RUNS: Who knew that almost 7 weeks into a 20 week training plan I would decide to change my goals. Thats almost half way. And it isnt even because I am injured. Im not. In fact, I have been feeling great and running well!
And by well I mean that I ran the Horse-Shoe Trail FA 50k less then a month ago. Then the Virtual Half Marathon on the Appalachian Trail two weeks after that and then the Phunt 25k just last weekend! That means I have been running a race about every two weeks this training cycle.
Surprisingly, the race that I felt the best was also my longest race, the 50k. BUT it was also my first race in months and since coming back from an injury. So what does this tell me?! It tells me that I came back from my injury by training smart and listening to my body.
I swore that I would listen to my body from now on and that is what I am trying to do. I felt really good for the 50k. I felt pretty crappy and just kinda felt sore everywhere with the half marathon. It was obvious that I was still recovering from the 50k. And then felt pretty good for the first 10-11 miles of the 25k. Meaning that my recovery from the 50k was going well but it got tired and heavy before the race was over...aka, still recovering.
I have been doing alot of thinking on my runs. I always do. But a different kind of thinking...about each run and how I feel and what it is I want out of my runs. And what I want to accomplish with them.
My plans for 2013 was to do a 50 Miler in the spring if my body allowed. Then when my breathing gets worse in the summer months I wanted to decrease my mileage and work on speed. The working on my speed thing is why I signed up for the 13 in 2013 deal. I figured to would force me to run some shorter races for speed. Then I wanted to run Rosaryville 50k again in November to try to PR it when the weather starts to cool again and my breathing gets better.
Rosaryville was my first 50k in November 2011 and it was also my fastest 50k (6:37) to date. Which tells me that I trained well and ran well. I also know that I ran a crap ton of races and long races last year at that. To many for my body to handle. Did I have fun? Oh heck yeah. But at a cost. I lost speed, gained weight and ended up injured twice.
So I have now decided that I need to switch things around. Sure, I could keep on training and run that 50 miler in the spring. I am fairly certain that I could do it injury free. But you know what? MY HEART ISNT IN IT. I know that I can run 50 miles. I ran 45 in September and had I had enough time I would have ran 50 that day. I know what it takes. But I dont want to just do the distance. I am tired of just doing the distance. It is wearing down my body and it just isnt recovering like it could. Like it should.
I AM switching things around. This week I decided to just run and not think about distance. Just run. I decided to look at my calendar from January 2012 and where ever I ran that day is where I was going to run January 2013! This weeks running has been just short of amazing. Yeah, I weigh more this year. Yeah, my breathing is just as bad as ever. But you know what?! I had some freaking awesome runs. My pace was just about spot on from this time last year. I am sure that I worked harder on those runs this year compared to last. But they were some of the best runs that I have had in awhile (time wise).
I will never be fast but I want MY speed back. I now know after this weeks runs that I still have it in there. So my new plan is to gain back my speed that I lost last year and to lose the weight I found in return, lol.
Dont get me wrong...I am an ultra runner at heart. I LOVE THE LONG RUN! I just need to learn how to run them a little bit faster so that I am not trying to just beat the cut offs. I still want to do a 50 miler this year but not right now. I am still planning to find a spring 50k so that I can gauge my progress and get my ultra fix. And I also still want to PR Rosaryville in November. But for the rest of the winter, spring and summer are going to be about speed baby!!!
I wore my body down last year more then I could have ever imagined. When you are running and having fun it is sometimes hard to see it. You just keep going and going until you cant go anymore and are forced to stop and face it head on.
I am now even more excited then I can explain for my running this year. I have made this decision by listening to my body and what it wants and needs so that we can both be happy! Here we go!!!
EATS: Oh yeah. I joined an online game called Dietbets. It just told me today that I only have 18 days left to lose 3.8lbs or I lose my money that I bet that I could. I guess I better get on that!