Jumping in with both feet

It’s been close to a month since the Pittsburgh half. So what have I been up to?

Well, for the first week, I basically did nothing athletic. I went to spin that Wednesday, which I took easy, and didn’t run at all until the following week. This was dumb, as evidence by a mild feeling of depression/post-race blues that I attributed to lack of endorphins. Diagnosis? Get to the gym. Pronto. Yes, I am addicted. So sue me.

By Tuesday, I was DYING to run, and headed out for three, blissful miles – no iPod, no Garmin, just the sound of my feet pounding on the sidewalk in a quiet morning. Pure bliss. That Thursday I tried out my new kicks – fresh from the PGH expo: the Brooks PureFlow. I had jogged around in them at he expo and was a little nervous, but excited about them. They are SO light and springy, and I predicted they would be quite fast.

They even LOOK fast

My plan was simple: two easy miles after work to give them a test drive. Enough time to decide if they were working. Not enough time to get injured if they clearly weren’t. As I pressed the “start” button on my Garmin, I said aloud, “okay, let’s see what these puppies can do.” And I sprang forward.

WOW. These things are so quick. Within three strides I was bounding up the slight hill of my street, feeling very gazelle-like. And that “easy” run I had intended?

Yeah. About that. At the very end, just after I ticked over 2 miles and was almost to my apartment, I sprinted until I hit the steps, hitting a 6:17 pace. I bet if I’d had more room I could have gotten up even faster. Wow.

So, other that, I haven’t run in them. I officially retired my Ghost 4s, looking at their worn treads and realizing that I bought them BACK IN DECEMBER and they take the bulk of the mileage load. My Launch are still in great condition, and only have 125 or so miles on them, 150 max. I’ll keep them as my tempo and mid-distance racing shoe, and may stockpile them soon since rumor has it they’re being discontinued… (say it ain’t so, Brooks!! Say it ain’t so!)

I’ve been crossing-training tons: still going to pilates and spin, trying to get back into an upper body weights routine, and continuing to do my lower body work, including my secret weapon: jump squats. My mileage has dropped a ton, and I’m fine with this. I haven’t done a true speed workout or tempo run, though some of my “easy” runs have been at HM race pace or faster. Last weekend, NB and I ran a “long” run of 7.39 miles. We thought about 8, but it was a ridiculously hot and humid day, and while the route we chose is EXTREMELY hilly (you climb pretty constantly the first couple miles), it was much shadier and we felt more comfortable sticking in the shade. We’re glad we did. It was very slow run, but satisfying.

This week I’ve clocked only 8 miles so far – three on Tuesday, five yesterday, and we had planned on our super hilly nine miler (all… the way… up… Shady… pantpant), but it turns out plans have changed. I’d been invited to run a 5K with couple friends about a month ago: one is a good runner, the other a very new runner, both have never run a road race. Exciting stuff. So I was procrastinating on registering when a weekend home visiting friends got moved up a week and thought now I”d have to back out Except today, looking again, I realized: it’s not THAT weekend, dummy, it’s THIS weekend. Registration, ahoy!

And this is a super-tiny local race with overall and age group awards sooo yeah hey guys, I’m racing a 5K this weekend. In new shoes. And I haven’t done any speedwork in like 3+ weeks. Oops.

Expect (demand!) a race report in short order. Don’t know if there will be any pictures. I have no clue what the course is like, or how fast I’ll be able to go. I do know that it’ll be fun, and the weather looks perfect: the temps won’t get higher than the low 70s on Sunday, and likely cooler than that during the race.

I have other racing news to discuss, but that can wait for another post I suppose. Until then, I have a race to prep for. And a blister the size of Texas to tend to… ouch.

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