Today’s run (street): 4.4 miles
Spring starts tomorrow at 12:57 PM but you wouldn’t know it by this morning’s chilly temperatures. I was excited to get back to my neighborhood roads after so many (many, many) treadmill workouts. It’s inevitable that I’ll be writing a lament about the tedium of neighborhood running in the coming months. Right now, access to the roads is a treat.
I was anxious to get out today to validate that my recent sub-par running experiences were an aberration and not a trend. I was going on two day’s rest and despite the cold, I felt like I was in for a good run. I wore my day-glo orange long sleeve jersey over a short sleeved bamboo-cotton running shirt. I was tempted to add another layer (the temperature was 33°) but I didn’t want to feel restricted. I wore my medium weight track pants, a warm hat and gloves.
One new piece of gear I brought along was a clip-on blinking red LED light that I attached to the back of my shirt at the top. This light was a giveaway from one of my 2013 races and I came across it while looking for my HRM in my gear drawer. It’s a really nice gadget and it barely weighs an ounce. Even with a bright orange shirt, I felt it couldn’t hurt to also have a flashing beacon to get the attention of drivers.
Ten seconds into my run I knew I was in for a better experience than Sunday’s. My target distance was 4.2 miles and I ended up covering almost 4.5 today. I didn’t worry about my speed at all. Before I can sustain race pace over 13 miles, I need to increase endurance. My plan is to run increasingly longer Sunday runs and then run 80% of that distance on Wednesdays. Next Sunday I’ll move up to six miles and the following Wednesday, my target moves up to 4.8. And so on, until the penultimate training week, where I’ll run eleven miles on Sunday and 8.8 the next Wednesday.
Getting through today’s distance was not a big challenge and I enjoyed the parts when the cold wind wasn’t hitting head on and freezing my face. My pace wasn’t impressive, but I ran a minute a mile faster than on Sunday. I’m buying into the idea that more miles and weekly speed work will eventually lead to better performances.
Tomorrow I’ll get a break and will only need to cover three miles plus “strength” whatever that means. I know what it means. I just have to do it.