Tuesday, December 2, 2014

Got it half right at least?

Sunday was the Seattle half marathon and it was a reminder, sadly always right around the middle of
the race, that I realized, or was reminded again, you can't ask for more than you put in. Sure there's some percentage of race day magic, but really there should be no surprise to ones self when you cross the finish line.

I had plenty of reason going into Sunday to be cautious (and maybe not run): rolled my ankle 2 weeks ago, bottom of left foot hurt w/ any run over 4 miles, sick 10 of the last 14 days, oh and I kind of pulled the plug on running 2 weeks ago after Grand Ridge trail half.

On the bright side I kept telling (lying to) myself, "GR was your long run with 2 weeks of tapper, you didn't really have GR in you (I did) and you did great, GR was really really tough (it was) so this will be easy (Hmmm)."

Once the early excitement of being in a race on a crazy cold beautiful morning has worn off...

There's that point in the race when the group you're running with, in the 2nd half of a race, stays on pace and slowly moves away. The point where it shows without hiding anything what you've put in. That's the point I usually tell myself that those are the people that have trained, the ones ready for these last miles.

It does two things during these moments:

One it's humbling, the feel of, 'I should be running up there', quickly followed by, 'I should stay trained to run up there', etc. Nothing worse than knowing you could be in with a group if you'd just done the work.That you get to enjoy the day having fun beating on yourself, rather than just suffering through the beating.

Two, how do I get back there and do I start by taking a bit of a rest?

Looking back at the last few weeks it has been all the little things getting missed that sort of take its toll. Stopped doing core workouts, stopped strength training, stopped stretching, stopped doing recovery runs. On and on and on. Getting sick didn't help, but I didn't feel that it was the biggest part.

I often tell people trying to get back into it that at least they've been there before and know what level of work it takes to get back. I enjoy the work, enjoy the pay off, enjoy staying up with the groups that I feel I should be running with, or get to run with. I've never taken running for granted, too many injuries over the last few years to ever assume anything.

That fire gets lit on days like that also, to jump back in the fray, but also some lines get redrawn. I think the best way to get back there is through plenty of rest up front and letting a few bothering injuries take care of themselves. After that getting back to what's fun and keeping it simple. Really simple.

Looking to 2015 I've cut back on the races that I'll be doing. I wanted to do roughly 11 races, all trail. Not a huge amount, but thinking it over the last few days and wanting to get the most out of the races I do enter I'm thinking I'll cut it down to just 5. Plus one long adventure that I want to work on for next summer. 

The priority in 2015 is leaving more time for just getting out and running in the mountain with the Girlie and the bears. Some long trips just knocking through the woods and enjoying what the Cascades and Olympics have to offer. 

No bibs, just a run vest, a pair of mutts and a woman crazier than I am. Cuz really, that's what I love!

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