Thursday Track Report: Light and Heat

June 27, 2019

It was sunny, hot, and humid, with just enough breeze to make it bearable, as John Domico, Ryan Burke, Adam Ilgen, David Lloyd, and Marty Mazur headed for the track. Quite a light turnout, even considering the weather. I can’t imaging that Tom and Meira’s Spring Creek Alternative is cutting that much into the workout turnout. I mean, getting there definitely adds some time to the lunchtime run, and some people actually have to work for a living!

In contrast to last week, where Bwana gave some long reps in relatively mild summer conditions, he decided to give a relatively light workout of short reps in our first blazing hot day of the year. The workout was two sets of 6 X 200. Run the 200s at race kick pace (not sprint!) and take a very short 100 meter recovery between reps. Between the two sets, the recovery is a full 400 meters at a very slow jog. And do stop for water between sets. We did!

Today was Adam’s last Thursday Track workout with us. Adam is heading off to Illinois for graduate school. A two-year masters program in nutrition. He’ll be in town here until July 8. Wish him the best when you see him!

NOTE: There will be no Thursday Track workout next week due to July 4 races and festivities. See you on July 11!

Thursday Track Report: Storm Trackers

June 20, 2019

It was changeable like a March day, but a whole lot warmer. Just about every kind of weather one could expect in June, except hail and lightning. There were clouds, sun, rain, heat, and plenty of humidity. John Domico, Mike Martin, Rob Shaver, Mike Zimmerman, Keith Henderson, Adam Ilgen, David Lloyd, and Marty Mazur headed for the State High track. The place is pretty heavily used in the summer. There was a flag football game going on in one half of the infield, and a soccer game on the other. A hurdler was getting some work near the 100 meter start area. But nobody on the oval until the crew showed up.

Bwana gave a pretty challenging workout for the warm day: Two sets of 1200-400. Run the 1200 at race pace. That’s enough time running to let the humidity be a challenge. Then a 400 meter jogging rest followed by a 400 meter run at an increased pace. Take another 400 meter slow jog and do another set. On a cooler day, this workout can be scaled up in number of sets, and it’s an excellent basis for a high volume workout for preparing for long races. And the rest between the 1200 and the 400 can be shortened to increase endurance.

We’ll be using the high school track for the next couple of months. Come on out for a workout! And bring some good weather with you!

Thursday Track Report: Movin' On

April 25, 2019

It was cloudy and drab, with an intermittent sprinkle, as John Domico, Costas Maranas, Mike Weyandt, Bob Shafer, Dean Capone, Andy Maguire, Mike Zimmerman, Dan Coughlin, Mike Martin, Adam Ilgen, David Lloyd, and Marty Mazur headed for the track. The University grounds crew was setting up for this weekend’s Movin’ On festival, a going away party for PSU’s graduating students. That festival has been going on in one form or another for, believe it or not, longer than Thursday Track, and is one of the largest student-run rock festivals in the country. The current mega-extravaganza has been a regular Spring staple since 2010. If you’re over the age of 40, as a few of us in the Thursday Crew are, you probably have never heard of any of the acts that have or will appear at this show, but they say there have been some big names.

The Crew had to get their workout in before the workers put up the fencing around the IM Fields. So Bwana called the workout: 4 X (400-270). Each rep starts with a quarter-mile, which is a full lap of half the field as marked, starting on a “short side". Run it at mile race pace. When you've completed that circuit, rest that short side at a slow jog. Then do a long straight, 270 meters, at “kick pace”. Cycle back to the start, about 330 meters, at a recovery jog pace. Do 4 reps, or 5 if you’re feeling like movin’ on. As always, run your reps at the fastest pace that you can maintain consistency through the workout.

Congratulations were in order today for Mike Zimmerman, the Hill Workout captain. Mike ran a sub-3 at Boston. While not a marathon PR, it was a good 10+ minutes faster than his best at Boston. He’s gotta be good for a sub-2:50 if he picks his course and training right in some Fall race. The rest of us have some work to do!

Thursday Track Report: Two-Fer Thursday

May 2, 2019 and May 9, 2019

Bwana has been remiss. For the first time in years, he *forgot* to put out a track report for a workout that was done. That was last week. Busy time of year, he guesses. Anyway, the workout was great. We had about 10 people show up, including a few of the usuals and a few of the unusuals. The workout was 2 X (600 - 3 X 330). Each of the sets is a 600 (a long “U" on the IM Fields) run at 5K race pace, followed by the short rest of the remaining side of the field, and then 3 X 330. Each 330 is an “L”, a long side and a short side of the rectangle. The rest between these is the next side, be it short (60 meters) or long (270). The 330s are run at 5K kick pace. Rest for a lap (660) between sets, then do another set.

That workout was so great that even though Bwana didn’t report on it, Tara, who showed up for today's workout, decided to do something along those lines. She’s topping off her training for a marathon next week and decided to do 8X600 at marathon race pace with just a 60 meter rest between reps.Ultra-T is signed up for another, much longer marathon some time next year. She announced her engagement to her beau Brian the only way she could: through a Picture A Day post on Facebook. (Tara’s been doing Picture A Day for years, and her posts are among the few things that make Facebook worth looking at every day.) Other than Tara, the turnout was thin today. The Rec Hall crowd, I guess, has to rejigger their schedules to deal with the shortened summer hours. Bwana himself just did an easy few miles on the IM Fields, since he’s nursing a mild ankle sprain.A few others, including Costas Maranas, Judd Michael, Mike Weyandt, Rich Harter, Mike Martin, Adam Ilgen, and David Lloyd, ran roll-yer-own workouts.

We may have to post a new summer time for Thursday Track, as we did last year, because of shortened Rec Hall hours. In addition, in a few weeks we’ll be moving to the High School track (yes, a real track) for the summer. Stay tuned for more information…

Thursday Track Report: Easy Breezy

April 18, 2019

It was warm and breezy as Judd Michael, Tara Murray, Mike Martin, Bob Shafer, Mike Casper, Seth Senior, Adam Ilgen, David Lloyd, and Marty Mazur headed for the track. The Boston Marathoners are still nursing their tight muscles, replenishing their electrolytes, and buffing their medallions. Congratulations to the large group from the area, especially the Thursday Trackers, and particularly Mike Zimmerman (first sub-3 at Boston) and Jaimie Wright (great time on her last (??) marathon).

Today Bwana had the crew do a very simple workout: 2 or 3 sets of 4 X 270 at mile race pace. The long straights on the IM fields are about 270 meters long. Run each at the prescribed pace, then rest for the short end, about 60 meters. Very slow jog or walk. A set is two laps of straights. Between sets, take a longer, say, half-lap (330 meter) rest. The key is to find the race kick pace that you can do consistently for all 2 or 3 sets.

Some of the Crew are topping off their training for later spring marathons. Tara was at the track today, but was doing her own thing, about 8000 meters of long repeats, a 3200 bookended by sets of 3 X 800. That’s a tough, but appropriate workout!