks!

On Tuesday, I made my way to Charlotte to pick up Esther from the airport and got in my morning run at McAlpine Park. Although it is a decent place for a run, I finished my 85 minute run feeling very blessed that I get to train in the Boone/Blowing Rock area as I was quite bored by the end!

On Wednesday morning I woke up and decided that I would try to hop in with Tyler and Griff for their fartlek session. They were doing a classic 5 to 1, 4 to 1 minute fartlek and I decided I would jump in for part of the 5 to 1. I ran the 5 minute and 4 minute pieces with them around 4:50 pace and then finished the remaining 3-2-1 on my own. Pete advised me to keep each piece evenly paced while Tyler and Griff were planning on progressively getting faster with each piece so I smartly went solo for the last few harder pieces.

Overall, it was a fun little session and my hamstring felt pain free throughout. I was sore the following day but that was to be expected.

On Friday, Esther’s parents, Martin and Hope, arrived from Richmond to get some last minute wedding errands done and help fix up some things around our new house. They were very helpful and I enjoyed the weekend. Most of the work is done for the wedding thanks in large part to their efforts.

To close out the weekend, Tim and Julie Meigs held an end of the summer party at their cabin in Blowing Rock. Most of the ZAP crew were in the attendance as well as some of their neighborhood friends. As usual, Julie served some AMAZING food and it was a great night! Thanks you for hosting us Uncle Tim!

Thanks for reading!

Pictured from L to R: Hope “The Teacher” Erb, Esther “Big 24” Erb, Andrew “Bootie” Colley”, Chris “Skater Boy” Moen, Joe “Ray Charles” Stilin, Cole “Future Mr. Erb” Atkins, Tim “The Uncle” Meigs, Martin “The Helper” Erb.

Here is my last week of training (8/30-9/5):

Sunday: AM: 9 miles   PM: 5 miles

Monday: AM: 12 miles

Tuesday: AM: 11 miles (8×20 sec post run)   PM: 5 miles

Wednesday: AM: 9 miles (5 to 1 fartlek)  PM: 5 miles

Thursday: AM: 14.5 miles

Friday: AM: 11.5 miles (10×20 sec post run)

Saturday: AM: 8 miles   PM: 4 miles

Total: 94 miles, 11 runs

Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

My last week of training (8/23-8/29)

Last week was another good week of training as I inch closer to being ready to workout fully. I got close to 100 miles on 10 runs and had 3 days with runs over 90 minutes and another day with some light surges.

On Wednesday, most of the guys were doing a 2k-1k workout at the Boone Greenway and Pete gave me the option to throw in some light 1 minute surges during my run. I ended up doing 8×1 min at around 4:55 pace and my hamstring held up well. It was far from fast but I was pleased that I was able to change gears and spice up my run a bit!

On Saturday I ran 2 hours 5 minutes with Griff who was doing an 25 miler as part of his Twin Cities Marathon build up. Usually once or twice during a marathon build up Pete has his athletes get in an almost 3 hour run. These runs are usually not particularly fast but more a “time on feet” run to callous the body to all the pounding that the marathon will deliver. I enjoyed running with Griff and I think he was happy to have the company! Check out this map he scribbled out to show all the sights and sounds of his 2hr and 45min adventure through Blowing Rock.

Griff's map. Not to scale.

Griff’s map. Not to scale.

And to finish out a busy week I was excited to get to watch Esther run in the IAAF World Marathon Championships in Beijing. She has been gone for about a month and although I want nothing more than for her to get home, I was really excited for her race. The women’s marathon is the last event of the championships and Esther was also ready to get it on!  She spent time in Austria, Japan, and finally China in her last few weeks before the race. As usual, she had prepared well and was ready to face the distance with excitement and maturity.

So on Saturday evening after a long day of coaching, I made my way to Town Tavern in Blowing Rock to watch the race on Universal Sports. Nearly all the ZAP team came out to support Esther as well as a parent from one of the teams I coach (GO ROSS!). David Rogers of the Blowing Rock News came as well and wrote a very nice recap of her race here.

Esther finished in 24th place after being in 48th at 5k. She is an incredibly smart marathoner that seems to have an uncanny ability to accurately measure her effort throughout her races. I know that she wanted to finish in the top 20 but I would have been proud of her if she had finished dead last. To be honest, when she came onto the track in the Bird’s Nest and kicked by a Bahraini athlete I was very close to tears. I had been watching the race for over 2 and a half hours and to finally be able to see her running was an amazing moment. And to see her kick by someone made it even cooler!

She’s tough, she beautiful, she’s tenderhearted, and she’s going to be my wife very soon. I am a lucky man to say the least.

My girl.

That’s my girl.

Thanks for reading!

Here is my last week of training (8/23-8/29):

Sunday: AM: 8 miles

Monday: AM: 16 miles

Tuesday: AM: 10 miles   PM: 4 miles

Wednesday: AM: 10 miles (8×1 min within run)

Thursday: AM: 13 miles   PM: 4 miles

Friday: AM: 9 miles   PM: 6 miles

Saturday: AM: 19 miles

Total: 99 miles, 10 runs

Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

My last week of training (8/9-8/15)

I actually have something to talk about this week with regards to my running! Well, sort of…After yet another week of easy mileage I met with Pete early last week to discuss what we needed to do to expedite the healing process. Even though it’s still 6 months out from the Olympic Trials it’s important that I’m 100% healthy and can do quality workouts sooner rather than later. Any progression in my fitness prior to the actual marathon build up in December will only set me up for greater success when I toe the line on February 13, 2016 in Los Angeles.

Pete is contacting various massage, ART, and acupuncture specialists around the country this week to try and get some additional treatments that will hopefully help me make the jump from 85% to 100% ASAP!

And we both decided that until that 100% jump is made there is no sense in making any concrete racing plans. Deep down I think I am close to being ready to workout and think some Fall half marathons are in my future but nothing definite yet.

Former Todd mayoral candidate Petunia enjoying her breakfast pre-run.

Former Todd mayoral candidate Petunia enjoying her breakfast pre-run.

So on to the good news! On Sunday, Tyler, Pete, and I made our way to Todd Railroad Grade Road to do our long runs. Todd was featured in several of Tyler and I’s build-up videos for Twin Cities last Fall and is a great place to get in a paved, flat long run. I was able to run 19 nearly pain free miles for the day and actually ran the last 10 or miles at or below 6:05 per mile pace. These times are not groundbreaking in any way but I was pumped after finishing the run as I have not been able to run that fast pain-free for months. I will take this run as a victory!

Check out the splits from my Soleus GPS watch:

8:09, 7:43, 6:54, 6:49, 6:37, 6:28, 6:30, 6:39, 6:47, 6:15, 6:07, 6:08, 5:54, 6:01, 6:04, 5:53, 5:50, 5:50, 5:49…2hrs 2min total.

Down goes the White House...just like in Independence Day.

Down goes the White House…just like in Independence Day.

And in other ZAP news my home for nearly 5 years, the appropriately named White House, has been torn down. ZAP recently completed a new athlete house and will build another one where the rubble of the White House currently sits. A sad day for sure but a necessary demolition as that house was without a doubt ready to be replaced!

Thanks for reading!

Here is my last week of training (8/9-8/15):

Sunday: AM: 18 miles

Monday: AM: 7.5 miles   PM: 5.5 miles

Tuesday: AM: 6 miles   PM: 4 miles

Wednesday: AM: 13 miles

Thursday: AM: 13 miles

Friday: AM: 10 miles   PM: 4 miles

Saturday: AM: 9 miles

Total: 90 miles, 10 runs

Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

My last week of training

Due my lack of workouts or races I will AGAIN be brief with my weekly running recap. I ran a bit less this week, 80 miles on 9 runs, than I have in recent weeks. I got in several longer runs however my hamstring is still annoying me. I am perfectly fine running 6:15-6:45 pace but when I start to ratchet the pace down from there I begin to feel general tightness that I’ve sadly gotten accustomed to over the past 6 weeks. Not to belabor the point, but it has been a rough month but things are ever so slowly improving. Positivity is key!

WHITE BG

In non-running news, HCSA hosted a 1 day 4v4 tournament at our complex. The Blue Ridge Mountain Cup has been growing over the past few years and this year’s edition was not different. We had 38 teams participate in 6 different age divisions from cities all over North Carolina and Tennessee. It was my 1st time as Tournament Director and I thought everything went smoothly.

Thanks for reading and I hope to have something of note to write about over the next few weeks! Until then, I am continuing to get in easy miles and hitting all of my rehab exercises as diligently as I can.

Here is my last week of training (8/2-8/8):

Sunday: AM: 16 miles

Monday: AM: 5 miles  PM: 4 miles

Tuesday: AM: 13 miles

Wednesday: AM: 11.5 miles   PM: 4.5 miles

Thursday: AM: 9 miles

Friday: AM: 10 miles   PM: 7 miles

Saturday: AM: short shakeout

Total: 80 miles, 9 runs

Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

The Challenging Art of Easy

“Smooth seas do not make skillful sailors”
-African proverb-

The art of easy running is not so easy. Building up after an injury can be a stressful and emotionally draining time and as contrary as it sounds, running easy each day can be incredibly challenging.

Risk takes many forms in distance running. The goal of training is to push your physical limits little by little over the course of a training cycle while not getting injured or burnt out.  An athlete must pursue the “red line” in earnest but then stalk it from close distance while being sure to not cross over it.

I crossed the line after the Boston Marathon and have been dealing with the consequences every since. And to be honest, I wouldn’t have done it any other way. I’ve found that when something is hurting it can go 1 of 3 ways:

1. Keep training normally, get treatment between runs, problem goes away gradually.

2. Keep training normally, get treatment, problem persists, reduce training load by eliminating hard workouts, problem goes away gradually.

3. Keep training normally, get treatment, other problems arise from compensation, reduce training load, problem persists or worsens, drastically reduce training load by taking days or weeks off…problem eventually goes away.

Option 1 is the goal (and dream) while 2 and 3 are far more common. Luckily I find myself firmly in #2 on my scale. I’m not injured enough to be unable to run easy miles but I am not healthy enough to do anything of quality (i.e. under 6 minutes per mile pace). This limbo is an odd place to be but I’m fully aware it could be far, far worse. I mean, I ran 92 miles last week for goodness sake!

The goals that I came to ZAP to pursue are long term and require a vision beyond any bad week or month. This far reaching view is exciting yet equally arduous and often times vague and unclear.

Here is what I know: my body wants to run fast again. I enjoy an easy, smooth 90 minute run as much as anyone at ZAP but I also feel my body gently accelerating on a downhill or ever so slightly attacking an uphill and I know that going fast is something I want and need to do soon.

Here’s to keeping things easy even when it’s hard. Thanks for reading!

Here is my last week of training (7/19-7/25):

Sunday: AM: 15 miles

Monday: AM: 8 miles

Tuesday: AM: 11 miles

Wednesday: AM: 14 miles

Thursday: AM: 10 miles  PM: 5.5 miles

Friday: AM: 13 miles

Saturday: AM: 15.5 miles

Total: 92 miles, 8 runs

Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,