Up to speed
Ugh, this is a running-mostly blog. Thus I am cringing at that title, for obvious reasons. But fact remains, I have been decidedly quiet for the past few months and there’s no really good reason why. I ran that 24 hour race I just finally talked about. Before that, the very last day of June I ran the Finger Lakes 50k and broke the course record in a second place effort. It was a pretty good day. The beginning of June I ran 29:0? for 8k in Durham.
I’m going in the wrong direction here. AFTER the race I did pretty much nothing. Literally nothing for over a week. Well, that’s not entirely true. I sat on my ass in my parents’ house and ate whatever the hell I felt like whenever the hell I felt like it (which was often). I watched Breaking Bad from season 1-4 and then every Sunday I was watching the new season. Best show ever. I stayed up way later than I should have eating at least one big bowl of ice cream every single night (occasionally two). By the time I got back to Durham, I was 15 pounds heavier than when I left. And considering that even when I did start running again, it was listless and sluggish and short, I was also very out of shape. Shortly after getting back to NC, I ran the Continental Divide Trail 10k. It was also the USATF trail 10k national championships and it was a freakin bear. Bull City Track Club cleaned up, with the overall winner (David Roche) and a slew of fast guys coming in shortly after. I pulled up the rear for the team, mostly just pleased I wasn’t DFL or just dead.
In the ensuing month, things have gone progressively better. I have managed to shed about ten pounds, through mostly just not going through a quart of ice cream every three days. I’ve run more consistently. I’ve also developed something of a social life. SHOCKING! In doing so, my mileage build-up for the past month has been kept in check. Because I’ve had non-running things taking up some of my free time, I haven’t been able to just go out and run 18-22 miles every single day. Which is good. Instead, I’ve added 5-10 miles each week. It’s slower than I would go if totally left to my own devices. But it’s hard to argue with results. I feel like I’m getting fitter, I’m lighter, and my legs feel better than they have in months. No nagging, troubling pains or aches that won’t seem to go away. Cause for cautious optimism.
And so I am actually kind of excited for this weekend. Saturday I’m heading down to Rockingham to run the Hinson Lake 24 hour. Of course, the race starts at 8 am and I have to work from 9a-12p. This is not as bad as it seems. I realized sometime in August that there was absolutely no way I could possibly be ready to race for 24 hours in an attempt to do what I failed to do in Philadelphia. It would inevitably end in disaster. With a more sane (in a relative sense) long-term view of things, missing the first few hours of the race was a blessing. I probably won’t get down there until around 2pm, leaving me no more than 18 hours to run. I don’t think running even THAT long is a good idea currently. But I already paid and crew chief extraordinaire Katie is coming. And so is Shuriah, who doesn’t really run but seems genuinely interested in the insane running I do. We’ll go down there and the primary goal will be to enjoy ourselves immensely. I will of course run, and run a lot. How much exactly I have no idea. It depends on how I feel and how fun the party surrounding the race is. Ideally, I’d like at least 60-80 miles on the weekend. But I also want to come out of the weekend needing minimal time to recuperate and continue ramping things up in training.
Last week I officially registered for the 2013 Umstead 100 miler. I’m also doing the Umstead marathon again. I think it’s a very safe thing to say that I have never had a month as good as this March. And it will be exciting to attempt a repeat at the double Umstead races again next year. The more important of the two obviously being the 100 miler, I now have something like 28 weeks left before the race. And I have goals, BIG goals, that I am not afraid of, that will fuel the next 6+ months. I am right where I want to be — with plenty of time to put in the work and get myself to a place where when the next big race finally comes, and Umstead IS my next big race, I will be ready.
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