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Attackpoint - performance and training tools for orienteering athletes

Training Log Archive: iansmith

In the 7 days ending Dec 5, 2010:

activity # timemileskm+mload
  Running3 1:10:11 7.66(9:10) 12.33(5:42)16.8
  Orienteering2 1:09:06 6.02(11:29) 9.69(7:08) 21231c91.3
  Map Exercises1 1
  Total6 2:19:18 13.68 22.02 21231c108.1
  [1-5]5 2:19:17

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Sunday Dec 5, 2010 #

9 AM

Orienteering 22:13 [5] 4.14 km (5:22 / km) +74m 4:56 / km
19c shoes: 201006 Inov-8 X-talon 212

The second day of the weekend's events consisted of actual orienteering. While I had intended to run lightly, I was feeling good from Saturday's events, and my competitive drive kicked in on the sprint. Alex set an excellent course on a solid map of UMass Amherst's campus. The edges of the map weren't quite complete, and the course barely fit on the page, but the detail was accurate.

I started by running the wrong way out of the start; for some foolish reason, I thought I was starting at control 1. I corrected after about ten seconds, for a net loss of twenty seconds. Giovanni started a minute behind me, and I pushed hard at the beginning to try to stay ahead of him. He caught up to me by control 7, and passed me before 8. The hill climb to 9 was brutal and taxing.

I bounced about with Katia until control 14, when Sam cruised past me. I put on a burst of speed to try to pull away from her, but I only gained ten or so meters before my effort failed. Sam and Katia then passed me, and I struggled to chug along at the end. The spirit was willing, but the body was weak. It was a struggle with each step, particularly near the end, and my breathing was ragged. I remember being able to go faster than I am. Nevertheless, I was ecstatic to find myself stronger than I expected; I was at times able to run faster than 4:00 /km.
12 PM

Orienteering 46:53 [4] 5.55 km (8:26 / km) +138m 7:30 / km
12c shoes: 201006 Inov-8 X-talon 212

After relaxing indoors at Alex's office at U Mass for a time, we set off for the second event at Quabbin. This race was a mass start with courses customized for each individual by PG. The courses were devised such that each individual was expected to be out for about the same length of time. The map was at 1:15k scale, and the vegetation in general had thickened since the map was made. In particular, there were numerous fallen trees with logs and scattered underbrush.

The mass start didn't cause me problems. It took me some time to get adjusted to the scale, and I was wheezing and out of breath throughout the run. I felt very weak, and it seemed that insufficient oxygen was the limiting factor for me. I guess that's the general feeling that emerges from poor fitness (i.e. low VO2).

The map was very good, though the detail was limited by the scale. The most interesting part of the race was running into other people who were not necessarily attacking the same control I was. Boris, JJ and I had a particularly harrowing experience running up a trail just before the road crossing that was laden with numerous fallen trees. The climb up the hill after the road was exhausting, and curiously, while I had enough energy, I had very little power. Once I reached the top of the hill, I was able to run through the clear woods, but I could not push up the hill faster. I was quite tired near the end of the course, but the pressure of a mass finish drove me on.

The last control was up a non-trivial hill, and I slowly trudged up the slope. Just as I approached the streamer, I heard crashing through the vegetation behind me. I reasoned that I was in danger of being passed, so I started my charge to the finish with over 300 meters to go. The trail around the lake bed had poor footing, and my worst fears were realized when Ali cruised past me. I tucked in behind her until the trail leveled out, then I spent everything I had left on the final sprint. I was undoubtedly helped by the fact that the finish was downhill, and I just managed to get ahead of her before we tagged Peter. She did run a much longer course, but I will take my victories where I can. The speed plot from the gps track has a nice rise where I noted Ali's approach.
11 PM


Tonight was an inconvenient time to realize I didn't have any naproxen in my apartment.

Control Count: 104/2000
Burrito Count: 42

Saturday Dec 4, 2010 #


CSU Superstars Bowling. I need to retrieve my explicit scores from Peter, but I had a PR 146 in the first game and an unremarkable 109? in the second game. It should noted that Sam (scores: 126, 122) obliterated me in the second game, more due to her proficiency than my failure. A score of 109 is not outside of my typical probability distribution, so clearly I need to train more.
11 AM

Running 5:15 [1] 1.2 km (4:22 / km)
shoes: 201002 Asics T918N

After watching and cheering during the 3 km time trial, I decided to tootle around the track thrice to see how my legs felt. I didn't time my escapade, but my legs were comfortable and without pain.

Friday Dec 3, 2010 #


As is well known, I really like mountains. I lack mountaineering experience, though I may one day try to surmount a peak like Denali. Hiking in the Whites, the Rockies, and even little guys like the Franklin Mountains in my hometown of El Paso is very satisfying. I'm not as intrepid as some, but I might consider a trek to a basecamp of one of the 8,000 meter peaks or something.

Anyway, with Google maps, I can indulge my thirst for data on these peaks. My favorite mountain by many measures is K2; it is a sublime behemoth of great beauty, power, and majesty. Consider K2's contour profile: K2's contour profile

The contours are nearly circular; the mountain is very nearly a cone. It rises over 3,000 meters above the great Baltoro Glacier to the south. Along its steepest grades - to the north, southeast and southwest, it ascends over three vertical kilometers in less than three horizontal kilometers. On its north side, it rises 3 km in 2.5 horizontal kilometers, for an average angle of fifty degrees. The mountain itself is so remote that it was not given a native name, unlike Everest (Sagarmatha) or Mt. McKinley (Denali).

Compare K2's exquisite pyramid to Everest and Denali, at approximately the same scale:
Everest (Sagarmatha)
Denali (zoom in to get higher contour resolution)

It's a little hard to appreciate how massive these mountains really are. Here are some other famous mountains at similar magnification to K2:
Matterhorn (Mt. Cervino)
The Eiger, with its formidable North face
Rainier, an impressively wide and intricate volcano, with a peak average grade of about 25 degrees.
The Presidentials

The magnitude of these mountains overwhelms me (particularly K2).

Control Count: 73/2000
Burrito Count: 42
Anna's Th, Star Market Fr

Wednesday Dec 1, 2010 #

6 AM

Running 32:11 [2] 5.53 km (5:49 / km)
ahr:162 max:173 shoes: 201002 Asics T918N

A difficult, slow run. I paused at about 27:00 to stretch and breathe. My muscles were weak and very tight, particularly my entire right leg, my lower left calf, and both hamstrings. I stretched thoroughly after the run.

Consider the majesty that is Mt. Foraker, the third highest peak in the United States:

Control Count: 73/2000
Burrito Count: 40

Tuesday Nov 30, 2010 #

(rest day)

I'm strongly considering traveling to Georgia for the Navigator cup, particularly if restarting my training in December goes well. Is anyone else interested in going and possibly sharing rental car and hotel action?

Monday Nov 29, 2010 #

Map Exercises 1 [0]

An hour of Catching Features action; I ran two courses.
9 PM

Running 32:45 [2] 5.59 km (5:51 / km)
ahr:166 max:175 shoes: 201002 Asics T918N

Yay training! I went on a gentle run which was one of my staple runs before my injury. Last spring, this run was the very least I would do on a training day; it was what I ran when I didn't have enough time to go on a longer run. Today, it was difficult. Even running at an easy pace demanded so much of my depleted fitness. This run is sufficiently common in my training that it will make a good benchmark for my progress.

It would seem I am now training again. My right leg was tight, particularly at the hip, but my body felt strong enough to run. I would not sprint or do plyometrics, but I am strong enough to do easy running. I mean to run 10-15 mile weeks for a short time until my body adjusts to this new stress. While it was frustrating to have so much difficulty given the comparative ease with which I ran in the spring, I am delighted to be active again. On 28 April, I ran 4:28/km pace with 168 ahr.

Control Count: 73/2000
Burrito Count: 39

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