Friday, September 08, 2006

Vanity


A view from the camera on the computer at home right now. With a sick Finn it's good to be at work.

I made the mistake of running those 5 extra miles after work yesterday, mostly to be able to put a higher number in the "miles traveled" column of the log. The miles didn't do diddly for my endurance, as I was only out for 35 minutes. The run didn't aid my recovery, as I was stressed before, during and after the run because of time constraints (my wife needed to leave as soon as I got back and I had the kids to myself). At 7 minute pace, I ran just fast enough to keep any benefits of the run as a "shakeout" for my tired muscles to an absolute minimum. Never mind having raced over the weekend, never mind a few poor nights of sleep and the added stresses a sick child brings, never mind making your wife spend yet another 35 minutes without any help.

These were stupid vanity miles, and I should be smart enough by now to know it.

I paid the price for this run, the run earlier in the week in the 6:20's, and the race on Monday during the workout today. Remember last week how I glided through 7 miles at marathon pace? There was something about padding along quickly in my race shoes, my breath barely registering on the effort scale if I'm remembering correctly. Today I attempted this same run, in trainers this time, and it felt like I was dragging a bag of bricks behind me the whole way.

The two mile warm up should have been a sign, when I had trouble getting down to even 7:15 pace. I thought about calling an audible at this point and doing the workout tomorrow, but I decided instead to just muck through it. At about two miles in I started making deals, saying to myself that surely I would warm up and the legs would empty out and start behaving after a few more minutes. At 5 miles it took some will to get through the last 12 minutes or so, and the last mile took an eternity. All that being said, I did manage 7 miles at an average 5:58 pace.

I feel I'm at a tipping point, as hard races tend to either lead to training breakthroughs or weary malaise. I've been banking on the former, but perhaps I've been a little too gregarious this week in trying to force what will only come naturally in time. I've taken a page from the coach I've been listening to and started to pay attention to my overall training pace for the week. I'm at 63 miles right now at an overall 6:45 pace, which is right on the edge of what it seems I can recover from.

Speaking of recovering, Finn only woke once in the middle of the night and once at 4:30 after I'd already gotten up and poured some coffee. He's still quite miserable, and while his fever is down to 99-100 degrees, he's still lethargic. He's starting to eat a little more, which is certainly helping. I'm hoping he'll be fully recovered by the time we take him back to the doctor on Tuesday. Thanks as always for rooting for him, he's a tough little guy. I was asleep by 9 last night, and while I'm still feeling pretty fried I enjoyed getting a little more rest than what has become "the usual".

Training: Today, 10 miles, 1:04:05, 6:24 pace, with 7 miles at 5:58 pace
Yesterday pm., 5 miles, 34:50, 6:58 pace

5 comments:

miller said...

Thanks Mike. It's been too long since I've been able to feel like a workout has been near the level of what I'm capable of. Hope your training is going well.

Laurie said...

Finn is cute even when crying and sick.

Marc said...

What a priceless pic.

Yeah, we have all run those stupid vanity miles, even though we know better.

Here's to a speedy recovery for Finn and the scales of training tipping towards training breakthroughs.

Eric said...

You've got a pretty good level of self-awareness going on...Arthur would be proud.

I hope the doc is able to tell you something about the Finn Man, and I hope you all are back to normal soon. Take care.

Mike said...

Thanks everyone, Finn seems to be on the mend. I guess we're still waiting for a blood culture to...well, culture, but I think he's just an unwilling host to whatever bug Haiden brings home from school.

He is pretty cute, even with those circles under his eyes.