Weekly Summary – 166 miles in 13 runs. Very big week as it had 2 long runs, including the longest run I’ve ever done on Sunday (53km, 3h28). Making the most of my last 3 weeks here at altitude in Quito!

One more thing – for all my local Greater-Boston readers – if you’re an athlete looking for an exceptional sports-massage therapist who specializes in runners and injury prevention and recovery, go visit Sam Peck at SoarBody Theraputics in Davis Square (Somerville). He was crucial to helping me recover from my injury during the fall and I wouldn’t be running without him!

Don’t forget, you can follow me day to day on Instagram and Twitter (@TylerCAndrews) and my daily training log on Strava. Oh and hey if you’re reading this and don’t know about STRIVE, you should probably check ’em out. I lead groups through the mountains of Peru on a  journey of running, service learning, and adventure. If you’re interested, join us this summer, when we’ll once again have programs for High School and College students, and even 10-day trips for adults and families.

Lunes, 11 de Febrero, 2019 – Sparknotes: TREADMILL – AM: 10x [3K @ 10’00, 1K @ 3’57] / PM: 2x [3K @ 10’00, 9’44, 1K @ 3’57]

09:25: Ran at the 91 sydney gym for the long workout today. Really need to practice fueling/hydrating and since Mariana was in class and I don’t have a good loop here yet, it seemed simpler to control.

Warmed up easy 1.5km + a few strides. Goal was to do 10-12x 3km on, 1km off, trying to avg about goal race pace ~3’30-35, so maybe 10’00 for the 3Ks and 4’00s for the 1Ks. Did this at 2% incline. Ran in the Mach for most of the workout.

Started off feeling very good and smooth. Still a bit tired this AM, slept for like 11 hours last night, but effort felt pretty manageable for really the first 6 reps or so. Did a good job of compatmentalizing and sticking in each rep. Very consistent pacing, everything was 10’00 and then maybe 3’55 for the rec.

Rep 7 and 8 felt much harder but I had the carrot in my mind that I was going to change shoes into the new SW after #8, so was able to really push to that point well.

I took a couple minutes pause there and not sure if I just lost the rhythm or if I’d dug too deep on #8 or if I was just expecting it to feel way easier and it didn’t, but basically just totally botched the rest of the workout. Got like 2 minutes into #9 and had to stop. Got back on and finished and then ran to 2h20 after that but not very fast, just to get the volume in.

Disappointing to eat it so poorly in the last part of the workout especially after feeling very good at the start, but I guess I need a bit more patience.

Total work was sitll 40km in 2h20 and total run 42km w/ warmup.

NB: Took gels at 10km, 20km, 30km, drank about 500mL of Maurten (320) and 250mL of caff. Nuun. Only had 1 cup of coffee and no caff pill.

16:00: Took a good nap this afternoon and wanted to get a bit more out of the day so decided to try to do a bit more quicker running on very tired legs. Warmed up 3km easy outside (had to drop my phone off for repair) and then back to the gym. Ran in Carbon rockets. Drills and a couple strides. Legs felt very tired and sore but not bad once I got into it. Ran 1 rep in 10’00, 4’00 rec, and then the last one started out at 3’20 and brought pace down every minute, running 3’19, 3’14, 3’11 for 9’44. Felt very hard but good. Probably could have run at least 1-2 more at 10’00 if I hadn’t accellerated but this already seemed like a good total amount of work and I was tight for time. Cooled down very short. Total run 11km in 40’.

Martes, 12 de Febrero, 2019 – 11:00am: Made it to Miami! Woke up at 03:45 and left the house shortly after 04:00 for 06:00 flight to MIA. Slight delay as they kicked a passenger off (no explanation given) but got a lyft in MIA to the University and got a good run in. Ran from the fitness center over to the track and then the big field complex which is about 700m around. Ran I think 15 laps, alternating every 5 laps and then started to feel really tired so jogged over to the track for drills/strides. Running 4’15-30 for the most part on the grass. Legs a bit beat up from yesterday and very hot in the 80s and sunny. Nice. Stopped at the track and did drills and then 6x strides very slow (2’09) and then 200m in 34. Legs felt pretty tired by the end between yesterday and the hot temperatures but really good to get out and get a good run in on a layover!

Met up w/ Mel at her car and got a shower and then headed back to the airport where I had a big meal at the AA flagship lounge.

Total run 16km+ in 69’.

PM: OFF – easy travel to UIO. Flight landed on time and got a ride from Sonia back to the city. Was back in the apartment by 21:30 and in bed by 22:00.

Miercoles, 13 de Febrero, 2019 – 09:50am First run back in Quito! Slept late after a long travel day and then ran solo up to metropolitano. Felt pretty tired but ran by feel. Beautiful morning but pace was slow, only 4’59 avg coming out of the park which was still not bad for last year but slow compared to earlier this block. Ran down to la Carolina and 1 big lap in 16’16 and then half lap to the track. Stopped and did drills and strides (8x in 2’50) and then 200m in 32.x. Finished long way over to Inaquito to do grocery shopping. Total run 23km in 1h48.

XT: Glutes (7x weights), toes, heel drops (10x each side).

16:00: Short turn-around for the double but ran down to the park, 2 big laps in 15’59, 15’39, felt much better than the AM. A beautiful afternoon. 4x strides and drills after in 1’23. Finished easy at Supermaxi to do the rest of grocery shopping and then cab’d home. Total run 12km in 52’30.

Jueves, 14 de Febrero, 2019 – Sparknotes: 9x [200m @ 34.1, 100m @ 38.9, 400m @ 70.5, 100m @ 37.5, 200m @ 33.6, 200m @ 1’41 (all avg)]. Very progressive, great!

07:10a: Great session this morning! Had lots of reasons for this to go poorly – tired from big day yesterday, slept really badly, big workout Monday, etc. etc. Almost didn’t get out of bed but made it to the track in time for warmup. Felt pretty bad on the warmup jogging but managed to stay positive.

Workout was to be 9 sets of 200m, 100 jog, 400m, 100 jog, 200m, 200 jog. Figured I would try to do maybe half of that as a good goal and then go from there.

Actively didn’t worry about pace, just tucked into the train behind Denis and Miki and barely even looked at splits. Started off very slow (37/74/34) and then pretty much each rep got faster from there until 200s were 33-34, 400 was 69-70.

Took it one rep at a time and just felt more manageable than I expected. Got to rep #7 which was Denis’s last one and went a bit harder. Led rep 8 a bit easier and then rep 9 was hard: 31/67/30. Very good!

Really pleased w/ how this went both mentally and physically. Overall not an impressive session on paper but great to get the legs moving in the middle of a big week and stick w/ Miguel pretty much the whole time (he dusted me on the last 400m and probably ran like 63 but I was w/ him on the 200s).

Cooled down barefoot on the grass w/ Miguel and then solo home.

Total run 22.5km in 1h42.

XT: Toes, pedestal (7x weights), heel drops (10x each side)

15:30: Keeping the mileage high. Would normally triple but want to keep the singles longer this block so did 3 big laps (16’07, 15’57, 15’55) and then 3 /4 to the track. Felt way better than expected. Stopped and did drills, 4x strides slow in 1’26. Finished easy home. Total run 18km in 1’19’30. 40.5km for the day.

Viernes, 15 de Febrero, 2019 – 09:00: Another beautiful morning – no clouds at all. All the mountains were clear! Amazing.

Ran down to 6 and the up to Metropolitano. Ran the big loop there and felt much better than Wednesday. Came out of the park and avg pace was already at 4’44 (vs. 4’59). Ran down the hill and then just three quarter lap to the track, drills, 8x strides in 2’46, 200m in 32.0. From there ran up north of the stadium to try to register for the 3 Juanes race next week. Profe’s directions were just a GPS point which turned out to be a bunch of random unmarked houses. Finally found the right place and was able to register and then jog home. Total run 23km in 1h44.

XT: Heel drops (10x each side), toes, glutes (7x weights)

15:40: Easy run around the park. Felt a bit tired and pleasantly surprised to see laps quicker than I expected (15’59, 15’58). I think the new watch reads shorter but that’s okay as laps are a good indicator and consistent. Finished at the track at 10km in 45’ and did drills and 4x easy strides in 1’27. Finshed easy up Portugal to stop at supermaxi and then home. Total run 13km in 58’.

Sabado, 16 de Febrero, 2019 – 08:30: Ran at the ROMP fundraiser down by the airport. Very cool even w/ a run for amputees and supporters both.

Super Ecuadorian and un-organized so wasn’t really sure what to expect. Supposed to be a 6km run out/back on the road that goes out the other end of the airport. Ran easy on the very nice wide road/shoulder and downhill on the way out. Got to about 2 miles (3.2km) and there was no signal or sign to turn back or anything so just headed back at that point. Nice uphill on the way back but was still running under 4’10 pace, though altitude is lower at 2400m.

Came back and ran the rest easy on the grass next to the airport hotel where the event was hosted. About 500m around and did 5km there to 12K and then drills and 4x strides ~20 seconds in the parking lot. Finished w/ 200m+ in 34 (downhill) and then easy jog back. Total run 13km+ in 54’.

XT: Heel drops (10x each side)

15:00: Easy run down to the carolina. Tried out the HOKA bottle vest but I couldn’t get it tight enough so it was a real hinderance as it bounced all over the place. If I held the bottles it felt okay – it’s not the weight but the bouncing. Is this what it’s like to have huge boobs? Bummer as I was planning to use it for tomorrow’s long run but good to figure that out today.

2 laps were slow (16’20, 16’19) and then to the track for 10km+ in 45’. Did drills and (after emptying bottles) 4x strides in 1’25. Track wasn’t too crowded which was nice for a beautiful Saturday afternoon. Easy home. Total run 12km+ in 53’.

XT: Toes

Domingo, 17 de Febrero, 2019 – Sparknotes: 53km in 3’28’42 (3’56 avg), on hilly ciclopaseo in Quito. Negative split! Great! (Marathon ~2h45, 50K 3h17)

07:00am: Big one this morning! Woke up early around 05:00 to give myself extra time to wake up. Slept very well. Had black coffee and a NV bar. Took 100mg caffeine just before leaving.

Jogged down the hill and then started on 6. Beautiful morning. Super clear again but not too warm at 07:00. Ran to the park and then northbound on the ciclopaseo. Road wasn’t closed yet but not too much of an issue this early.

Felt okay for this first 18km or so out/back. Listened to This American Life and tried to just relax and not look at the watch too much. I checked it at the turnaround after the giant hill around 10km and avg was at 4’03 which is just where it was when I did the 40km in January, so that was a good sign. Had to stop halfway down the hill and use the bathroom at a gas station but then felt much better and cruised into 15K at 59’15.

Planned to do a 5K of 1’ surges after the first hour (basically after TAL was over) which ended up being 17-22km. This was not as fast as I expected and really didn’t feel great. It was definitely a net uphill section heading towards Ejido but just didn’t feel great.

This started really like an hour of not feeling great. In retrospect, this was a very much net-uphill section (w/ almost as much gain as the giant hill in the northbound loop). I was also comparing it to the 40km I did in January where I absolutely crushed this section. That was just a killer run that day.

It’s also worth noting that I carried a water bottle for the entire run. Started out w/ 500mL of Maurten which I sipped slowly over the first 35km.

Anyway, the good news was that I found that the ciclopaseo goes even farther south than I realized, like quite a bit. It gets even more net uphill but I basically stopped looking at my splits. I would check the avg once in a while which had gotten as low as 3’56 after the surge at 22km and was up to 4’01 by the time I turned around just before 35km.

At that point, my maurten was gone so I stopped and bought a gatorade which was 750mL (the only size they had) and began running back. I knew I was over 4’00 pace avg but could see I was now running downhill a lot and figured I could still try to avg sub-4 if things went well.

I felt great coming down the hill and between hydrating and the positive reinforcement of already seeing the pace dip below 4’00 by 40km, I was starting to feel good and excited. I relaxed and just tried to hold pace but I could see I was running well.

Despite being net down, there are two very hard hills on the way back – at the Panecillo and Alemeda. I actively didn’t look at my watch there but just tried to focus on effort and keeping it consistent. Once I got to the top of those ~45km, I really felt like I was home free. I ran strongly all the way back down Amazonas to la Carolina and hit 50km just before Cruz del Papa.

Once I realized the run was going well, I had decided to try to run to 3h30 or 53km, whichever came first. I ran these last 3km on the oversized track and had plenty left, still running 3’51 avg for that last 3km. I honestly felt like I could have kept going. Certainly to 55km if not 60km.

Finished in 3’28’44 which is 3’56 avg overall. This is the longest run I’ve ever done (both in minutes and km) and at altitude no less.

Moreover, this was very good mental training in dealing w/ a pretty long rough patch but really rallying and turning things around. That was great.

Fueling: Gels at 15, 25, 35K
500mL Maruten 360, 500mL gatorade ever 5km or so (swished in mouth each km from 45-50ish)
Caff pill (100mg) before leaving and another at ~1h30

Time Split
5 km 0’19’58.0 (19’58.0) (3’59.6)
10 km 0’40’29.0 (20’31.0) (4’06.2) – big up
15 m 0’59’15.0 (18’46.0) (3’45.2) – big down
20 m 1’18’18.0 (19’03.0) (3’48.6)
25 m 1’38’36.0 (20’18.0) (4’03.6)
30 m 1’59’11.0 (20’35.0) (4’07.0)
35 m 2’20’24.0 (21’13.0) (4’14.6) – big up
40 m 2’38’44.0 (18’20.0) (3’40.0) – big down
45 m 2’58’09.0 (19’25.0) (3’53.0)
50 m 3’17’06.0 (18’57.0) (3’47.4)
53 m 3’28’39.0 (11’33.0) (3’51.0)

XT: Toes

16:00: Good rest and nap this afternoon. Very easy shakeout around the park. Carolina was packed w/ families as it was a beautiful Sunday afternoon. Ran very slow, 1 big lap in 17’26 and then short way to the track. Way too crowded w/ walkers, etc., so ran down to bike path and did drills and 4x very slow and relaxed strides just to open up a bit. Jogged up Portugal after to grab some food and stretch and then head home. Total run 7km+ in 34’.