Tuesday, March 25, 2014

Still Struggling (But Never Stopping)

I haven't enjoyed running lately. I've been dreading the training and been finding reasons not to go. I wish I could find solid reasons for this slump. The weather has been warming, but I've been fighting allergies. I've taken some vacation time which has been refreshing and tiring in its own way. But if I stay still too long, the Black Dog comes close.

I did a few things that are hopefully in the right direction. Firstly, I ditched the sub-65 10K training. I wasn't making the intervals for the bulk of the tempo runs. I couldn't work out the schedules at all. Rather than keep feeling bad, I decided to stop altogether. The constant failure wasn't doing my mental state any good.

Secondly, I started up doing Zombies, Run! again. By including the zombie chases, I get the speed intervals I've actually been enjoying. I have to watch my pace, though; I have to figure out how fast I have to go to outpace the Walkers but still retain the energy to keep running. I'm discovering that the chases are random; sometimes they even show up when I'm warming up or cooling down, so I have to be prepared at all times. It's part of the brain work that I need.

The final thing I've done for myself is to sign myself up for another race. There is a half marathon and a 5K option. I was going to do the half, but there is a 3 1/2 hour time limit. I did my last half in a little over 3 hours, and that's cutting it a bit close. Even if I don't DFL, chances are the bulk of the champagne will be gone. With the 5K, I have an hour to finish (easy-peasy), and I still get the tech shirt, the boa, the tiara, the champagne, and a medal (smaller, but a medal nonetheless). Since I'm taking the shorter route, I'm going for a PR--dare I try sub 40 minutes?

My new training plan is as follows:

  • Sunday - Long run, defined as a leisurely 4-5 miles so the 5K seems like a "short run." Done while listening to On Being for an extra piece of peace.
  • Monday - Cross-train (yoga, belly-dancing, something)
  • Tuesday - Zombie Run
  • Wednesday - Cross-train
  • Thursday - Tempo run, only about 3 miles, while listening to NPR
  • Friday - Cross-train
  • Saturday - Rest
I feel like a weenie reverting back to 3 mile runs, but right now that seems to be what best fits my schedule and my temperament.  I do want to do another half this year. For now, however, I want to find my joy again. Or at least a reason to move forward.