Sunday, January 22, 2012

Week ending January 22: 14 days straight

Week ending January 22
Monday 1/16  4 miles, including 16 x 120 yards barefoot. I think my legs may have been wondering what we were doing running on a Monday. I swear I heard, “We shall overcome” chanting from down there.
Tue 1/17 6 miles at Croft. I felt uncomfortable after about ten minutes, mostly with the night running. I went to Croft to run a trail we call the Chapters, but had some bad mojo in the dark and turned around, cutting off the 2 1/2 mile trail section. That kind of thing happens.
Wed 1/18 4 miles on Cottonwood from home.
Thu 1/19 1 1/4 miles around the neighborhood The first test of my resolve to run every day: a late meeting meant I got up early to run, not something I generally do during the week. Also a test of claiming to have run when I only ran 10 minutes or so. Needed the rest, will see how that plays out.
Fri 1/20  5 miles, including 2 miles barefoot on grass. Rainy and chilly. The barefoot running was pretty darn cold for a while, sloppy the whole time. Felt reasonably loose.
Sat 1/21 11 miles at Croft. Dumping rain from 4 miles on, and wet and muddy trails throughout. Thunderstorms forecast, and sure enough, right about noon, rolling thunder rattled the woods for 20 seconds or so. 
          I’m not a fan of lightning, and I thought about turning around. But I was running a trail I haven’t been on for a few weeks, one of the toughest we run; I carried on. So up to that point my legs had felt a little dead, and I wasn’t able to push off much. As though the thunder brought it on, 36 minutes in, I suddenly loosened up, and ran hard through the long climbs that just seem to keep going. I thought I would make a loop with some of the horse trails at Croft, but the thought of that slop didn’t exactly fuel my pace. While I was climbing the steep road section out of the draw, I decided instead to turn around and run the lake trail back again, adding some miles but avoiding substantial mud holes. 

I was warm only while moving, so I hustled, and the footing was pretty good. I was reminded that sometimes the middle of the trail is the safest when it's flowing ankle deep with rainwater. Then I hit the less-than-a-mile section of horse trail back to the parking lot, exactly the deep mud I'd avoided by turning around on the road. That section, and a couple of heavy thunder rolls let me know I made the right decision to turn around and also to bag the second loop.  
Sun 1/22 12 miles at Southside. Tired legs warmed up after 35 minutes again. This time I expected it to come, so the first part was a bit more enjoyable. 
Total 43 miles in seven runs
            I felt tired on every run this week, though I felt motivated to run every day, too. I remember those summers when I added three or four two-a-days. The first couple of weeks I felt extra tired, but felt a real bump in the third week. I’ve read others say they also experienced the same bump. I’ll give this increase that kind of chance. But I need to do sustained long runs if for no more than to build some mental strength.

He'd go again if I said so.
Bristol remains an endurance beast. I didn’t take him around the neighborhood, and I didn’t take him on Friday in the rain because he can’t run with me on the fields. So he ran 37 miles with me this week; at places where multiple trails weave around obstacles he often takes the steeper. But he’s very patient with me, and lets me lead most of the time these days. 

           He is confident and fearless, I'd say, though he has a tendency to get jumpy around other dogs. He generally wants nothing to do with other animals, except that the herd of eight or ten does we saw today down in the creek bottom got his attention for a couple hundred yards. 

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