Let's be honest, here. I am really just coming back from a injury that kept me on the couch for 3.5 weeks and the training since I've been back has been spotty, at best. The initial quad pain that I experienced when I first came back, has subsided. The over-whelming hip pain that TKO'd me to begin with is still masked by the cortisone shot. I can still feel the tightness of in my upper leg and along the IT Band. And on top of that, I am really struggling to finish runs of 10 miles or longer. I think it's a combination of the humid weather and my leg and fitness level. BTW - the temperature is relatively mild (compared to July/August temps) but the humidity is back in earnest.
My goal 13.1 pace is going to be one hour and fifty minutes, which is an 8:23 per mile pace. Before the injury, I would say "no sweat" to this time, perhaps even faster. Now, not so sure. My mind has been saying "please stop, please stop" on my long runs, and I think just finishing in under 2:10 may be more realistic. I did a 6x1 miles interval run on Tuesday at 7:50 to 8:20 per mile paces - with 400 meter recovery, and was ready for more. Mostly, the first 6-7 miles of my long runs have been easy, but the "turn-around" has been tough.
What is the "turn-around", you say? Well this is the half way point of a particular long run. It's not like I carry a cell phone with me on the run, so I can't call Stephanie to come get me after 15 miles. I have to go out 7.5 miles and turn around and go back 7.5 miles. I think some of it is MENTAL, knowing that I have run for 1 hour to this point, and have to go back another hour. I think a little is still PHYSICAL, both with my leg and fitness.
Well, here is my secret weapon to combat these mental and physical issues. The Brooks Launch.
It's a really light Racing shoe (as opposed to a trainer) which does not have much cushioning or mesh, or much of anything extra. The less it has, the lighter it is. It's about 4 ounces lighter than my Nike Vomero 4's that I normally train with. So the theory goes, that the 4 oz., over the course of 13.1 miles is like carrying 5 to 10 less pounds. I'm down with that. Besides, I think they look fast.
And, IF I don't meet my goal pace, I've got a bunch of excuses why I didn't quite make it. Just re-read this blog entry - LOL at myself. ..... ..... .....