Jodi's Running Blog

Gotta keep going…

Pumpkin Push 5k – Seattle, WA1

Posted by jodi in Uncategorized (Saturday October 22, 2005 at 6:23 pm)

Evan and I finished the Pumpkin Push 5k this morning, a very pleasant local race that celebrates Halloween and autumn while raising money for the 45th Street Clinic. The course was on a trail through the park that, at times, ran alongside Lake Washington. The weather: absolutely gorgeous, perfect fall weather. I would say it was in the low 60s, sunny, not a rain cloud in the sky. I loved running alongside Evan as the fall foliage hung over us – the leaves here are amazing this time of the year. I have never experienced autumn before this year, and it is quite spectacular.

Anyway – you can read Evan’s perspective on the event. Mine does not vary much from his – we had a fun time and enjoyed being fit together. I am so incredibly proud of him for participating, and he did a fantastic job. I’m already looking forward to the next one, whenever that may be. What was adorable about this race, in addition to all of the costumes, was the pile of pumpkins at the end – everyone could take home a pumpkin! We got a smaller one and will be making a healthy version of a pumpkin pie in the near future.

Inconvenient work schedule0

Posted by jodi in Uncategorized (Thursday October 20, 2005 at 10:25 am)

During my month-long neuroradiology rotation (with the built-in week of vacation) I had gotten into a great new running routine. I was pleased with my time at the Salmon Days 10k, and my regular runs were becoming brisker by the day. Heck, I had even engaged in intervals (TWICE!).

Then – I went back to real work. That is, I am currently the “float” resident, and for the VA Medical Center, that means I am here Monday through Friday from 11AM until 11PM. This is not great for running, for while I may have time in the mornings, I am usually too exhausted from the previous busy night to get up early and fit a run in before my next 12-hour shift (which will last until 11PM). Fortunately, Evan and I have registered to run the Pumpkin Push 5k this weekend, so that gives me incentive to run on Saturday morning. I am also planning a long run on Sunday (8 miles) at a fun pace. Then, my last two “float” shifts fall on Monday and Tuesday before I return to the usual wards schedule – working six days a week, fairly regular hours, and on call overnight every fourth night. It’s still rough, but it will leave time for running in the afternoons at least four days a week.

So for this week – I ran Monday morning, but have not run since. I will run Saturday and Sunday, so that’s three days of running during the week (my running weeks start on Mondays). It could be worse. Still, I am eager not to lose what it took a month to regain. I feel great physically and want to sustain that feeling of fitness.

Intervals at Green Lake, Part 20

Posted by jodi in Uncategorized (Tuesday October 11, 2005 at 8:42 pm)

I stuck to my plan for weekly intervals – at least for this week. This time Daniel was able to accompany me, although we did not disturb Matt as he was post-call on a very busy oncology service. The weather was, again, absolutely gorgeous – low 60s/high 50s, clear skies, and not a cloud around the area. I loved it!

The workout began with a three mile run around the track at Green Lake (not the path around the lake, but the track at the local park), with the following breakdown:

Mile 1 – 8:34     Mile 2 – 8:29     Mile 3 – 8:47

Now, for the intervals. My goal was to run 4x400meter intervals with 400 meter cooldown jogs in between each one. The target time for each was to be <1:40 but I was trying to remain slower than 1:35 for consistency.

  • 400 meters – 1:32.38
  • 400 meters cooldown – 2:31.18
  • 400 meters – 1:37.23
  • 400 meters cooldown – 2:43.52
  • 400 meters – 1:37.62
  • 400 meters cooldown – 2:38.97
  • 400 meters – 1:36.74
  • 400 meters cooldown – 2:59.17

All in all, a successful interval day. I am going to do my best to continue a weekly speed workout, with intervals or fartleks or hills…we’ll see.

Also, I received my heart rate monitor strap in the mail from Timex today, so I was able to monitor my heart rate (154 average, 184 max) and caloric consumption (583). It’s nice to have numbers again. 

EPO testing featured0

Posted by jodi in Uncategorized (Monday October 10, 2005 at 8:41 am)

This is a link to an article in The Seattle Times, sent to me by fellow runner Dick Michener:

It discusses the performance-enhancing drug EPO (erythropoietin). Erythropoietin is a hormone produced by the kidneys that stimulates red blood cell production. We all have natural levels of it in our bodies or else we would all chronically face problems with anemia. People experiencing end-stage renal disease are often given EPO at dialysis as they lack the ability to produce and release adequate amounts of the hormone and, thus, often become anemic.

Below is the standard oxyhemoglobin dissociation curve. The x-axis represents the partial pressure of O2, the form of oxygen we breathe. The y-axis is represented by the percentage of hemoglobin (the molecule on a red blood cell) that is bound to oxygen. The curve demonstrates that the higher the partial pressure of oxygen is, the more oxygen will bind to hemoglobin on a person’s red blood cells. Various conditions may shift this curve – among them is a higher altitude. Increased altitudes lead to a build-up in the bloodstream of 2,3-DPG, which shifts the curve to the RIGHT; that is to say, this results in a DECREASE in hemoglobin’s affinity for oxygen molecules, thus requiring either: A) higher partial pressures of oxygen to force binding between hemoglobin and oxygen, or B) greater production of red blood cells in order to function with a lower percentage of bound oxygen.


(Table can be found at )


Higher Altitude –> Increased buildup of 2,3-DPG –> Decreased affinity of hemoglobin for oxygen –> Receptors in body recognize the lack of oxygen saturation –> Stimulates production of erythropoietin –> More red blood cells are produced

What is amazing is that athletes will train at high altitudes as a way of naturally enhancing red blood cell production, and then run races at lower altitudes. At lower altitudes their red blood cells can carry close to a 100% oxygen saturation, PLUS they now have more red blood cells, so they can carry a greater amount of oxygen.

Some athletes, however, have taken to injecting themselves with synthetic erythropoietin in an attempt to achieve the same effect, and the powers that be are not happy with this. So read the article and learn something from it – and about the complications that have arisen as a combined result of human physiology and the desire to be the best.

Intervals at Green Lake, Part 10

Posted by jodi in Uncategorized (Thursday October 6, 2005 at 6:01 am)

On Tuesday of this week (October 4th) I ran with two friends and fellow residents, Daniel and Matt, at Green Lake. The weather was gorgeous – mid-60s, clear skies, not at all what I was expecting for Seattle in October. And the leaves are brilliant reds and yellows too! 🙂 We started by running the 2.8 mile trail around the lake as a warm-up, and then engaged in (drum roll, please) – INTERVALS. <gasp> I attempted several half-mile intervals when I first started training for the London Marathon. Daniel had done intervals two years earlier while training for a triathlon. Matt could not remember when he had last done them – and honestly, the last set of serious intervals I ran were probably in high school.

Initially Daniel suggested starting with eight sets of 400m with a cool-down 200m in between each and with a goal time of <75 seconds. After the first round it was obvious that are goals were going to change. Here is how the workout went for me (I don’t have each of the recorded times for my running cronies):

  • 400 meters – 1:33.93
  • 400 meters cooldown – 2:37.77
  • 400 meters – 1:30.19
  • 400 meters cooldown – 3:15.83
  • did not participate in the third interval, but ran cooldown lap at 2:57.47
  • 400 meters – 1:32.38
  • 400 meters cooldown – 2:59.43

So in summary, I ended up doing only three 400 meter intervals, and it just about killed me (not seriously, but it hurt a LOT). So while I am growing more fit over longer distances, my sprinting could really use some work. The plan is to meet Daniel and Matt again next Tuesday for another interval workout, and this time I’m going to make it through all four. I’m also setting a goal time of beating 1:30 on all four of them. We’ll see what happens!

Salmon Days Rotary Run 10k – I went running with the salmon!2

Posted by jodi in Uncategorized (Monday October 3, 2005 at 7:08 am)

Yesterday I ran my first 10k since April 2003, a Rotary-sponsored event coinciding with Issaquah, WA’s “Salmon Days” festival. It was a terrific experience! I have posted results, pictures, and comments on my website at . This morning I am experiencing mild to moderate tibialis anterior soreness bilaterally, likely attributable to running six miles on pavement. I had absolutely no soreness during the race, which is wonderful!

Evan and I enjoyed the Salmon Days festival that followed the race. Huge salmon were trying everything to get upstream to the Issaquah Hatchery, where they were hatched and where they “wanted” to go to spawn. Many were so large they were forced to flop (for lack of a better word) upstream in shallower portions of the creek bed.