Sunday, December 9, 2012

Confirming normality after yesterday's tough run

Today's run (street): 4.5 miles

I'll admit that I was nervous about today's run because I was concerned I'd struggle again like yesterday.  I had hoped the lethargy and weighty feeling in my legs was due to having a large lunch prior to running. The paranoid part of me was thinking that my problems at Caleb Smith were a sign that I'm fighting a virus or my level of conditioning has dropped. 

After stalling for 45 minutes, I finally got into (running) gear and stepped outside. The weather this weekend has been in the high 40's but the occasional rain made it seem colder. I dressed a little lighter than yesterday and hoped I wouldn't regret it. As I stood outside waiting for my Garmin to acquire a signal, I noticed that there was a moderate breeze coming in from the north.

The moment of truth came when I headed up the first road and compared my level of energy to yesterday's start. Despite the wind, I was pulling strongly up the slight incline and it was clear that I was back to strength. It felt like I was carrying fifteen extra pounds through most of yesterday's run, but today I had no such issues.

Once I understood that things were back to normal, I focused on covering my planned distance. I've definitely hit a lull in terms of weekly mileage and my base has dropped a little. Without any races on the calendar I'm seeing my performance curve dropping. It's reminding me why I compete.

I rounded the neighborhood at a pace near the high end of my average. I was comfortable and had no fatigue,although my legs felt a little rubbery. I'll take rubbery legs over legs that feel weighted down so no complaints there. By the time I reached home I'd raised my heart rate into zone 4. I finished the run feeling worked out but far better than I did at the end of yesterday's run.

The best part about today's run was that it confirmed that yesterday's struggles were an aberration with an attributable cause.  This will go down as another low mileage week (15!) but I expect to resume base building next weekend. I'd really like to get back onto the Bethpage trail and run for a while.

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