Week 5: 8/7/06 - 8/13/06

Weekly Summary
Resting HR: 52
Total Weekly Mileage: 28

Saturday 8/12
AM - Vevey. This morning I woke up and did a very easy 4 mile run in Vevey from the Scheling's house. I ran uphill for 2 miles and then turned around and came back downhill (it took me twice as long to go uphill as it did to turn around and go downhill). My hip was feeling okay this morning, but it's kind of hard to tell whether or not it's better because I was taking it so easy.
PM - Headed over to Aubonne, where I will be staying for the next few days. Just two days until Sarah gets here!
4 miles

Friday 8/11
AM - Day off. After yesterday's problems, I decided to take the day off today. So I slept in and had an "American breakfast" (scrambled eggs, toast, and cereal) at the Metropole hotel.
PM - Spent the afternoon walking around Bern. I got a Thai massage, which seemed to help my left glute a bit.
0 miles

Thursday 8/10
AM - I left Lugano this morning and headed to Luzern. On the way to Luzern, I saw a picturesque village in in the hills, so I decided to pull of the highway and go on a short run. I jogged for about 30 minutes, and in the middle of the run it started pouring. But I didn't really mind the rain. It actually felt kind of nice.
PM - After stopping in Luzern for lunch, I continued on to Interlaken. After checking into the Metropole hotel, I went out for a run. I had heard that Interlaken was a great place to run, so I was pretty excited about it, but 1 mile into the run, my left glute really cramped up and I had to stop and walk back. A pain was shooting down my leg and it wouldn't go away. I can't believe that I'm injured once again. I'm going to have to take it really easy until I get better (hopefully soon!).
4 + 1 = 5 miles

Wednesday 8/9
AM - This morning, I went on an easy run around the lakes before leaving St. Moritz. I then caught the 12:00 postal bus to Lugano, which was a nice ride through the mountains in Italy and then back into Switzerland. Pretty much the entire 4 hour drive was downhill (we dropped from 1800 meters to just a couple hundred meters above sea level, and my water bottle looked like it had just been on an airplane when we got down there).
PM - When I got to Lugano, I checked into the Best Western and then went on an easy run along the lake and then up one of the mountains. I had heard that there were great trails to run on in Ticino, but I couldn't find any in Lugano. It was still a nice run, but it was a bit frustrating not to know where the trails were.
4 + 8 = 12 miles

Tuesday 8/8
AM - Left glute was still bothering me, so took the day off today.
0 miles

Monday 8/7
AM - Went on an easy 7 mile run this morning. Was going to go 10, but by 3-4 miles into the run, my left glute was just getting tighter and hurting more, so I decided to turn around early and call it a day.
7 miles


Week 4: 7/31/06 - 8/6/06

Weekly Summary
This was my first week in Switzerland, and it's great to be here. I was having a good week until my left glute started hurting on Friday. I then had to take Saturday off and go easy on Sunday. Despite that, I still got in 78 miles this week, which is quite a step up from the 50 that I ran last week (perhaps that's why my glute is hurting me right now). St. Moritz is a great place to train. There are lots of other athletes out here who come to train in the high altitude. I'm enjoying it so far, but I wish I had more friends out here -- it gets a bit lonely at times. I made friends with one guy named Rafal, but he's going back to Poland on Tuesday morning. I was sleeping well at the begining of the week, but I haven't been sleeping well at all for the past few nights. I don't know if it's the altitude, jetlag, or just the bed that I'm sleeping in. Anyway, I feel like I'm finally starting to get back into shape, and as long as this glute gets better soon, I think I'm off to a good start.
Resting HR: 48
Total Weekly Mileage: 78 miles

Sunday 8/6
AM - St. Moritz valley. HR: 146bpm (140-160). I got up this morning, had breakfast, and checked out of my hotel room to change my accomodations once again. My left glute is still hurting, but I decided to run anyway. I felt okay on the run, and averaged 6:40 pace, which felt quite easy until the last mile, when I started slowing down b/c I was tired. I hope my glute gets better soon. I don't want to have to take more time off while I'm here!
Sleep - 7 hours. Still having trouble falling asleep at night.
Food - Breakfast: Cereal and yogurt. Lunch: Pasta carbonara. Dinner: Dinner buffet.
12 miles

Saturday 8/5
AM - Decided not to run today because my left glute is still hurting me. It was hurting as I was trying to fall asleep last night, and it's not quite as bad today, but I want to make sure I let it heal. I got a massage and iced it in the evening, so hopefully it will get better soon.
Sleep - 7 hours. I didn't sleep well again last night. I don't know if it's the high altitude or what...
Food - Breakfast: Breakfast buffet. Lunch: Lunch buffet. Dinner: Dinner buffet.
10 miles

Friday 8/4
AM - St. Moritz Lakes. HR: 150bpm (141-165). This morning, I got out of bed around 10am and finally got out the door to go on a run a little after 11am. It was a beautiful day, a bit cool, but once I started running, I felt great. I pushed the pace a bit more than I have on any of my other runs so far, and I felt pretty good. I finished the run in 62 minutes, so about 6:10/mile pace. I stopped at 2 miles and 6 miles to stretch a bit because my left butt was tight. But after stretching it out, I felt pretty good. I'm already at 66 miles this week and I still have two more days left. I need to be careful not to increase my mileage too quickly, but if I end up somewhere in the 80's this week, I think I'll be okay. It was nice to finally feel like I was running at a decent pace today. I still have a lot of work ahead of me, but I'm making progress.
PM - This afternoon, I went over to visit some family friends. They told me of many places in Switzerland that I should try to visit if I have time (including Interlaken, Lucerne, and Bern). They also took me on a drive south to see many of the mountains and valleys. I have only been able to see a small glimpse of the landscape around here on my runs, so it was really nice to drive around and see more.
Sleep - 5 hours. I made the mistake of taking a 4 hour nap yesterday, so I wasn't able to fall asleep until about 4am.
Food - Breakfast: Balance bar before going on run. Lunch: Lunch buffet. Dinner: Dinner buffet.
10 miles

Thursday 8/3
AM - St. Moritz Lake. This morning it was cold and raining outside, so I almost skipped running. But my legs were feeling tight from yesterday's run, and I decided it would be best to at least put in a few very easy miles to loosen up. So I jogged around the St. Moritz lake in the cold rain and the stretched out for a while afterwards. Then I had lunch and took a long nap.
PM - St. Moritz Lakes. HR: 141bpm (130-150). This afternoon, I went on an 8 mile run along the lakes at a pretty easy pace. I was going to go 10, but I was feeling kind of tired, and my mileage for the week is already high enough.
Sleep - 8 hours plus a 4 hour nap in the afternoon.
Food - Breakfast: Balance bar. Lunch: Lunch buffet. Dinner: Dinner buffet.
3 + 8 = 11 miles

Wednesday 8/2
AM - Vsch. da Samedan (see elevation!). HR: 141bpm (130-160). Today I decided to explore the mountainous terrain around St. Moritz a bit more. First I had to check out of Hotel Stille and move over to my new hotel, Laudinella, which is much nicer, and only an extra $10 per night with the "athlete discount" (this is where I was already going for the all-you-can-eat buffets, and it is literally right next to the track). So a little before noon, I finally got out on my run. I had a general idea of where I was going to go based on the trail maps I had bought, but I decided not to bring the maps with me and just try to do the run from memory. I did wear the GPS watch today, which as you can probably tell from the pictures above, worked like a charm. So I was only going to go 14-16 miles today, since my longest run in the past few months was the 16 that I did 3 days ago, but the run was so nice that I couldn't get myself to turn back that early. I wish I had run with my camera because there were so many spectacular sites along the way. I was running on mountain biking trails and grass hiking trails for most of the run (except the middle 4 miles, which I will get to later). And most of the run, as you might be able to tell from the picture, was in a valley with mountains on either side and a glacier stream along the path. The route was pretty much uphill the entire way, so that by 10 miles in, I had gone from 5800 feet to 6800 feet. I passed through one village and went by one hotel during the run, but other than that it was all nature. So back to the middle four miles: 8-12. The terrain became quite rocky and it because hard to tell if there was any kind of path. I noticed there were some red markings on rocks that seemed to indicate some sort of path, so I just kept following those. There were also a lot of cows all around me. I started to see snow on the mountains on either side of me and in front of me, and if I had been able to go maybe one more mile, I might have reached the snow, but by the time I was at 10 miles, I knew I should probably turn around: not only had this turned into my longest run since I've come back, but it was starting to get a bit chilly and I was only wearing a running singlet. So I told my GPS watch to take me back to where I started, and I just followed the exact same route 10 miles back to St. Moritz. I stopped at a hotel on the way back to buy some water with my 5 Frank (~4 dollar) coin, but all I could afford was a tiny bottle of water for 4 Franks. By the last 3-4 miles of the run, I was definitely hurting. I don't know how much of it was the distance of my run vs. the high altitude that I am still not used to vs. the fact that I felt dehydrated. I was just sore and tired and thirsty. For the first 10 miles (uphill), my pace was between 7:00 and 8:00 and on the way back, my pace was between 6:30 and 7:30. When I got back to the hotel, I got a massage, and then went shopping for a sim card for my phone before getting dinner. If anyone needs to reach me while I'm here, my new Swiss mobile number is 076-404-2955 (Switzerland country code is 41, so I think from the U.S. it would be 011-41-76-404-2955, but I'm not sure).
Sleep - 9 hours.
Food - Breakfast: Balance bar. Lunch: I got back from my run after lunch, so I just had some snacks in my room (balance bar, dried fruit, cereal, etc.). Dinner: Dinner buffet at Stuva (pasta, potatoes, fish, meat, nan, rice, fruit, and much more).
20 miles

Tuesday 8/1
AM - Trails behind hotel (I didn't wear my GPS watch on this run). This morning I got up around 9am and got in a short run in order to get back before breakfast stopped at 10am. A few steps out of the hotel, and I was already on amazing trails in the woods. I noticed the ~6000 foot elevation immediately -- even one minute into the run, I was breathing pretty hard. But the weird thing was that after about 5 minutes, I didn't feel quite as bad, even though I was still breathing pretty hard. The weather was perfect this morning as well. Cool and dry. I wanted to go farther, but I only went for 35 minutes so that I'd be back in time for breakfast, which ended up being a bit of a disappointment. After breakfast, I went into town and stopped by the tourist center to pick up some trail maps. They didn't have many, but the nearby grocery store had a nice selection. I ate lunch at Stuva, and met a couple of other runners, including Bahrain middle-distance runner Maryam Yusuf Jamal and olympic gold medalist Mizuki Noguchi, whose marathon PR of 2:19 is two minutes faster than mine!
PM - Two larger lakes. HR: 139 (135-155). This afternoon, as I was getting ready to go on a run from the hotel, Rafael was about to go on a run as well, so we decided to go together. He was only going 5 miles after having done a track workout this morning, so I did 5 miles with him (a couple of laps around the smaller lake) and then added on another 5 miles, where I ran to the larger lake and back. Once I got back, Rafal, and his coach and I all went to Stuva for the dinner buffet. The coach was telling me how he once coached a 2:11 marathon runner, who unforunately died in a car accident.
Sleep - 9 hours.
Food - Breakfast: Cereal with yogurt, bread and ham, OJ. Lunch: Lunch buffet at Stuva (pasta, gnocci, salad, meat, fruit, and more stuff that I can't remember). Dinner: Dinner buffet at Stuva (nan with curry, pasta, meat, fruit, custard, and other stuff I can't remember).
5 + 10 = 15 miles

Monday 7/31
AM - Zurich Lake (note: If you would like to view any of these routes in Google Earth, just change the .jpg to a .kml in any of these links such as here and open that file with Google Earth). HR: 149bpm (137-157). This morning I got up around 10am and went on a 10-mile run along the other side of the lake. I turned around at this house. Once again, I started to feel pretty weak towards the end of it, and my stomach really started bothering me towards the end. I was keeping the pace slow (as I have on almost all of my runs so far), and finished the 10 miles in a little under 69 minutes. I had booked a 1pm tour today, so I was pretty rushed when I got back to my hotel to stretch, shower, eat, and pack my bags, and it didn't help that my stomach was hurting me the whole time. The 4-hour tour was nice. Our guide showed us around Zurich, and then we took a cable car up to the top of a mountain, and then took a boat across the lake.
PM - After the tour of the city, I took the train to St. Moritz. It took about 3 hours or so to get there, and it was already dark by the time I arrived. From the train station, it was only a 4-minute (and $15) cab ride to Hotel Stille. I was lucky that the guy was still there when I arrived because he said reception normally closes at 8pm and he did not have my reservation on file. He put me in a room next to a Polish runner named Rafal (7:58 3K) and his coach, who is also out here coaching Wioletta Janowska, who currently has the fastest time in the women's 3K steeple chase this year (9:17).
Sleep - 9 hours. Could have slept even longer!
Food - Breakfast: Corn flakes, yogurt, fruit, OJ, croissant with ham and cheese, cherries. Lunch: Ham and cheese sandwich and balance bar. Dinner: Barley soup, gnocci with tomato sauce.
10 miles