Tuesday, March 04, 2008

On suckiness

Yesterday's run was so sucky that it was almost comical. It was 38 degrees and pouring down rain, and I was struggling mightily with a three-mile run. The only redeeming value of the run was that I managed to dip under 10 minute pace, unlike Sunday.

As I slogged down Jordan Avenue, I reflected that it's almost as if the past year hadn't happened. Last year my average pace hovered around 10 minutes and I was ecstatic to have a run as fast as 9:30. But more than the pace, the runs usually felt hard. I'd only been back running regularly for a couple of months and it wasn't coming easy. But this year, for the past few months, I've knocked out 5-8 mile runs at sub-9 minute pace while barely breaking a sweat, just feeling awesome. Even my long runs have been in the low 9s, with seemingly no effort. It's hard to go back to puffing along, feeling spent after a mile, so abruptly. Part of it is the unexpectedness: when I scheduled my oral surgery appointment, I expected a brief hiccup in my training, but what I got was a full-on interruption that's now dragging into its second week, not helped at all by the random foot pain.

But anyway, I'm already sick of the self-pity and am ready to move on to making it work. It's just a matter of time and I love me a challenge. Here's the plan: no real plan! Weeeee! Yep, I'm going to fly by the seat of my pants until I feel ready to pick up with Pfitz. Pfitz, I do like you. It's not you, it's me. One day, I'll commit fully to you.

I'm going to run by feel and try to work my long runs and tempo runs back up to Pfitz levels in the next month or so. In about a month, I have a 15K scheduled, which will give me a good idea of how things are going.

So, what sucks more: a crappy run on a gorgeous partly-cloudy 66-degree day (the first nice day in a long while) in which you are basically bemoaning the amount of suckiness that is occurring on such a nice day, OR a crappy run on a day of such sucky weather that you are basically laughing at the amount of suckiness going on at one time? I feel fortunate to live in the Midwest, whose constant weather-changing habits make questions like this possible. :)


Al Durham said...

Sorry to hear about being laid off, surgery, and your foot. My foot actually did that same thing last summer. It hurt the first couple miles of a run and then went away. After running it was tender for awhile and then it simply healed itself. I figured it was simply overuse or over training. Imagine that. Keep your head up, Spring will be here soon.

Paul said...

Apropos of nothing, I waited until the final volume of the Dark Tower series was completed and then read through the entire work last year. It was quite a journey. If you are just getting started you will be amazed at where the story goes in the later volumes.