There hasn't been much to report about my running lately, because I haven't done much running. The sport's become more a matter of pain management than anything else this past year. After a few days of good running, I decided I needed to do a race to see what shape I was really in - because you can convince yourself of anything, but the race times don't lie (usually). I wanted to do something where there'd be no pressure, where no one would know who I was and so I ended up running a 5K race in Plummer, MN on the 4th of July.
I won a trophy, but it was a harsh dose of reality, especially as I think the course was about 300 meters short. Since then, it's been mostly too ridiculously hot and humid to do much serious training, even if I could.
Today there was a break in the heat and I was well-rested. It was time to see if I have finally figured out how to deal with the pain I have when running - I tend to describe it as "running with broken bones on broken glass."
I felt good and started out much faster than planned. Recently, I'd been plodding at 10-11 minutes per mile, but I was under 8 at the start and kept speeding up. It was time to try to rip the scar tissue adhesions in the fascia holding me together, like running an engine hot and then flooring it to burn off the soot and blow it out of the cylinders.
I dropped under 7 minutes per mile, then spotted one of the top local women runners ahead of me and just "gunned" it. I knew she was doing a long easy run and undoubtedly would be thinking about "guys who just have to pass women." In fact, she turned when she heard me breathing like an asthmatic bull (which isn't far from the mark, really) and I managed to exchange pleasantries about how we finally had decent running weather. Then I hit a downhill and just blasted it. 6 minute mile pace dropped to 5 and then a little better than that.
And nothing hurt!
Unfortunately, there's still all of the "old and out-of-shape" stuff to deal with, but it's a start.
4 days ago