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Jacksonville, FL, United States
In Life as well as in running the secret is Pace.

Thursday, July 21, 2011

98.6 - Sounds Normal to me

Just for grins I decided to take a look at the weather for my lunchtime run.

Yep 98.6 with a heat index of 112F

Pretty much par for the course here for July…  I’ve heard a bunch of my friends from the North complain about the heat…  I think it’s cute…  probably in the same way they laugh at me when I turn on my seat heaters in my car when the temp dips below 65…  they kinda remind me of Eugene Morris Jerome in Biloxi Blues

"Man it's hot. It's like Africa hot. Tarzan couldn't take this kind of hot."

Well I had a tempo run on the training schedule for today 7 mi with 5 @ sub 9 pace.  I have purposely planned easier than normal tempo runs for two reasons. 

  • 1.       I’m training for IM distance
  • 2.       I’m really focusing on swimming right now
  • 3.       It’s really hot
  • 4.       I have a tendency to be overzealous with my run training at the expense of everything else

So off I went armed with a liter of water.  It really didn’t feel too hot at first.  Legs felt surprisingly good.  Warm-up mile passed easily in 10:31.

At the mile mark I sat the water in the shade…  oh yea…  like that’s going to keep it cool… and picked it up to tempo pace.  A quick peek at my garmin showed me that I was on pace and I just loped along for a couple of miles enjoying the day.

But then I got to thinking…  that I wanted to be really tired tonight…  today is the biggest Tour de France stage in the Alps… and I can’t wait to see Frank Schleck put in one of his “baby attacks” where he rides hard for 50 meters then sits up and tries to get someone to come through….  Or see Andy pout because Fabian won’t let him ride on his handlebars for the scary descents….  And if there’s anything better than watching a good bike race on tv…  it’s watching with completely cooked legs.

So I decided to stretch the tempo part out to 6 miles…  *and* run the last two at a sub 8 pace…  splendid idea! (I’m an idiot)

Miles 4 and 5 I still felt pretty good but I was a.)  getting a little tired…  and #2 holding back just a wee bit knowing that I had to pick up the pace soon.

Mile 6 – increased turnover led to more speed…  I worked hard to stay relaxed (I just re-read that and it sounds kinda dumb) and managed to clock a 7:59.

There was nothing relaxed about the beginning of the last “tempo” mile…  I decided straightaway that I was going to have to use leg strength to keep up the pace…. The first glance at the Garmin showed 8:21…  Now I had already decided to do a little write-up about this run… and right then I was just fine with my story ending with failing to hit my goal…  I was okay with it really but then…  I mumbled to myself…  “I like a happy ending” and tried to pick it up…  surprisingly I did… as I ran along I thought “you are just running this hard so that you can post a lower number on the internet”…  so on I ran checking my Garmin often…  to see how fast… and how much further…  another thought that popped into my head was “you are a slave to the machine on your wrist” I inwardly nodded yes…  and added “and to the machine pumping the Neon Trees – ‘Animal’ into my head”.

So I pushed… with a 5k type effort…  heart pumping…  legs churning and until the wrist machine said “7 miles”

the split read 7:50

I slowed and walked to where I had stashed my water…  feeling pretty good

And ya know…  for me..  that’s what it’s all about…  there was no medal, no NBC announcers at Ironman Hawaii, no Boston Marathon Jacket, no coffee mug…  nothing wrong with any of that stuff… and yes I aspire to some of them myself

I just went out and did more with my body than my mind thought I could do…  and now I’m tired…  and I can watch the Tour stage tonight with my legs still twitching from today’s effort…  and though I am far from a world class athlete…  I’ll be able to identify a bit with their suffering and enjoy it all the more.


Mark said...

very nice read. Brings a smile to my face

Matthew Smith said...

You're an inspiration! Nice work on the run. Was the water cool at the end? ;) It's hot like that here in Michigan too, and it sucks! But I'm just whining...

My Boring Triathlon Blog said...

if it makes you feel any better, its 118 with the humidity in toronto, canada right now. i ran at 5:15 am all though it was only 5 km

Wes said...

doing a tempo run in that heat is just crazy! crazy..crazy..crazy!! I hope you had a nice pool to dive in when you were done! GREAT WORK!

runnergirl training said...

Fantastic job!! Thanks for sharing!