Wednesday, July 11, 2012

Tracking stress...

One thing I like to keep track of is how much fast running I do. Specifically, how often I'm getting my HR above my aerobic sweet spot of 125bpm or so...there are some people that think too much of this running jazzes up your endocrine system and primes you for injuries and overtraining syndrome.

The garmin tools are not very good at this: they give you average for the entire  lap and max. If you are doing autosplits set for a mile, there can be some pretty high bpm in there, e.g. if you do some fast pickups.

e.g. If you run at a recovery pace for .8 of a mile and then run at 85% of race pace for .2 , the average HR does NOT reflect the stress on your body.

Here is what the lap based data tells me for how much running I have done at different working heart rate levels for the 30 days:

Here is the same data with the trackpoint by trackpoint heart rate information summed to miles for each run:

Notice there's more hot colors, reds and oranges..where I got up to 80-85% WHR. When I do unstructured hard running now (ie. when I'm not hitting the lap button) I will see it.


For the last two weeks since San Lorenzo I've averaged about 18 miles/week..the holiday vacation was responsible for some of that reduction...but my body needed a break anyway.

This week  have done the previously mentioned hill repeats Monday and 
yesterday a faster 4.4:

2012-07-10 Tue
Split   Dist   Pace       HR   Cad Elev+ Elev-    YPB
1 1.00 8:42 124.0 90.0 0.0 11.7 1.624
2 1.00 8:52 133.0 90.0 0.0 5.2 1.487
3 1.00 8:48 135.0 89.0 5.8 4.5 1.484
4 1.00 8:50 137.0 88.0 4.4 0.0 1.456
5 0.36 9:50 131.0 86.0 6.4 0.0 1.380
Sum 4.4 8:53 132.2 89.0 16.6 21.4 1.498

This run turned out pretty well considering it was warm (mid-70s) and very hot sun. I  also did full set of lower body / core strength training afterwards. I'll do one more very short run on Thursday and then declare myself ready for the Golden Gate Marathon on Saturday.

Last year only 28 people ran the full marathon and only two in my age group, so I have good chance of placing in my age group 8)..last year I would have been 2 of 3. 

So far the weather looks cloudy and cool with full sun only showing up sometime between noon and my expected finishing time around 2:15pm (~6 hours). Perfect!

I am going to take it super easy on the first two 800' hills..they are not as steep as San Lorenzo's gut-buster but I will not be tempted to run them..power walking for me!

A goal, or perhaps more accurately "thing I want to work on" (besides the main thing: having fun! )is to run a 3 hour half marathon split and then see if I can do faster than that on the second half and finish in under 6 hours. 

But, I haven't run this course and elevation profiles are often deceiving so I'm not obsessing about this. 


  1. Only 28 people ran the marathon? Wow! Good luck and thanks for the toothpaste tip.

  2. Oh paul...good Luck this weekend. I am hoping for a medal place finish for you ;)

  3. Good Luck, Paul! Go for that extra bling.

  4. Good point about the Garmin not proving stress results. I like your approach to correctly analyze the data.

    Hey, good luck with your race and have fun.


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