Week 1 – Easy/Recovery – 13 weeks until Baltimore
Monday, July 23, 2018 – 6:00pm – 3 mi @ 7:05/mi
Last night there was a spectacular storm – the lightning lit the room and the thunder shook the house. Our dogs took refuge under the bed – not trusting that Diana and I could keep them safe. From under the bed, they took turns barking at Mother Nature. I didn’t sleep for the majority of the night. When my 4:45am alarm went off I must have reset it because the first thing I remember in the morning is my alarm going off at 6:00am.
When I got home from work I felt terrible. I was tired, my head hurt and I felt on edge. I wanted to skip my run but I knew that was a bad way to start the week. I decided to go for my usual run, to push myself as hard as possible, and to pray for good sleep. I ran really well (7’05/mi pace) with very little deviation in my pace.
Tuesday, July 24, 2018 – None
My plan the evening before did not work. I can tell I am getting older because one night of bad sleep tends to ripple out for days. I don’t bounce back as well as I used to. Sleeplessness two nights ago led to fitful, sweaty sleep last night. I woke up to my 4:45am alarm and made the decision to turn it off. After work, I decided it was better to rest. I knew this would set me back on the week but I still had plenty of time to make up the lost miles.
Wednesday, July 25, 2018 – 5:00am – 3.09 mi @ 8:16/mi
My body finally fell back into a normal rhythm and I slept extremely heavy on Tuesday night. With the 4:45am alarm, I jumped out of bed and felt ready to run. Hitting the road, I had a remarkably unremarkable workout. I felt good but not great, quick but not fast. When I got back home, I decided I would capitalize on this extra-mediumness and pack a gym bag for after work.
Wednesday, July 25, 2018 – 5:30pm – 2 mi @ 8:00/mi + LiftingB
While at work, I felt the day drag. In the lulls between tasks I could feel my brain get heavy and sleepiness creep in. Driving home after work, I had fantasies of going straight home – of napping or snacking or doing anything but working out. I could feel my training plan start to crumble and my best intentions start to fade. I already missed one workout (for good reason), skipping this one gives me a smaller and smaller window to get my miles in.
When I got to the gym, I decided to try to make up my missed Tuesday run (4 miles). Almost immediately into my treadmill run, I felt like leaving. I wasn’t in any physical pain nor did I feel tired. I just was emotionally not invested. I just didn’t want to do it. I negotiated with myself and agreed to do half of the run and make up the other half on Friday. After the run, I did my prescribed lifting program for the day. I was using this time to also monitor my thoughts for my latest entry about cognitive fusion/defusion. People were driving me NUTS (talking on their phones, sitting for great lengths of time on pieces of equipment I needed, wearing jeans while lifting). Check out the post to get the low-down of my mental turmoil.
Thursday, July 26, 2018 – 7:00pm – 45:00 tempo run
My beloved Thursday night run. The heat was exceptionally deceptive. For the first two miles, I felt good. I was trying to hold back my pace – warm up and ease into the workout, but I just couldn’t. My legs felt springy and my body felt strong so I started to push myself. About ½ way into the run, all of that good feeling wore off and I felt like the human embodiment of diarrhea. The last 20 minutes were a battle to keep my pace and minimizing my walking (I did have to walk but much, much later in the run than last week). Most of the time I ran without Rod, which made me sad but was also 100% my fault for pushing the pace too early. I am the bad guy of the run today.
Friday, July 27, 2018 – 5:30pm – 2 mi @ 8:00/mi
This was a scheduled day off but I wanted to hold up my end of the self-bargain I made on Wednesday. Much like two days prior, I wanted so badly to go home after work. Luckily, Diana called me and told me she would meet me at the gym. Knowing she was going to be there, and expecting me to be there, made it far easier to make the right decision.
I ran another 2 miles (now caught up on weekly mile total) while watching the end of Wonder Woman (meh). I got a lift in and noted that my legs/hips were progressively feeling better as I consistently added in squats and lunges.
Saturday, July 28, 2018 – 8:30am – 6.01 mi @ 8:50/mi + stairs
Two days ago, I found out my grandmother died. It didn’t come as a complete shock – she was in her 90s and had been doing poorly for some time. Still, it was sad to find out. My parents gently asked if I was planning to come back to Utica for the funeral and gave me plenty of room to back out. My initial urge was to make an excuse and avoid the trip – I didn’t want to spend the money, I didn’t want to have to call out from work, I didn’t want to have to travel, blah blah blah whine whine whine.
I don’t want to be like that anymore – I want to be a reliable person who makes “the right” decision rather than “the comfortable” decision. So, I told my parents I would come home so I could see them and then purchased my ticket to Utica. My flight was leaving on Saturday afternoon at 5:00pm.
Diana and I decided to move our usual Sunday run to Saturday. Even though I wasn’t feeling overtly mournful over my grandmother, I was feeling stressed and on edge over the upcoming trip – seeing family, traveling, having to tell me boss I wouldn’t be coming in – all these things led me to feeling overwhelmed. I had a hard time not acting short with Diana (which added more stress because I knew I was acting like a jerk) and an even harder time keeping a light attitude while running.
I managed 6 miles down Bayshore. It was hot. I knew it was going to be hard both physically and emotionally and accepted that it was going to be a slow run. I went through a whole roller coaster of emotions – I became angry, sad, defeated, elated. I got back to the start and felt unfinished. I went over to the convention center and ran stairs – up and down and up and down again. I started on the set closest to the car and began working my way around the building. Half-way through my stomach turned and vomiting was a near certainty.
I didn’t puke – I stopped and laid down in the shade until Diana came back.
Sunday, July 29, 2018 – 10:30am – 8 mi @ 8:19/mi
I was back at my parent’s house for the funeral of my grandmother. My parents live near “TV Hill” – a long, seemingly never-ending climb to the top of a hill where local TV stations house their operations. The weather was 65 degrees with a slight breeze. I wanted to end my second week of training strong so I decided to do my eight-mile run up to the top of TV hill.
Climbing the first two miles was nearly a continuous grind. At mile 2.5 I crested the hill but needed another 1.5 miles before I could turn back. I turned down a gravel road that cut into the woods. The road suddenly turned pavement and started a second climb. Four miles in, I turned back and started my descent. The first return mile was fast (7:30/mi compared to 9:45/mi the previous mile). I ran over rolling hills beside fields of wild flowers. At mile 6.5, I was back at the crest of TV hill. I stopped for a moment to look over the city of Utica. When I was younger, I really did not enjoy living here (I wouldn’t say I hated it but it was close). Now, from the distance of years and miles, I found it beautiful. There was the smell of pine on the cool breeze and I felt a strong nostalgia that I don’t think I’ve ever felt before in my life. It made me feel sad and very, very old.
I started running down the hill. My feet barely touched the ground. Initially, my heels were hitting hard like my body was trying to engage the emergency breaks. I tried to relax and shift my body to better bounce on my feet rather than slam my heels. The first mile down TV hill was the fastest mile of my life – 5:53/mi. The road leveled off for the last mile and I tried to push myself to keep the pace up – 6:50/mi. I felt good. Two weeks down – 12 more to go.