Well, 11 miles into the week and I’m already dragging. Of course, I don’t think I’ve done 11 miles to start a week this training cycle, other than maybe when I was on spring break. (Well, then I went and looked it up while that’s true, I’ve started the week with 10 miles twice, so my whining is kind of ridiculous.)
Tuesday I did 8 hill repeats. I suffered a bit. My legs were really tight, so when I got to my usual hill, I wanted to stretch, but I had to stretch cautiously. My muscles felt like overly tightened violin strings; one more turn of the peg and they’d snap. Then when I tried to stretch my quads by doing the flamingo-type stretch which I’m sure has a real name, I actually tweaked something in my arm and side. It didn’t last but I was worried for a minute. The repeats didn’t feel that great, but I reminded myself how thrilled I was I’d done all this hill running when I was charging like a rhino up Lake Avenue on the home stretch of the 5K last weekend. I reminded myself of that feeling probably 16 times during the exercise. I had half the run in by the time I was done with the hill workout. I was feeling ok for awhile as I started the rest of the run, but my legs started to feel heavy after awhile, and then I had some lower abdominal cramping that slowed me to a walk a couple times. I spent the whole night working on homework, got home at about quarter to midnight, did more homework, and then couldn’t get to sleep because my neighbors had their windows open and music playing til after 3. I finally shut my window at 3 because I couldn’t stand it anymore.
Wednesday I woke up before my alarm (ugh), was too hot, and opened the window. Then the garbage truck came by, so I couldn’t fall back asleep. I was late to class and just dragging. I finished the homework I hadn’t done Tuesday night, and tried to convince myself I didn’t need to run, or maybe I should swap days and just run the 4 miles slotted for today. I still had a bunch of homework to do that evening, and I had a meeting, and I had been late to my group meeting on Tuesday night because I’d run so slowly, so it wasn’t looking good for getting in my scheduled mileage.
Well, my meeting was canceled, and I managed to wake up enough that I got out and did 6 mucky miles at Hartley. 6 very tired miles. My legs didn’t want to go fast. They didn’t even want to go slow. I shuffled along, getting passed by other runners, and also getting zoomed past by a dog repeatedly. I swear the dog was just showing off. Also I find it odd how many people around here do not leash their dogs. Hartley is still in the city limits! It’s not like we’re on some remote trail. I like dogs, but they really need to be on a leash, for their own safety and for the safety of other people and animals.
I wasn’t in any pain while I was running, so I was just suffering dead legs from the run the day before and from my general fatigue. I got back to the parking lot with 5.5 miles down and thought about calling it quits because I was dragging so badly. Then I reminded myself that I’ll be running on tired legs during marathons (and ultras if I ever get there), so I had better learn to suck it up for one half of a mile. So, I did, and finished at 5.98 miles, somehow still at a similar pace to most of my trail runs and a 146 bpm average heart rate. I do not know how that happened, but I’ll take it. I guess it just seemed like I was running in slow motion.