The day I became...

an AVANTO lover!

This week I only trained 2 days; on Monday and Thursday. The weather hasn't been helpful, neither was the work-shifts. Nonetheless, today I enjoyed of a great experience: the Finnish sauna and avanto. You all know what a sauna is but probably don't know what avanto means. 

I read some translation and I came up with this one “the hole in ice where you can practice winter-swimming” For somebody who uses his legs as much as I do, the experience can be defined as healing. Icy cold water helps blood circulation and healing tired muscles. 

Lately I was feeling difficulties on running and pain on my heels and knees so I took this opportunity as a good way to "re-boot" my legs on running and get them ready for a marathon training! Yes, you read it right, I am planning to participate in the great experience of a Marathon this year. Right know, I am searching to create a great training plan. At the same time, I am talking with Javier which is going to be: So far, we have talked about San Petersburg (ERGO White Nights Marathon) and Copenhagen (Nykredit Copenhagen Marathon), the idea is to go somewhere near Helsinki. Any suggestion?

I will let you know when the training program is ready and where is going to take place my first marathon experience! Meanwhile, I let you enjoy my face of.... pain? fun? pleasure?


Training Log: Week 7

There are many excuses I can use to explain why I haven't been running much lately: bad weather, working shifts, deadlines... The true is that I have been quiet lazy these days, and 2010 looks a good year for everything else but running. Nonetheless, I am trying to change it and this week is a good example. Considering my plans for the year, I better get back on track and focus on a training program I haven't managed to create just yet. Following, you can see my runs on week 7:

It can be better, but I can't complain. Overall, it felt great and I am very happy with my pace. It is also true that I have been feeling some pain on Thursday and today but I hope I don't have to worry much about it.

What about you? Did you have a good training week? Let's see if I can show you better results next Sunday!


My races experience!

During the last year, I participated in two races:
Helsinki City Run (HCR): May, 2009
Stockholm Half Marathon (SHM): September, 2009

For my first race, HCR, I didn't follow any training program but ran mostly with Javier who was following for the Stockholm Marathon. Needless to say, I went on running with him but followed him with my limits. I would run less or shorter  intervals depending what his program said. I think the reason I developed the endurance needed for the HCR was running outdoor from the end of February in Helsinki: the ice-cold weather and snowy/icy paths made this possible. By spring, my legs were stronger and faster because of the conditions I ran during the winter, and my Heart Rate (HR) drop down considerably. I was very proud to be able to finish the race and didn't care much about the time: 2h 03' 13'

When it was time to get ready for the SHM, I decided to follow a training program from Runner's World to get faster. Considering my lack of experience, I re-wrote the program taking into account my limits (for example, my longest runs were around 23km). I followed the program during the summer in Helsinki, and it was a great experience. Javier was away so I had to learn to run by myself and was able to log 40 to 50 km/week with my Nike +. For what it worth, I completed with a Personal Best (PB) and felt great during the race! My time was 1h 53' 02'' and learned a good lesson: protect my nipples from rubbing against the t-shirt; the bleeding was real pain after km 16, and it took times to recover from it (scabs included!)

If I have to compare both experience, I have to say that I enjoyed SHM better than HCR. The water points were well-organized and larger than in Helsinki, there was a larger selection of food, in Stockholm, bands playing all around the course and the possibility to have a massage at the finishing line!


The day I became a runner

It was the end of November 2008 when I decided to join a gym with a friend. To say it straight: I am 168cm and weighted 78.5kg. I felt overweight and was scared this would get worst considering Christmas was behind the corner. My friend Javier Valiente Webster has been running for a while and was totally fit compared to my life style till them. My plan wasn't to keep on his training but get fit on my own way, nonetheless, I enjoyed his company enough to walk the treadmill while his running workouts. It didn't take long to realize that fast-walking on the treadmill was paying nicely back on the scale; I was loosing weight and it didn't feel that bad... Not at all.

I still remember the day that changed my routines and became a runner. After the Christmas holidays, I was going to the gym without my skilled friend around and I decided to change my pace at the treadmill and surprised myself with a run for longer than 30 minutes at a pace of  7 m/km. For my condition, it was a great achievement and never came back on walking while training; nor in the treadmill, nor on the road. Since then, I have logged more than 1000km in my Nike+ profile, drop down my personal pace for more than a 1 m/km and lost 10 kg.