Sunday, July 06, 2008

The Yoopers

June 30 - July 6 (2008)

Monday, 6/30

am: Elliptical - 45 min
Easy day following the long run on yesterday. Stomach is getting worse and since "abdominal pain" is a symptom for everything, I bit the bullet and made a doctor appt. for what is just a case of being "backed up".

Today Katie and I drove to Houghton, MI for her interview at Michigan Tech. We're both excited, not only for the interview, to visit Houghton. It seems very similar to Duluth, where we spent our college years (and I a few years more than that). Since I won't be the one interviewing I should have plenty of free time to explore the area.

Tuesday, 7/1
am: Run - 1:12:30
pm: Run - 48:00

Houghton is pretty great. Small town, beautiful views. Pretty active downtown, free of chain stores. Country roads and cross country ski trails. As good as advertised.

Katie began her all-day, 12-hour interview with breakfast. I headed out early so I would be back to see her off. Looking at the map prior to our trip I had highlighted a general road route that I wanted to traverse that included Paradise Rd. How could I not run on Paradise Rd., especially when the terrain profile showed a good size hill that looked about the same length as my favorite hill in Duluth, 40th Ave W.

I misjudged where I needed to go starting out so I ended up adding some distance running around Tech's upper campus. I ran for a short time on the cross-country ski trails/snowshoe/mtn bike trails. No surprise that these were first rate given that Tech has a first class nordic ski team. Of course good snow sport teams means you get a lot of snow, so I may have to add snowshoeing to my winter training regimen if we end up here.

Paradise Rd was beautiful, but had a bit more traffic than I figured it would. It reminded me a bit of Jean Duluth, only narrower so traffic traveled a little slower. The direction I ran had me descending the big hill initially, but at the bottom I took a hard left and headed up Pilgrim Rd. Now this was more like it, a nice long climb on a quiet road with wide open views of the hill country. It was quite a run.

At 9:00 I took a tour of the campus that the selection committee had signed me up for. It was little weird to be touring with prospective students, but I got to see the tallest building on the UP and eat in the dining center (pretty good food). After lunch I met up with Katie and some of the Tech staff to take a tour of the place we would be living on-campus and then a driving tour of the Houghton/Hancock metropolis. We did make it the drive out to Lake Superior which kind of felt like a homecoming. It still looks big.

After that Katie went on her merry way to more interviews and finally dinner to conclude her long day. I ran a roundabout, out-and-back along the bike/running path along Portage Lake. I felt a little warm and my HR was little high, but I also think I was cranking the pace a little bit. Running in a strange land can sort throw off my perception of how fast I'm running.

For dinner I picked up a little Chinese food and then made a stop by Jims Foodmart for some treats for Katie. While there I saw for the first time, actual aluminum and plastic recycling machines. I couldn't help but think of the Seinfeld where Kramer and Newman had the scheme to load up a USPS truck with bottles and cans and truck them to Michigan because they got 10 cents per. That ended with JFK's golf clubs stuck in the truck's grill and Newman running from the shotgun toting farmer. Ah, good times.

Wednesday, 7/2
am: Run - 10M incl 8x 3on/2off fartlek.
pm: Run - 1-2-3-4-3-2-1 fast ladder (6M)
The morning run went well as I felt strong and smooth the whole way. The nice thing about fartleks is that I don't obsess about pace. I just focus on running as fast as I can comfortably and with good form. I squeezed this workout in before we sadly departed Houghton and made the long trek back to Minnesota. When we got back I went directly to my doctor appointment where it was confirmed that my issues were pretty simple (that was quite an x-ray). He recommended some over the counter stuff that I should take with prune juice. Should be a fun 4th!
The p.m. session was short and sweet.

It wasn't too hard, but I sure am rusty.

Thursday, 7/3
am: Run - 1:48:35
Back to work for one day. I'm going to be spoiled on this vacation thing. Would have liked to go a little longer today, but it felt more cautious to cut back the mid-week long run this time around. It will be back up there again next week.

Friday, 7/4
am: Run - 61:35
Just an easy run today and some good grilling.

Saturday, 7/5

am: Run - 10M+(65:27), 8M MP (avg: 5:34), 2M+ cooldown
A big improvement on the last time I did this workout. I felt much more in control and averaged a faster pace for two extra miles.
5:31.1 (155)
5:35.9 (157)
5:36.9 (158)
5:37.6 (158)
5:34.1 (160)
5:32.1 (162)
5:35.4 (164)
5:32.3 (164)

Sunday, 7/6
am: Run - 60:45
Things are starting to heat up around here. I didn't get out to run until about 10:00 and the temp was already in the mid-80's. Thats pretty steamy for around here, considering we've had idyllic weather for the last month. I felt good starting out, but as the run went on I went a little flat. Back to work for good tomorrow. Aye *wince*

Total miles for the week:

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