It wasn't like the first six words of Dickens' A Tale of Two Cities last week. After dropping out of the half-marathon, where I ran one of the fastest 10Ks and 10 miles of my life before the wheels came off, the week went from bad to worse. I took Monday off, popped 4 (ish) miles on Tuesday - Thursday each a.m., and then just ran out of steam completely. I saw my sports doc and my rolfer to try to regain some semblance of my old self. After taking Friday and Saturday off, Eric and I went to do an easy 10k on the river trails on Sunday. About 2 and a half miles in, I requested that we turn around. Man, some days you're just not feeling it. I couldn't get my breathing right - something that never is an issue for me.
I spent the rest of the morning pondering weak and weary over my running. Then, a friend, well let's be honest... one of my greatest friends came into town to have an early Thanksgiving with a portion of his extended family who are also friends of mine. We partook of good food (vegetarian in my case) and wine, and splendid conversation. It took my mind off of my plethora of problems de pied.
The next morning, yesterday, he and I got up relatively early. I wanted to attempt another run. He asked if he could bike along and keep me company. What ensued was a terrific run into a cold wind. Running slowly enough to chat took my mind off of my problems. I felt fluid and, if not fresh, relatively rested. We finished the hilly and windy 4 miles in a nice time, with little or no problems to report. I felt pretty good about it the rest of the day.
This morning I decided to tempt fate again, and awoke at 4:30. By 5 a.m. I was out in the pretty seriously chilly morning air putting in a little three miler on the flatest course I run. Honestly, it felt wonderful. I made sure to stretch a bit more, and focus on the activity more than the time (22:12 in case you're wondering).
So, after a craptastic past 7 days or so, I think I'm back on track. I am going to chill out on running any races, and just focus on the zen of running (or at least try to do so). Friday and Saturday, for want of something athletic, I dusted off my awesome road bike and cranked it around town. I remember why I like doing that so much. The speed and handling of the two-wheeled Ferrari is kind of exciting every now and then. I usually use one of my mountain bikes for errands, and haven't had the roadster out for some time. I think on my 1 or 2 days off each week, it is going to get the nod as the regular go-to machine.
I've also been checking out swimming videos (since I live 100yds away from an Olympic size pool). I normally do more swimming in the Winter, and want to try to improve my form. I'll write about it more as soon as I get my head wet.
That's all for now. Props to my friend, Doug who had a nasty little bike accident in early morning frost yesterday. We've all been there, and hope you're feeling well enough to get back on the horse later this week.