Progress!

I’m finding training for a 5K both easy and frustrating. The easy part is fitting the workouts into my schedule. It’s odd, because I’ve managed to squeeze 8-10 mile runs into workdays, even during the winter. But my pledge to not run on pavement means trail runs, and I haven’t tried trail running in the dark. (It’s on my list of challenges; I just haven’t gotten there yet.) There’s a park close to our house where I can run in the grass. Another advantage of these short workouts: running a loop that’s a third of mile doesn’t suck as much when you’re running for a few miles instead of a half-dozen.

The frustrating part? There’s really no need to change my diet, other than ensuring I’m getting high-quality fuel. Gone are the days of carrying bagels in my pocket to fuel my training runs. Heck, I frequently don’t bother carrying water, let alone food.

Despite the relatively light training load, I’ve had too many “eat everything in sight” days. Feeling gnawing hunger when I shouldn’t. I frequently eat when I’m not hungry: boredom, craving a particular taste or texture, a whim — lots of reasons I eat when I don’t need to. But I’ve been feeling a genuine, I-will-eat-anything-including-a-kale/quinoa-smoothie, hunger. I don’t think I’m under-fueling, because – no surprise here – I’m not losing weight. I haven’t been drinking as much water as I usually do, and that may be part of my problem. I’m trying to ensure I drink enough water over the next week or so, and seeing how that impacts my hunger frenzies.

So why have I titled this “Progress!” if I’m whining about my diet? Last night was a cadence interval workout, and it went really well. I’m a plodder, so my cadence tends to be in the “you’re going to injure yourself” range. During the intervals, I was pretty consistently at or above 180 steps per minute. (I had to slow down to step gingerly across a bridge with a weak deck and navigate downed trees.) That’s pretty awesome, as I think it’s the first time I’ve done this. That’s progress, and that means it’s time to up my target range. YAY!

Today is supposed to be a cross-training workout, but The Hubs & I are planning to go to dinner. I could go for a walk before he gets to Pasco, but there are errands I’d like to run. I’m fine with skipping the workout. Tomorrow’s Thursday, and I plan to swim before work and there’s a training run on the calendar. That’s good enough.

This weekend is the Diocesan Convention, and this year it’s in Spokane. I’m scheduled to donate platelets Friday morning and then drive to Spokane; the afternoon & evening are busy, and Saturday is very busy as well. I plan to do the weekend’s long run (it still amuses me to consider an hour-long run a “long” run) at Riverside State Park after church on Sunday.

I’m still skipping the core workouts, which is stupid, and I’m having a hard time getting myself to stretch – also stupid. (I think it’s partially my mindset with the shorter workouts.) I’m planning to change Monday’s “recovery run” — seriously, who needs recovery runs when you’re training for a 5k? — to cross-training workouts, especially when I’ve done the weekend run on Sunday. That will allow me to do the core workout as part of my cross-training on Mondays & Wednesdays. If I feel the need for a recovery workout, I can go for a walk.

I still haven’t exactly worked out the course of the Kim’s Bad Knee 5K. But I have a few months to straighten it out. And running those crazy loops on the BMX trails is a blast!

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