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Treadmill Almost Mini-Marathon…Part Deux

August 3, 2012

Yes, it was a late training session due to life. Here’s the raw data from the treadmill:

Time: 2:30:00
Distance: 10 miles
Vertical (vert) Climb: 5,797 feet (11% grade)

The repeats looked like this:

  1.  60:00 to do 4 miles at 4 mph and 2,320 vert
  2.  60:00 to do 4 miles at 4 mph and 2,319 vert
  3.  30:00 to do 2 miles at 4 mph and 1,158 vert

But that’s not all, folks. Then there was this:

Stair stepper: 20:00 to do .86 miles

Not surprisingly, there’s not a great way to prep your legs for the climbing during that first repeat. I tend to walk on the treadmill at a moderate pace for 5 minutes to start. Then, I stop the treadmill to stretch. The initial mile took a little experimenting to get the muscles stretched out and develop a rhythm. Additionally, at the pace I was going, I was in between a light jog and solid walk. By the end of the first repeat, I had it figured out and felt pretty good.

Then, to make sure the treadmill didn’t go haywire and lose my data, I stopped the treadmill to reset it. Between stopping the machine and getting a quick swig of water, I would guess it probably gave me a 2 minute break.

As I started the second repeat, I felt like I was just a wrong stride away from cramping up. By this point, I was jogging .75 miles before walking the last .25 miles. Then, it was wash, rinse and repeat. It was about here as well that my iPod started misbehaving. Do iPods really only last a year or so before they’re toast? I was able to get back into my rhythm despite that cramping feeling and that feeling eventually went away. Of course, now with no iPod and moving too quickly to play any games on the treadmill computer, I had to mentally fight through the monotony.

After that second 4-mile repeat, I took time to reset the treadmill again and this time refill my water bottle. My legs were approaching jello when I was walking to/from the water fountain…on that flat surface. I would guess I probably got about a 3 minute break this time.

The last repeat gave me that cramping sensation again. I was also periodically checking my heart rate the whole time. According to the charts, I was usually right about where I should be on the top end (80% of max) of the range. However, by this last repeat, my heart rate started to jump. It didn’t get anywhere near being dangerous, but I was definitely gassed and my heart rate bore that out. By that second (and last) mile, it was actually easier to keep jogging as opposed to walking at all. Somehow, I managed to grind it out to hit my goal of getting in 10 miles at the average incline that the race will hand me.

I got another quick break to drink some water, wipe down the treadmill and get another towel before hopping on the stair stepper. In all, it was probably a 5 minute break.

Finally, I hopped on the stair stepper to somewhat mimic the “16 Golden Stairs” at the race. During the race, you basically run 12 miles and the climb varies on how tough it is. However, at the end, there’s the climb to end all climbs. Rather than continuing to jog, you basically stair step up series of rocks. Though these “steps” don’t take up the entire 1.3 miles to the top, but the last mile does give you 1,000 vertical feet to climb. Put another way, you have almost 13% of your vertical climb over the last 6% of the race. I think that qualifies as cruel and unusual. I don’t usually do a stair stepper, so I just did what my legs would let me. It actually wasn’t as bad as I thought it would be because it required me to use different muscles and I didn’t exactly try to kill it with my pace.

In the aftermath, I’m still encouraged that I should be able to finish the race. The discouraging thing is it will likely take me longer than I had hoped. Considering how drained I was tonight after doing 10 miles on the treadmill + .86 miles on the stair stepper, let’s look at the race. Throw in running on a trail, uncertain weather conditions and the lack of oxygen for the last 2,000 feet of vertical climb over the last 3 miles of the race and all of that can add up to delirium.

The reward for that hard work tonight is quads that are barking as was the case from the last treadmill session and throw in a splash of blown out calves. Oh yeah, I can’t forget the McDouble, small fry and caramel sundae from McDonald’s in order to get some protein and carbs in my system within 30 minutes or so of finishing my workout.


No workout, but it will be another entry of Fill ‘er Up Friday. Does anyone want to place a friendly wager as to whether or not I can consume more than 4,000 calories?


From → Workout

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