Tuesday, February 28, 2012

Take A Minute

It was just over 1 year ago that I started my blog/website and it’s now over 20,000 views! And, no, my own visits don’t count in the total so it’s not skewed by a couple thousand hits or anything like that. I wasn’t sure how frequently I’d keep the site updated when I first started it, but I think I’ve done pretty well; other than a little procrastination here or there.

There are only 4 months until the Olympic trials. 4 months! Time is flying by. 

I just wanted to take a minute to say thanks to everyone for their continued interest and support. I hope that you’ll all continue to follow along as I make the final push towards London…

    - Linc 

Wednesday, February 22, 2012

Morning Glory

Well, it’s official. I’ll be opening up my season on March 17th with an 800m at ASU. I’ll be following that up with a 1000m on March 24th and a 1500m on April 7th, both at Arizona State as well.

I’m already beginning to get excited. Last year, it was more like dreading the first race, so it’s a nice change! It will also be nice to have the first 3 meets at “home”. Not having to travel will help with fatigue, loss of training and cost; as well as being able to stay in a familiar routine for the races…Less than a month away!

Leading up to this week, I wasn’t really sure what kind of shape I was in. Workouts have been getting progressively better, but there hadn’t been a real test yet to let me know with some certainty where exactly my fitness is. Then came Saturday’s workout. I actually got a little anxious about it beforehand, because on paper, it looked pretty ominous. 

The workout: Set 1 - 400, 800, 400 with 1 minute recovery. 
                         Set 2 - 400, 500, 300 with 1 minute and 2 minutes recovery.

I was definitely dreading only having 1 minute of recovery after the 800 and knew the 500 in the second set was going to be pretty painful. That was probably what worried me the most…By the time the workout rolled around, the weather was just about perfect; almost no breeze and not even a cloud in the February morning sky. There would be no excuses.

The first set started off with a 58.5, slightly quicker than expected, but relaxed nonetheless. A good sign for things to come…The 800 was much of the same, as I cruised through the line in 1:58.0. Again, a touch faster than expected, but smooth the whole way. The next minute went by rather quickly before running a 58.1 for the last 400 of the set. A very good first half of the workout.

The second set started with a bang. If someone had asked me what the time was, without looking at my watch, I would have said 56-57; and would have been way off. It was 53.8. I was pretty shocked, it felt way too easy. Ultimately, I’d pay for that pace to start the set though. I only followed it up with a 71.4 in the 500m and rigged home in the last 50m of the 300 to a 43.4. It probably didn’t look too pretty. As Coach Groves would have probably told me at Penn State “You looked like a god damn raped kangaroo at the end of that.”

All in all, I was really happy with the workout and it definitely provided me with a bearing on what kind of shape I’m in right now. It feels good to know you’re getting fit and that progress is being made. But, there’s still a lot of work to be done!

-         Linc

Wednesday, February 15, 2012

Walk The Line

Indoor records are seemingly getting knocked off everywhere you turn. The American, Collegiate and High school 5k records, the American 2 mile, the collegiate mile, collegiate 1000m…I can’t even keep track of them all as they appear to be falling left and right. The last two weekends of racing have been crazy. Centrowitz made a 3:53 mile look easier than a 3:53 1500m and 8 guys went under 3:58 in the same race. It wasn’t long ago that it seemed like only 8 guys did it during the entire indoor season.

What the hell is going on?? 

Oh yeah, it’s an Olympic year; where people come out of the woodwork rolling. Every 4 years it happens. The depth seems to be greater and the times seem to be faster. People find it within themselves to give it one last shot, work that much harder and really get after it as they cling to hopes of a chance at making the Olympic trials; and for the lucky few, a trip to London to represent their country at the pinnacle of our sport; The Olympic Games.

I’m not going to lie. The last couple of weeks it has been painstakingly difficult to sit around and watch these times be thrown down by fellow competitors with no race of my own in the foreseeable future. It’s definitely made me anxious to race. Very anxious. I won’t be running my first race until mid-late March. But, there is method to the madness. Instead of sacrificing valuable training for a few races indoors, we’ve been getting in some solid blocks of training to better prepare for the season that actually matters.

It’s easy to get caught up in the excitement, which I myself have been guilty of in the past, but you have to stay focused on what’s important. Often times, staying smart and consistent with what you’re doing will take you farther than trying to push even harder and do all this extra work. That’s how you end up injured; and you can’t do anything from the sidelines. I’m not saying that you shouldn’t be working hard. But, there’s a fine line between working really hard and working too much. You need to find that line, and walk it carefully.

Training has been going really well down here and track work is starting to feel good again! We had 2x 600, 500, 400 towards the end of last week and I ran 1:30, 73. 58 – 1:27, 72, 56. It felt nice and controlled, so things are continuing to move in a positive direction. 

Other than that, things haven’t been too crazy around here…I went to a Coyotes game last week, a dueling piano bar, hiking in Sedona and Go-Kart racing. Gotta love recovery weeks.

-  Linc

Tuesday, February 7, 2012

Spoonful of Sugar

Recovery week is here again; just in time. Training has continued to go really well for me these past couple of weeks, but I got a little sick this week and have been fighting through it. I was still able to do the workouts, but my overall volume suffered a bit as I tried to stay rested to prevent any prolonged illness. A recovery week is just what the doctor ordered.

I took the day off completely today. The one day of rest I get to look forward to every three weeks. I actually got a bit bored though and almost went for a run anyways. Recovery can be just as important as the training itself though and often gets overlooked, so I thought better of it and returned to the couch for some more NHL 12. 

We’ve started getting on the track more recently, so it will be nice to get a better idea of where I’m at with fitness. We had 5 workouts and 4 weight sessions in 11 days leading into the weekend, so I’ll only highlight a couple of them...

Two weekends ago was the first real workout where we got a bit anaerobic. The first set was 600, 500, 400 with 2 min rest. Then we had 300, 500, 200 off of a minute. I expected to really struggle through that second set, but it went surprisingly well. After the first set at under 60 second pace, we dropped it down some more in the next set and I hit 42.0, 69.8 and 27.2; feeling relatively comfortable the whole way. Definitely a good sign.

A few days ago we had 2x (4x500) with 5 minutes between sets. Again, we started out slightly slower and got increasingly faster as the workout progressed. In between hacking up a lung, I managed to run 76, 75, 74, 73 in the second set. I think after the 7th one, GMart turned to me after having run the interval just in front of me and said “Man, are you gonna be okay? Sounds like you’re dying back there”. I was able to get out “I’ll…(inhale)…be…(inhale)...alright” before heading to the line for the last one. It will be nice to be able to breathe again. Not being able to catch your breath the entire way through a workout isn’t pleasant.
Even with the sickness I averaged 82 miles for the last two weeks and in the next day or so I should be back to normal and ready to rock.

In the sports world, things are looking good. The Giants won me some money in Vegas and a Burrito from a teammate. Now, hopefully, Big Bro will bring his talents to South Beach, where he already has a condo, to try and keep pace with Eli in the ring count. (They both have more than LeBron…) Even the Leafs are playing good hockey these days. Hopefully, Toronto fans don’t get to delusional with hopes of grandeur and  being able to trade Komisarek, Kadri and a 2nd round pick for Rick Nash. Seriously? What is wrong with Leaf fans sometimes. Our spare parts will not combine to bring us a superstar; unless we’re trading with Calgary... A simple trip to the playoffs this year will suffice. 

Keep it Classy.

    - Linc