On The 71st Day, She Rested


I attempted the speed workout on Wednesday. It was hard. First, it was on a treadmill, and I believe I’ve clearly expressed how much I dislike running on a treadmill. Second, my legs were tired. The fastest pace I could reach was a 10-minute mile, and I was only able to do that very briefly. I’ve yet to replace my footpod, so I don’t have detailed information about my pacing; I believe the longest I was able to maintain 10:00/mile was a minute. After that, I’d do it briefly during the speed phases. That shit hurt. My quads were aching.

I’m pleased with myself that I did the workout. It hurt and it was boring, but I pushed through it.

Friday morning was an easy run, and I was delighted to find that my legs didn’t hurt. It was a slow run, and not just because it was supposed to be an easy run. Our neighborhood streets are still covered in compact snow & ice, so I ran wearing YakTrax. I’m not sure if they slow me down or if I slow myself down while wearing them.

I pulled a lesson out of Friday’s run: trust the plan. The other runs post-DP25K were hard, but they were critical: they helped speed my legs’ healing.  I’m following a plan written by a well-respected ultramarathoner. I put a lot of work into creating the workout calendar to make it to work with my schedule. I need to have faith that if I do the work and follow the plan as best I can, I’ll be ready race day.

And then came the weekend: Saturday, I was supposed to do a ten-mile run. I have a ten-mile loop mapped out on Badger, and that was my goal. Fun fact: it was about 10°F during this run. Yeah, that’s cold; it meant I didn’t take any pictures, despite the beautiful scenery. Badger is remarkably snowy right now. In fact, someone has been skiing on the Skyline & Langdon trails. All the snow made for slow going. I gave up trying to run on the slightest inclines as running on flats was hard enough. I’m embarrassed by my pace. It was discouraging. But I’ve decided to focus on the fact I got out and did this workout despite the cold. I kept moving. All that snow-tromping turns out to be a pretty good hip workout, and I need that. And “running” in these conditions has got to make me a faster running in the end.

I ended up cutting out the last three miles of the 10-mile loop, and I deferred them to Sunday’s workout. I decided to run near the house. I’m in a bit of a pickle, in that I need the YakTrax to run on side streets, but the main roads are bare. I decided to run through the field to the east of our neighborhood, then along the canal to the freeway overpass over Argent Road, and then back along the canal. This was a questionable decision, as it meant, once again, running in the snow.

I’m an idiot.

I passed a Nordic skier in the field. The snow along the canal is about 6-8″ deep – someone’s been skiing there, too. I ended up crossing Argent and running back west through the neighborhood. My “running” was still pretty slow – my fastest mile was over sixteen minutes. And it was about 12°F. I really should just suck it up and run on a treadmill, but even with this slow-going, I’d rather run outside.

Today is a rest day. I’m happy about that. This week has a threshold workout and a three-day span during which I’ll run 12, 8, then 5 miles. I’m almost half-way through training, and I’m still concerned that I won’t be ready. But I’ve got to trust the plan – this is uncharted territory for me, and the plan is all I’ve got.



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