Sunday, February 8, 2015

Random racing ruminations: Week 13, Gains

(5.65 miles)
Temperature 56
Mile 1 = 9:07
Mile 2 = 9:03
Mile 3 = 8:49
Mile 4 = 8:44
Mile 5 = 8:53

(2.94 miles)
Temperature 52
Mile 1 = 8:06
Mile 2 = 8:26
Mile 2.93 = 9:32
My break from running has lasted too long. My achilles feels better and much of the snow and ice has cleared from the trails and sidewalks. Saturday brought a beautiful 56 degree day. It felt great to be outside running again. The almost week-long rest must have been good for my body because my time improved. The only challenge was an annoying one: some sidewalks were not entirely cleared of snow. Instead of taking the extra time to remove snow from the entire area, some people only removed a little path. Or, there were piles in the middle of the sidewalk. Or, snow was trampled down and compacted instead of cleared away.

Approaching these areas required me to stop running so I wouldn't slip or fall. Additionally, I had to strategically and carefully place my feet in places as to not get my shoes and feet wet. Unfortunately, the remaining snow was essentially wet slush. Only half a mile into the run, my right foot got soaked. I felt the cool water douse my sock. Running with a wet foot is terrible. Towards the end of my run, I couldn't put up with the rubbing anymore and stopped shy of 6 miles because I could feel the blisters forming.

Sunday I went for a three mile interval run. At the beginning I was pushing for a faster pace than normal. However, just like on Saturday, some of the uncleared sidewalks got the best of me, especially at the end, forcing me to walk. This was tragic and disappointing because I was hoping for a fast run to celebrate.

Overall, I can't be too frustrated with these two runs. I'm making gains, even if they are somewhat miniscule. I'm hoping every week's slight gain will compound as I press on. This weekend my thoughts focused on humble, small-scale progress.

Lily is my inspiration. I see her develop slightly different traits each day. Her gains are barely noticeable, but nonetheless significant.

This weekend Lily's crawling finally cultivated distance. She started in the living room and then slowly but determinedly made her way after Charlie, her canine brother. He was walking back and forth to the front door. The sun was brightly shining through the glass. He was taking in rays and keeping track of life in the neighborhood. Lily wanted to be part of the action. She shouted, squealed, and grunted her way, inching along, out of the living room, and then after Charlie, toward the front door.

As the training weeks for the Lincoln Half Marathon pass from one to the next, time seems to be the sole variable fighting both for and against me. I'm fighting, too, through the difficulty and challenges whatever they may be. If Lily can persist through the challenges of learning to crawl, I can keep on running.

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