After illness and injury, I finally got back on my training program schedule today for a run. Since I had to be down that direction anyway (and it is snowing AGAIN), I went back to the Perrysburg YMCA to use their 1/16mi indoor track.
I don’t think I’ll ever get over just how absurd a 1/16mi track is for serious training. You spend a ridiculous amount of time on the banked corners, so your pacing is all wonky. The outdoor track between Savage Arena and Glass Bowl is looking more and more appealing with each day.
It should not have been a surprise, but today’s triumphant return was a bit rocky. I didn’t take into account just how long I’ve been off. For one reason or another, I haven’t been running for two weeks. Long enough to lose my edge, that’s for damn sure.
I am now convinced that my knee pain is actually an IT band issue. Not a big problem, but a serious annoyance as I get back into the old rhythms.
Everyone seems to sing the praises of foam rollers, but I have yet to try one. I would say it is because running should be simple and good mechanics & stretching will solve most problems… but the truth is, I’m just cheap (just ask Stacy).
This might finally be enough to get me to part with enough cash to get a decent foam roller from Dave’s Running this weekend. It doesn’t hurt that Stacy got a coupon for a foam roller as part of the 5k training group. Ease the pain in my wallet, I suppose.
It had to happen eventually – I had a truly bad run this morning. Not that it is hard to suss out the reason why. Sleep was impossible last night, and I am not exagerating. I saw the clock read 2:00am, then my alarm went off at 5:00am to get me up for my run. I should have known my day was in dire trouble when my Chocolate Outrage GU didn’t lift my mood.
At least Leo got to go to puppy daycare and have a fun time. Someone needed to have a good morning, right?
But I’m going to stick to my goal of finding the positive, no matter the situation. Today was a chance for me to train under less than ideal conditions. And, even though it was ugly, I completed the run. Or rather, I outlasted it.
I had a very interesting & thought provoking conversation with Mrs. BSR as I had my wake-up coffee this morning. We were discussing how the process of becoming fit is a long one and that there is an innate discouragement in that.
I did my best to express to her that it is a long process, but a worthwhile one. As a way of reinforcing my point, I showed her the graphic at the top of today’s post and explained that it was very true for me. Once I quit smoking, corrected my eating, and got back to active I was filled with regret that I waited so long to do so.
This conversation stuck with me on my drive in to the gym and through my warm-up routine. Eventually, it occurred to me that we have developed “motivational inertia” as a society. I define this as the way of thinking that says “it takes a long time to see results and that delays my gratification, so I don’t want to start now and suffer for no perceived gain”.
I lay a large portion of the blame for this at the feet of tabloid-esque magazines like Woman’s World that month-to-month have large typeface headlines like “Juice your way to 20+ lbs lost in a week!”. While well-meaning, shows like The Biggest Loser also show double digit pounds lost per week as viable.
All of this creates a worldview where a safe, sustainable loss of 1-2 lbs per week is seen as a failure, and not getting Beach Ready Abs ™ in four weeks means its not worth starting. Its ludicrous and sad.
We are facing an obesity epidemic – the dangerous cocktail of fatlogic and over-processed food (a story for another day & another post…) is killing us. It is a slow, hedonistic death that is preventable by personal action.
But maybe I’m just putting off discussing my interval training…
This is for you, Miss “Give BSR the rapist glare over the shoulder running girl”.
Seriously, though. If you are going to speed up and match my pace, don’t then get annoyed when I’m running directly behind you. I’m going based on a constant pace, not whatever the hell you’re doing.
Eventually, I sped up and passed her… and passed her again…. and again…. I was starting to worry I would get maced coming around a corner if I stayed behind this paranoid girl. It boggles the mind, it truly does.
Never a dull day on the YMCA indoor track, I tell ya.
Some days, it seems that you just can’t get started – nothing seems to go right from the moment you wake up. This was one of those days for me. But you know what?
It doesn’t matter.
When things go wrong, it is a challenge. An opportunity. A chance to figure out a way to overcome whatever the hell is going on and learn from the experience. That is how I am going to view these days – I started this morning and I feel much better.
When I first started training for half marathons, I did all of my training on a deserted metropark trail. I got all the miles I needed, but I never had any external challenges to overcome. That lack showed up at the Santa Hustle, Cap City, & Columbus. Since I never had to work my way through a crowd in training, I had to relearn how to do so in the race. Not so good Dr. Jones!
Being a dataphile and a consummate geek, I wore my heart rate monitor to bed so I could check my resting heart rate when I woke this morning. I wasn’t going to be jarred awake by the alarm due to the late opening, so it seemed like as good a time as any. The results were pretty phenomenal. My RHR is currently 45 beats per minute. That’s pretty solid in the athlete zone!
The only positive I found to the church forcing the Y to stay closed until noon is that I was able to go out and deal with the Snowpocolypse – 3+ inches of fresh snow as well as packed ice from the earlier storms. Shoveling the drive and hacking at the ice sheet was actually a decent upper body workout. Silver linings, I suppose.
After yesterday’s speedwork, my legs were pretty drained and I could feel a lack of pep as I walked out the door and that feeling didn’t change as I got into my workout.
No joke, this was the most difficult “easy” run I have had in my two years back as a runner.My breathing was easy and even, so the pace was right – my legs were just incredibly tired. I’m looking forward to tomorrow’s cross-training just to give my lower body a break.
Speedwork today, and I knew going into today that I had mile repeats on the calendar. So, out the door extra early to try to avoid a crowded indoor track at the Y. It kinda worked. There were still people on the track, including a gaggle of joggers. But when I explained that I was doing speed work, they agreed to leave the outside lane open instead of running all abreast like I found them. It was a close call a few times, but they were polite and tried to accommodate a faster runner on the track.
I’m glad, too. While I may not be an elite marathoner, a 6:00/mi pace is plenty fast to cause an injury during a full-tilt collision, and I was glad to avoid that!