That was then...
We've all felt it, and we named it progress. January 2009, I made the choice to run my first 50k and at the time I was scratching out 10 miles each week, randomly getting out for a few miles here and there.
This! is NOW
January 2010 brought consistent training, a marathon PR at Disney and a nice solid start to the new year. My focus was, after racing, to recover and then begin the winter/ spring build up of base for a couple of key races in June and September.
The basic idea is to add about 10 minutes a day to the easy runs, keep on with the tempo efforts one or two days a week and continue with the long runs as well, but add hills to the mix, to actively seek them out and hopefully garner some power over the course of longish runs. With Chattooga not far off (5 months) and the Run For the Red, just around the corner after that, this is the month to get off to a good start to get as deep a foundation as possible for these two very hilly goal races.
Here are the dirty details in statistical form:
Monthly Total: 203 miles
Longest Day: 28.5 miles
Weekly High: 54 miles
Average Pace: Not important.
Well, I know the mitochondria will remember every step I have taken, and the ones I did not (recovery is not a 4 letter word). As far as what my brain recalls from this month... it was cold, some days were bitter as a political convention, but much more hopeful. I do find liberation in the winter, slippery season.
We are forced to slow our roles, to ease it back after the peak racing season. This takes some of that pressure away, that tends to creep itself into our routine. With the goals a bit farther off, we have the chance to test our dedication and our ability to keep something as abstract as a goal in mind, training the mind to dictate to the body what will occur. This skill is a great seperator when it comes to external results. Most importantly, it teaches us some valuable things we can carry into our lives.
but, Most of All
I am just thankful to be getting out there. To feel the chill and occasionally get a spring-like day as some sort of a gift. And, be able to cruise along and enjoy that day because I have been consistent in my training. When I pass by the other guy, the fair weather runner, and he is hacking along the trail... what can I do?
Just continue setting the example, and hope that others get out there when it is NOT so easy. We all have the potential to either be dedicated or to take the easy way out.
P.S.- Pitchers and catchers are packing their bags... which means spring is just around the corner. Hang in there a few more weeks!!!