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Attackpoint - performance and training tools for orienteering athletes

Training Log Archive: jfredrickson

In the 7 days ending Jul 30, 2006:

activity # timemileskm+m
  Road Run5 3:15:10 27.24(7:10) 43.84(4:27)
  Biking2 1:12:30 15.77(4:36) 25.38(2:51)
  Orienteering1 51:50 3.6(14:23) 5.8(8:56) 23011 /13c84%
  Interval Training1 39:40 5.9(6:43) 9.49(4:11)
  Trail Run1 25:32 1.3 2.1
  Total6 6:24:42 53.82 86.61 23011 /13c84%

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Sunday Jul 30, 2006 #

Trail Run warm up/down 13:14 [2]
shoes: Integrators 2005

A brisk warmup jog on some trails at Nolde. Felt pretty tired at first, but better as my legs started to loosen up.

Orienteering race 51:50 [4] **** 5.8 km (8:56 / km) +230m 7:27 / km
spiked:11/13c shoes: Integrators 2005

A very steep and thick course on a very hot and humid day. Basically, it wasn't ideal Orienteering conditions in any way. I figured that it would be a good opportunity to try running in crappy conditions, so my focus for the day was to try to stay focused and push hard throughout the entire race even when my body and mind were crapping out on me.

I successful for most of the race, but there were a few areas where I really failed. I completely lost focus on the trail run to number 4 and attacked the control without really thinking about it or paying attention to where I was going. I was able to relocate quickly enough, but it was a pretty stupid mistake especially since I wasn't really feeling the effects of the heat yet.

5 to 6 was a nasty slog through some really thick thorn bushes, and I just couldn't stay focused enough to really push through them, so I ended up losing a lot of time slowly picking my way through. At that point I was really feeling the effects of the heat and the climb, but I still should have been able to put my mind to the task and fight through the underbrush. This was probably my most frustrating problem on the day since it is so easy to fix and it had been one of my goals prior to the race.

It was also hard to get focused again after I made it through the green area and so the next 2 controls were pretty sloppy, and I was pretty lazy going up the hill to number 8, but after that I was able to pick it up and get back into the race for the most part although I still felt a bit brain dead.

This race reminded me why I hate the long distance format, even though it was only a 5.8km course. The combination of the long legs, the climb and the thick vegetation made it a course where your ability to push hard through physical obstacles was more important than your ability to navigate on the run and make quick decisions.

Trail Run warm up/down 12:18 [1] 2.1 km (5:51 / km)
shoes: Integrators 2005

Easy cool-down jog with Vadim. He had his fancy GPS watch and measured the distance which was pretty cool. Legs felt pretty dead at first, but after a couple minutes they started to feel better. I didn't really get a chance to run very hard today, but I think the heat and humidity wore me out enough.

Saturday Jul 29, 2006 #

Biking 13:00 [3] 2.6 mi (5:00 / mi)

A quick bike ride up the hill to the barn to pick up the keys.

Road Run 17:56 [2] 2.6 mi (6:54 / mi)
shoes: Adidas a3 Prowl

Left the bike at the top and ran back down. It was hot and humid and basically just disgusting. This is why I avoid running during the day time in the summer. Anyway, took it pretty easy.

Road Run 29:00 [2] 4.2 mi (6:54 / mi)
shoes: Adidas a3 Prowl

A nice evening run back in the Ridge. It was still pretty warm though and humid as anything but I felt decent after the first 15 minutes or so. It seems to take me a good bit of warmup before I feel like running at all. Maybe I am getting old...

Anyway, I am down for the evening so that I can go to the DVOA event at Nolde tomorrow. Should be fun to get back out on a map.

Friday Jul 28, 2006 #

Road Run 44:28 [1] 5.9 mi (7:32 / mi)
shoes: Adidas a3 Prowl

Didn't feel so great so took it easy today.

Thursday Jul 27, 2006 #


Didn't get much sleep last night, so when I got back from work at 3 I crashed and didn't wake up until 8:30. So much for my long run today...

Wednesday Jul 26, 2006 #

Road Run warm up/down 17:14 [2] 2.34 mi (7:22 / mi)
shoes: Adidas a3 Prowl

A fairly brisk warmup through Berlin. Feeling pretty good.

Interval Training intervals 39:40 [5] 5.9 mi (6:43 / mi)
shoes: Adidas a3 Prowl

Did 3-2-1 pyramid tempo intervals on the Lyman Loop with 1 minute easy jogging in between each one. Legs felt great, and it felt really good to be doing some tempo work.

Road Run warm up/down 17:32 [1] 2.0 mi (8:46 / mi)
shoes: Adidas a3 Prowl

Did a real easy cool down out to the first mile on the course and back. That workout felt really good on my body.


Today Spike wrote in his blog about looking on the bright side. He wrote: "Pick something that seems like it might not be the best situation, then take a slightly different view and think about the strengths of the situation."

That is definitely very good advice, and so I thought I would spend some time thinking about my situation.

There are obvious many downsides to my situation at the moment which are keeping me from training the way that I want to and need to. However, the purpose of this exercise is to think about what my current strengths are.

I guess my biggest strength right now is that I have lots of time to focus on training. I am only working in the mornings, and even though I have to get up early, I can usually take a nap in the afternoon if I am feeling tired, and then still have time for a run in the evening. While it may be quite hot during the day, I have discovered that I am pretty comfortable biking in the heat, so I can bike during the day time and run in the evenings.

With all of this time I should be able to get in some very decent physical training.

My biggest strength is my love for the sport. There is no way I could do much running training if it weren't for Orienteering because running can suck pretty bad. I am pretty much an O-Geek and that is my life. I spend all day thinking about Orienteering, from training to developing the sport, and so I am pretty focused. It is very difficult to maintain a good training schedule and stay focused throughout the year without people around you to help motivate you, and so I need to rely on my addiction to all things Orienteering to help keep me motivated. Of course Attackpoint makes this much easier, giving me many smaller things to focus on that help keep me motivated through the longer stretches without much Orienteering.

I would say that my natural ability for Orienteering is definitely one of my strengths. I really haven't done much Orienteering specific training compared to most of the good Juniors in Europe, and so I am pretty lucky to be as good as I am. Unfortunately I don't feel like I have improved all that much over the years because I haven't been doing enough training, and so I almost feel like I am still at the same level I was when I was 14.

Of course I know that this isn't true, but the fact that I haven't done much training yet means that I have a lot of potential if I can just get my life organized to allow me to train the way I need to.

Well, it is nice to think about all the good things for once. I probably focus on my problems a bit too much, and I think it definitely helps my motivation to remind myself of the strengths of my current situation, whatever it may be.

Thanks Spike for the reminder.

Tuesday Jul 25, 2006 #

Biking 40:30 [2] 9.0 mi (4:30 / mi)

Went for an afternoon bike ride in the heat since it was too hot to run but I felt like doing some training. My legs still felt really tired at first but they definitely eased into it nicely. Biking felt just right.

Biking 19:00 [2] 4.17 mi (4:33 / mi)

I took about a 20 minute break after the last bike ride to rehydrate and pump up my tires then I went for another quick 4-mile loop. I felt even better on this one. Maybe my legs just needed some loosening up. We'll see how I feel on my evening run.


So I decided to bookmark all my running routes so that I could have them for easy reference. Here are the four loops I use where I am staying for the Summer in Berlin, MA:

Barn Loop - 9 mi
Lyman Loop - 5.9 mi
Sawyer Hill - 4.2 mi
Berlin Warmup - 2.34 mi

It's nice to see the elevation graph for each one, but it is hard to tell exactly what the actual climb is since the top of the graph defaults to the highest point making them all relative. Maybe I can figure out a way of counting pixels to determine actual climb...

Road Run 28:30 [3] 4.2 mi (6:47 / mi)
shoes: Adidas a3 Prowl

Legs felt a bit tired at first but otherwise I felt great. I was planning on taking it as an easy evening run, but I felt so good I couldn't help running a bit harder. I think I have been doing too many mid-intensity runs lately though. I will have to go all out in a workout tomorrow and then have a nice long day on Thursday.

Monday Jul 24, 2006 #

Road Run 40:30 [3] 6.0 mi (6:45 / mi)
shoes: Adidas a3 Prowl

Ran the same 6-mile loop as yesterday but started out a bit slower than yesterday. Feeling much better than yesterday, but still not very strong. Hopefully I will be ready for a workout tomorrow.


Peter wrote a very interesting thing in his log today when he was writing up a list of things that he needs to improve on in his Orienteering. He wrote that he needs to make more mistakes in practice so that he can practice what he needs to do when he makes a mistake in a race and thereby avoid going into panic mode.

I thought that this was a genius idea because I am always focusing on making as few mistakes as possible and often in training I blow off my mistakes and don't try to fix them with the same urgency that I would in a competition. Having the mindset that making a mistake is just an opportunity to practice the things that you need to do when you make a mistake in a competition is probably the best way to approach it because it will enable you to deal with it in a much more positive light.

Having a positive mindset is very important in Orienteering because as soon as you lose your confidence you can't perform at the same level and your decision making skills get defenestrated. Often the first thing that happens when you make a mistake is that you go into panic mode and lose your confidence. By focusing on the fact that it is simply an opportunity to practice a vital skill perhaps you can avoid the panic and maintain a level of confidence that you have some control, even if it is only control over how you are approaching the situation. This will keep you in the problem-solving mindset and away from the hopelessly-stabbing-in-the-dark one. That alone should put you one step closer to figuring out what went wrong and thereby lower the total time lost per mistake.

And while we are talking about mindset, the fact that Peter is thinking about what he needs to improve in his Orienteering immediately after demolishing the M60 category at the Swiss 5-Day is very inspiring. The nature of our sport is that no one will ever have a perfect run and their technique will never be perfect. We are all artists striving for a perfection that can never be attained. Yet even when we are graced with success we must continue to focus on our weaknesses in order to continue progressing towards perfection.

There is no success in Orienteering that can be satisfactory enough to allow ones struggle towards perfection to cease. It must be this knowledge that makes people like Sime and Tero and PG rise so far above the rest and not settle for the best compared to others. You must always strive to be the best compared to what you could be, and since that is never attainable we must always continue the struggle.

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