9 miles, avg. HR 159, 8:30 pace, 1100 ft. elevation. Today was a fairly rolling trail run in mid 80 degree heat. It was hot. Actually the conditions were a little tough for me. I've been pussy-footing it a on pretty flat courses and the treadmill, targeting specific HR zones. So, this course was much more realistic and more difficult in terms of keeping the HR down. Also, the treadmill can hide some illness, in this case, congestion (that's been my experience). A good trail run exposes all of that. So I'm fighting a little upper and lower respiratory, which makes sense since my kid was sick all last week, but has since been prescribed antibiotics. Fortunately, a good run generally clears-out most of that, so by about five miles I was breathing better.
But the HR was definitely up. The hills explained some of that and I figured the heat explained the rest. During the first split (4.5 miles) I kept the HR down as much as I could, but figured I hadn't run out of zone 1 or 2 for a long time, so oh well. On the second split I decided to lay it down a little. I ran a few fartleks, which turned into a little tempo. My HR went pretty high but I toned it down enough (see avg.). It was a good run. I suffered a little. I thought about suffering a lot. MAF training is terribly significant to my growth as an endurance athlete. But suffering is not part of the MAF itinerary unless you consider patience suffering. I'm talking about anaerobic suffering. It's come up a few times on Lucho's blog. It's an interesting conversation. If you've been reading my fledgling blog, you'll note I'm pretty fired-up on MAF. I still am and will be especially after I get my recently purchased reading material which includes this. But today made me realize (along with almost any conversation with a runner not really familiar with MAF) that I need to suffer a little just so I've got some of that in the tank, so to speak. More on that because this dynamic interests me. I can't wait to ask Lucho and others about this.
When I got back to my car, another runner was stretching having just finished his run. The guy was fit. We talked a little. He's 38 and has 2 years left of college eligibility, so he's running track and cross country at Cal State San Marcos. He wants to set some masters records in the coming years. His resting HR is 42. His Max is 200. Sure he could have been lying, but you could tell he's a runner. I only bring this up because he pointed-out how hot it was and how is HR was at least 10 beats higher than normal.
That made me feel that much better about my HR. Tomorrow I'm running 12 miles, zone 1.