"There's only one hard and fast rule in running: sometimes you have to run one hard and fast."

Sunday, August 26, 2012

Throwing up more red flags than the Beijing Olympics

It's been a rough week. After a week of running that felt easy and fun, despite being fast, this week was one that was nothing but warnings to back off, ease up and slow down.

Monday, I felt surprisingly good for the day after a hard run. Instead of remembering that sometimes it takes a day to feel the effects of a hard run, I did my easy day too hard. Trying to make up the weekly average by pushing the easy days is usually the first sign for me that I'm in trouble.

Tuesday, I just didn't feel "solid." I went to do my hill repeats, but I wasn't looking forward to it - another warning sign. I tried to "cook" the first one and I didn't have any zip in my legs, so I decided to just do the repeats comfortably. Because the uphills were easy, I ended up doing the downhills fast, which is another case of trying to improve by pushing the parts that are supposed to be easy. On the third hill, I was already wanting to walk, so the wheels were falling off, but I did the five hills and it was a little faster than the week before overall.

Wednesday was supposed to be another easy day and I went out hard. This time it felt hard. The daily grind was starting to show, yet I wasn't backing off, even though I was starting to have sleep problems [another sign].

Thursday was sprints day, which became strides day. I did them against the wind, which gave me an excuse for how slow they were. [Another flag.] And I did the recoveries too fast, yet again. The cool-down was grueling, but, looking at my watch, I pushed a bit to make it as fast as planned.

Friday was an off day, but car troubles meant an unplanned walk of several miles. The day was really stressful emotionally, even without that. I ended up not really eating or sleeping, making a bad situation worse. [This is three or four red flags]

Saturday was quarter mile repeats. I started off thinking I couldn't do it, even though this is the one workout I've done four weeks in a row [another sign]. I did three miles warm-up, then took 15 minutes to stretch and convince myself to do the workout [another sign]. I decided not to look at my watch, but to do the repeats by feel, to make sure I didn't push too hard when I wasn't feeling it. After four quarters, I felt like I could do one more, but decided to go easy on myself and just do a cool-down. A half mile later, I was shuffling, barely able to move, I was so tired. Looking at my splits, I had done the quarters WAY too fast.

Sunday morning I had sore achilles tendons on awakening, so I knew I needed to drop any idea of running hard for a while. I felt drained from the first step, but hung on for 7 very slow miles.

Time for a recovery week!


Johann said...

With the running you do a recovery week is certainly in order. I'm always amazed at how much you do. Enjoy a relaxed week!

Anonymous said...

I try to run with people who are slower than me on runs when I'm supposed to be taking it easy works the best. It can also be a confidence booster in a twisted way.

Chad Walstrom said...

Here's to hoping your next week of running feels more like you're in a "groove" than this weeks workouts.

Anonymous said...

I have found I have to moderate my speed days - This is really hard, because I could do faster running or more reps without being out of line for the workout of the day, but in accumulation with the other workouts in the week I would be crispy by weeks end.

My goal is simply a diet of moderate workouts and slow constant improvement in 2012 and I continue to get in better shape each month over the previous month.