A friend of mine talked me into going to a track meet last friday. I decided if I was going to go I might as well run the 2 mile. My goal was to do it as a workout. Just run 5:20 pace. Once I got there I decided to run each distance event. Just run a good solid effort. Not really race, just tempo.
I got there with plenty of time and set out to run a warmup. As I circled the track I felt so miserable and it was so hot that I felt like walking the entire time. I decided to veer off through the neighborhoods where there was a bit more shade. Within about 10 minutes I was totally and utterly lost. Finally, with increasing anxiety that I would be late for my race I stopped and knocked on the door of a home where I could see people inside. They gave me directions back to the school and I made it. Missed out on time for stretching, bathroom, and the GU I had planned....but I made it.
Right before the race I saw the Georgetown Running Club guys.....great.....2 guys that ran the Olympic Trials..... The race started and I immediately let those guys go. I thought I was being smart about pace but I guess I still got swept along. When I came around I saw 75....too fast. I tried slowing the next lap but again was too fast. After 6 laps of that I was pretty cooked and nearly slowed to a walk. I recovered and jogged it in. No need to race. Just a workout.
In the mile I was better about judging my pace and effort. Plus I was able to get that GU. I didn't time my meals very well because of a weird schedule at work that day. I ran the mile easy cheesy. In the last lap the lead woman came up next to me, but I was already a few seconds faster than my goal and I didn't want to be "that guy" who sprints violently to not get beat by a woman....so instead I let her pass and enjoyed the much improved view.
Next up was the 400 meters. I was cooked. In the 2 mile, that 75 had felt so fast that I was quite certain an all out effort would get me around 60-65. I decided to go full speed and see what I could do. At the start I slipped (I wore spikes without actual spikes in them) and hurt my foot a bit. As I ran I realized at that speed that spikes were necessary and I was slip sliding the entire way. On the first curve a youngster got around me but I couldn't do anything or I'd go sliding off. Once I got to the straight away I was able to make up some ground but then had to slow again for the curve. In some places the track was so worn where the rubber had worn off that I was on the concrete and I was really slipping. Then on the final straightaway I really opened up and reeled the youngster in.
I'm glad I stuck around to do those extra races. With each race I felt better. Not sure if it was because of the GU or if it was that the sun had gone down. It was still horribly humid but cooler was better. In that 400 I ended up running 55 seconds which was WAY fast for me. Plus with spikes I could have gone even faster. My fastest ever 400 was 52.6 , so I wonder how fast, at 37, I could get to my all time PR if I did some training. The best part of the evening was coming off the final curve with 100m to go and feeling no hint of fatigue. So caught up in the race and feeling so good that my acceleration made the finish line feel like it was moving to me instead of me to it. No matter how slow I ran, or how bad my place.....if I could just replicate that feeling occasionally....I'd be addicted for life.
Saturday I took the day off, not by choice, but I had promised to help a friend and that took longer than I thought. Then I had normal TerribleTerry behaviors to perform in the evening and didn't get my run in. Yesterday I wanted to do a long run but bit off a bit more than I should have. I ran 10 miles but at mile 7 my form started to fail so I drastically reduced my pace and just took my time getting home. Lots of water stops in the last 3 miles. Junk miles. Should have done a route where I could have stopped as soon as my form failed.
Last night I was horribly tired and sore. Did a nice foam roller session and ice massage. Today I'll be lazy. Probably just do some swimming and a nice stretching session. I feel like a runner again. If I can run a 55sec 400..... surely I can run good mile with some training. If I get to where I can run a good mile.....a good 5k is just around the corner... and so on....and so on.....