After a summer of great traveling, abundant reading, and plenty of lazying around, my training was left somewhat lacking. Amazing how that works- I have all the time in the world yet fail to use it effectively towards running… I’ll be kicking myself when I’m back at work in a few days. So it goes. Not that I’ve done nothing; I’ve been running and swimming with a triathlon in mind, but nothing of great volume or intensity. And once again, I have found considerable difficulty motivating myself to get on a bicycle. To think I used to ride 200+ miles in a week. I just don’t want to do it- I dread donning lycra and riding just for riding’s sake. I’m not feeling the triathlon training life. I feel like I’m doing everything just enough to be able to do it, but nothing enough to excel.
So I’m back to focusing on running. My initial urge was to dive in and register for the North Face Endurance Challenge on December 3rd, a 50 Mile trail race. However, the more I looked at a training plan, the more I realized the volume build would be too high, too fast for where I’m at right now. Running some 50Ks in a few months would work, but 50 miles is a bit daunting with only 12 weeks to train and no substantial distance base at the moment.
So rather than going distance, I figure I’ll try to become a Born Again Runner in the coming weeks. I signed up for two 5K trail races tonight. One is in Malibu on September 24th and one at Elysian Park in Los Angeles on October 22nd (which appears to be a semi-XC looking course). The first will be my test, the second race will be a PR attempt. I’ve done 30Ks, halves, marathons, 50Ks…but never the simple 5K. To be honest, it scares me. I’ve always just plugged away, jogging the miles. Running in a state of non-stop lung-burning, head-spinning pain will certainly be new. I’ll be changing my entire approach to running in the coming weeks, a phoenix rising from the ashes, rebuilding the way I run. I’ll be focusing on quality over quantity, intervals and track running, and trying to get faster. I have no idea what time to shoot for; I’ll determine that after my first few weeks of workouts as I really have no baseline for shorter distance PRs. It should be an interesting shift: rather than running to finish, I’ll be running to finish fast.
The 5Ks are paid for, no turning back; I’m excited to discover a new side of running.