I put 6 solid weeks of 50+ miles running (with a couple weeks in the 60s), and am finally feeling like my old running self. I feel light on my feet again and strong. I can see the hills and valleys in my quads when I run. I have that slight tightness in my legs when I go up the stairs. And I am beginning to feel fast again (for me). I am not one who comes back from a break easily. My first aerobic runs hover around 8:30-9 min/miles. I get out of breath. My legs forget how to turn over. My stride shortens. It takes me time to get back my fitness base. I don't believe I lose it; rather, I try to think of it as buried inside; with each mile, I get closer and closer to it. And then, hopefully, as it happened before, I get faster. This is to be determined still.
I bit the bulled and went back to Fresh Pond for their weekly free races. I am planning on a 5K sometime in November, and so I am using FP as a tempo run, and only run one loop (2.5 miles). I have a couple of half marathons in the winter, so will be using the 2 loop as a tempo for that distance. I am being careful here not to get my body habituated to training. I am the kind of runner who needs constant change.
So, the one loop at FP is interesting. The speedsters never go for the 2 loops (surely why I won the 2 loop every time I did it, ha!). Two weeks ago I got second to a 26 year old; I ran slow, high HR, but I was sick. This past week I ran 20 sec/mile faster, and still lost to a 20 something cross country runner (she ran 5:20s for the 2.5 mile which now includes a 300m hill on a trail! Yup, can't compete with that, ha!). I ran effortlessly this past week, and enjoyed being paced by a couple of men. I have never been paced in a race before, but I can surely see the huge benefits of pacing. I am planning to use this speedy pacer for my upcoming 5K. Girl runs 5:45 mile repeats at the end of marathon training. Yes. I am planning on putting an imaginary elastic around our waists so she can drag me to the finish line. Ha!
After running well at FP in 50 degrees or so, I suffered through 4x1 mile @ faster than 10K, slower than 5K pace on 1 min jog in 73 degrees. My HR for each of these miles was about 5-10 beats higher than during the 2.5 continuous miles. Initially I thought I was tired. Then I thought again and decided it was the heat (and yes, 73 is hot for me. Give me freezing temps and I run really well). I don't feel tired. But I am also a poor judge of fatigue. Sometimes I wish I was the type of runner who gets tired, or loses motivation...I just feel fine and then boom, injured!
I watched Kona on and off all day Saturday. It solidified the fact that I do not have the desire (perhaps even the ability) to suffer as much as those pros. At some point in my life that would have been upsetting. or would have become a goal (to get to a higher level of suffering). Now it is just an observation. Good thing that running is not my day job!
Building a clock
7 months ago