After Thursday’s debacle on the MU w(Rec)k trail, a different group I run with decided to change our route due to construction on the MKT trail and run down… you guessed it… that very same trail again. Ghosts of stuck police cars, emergency lights and runners laying on the ground ran through my mind as we started out. But the combination of good friends, a beautiful, if cold day and a clear trail faded all of that and I settled in to a nice, easy pace.
Talk swirled around races, injury and recovery, workouts, bras, tools and lots of other random subjects. I listened for most of it, but I will admit my mind was wandering to other things. My new bike, finishing my cabinets, my kids, camping and fishing. I’m definitely ready for spring…! The run was blessedly uneventful. Since this was my long run day, I hit about 2 miles to go and could feel a little fatigue setting in. I decided to empty the tank and push the pace a little to the end. I have no idea what the pace was, but it was faster. The last hundred yards or so, I was wheezing and puffing pretty good. It hurt, in a good way… 😉
I have been having quite a bit of work related worry and stress lately. Not ABOUT my job, just stressed that my job might be on the chopping block. Friday we got word from our new boss that this wasn’t the case and that we all just needed to do our jobs and we would be fine. It’s amazing how much better you feel while exercising when your stress levels elsewhere are low. For the first time in months, when I finished, my neck and shoulders weren’t sore from running tense. I didn’t change my stride or form at all. The only thing it could have been was stress. That’s sad. I wish I didn’t let it affect me like that. I always thought of exercise as my release. I guess not.
Anyway, I got home and felt good the rest of the day so I decided to run on back to back days for the first time in months, yesterday. I met some more friends and we ran 6 miles. Although we all “SAID” we were going to run very slow (9:00ish) that did not happen. We started out at 8:30 and it got ugly from there. I insisted on running easy and, at various times, so did everyone else. Nonetheless our last few miles were around 8:00 pace with a 7:20 thrown in for good measure. NOTE TO SELF: With those guys… there IS no such thing as a slow run.
Not that I’m really complaining. It was fun to run back to back days. I feel fine today and I am resting with a day off, so I’m happy. Now I gotta get back on the bike! My hot rod will be built soon and I need to have at least SOME legs for it. C’mon warm weather!!!