Typical.Don’t let the title of this week’s blog fool you. I’m terrible with math. It took three attempts at Calculus in college to get the “B” I needed to major in history. My 7th grade step-daughter Emma has given up on asking me for help with her homework. My blank stares and heading to the laptop to Google for answers has left us both frustrated.However I am quite talented at keeping up with numbers when it comes to my running. For better or worse I am adamant about keeping up with: pace per mile, miles per day, miles per week, miles per month, miles per year, total running time per day/week, total ascent (descent not so much) and even my core work has the same number of sets and reps. My speed workouts are accurately logged for pace per mile and compared vehemently to previous efforts. Since the day I started running, I’ve tracked just about every number there is to keep up with for running and recorded all this information in my log books.Quite often all this number tracking can be helpful, especially if you use the information as a barometer to gauge how you are progressing with your training plan. Sometimes however this knowledge can backfire if you just go strictly by the numbers. Like all endurance sports there are other variables to consider when training. A six mile tempo run on a cool, dry day is usually easier or faster than the same workout in August here in NC. Trying to knock out a tough workout on tired legs will usually yield poorer results than when you are better rested. Other factors are proper fueling, nutrition, daily stress, footwear, and sometimes you can just have a rock solid run or an “off” day. There are many outliers to consider when tracking all your numbers so use this information smartly.My former coach used to give me workouts that stressed learning how to achieve maximum pace and still finish a speed workout strong. A sample workout would be 10 minutes hard, 3 min rest, 15 minutes hard, 5 minutes rest, and finish with 10 minutes hard. I’d report back my pace per mile and round up or down the minutes to the nearest mile or half mile increment. So the workout to me looked like 1.5 miles hard, 3 min rest, 3 miles hard, 5 minute rest and 1.5 miles hard. We had a nice tug of war with my strategy and my need to know my exact pace per mile. Eventually he gave up and knew I was going to do it my way. I felt more comfortable with our strategy if I knew my numbers.For some runners all these numbers can be too much and can actually create more stress. However most runners that I know love to talk about how many miles they just ran, the pace per mile, the total climb for the run, how many calories they burned and how many beers they can now consume for their effort. To prove my point, just look at all the running blogs out there now. Some of the numbers being tracked looks like that confusing Calculus equation in college that can take a while to crack.
It was Rakeem Christmas’ team again.Syracuse’s backbone for most of the season was no such thing in his last two outings, deferring to Michael Gbinije to bring the Orange past Boston College and come up short against Duke on Saturday.But the big man took the reins back Wednesday night.Three nights after shrinking in his biggest challenge of the season against Duke’s Jahlil Okafor, Christmas responded to carry Syracuse (17-9, 8-5 Atlantic Coast) past No. 12 Louisville (20-6, 8-5), 69-59, on Wednesday night in the Carrier Dome. The big man scored 29 points on 9-of-10 shooting to go with eight rebounds and 11-of-13 makes from the free-throw line.Shooting 53.8 percent from the floor in the first half compared to the Orange’s 39.3, the Cardinals took a 32-28 lead into halftime. Louisville forward Montrezl Harrell had 11 points to his name and Christmas had 12.AdvertisementThis is placeholder textChristmas started off his night with a pair of easy dunks, but also toughened up for a pair of baskets over Harrell.He misfired on a one-hander from the paint, but hustled back on defense to snatch a lob attempt, with the same hand, that was intended for Harrell to throw down. Then a baby hook to bring SU within a point.And after Terry Rozier, the ACC’s third-leading scorer, dropped a floater over the SU senior, Christmas responded with back-to-back baskets that stirred the crowd and hinted at the Orange’s potential upset over the Cardinals was not only a possibility, but in fact a reality.He attacked from the short corner to float in a basket, drawing a foul on Chinanu Onuaku in the process, but made the ensuing free throw.Then when UofL’s David Levitch missed a 3 and SU came back hustling, Gbinije dished off to Christmas, who thrilled the audience with a swooping dunk from the left side for a four-point lead.He scored seven points from there to cap off his 17-point half, piggybacking SU to the upset.And as the Carrier Dome rose into an uproar in the final 10 seconds of the game, Christmas waved his arms up three times and nodded his head twice in approval, before heading into the tunnel with SU’s most impressive win of the year. Comments Published on February 18, 2015 at 9:07 pm Contact Phil: [email protected] | @PhilDAbb Facebook Twitter Google+