Tuesday, December 2, 2008

I Think I've Figured it Out

"It used to seem to me, That my life ran on too fast, And I had to take it slowly, Just to make the good parts last, But when you're born to run, It's so hard to just slow down" : Steve Winwood: Back in the High Life

Yes, I ran last Friday (3 miles: 24:51; 8:17/M) and Saturday (6 miles: 51:44; 8:37/M), but overall both days were uneventful, so therefore no posts. I believe I was experiencing PMRRLS (Post Manchester Road Race Letdown Syndrome). Sunday I woke up with wicked back pain, which I've finally learned means to slow down and take a day or two off from running. Plus our first visible snow and sleet since last March was another omen not to run. Monday, as usual, was my full time job as a Teacher's Assistant, the weekly boring 3:00 meeting, followed by a 7 mile drive home, and racing around the house like a maniac for 30 minutes trying to shave, freshen up, check on our new cat "Ace," then driving 7 miles back to Wallingford to work at Weight Watchers from 5-7 p.m. As far as Ace goes, I adopted him last Friday from the Meriden Humane Society. I gave up waiting for the Branford Pound to process my application for the 27 lb. cat I saw there a week and a half ago. So of course there was a message from them on our answering machine telling me I could go there and adopt him. As much as I want him, it's not going to happen. Ace is 1 1/2 years old, and an orange and white tabby. He and I were hitting it off well until last night, when I accidentally stepped on his foot. Now he runs and hides whenever he sees me coming. Great...I was the Grim Reaper a few weeks ago with our 16 year old cat, so to help ease my guilt I adopt macho, humane society cat room bully Ace, who now won't give me the time of day. Reminds me of my single days when I'd always strike out with the ladies. It should be fun on Thursday trying to find him, talk him into going into a cat carrier without ripping me apart with his claws, and driving him to the vet for his check-up. That brings me to today. I cut a deal with myself to run a comfortable 3 miles on my road course. Sorta like ease myself back into running, even though my back has been fine since Sunday afternoon. I was feeling tired, having been up since 3:30 a.m., and it was now 4 p.m. So I "cheated" and chugged a 16oz. ERev energy drink to give me a boost. It was cold, so I went the full attire of hat, gloves, long sleeves, running pants, etc. I didn't even bother to check WTNH.com to see the temperature, nor did I stretch. I was being defiant, since I didn't want to run but felt obligated to run since I had the previous 2 days off. My first mile is mainly uphill, but surprisingly I felt good even though I was planning on taking it easy. I hit mile 1 at 8:16, which was about 30 seconds faster than I had planned. Damn energy drink was working too well! The next mile was easy, and I passed my 2 mile mailbox at 16:06, or a 7:50 2nd mile. Ridiculous! This was a take it easy run? Actually it was, since everything felt effortless. At that point I said "Screw it," and went into a full sprint. Seven minutes and twenty seconds later, I was finished. Total time was 23:26, or a 7:48 per mile pace. I think I've figured it out. Cooler weather plus less frequency of running equals faster times when I do run. It only took me two years to realize this....better late than never.

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