Weekly Summary – 110 miles in 12 runs. A transition week w/ a solid race Monday at the US 20K Championships and then 4 very light days before beginning the next big block of training. A fantastic first workout on Saturday (20K at 2h14 marathon pace) was a good way to start off what will be a very big block. Here we go!

Don’t forget, you can follow me day to day on Instagram and Twitter (@TylerCAndrews) and my daily training log on Strava (GPS included!). 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 next year for the summer of 2019, when we’ll once again have programs for High School and College students, and even 10-day trips for adults and families.

Lunes, 3 de Septiembre, 2018 – Sparknotes: New Haven US 20K Championships – 21st in 64’59 (3’14.9/km) EXTREME conditions, ran smart and well.

08:30: Woke up naturally before my alarm around 05:15am and got some coffee and hung around in the hallway as Matt wasn’t awake yet. Got a lot of work done on the HM doc which got me in a good mood.

Left the hotel around 07:15 w/ Matt. Weather was already so sticky. Matt compared it to his run last week: “running through clam chowder”. We headed to the elite athlete tent which was conveniently close to the hotel and the start/finish line but was approximately one million degrees inside. Quickly took off everything except singlet and comp shorts and headed out to warmup w/ Matt and his CPTC teammate, also Matt.

Jogged about 1.5km out on the course and back. Already sweating quite a bit. So sticky. Gross. Legs felt ok despite all this.

Got back and immediately tried to drink and douse myself w/ water. Only thing missing in the tent was COLD water, ice, etc. All the water was pretty warm already.

Did drills and a few strides including about 30 sec at race effort. Got to the line and was about 3 rows back.

Jon had encouraged me to let the leaders go and not worry about what they were doing and I actively wanted to hold back in the early stages today.

I ended up basically jogging off the line and worked my way up over the first km to a pack w/ John Busque, Johnny Phillips, and maybe 4-5 other guys I didn’t recognize. I could see a big lead pack that went through the mile at sub 4’50 – must have been 30 guys up there. The pace felt extremely slow but we were still 5’05 at the 1M which I thought was too fast.

NB: Daniels table which I’d consulted the night before said that 80F would add about 10 sec/mile and that doesn’t take into account humidity. I figured a great race for me would be about 3’05/km (around 5’00/M) on a fair day, so I figured this meant that anything faster than 5’10/M, 3’11/km was probably too fast.

Still, things felt very calm and there was a pretty big gap behind our group already, so I stayed put and watched the giant group in front of us get farther away. Before 2M, people were already starting to fall off. The carnage had begun!

Meanwhile, our group stayed together until about 5km. There’s a nice little hill just before 4km which may have split up our group a bit and then I found myself running the downhill better than the others and having to slow myself down to let them catch up. We passed 5km in around 15’55 (3’11/km) and I could feel we were starting to split up, with Johnny, John, and me coming off the front a bit. At some point during this rolling section, I noticed I was in front and still felt like I was running evenly (and was based on the clocks at each mile), so I held my own and focused on the guys coming back to me from the front.

I was already passing people at this point and caught up w/ a small guy in a Brooks singlet (Ryan Smith) before 10km. We ran together for a while and I think I put a small gap on him between 10km (31’54, 15’59 2nd 5K) and the beginning of the hills around 13km. I could see the next group ahead of me which had Jonas and a bunch of other guys. I really wanted to get up there but found myself stuck at about 30 seconds behind them.

There’s a long, quiet and exposed (to sunlight) section that basically runs from 7-10 miles including a long gradual uphill w/ 2 steeper sections around 8 and 10 miles. This was very challenging but I managed to stay engaged well and fight through it. At some point, Smith passed me back and I couldn’t quite respond. He was the only runner to pass me the whole race.

Finally, I made it up the last hill and tried to really use the downhill to accelerate. With only 4km to go, I thought of it like the last 4km of a marathon and really focused on just getting to the next km.

The last 2.5km are a straight shot down one long street. I could see tons of guys in front of me and caught at least 2 just in this last stretch. I was not totally imploding but new I was positive splitting, which I’d expected given the conditions. I could see one last guy who I probably didn’t pass until after 19km. I couldn’t quite get back to Ryan Smith (10 sec up) or Jonas and his group (25-30 seconds up).

I finished in 1’04’59 for 21st place.

Overall, this was a big step in the right direction for me. An extremely challenging race – one of the toughest days I’ve ever raced on and that thought was seconded by many others -and I ran smart and moved up the whole race. It didn’t feel good but I felt good about it.

On paper, it looks pretty bad – 3’15 isn’t even marathon pace. More like 50K pace. But almost no one ran their goal/PR marathon pace. Jonas didn’t. Fernando didn’t. Meghan didn’t. Most were quite a bit slower. The only one who did was Matt; he absolutely crushed it and – I’ll say it now – is absolutely fit enough to break 2h20 and will do it if he has a fair day at Chicago.

Moreover, this was just a really fun trip. I got to hang out w/ a lot of runners I haven’t seen in a while, see old friends and make some new ones, and do the whole trip in 30 hours door to door. It’s always fun to come to the US Champ races and while I know I’m not going to be that competitive in a shorter race (i.e. anything below the marathon really), it’s a very cool event to be a part of.

Cooled down w/ a big crowd which included me, Matt, Meghan, Fernando, Johhny, and others I’m probably forgetting. About 4.5km and felt like I was melting.

Total run 28km.

15:30: Made it home pretty easily on the train from NHV. First couples run w/ Mar since getting to BOS. Ran down to the track and then did about 3km on the track for her sake (she’s still coming back from an ankle injury and wasn’t sure how far she’d make it) and then headed out on the fields solo. Nice and hot and ran shirtless. Finished w/ 4x very relaxed and slow strides and then over to Anna’s to get some lunch. Total run 10km in 46’.

Martes, 4 de Septiembre, 2018 – 09:00am: Slept later and was pretty sore this morning. Ran very easy on science museum loop and then 3 laps on the fields. Sped up the whole run naturally as I loosened up. Still very warm in the 80s already and sunny which is nice now that I’m not overdressing. Finished w/ 4x slow strides. Total run 12km in 56’30.

XT: Glutes (8x), toes

PM: OFF – day 1 of recovery block so got a shit-ton done.

Miercoles, 5 de Septiembre, 2018 – AM: OFF! Block break day 2. Got a tremendous amount of work done. Feeling good about things.

XT: Pedestal – 7’ w/ 10x reps

15:45: Easy run on harvard bridge loop. Warm! 92F feels like 100F! Ran shirtless and felt pretty good. Didn’t look at the watch until halfway and surprised to see 4’21 avg and quicker on the way back. Listened to This American Life. Felt pretty decent. Soccer game on track so did drills on the fields and strides on Vassar St. 4x strides and ~200m very relaxed around 35. Much better than yesterday. Total run 14km in 58’.

XT: glutes, 8x, toes

Jueves, 6 de Septiembre, 2018 – Sparknotes: EZ + 4 x 500m @ MP surging last 100m, 200, 300m, 400m @ 1’31, 1’27, 1’26, 1’21

07:00: Early run before a climbing outing w/ Scott and Alex. Ran solo on sci museum loop. Already in the 70s as it’s going to be 95F today so nice to get it done early. Lovely morning and tons of people out. Finished w/ a loop around the fields and then 4x strides and 200m++ in 32.x (was on autopilot to run through to the blue 110h line and forgot to stop my watch). Jogged home for 10.5km in 43’30.

XT: Glutes, 10x, toes

XT2: Went to hammond Pond w/ Alex and Scott to go climbing. Hadn’t been outdoor climbing since Kuala Lumpur (was that really in January?) and it was much harder despite not even being vertical. Just garbage tiny little holds and my feet were not used to climbing shoes at all, plus swollen from an obscenely hot and humid day. Fun time showing Scott the ropes (literally) as it was his first time climbing. Good bro-nado adventure overall.

17:30: Ran late w/ STRIVE call and thunderstorms in the afternoon. Did only 2km easy around MIT camps and then to the track, light drills, and then 4x400m. Ran in Cavus.

Usually do this session on day 3 of rec block as a way to get the legs moving a bit but not take anything out of myself. Ran each one w/ a surge the last 100m, 200m, 300m, and 400, starting off around MP (a bit aggressive but it’s on a track). Ran 1’31 w/ a 15 sec last 100, 1’27 (55.x, 31.x), 1’26 (37.x, 47.x), 1’21.7 (19.x, 62.x).

Very good and rest was short, just 50-60sec quick jog.

Cooled down short to Harvest to keep the day low volume and then walked home.

Total run 6km+ in 23’.

1’30.5 (75 / 15)
1’26.5 (55 / 31)
1’26.1 (37 / 48)
1’21.7 (19 / 62)

Viernes, 7 de Septiembre, 2018 – 07:00: Early solo run before strive call. Ran Sci museum loop and felt pretty decent. Stopped at the track and did 4x strides and then 1km relaxed in 3’07. Ready to roll tomorrow! Total run 10km++ in 41’.

XT: Glutes, 10x, toes

4pm: Easy run around fields. Keeping it on grass w/ workout on pavement tomorrow. Legs felt pretty good and holding back. 4x very good strides on track fast (1’16). Total run 6km+ in 24’30.

Sabado, 8 de Septiembre, 2018 – Sparknotes: 20km @ 63’52 (3’11.6/km) – 32’04, 31’47. W/ Jonas, great!

08:00: Ran w/ Jonas from his place w/ his girlfriend Mary on the bike. Warmed up over to the river about 4km and the stopped and did drills and a couple light strides. Did this run in the Cavu.

Nice and cool (relatively) this morning w/ temps in the mid-upper 60s but humidity much lower. Finally felt decent! Jonas said he wanted to start out around 5’10/M and then I figured we’d get quicker after each lap of the ~3M course we’d run. He wanted to do around 16M and I had pencilled in 15-17km.

We started out a bit quick for the first 600m or so but then eased up and so came through the first km in 3’12 and then settled around 3’15s to ru 16’12 for the first 5K. After this, I led the second lap and we ran quicker, close to 3’10s pretty consistently for 15’52.

It’s also worth noting that this is not a perfectly flat loop. There’s a decently long uphill climb culminating in a nice steep bit around 3km and then another shorter climb maybe around 3.5km. The loop is probably 4.9km or so but I just had it on auto-lap for each 1K so I didn’t pay attention to overall loop times.

I hadn’t felt that good on laps 1-2 but by the time lap 2 was over I was sure I could get one more done which would be 15K and my minimum for what I wanted to do w/ the workout. Jonas actually gapped me a bit here and we ran the fastest loop of the day (he said we were like 5’02 at the mile and 10’06 at 2M on that loop). I worked back up and then passed him around 14km as we got to the 4th loop.

At this point, I decided I’d get at least to 16K and the see how I felt. It felt fine, so I figured I’d try to hit the 60’ point. Turns out 60’ was very close to the end of the loop so I figured, eh what the hell I’ll go to the end of the loop. This ended up being over 19K, so I again renegotiated and ran to 20K which I decided would be a good stopping point.

Finished in 63’52 and definitely felt like I could have kept going. A really great workout (finally) and great to have some company. As Jon said after, I think I had this run in me since early August but just needed the right day for it to come out.

Did 2 light strides after while waiting for Jonas and then jogged back slower around 4’30s for 4km.

Total run 28km.

1 km 3’11.9 (3’11.9)
2 km 6’29.6 (3’17.7)
3 km 9’43.7 (3’14.1)
4 km 12’57.7 (3’14.0)
5 km 16’12.0 (3’14.3) (16’12.0)
6 km 19’22.6 (3’10.6)
7 km 22’33.7 (3’11.1)
8 km 25’45.2 (3’11.5)
9 km 28’54.6 (3’09.4)
10 km 32’04.4 (3’09.8) (15’52.4)
11 km 35’14.0 (3’09.6)
12 km 38’26.0 (3’12.0)
13 km 41’34.5 (3’08.5)
14 km 44’43.0 (3’08.5)
15 km 47’54.0 (3’11.0) (15’49.6)
16 km 51’05.8 (3’11.8)
17 km 54’19.0 (3’13.2)
18 km 57’28.9 (3’09.9)
19 km 1’00’42.9 (3’14.0)
20 km 1’03’52.0 (3’09.1) (15’58.0)

15:30: Easy run around the fields for about 8km and then over to the track, 4x strides which didn’t feel too bad, and then across the river to Brookline to meet Mariana’s folks. Busy PM w/ socializing w/ them and then our big “welcome to Boston” party which was fun but I was pretty smacked by the end. Long day!

Total run 12km in 51’.

Domingo, 9 de Septiembre, 2018 – 09:45: Slept late after the big party last night. Ran solo for the first 55’ down the Chuck and then FP Parkway and up the alewife bikeway to meet James Randon. Ran w/ him a bit quicker than I probably otherwise would have gone for the next hour or so through Belmont and then around Fresh Pond and back to his place. Finished solo the last 7km down Mass Ave. through Harvard and then back on the Chuck to BU bridge and over to Mariana’s folks place. Longest single I’ve done in a while (since that long trail run on Aug. 1). Kept the effort pretty controlled overall. Also NB, ran this w/ no breakfast and didn’t take anything in during the run. Pretty hungry and thirsty after. Total run 31km in 2h15.

17:00: Really tired this afternoon. Planned to run an hour or so earlier but passed the fuck out in the hammock for like 45 minutes. Oops. Got out and sluggish first km but felt decent after that. Ran all on grass around the fields since this was a lot of pavement in the last two days. You’re welcome legs. Finished w/ 4x very slow strides. Total run 10km+ in 44’.