Here in Boone we have been awaiting several construction projects being completed. One has involved the building of a new, state of the art county high school. What does this have to do with anything? If you have not already figured it out on your own... this means a brand new track to run on, less than a half a mile from my work place!
So, last week I dropped by there on an easy run and investigated its progress... introduced myself and saw that it was not actually finished. The track was a hard, paved 1/4 loop- still good enough I thought and planned on running a workout there the next day.
That very next day I ran from work with flats in hands and arrived at the track to find a group of paving men with their equipment putting down the new plush surface. I quickly formulated a plan to utilize the football field instead. I could do diagonals for turnover and use that nice new turf surface instead!! Soon though, my dreams were dashed as the workers began berating me with waving arms and loud noises which brashly eluded to a sever lack of intelligence on my part.
Well, I can't argue with them there- but I was wondering what the football field had to do with them... and the track??? I guessed there was possibly a liability issue??? or that they were simply a**holes. Maybe both. I asked them which was the case by picking one and deducing the other, then delicately "waved" goodbye and spent the rest of my run in a poor mood for having reacted to stupidity with a higher level of such. Disappointment all around.
I did get that work in the next day at the Appalachian State track. I was there that day for the first official football practice. This allowed me to dodge parents, boosters, TV cameras, reporters... all hoping to see the next in line of National Football Championships for the FCS powerhouse. If the session had not been delayed once already that week, I am sure I would have put it off that day as well. 1 x 2mile, rest 5 min. then 4x 1mile, rest 3:30 (all at 10k effort)
I am no quitter
Yesterday I was able to get out on the new high school track and christen myself on its soft soft soft surface- almost like carpet it was so soft (or choice toilet paper). The workout called for 2x2miles at 10k effort with a 5 minute rest and then 2x1mile with a 3:30 rest. So that is what I did. Thankfully the 88 degree afternoon brought some sprinkles and shade dropping the temperature about 10 degrees and making things more sane.
The cross country team was out there for the second half running something like 25x100m or so. I guess getting turnover worked into their muscles or something. Having other runners out there was helpful in its mysterious way. I normally run circles around the curious stares of football players playing catch in lane one.
This weekend I race 10k on a flat gravel course before returning to both the Xterra and High Country Triple Crown series(es?) over the follwing 3 consecutive weeks. I feel the mental edge needed to race well and stay engaged coming back. The required attitude to stay focused through a rough patch and not let the pace slip because that effort level is just so familiar at all levels of comfort after so many trips around the oval.