Friday, April 27, 2007

Who You Callin' "Jogger"?

Racing down from the top of Sabino Canyon's paved road brought me up behind two cyclists; A guide from the exclusive Canyon Ranch resort and his guest. The road has a 15 mph speed limit, so these gentlemen were riding the brakes on the downhill portions, then twiddling away in their smallest gears to manage the few uphill sections, where they sometimes weaved back and forth across the pavement to avoid falling down. I would pad by them on the "ups" and they would pass me on the downs, and after about a mile I was growing a bit tired of it all. Finally the older guest spoke up. "Go ahead jogger, have a nice morning." He was so polite I didn't even mind the moniker, which is a word that makes my wife visibly cringe. She's a runner, dammit, not a jogger.

This was the profile for the 10 miles today, and contrary to my expectations the run went very well. The concert kept me out until after 1 this morning, and when the kids awoke in the 5's I had trouble getting out of bed. By the time I got out on the roads it was already warming up, and while I was determined to make it up to the top of the road at Sabino I had no expectations about what sort of pace I could manage.

The last bit of soreness seemed to have exited the legs, and I was surprised to find myself running under 7 minute pace when I passed the visitor's center and started up the gradual climb. I'm trying to get more familiar with hills these days, in part because of a hilly 10K next weekend, but also because I'm seeing at least one hilly run per week in the upcoming marathon build.

For whatever reason, in my slap-happy sleep deprived state I found myself with a bit of fire in the belly. I hit the climbing road at a steady effort all the way up, digging in towards the end on the last half mile where the grade gets more severe. The legs cooperated and I hit the turnaround at 6:46 pace, which for me is moving along.

The downhill section found me in assisted marathon pace mode, and while the legs took a little bit of a beating it was nice to turn them over with some help from good ol' gravity. I kept the pressure on through the few climbs that popped up, then ran the last mile home as the legs began to fatigue a bit.

This run was much better than yesterday, and while my chin is resting on my desk from the lack of sleep, I feel I knocked out a good one.

Oh, for those of you who remember Crowded House (the concert I attended last night), you might enjoy Liam Finn's music. He opened the show with a solo performance, starting with the song that loads from the link. Great stuff.

Training: 10 miles, 1:04:01, 6:24 pace, w/5.3 miles uphill at 6:46, 4.7 miles downhill at 5:59


Blaxabbath said...

Why didn't you race the Sabino Canyon Sunset Run? The course is right in your backyard and you would probably have been able to take it.

Mike said...

I probably should have in retrospect. I just hate racing downhills, and it was pretty close to a few other races that I didn't want to trudge through with aching quad muscles.

You better show on Sunday, we have a nice 1 hour group.

Thomas said...

I agree with Kiera, I too hate to be called a jogger. At the party one lady mentioned she sometimes sees me jogging past her house. I very nearly cringed at the word.

Love2Run said...

I hate the word too but must confess to using it myself on occasion when 'running slowly'. But don't ever call me one, please!

Abadabajev said...

Quick question if I may;

Prior to your 5k xc-race, you mentioned you were worried about being flat because your week consisted mostly of recovery and on one particular day, you took it off completely.

Did you feel flat in your warm up or during the first 1k of your race? Or did it all vanished when the sun peaked through the clouds?

Nice hill work..... jogger :)

Mike said...

Sorry Abadabajev, you asked this before and I didn't get around to it. I did feel a little flat during the warm up, but I think it was mostly due to not having enough time to ease into it. If given the choice I like to run a very slow mile (8 minute pace), then another two miles or so while gradually speeding up. I also like to get in a series of strides beforehand. All in all, I prefer about a 25 minute warm up for a 5K, with me covering 3-3.5 miles.

Caring for the kids in the jogging stroller while my wife raced cut my warm up down to closer to a mile, and I really didn't have enough time to get past feeling flat. Still, I'll trade a short warm up for a chance to watch my wife race with the kids alongside me, so I guess it's a matter of priorities.