Had one hour to run today so I managed to get myself to the gully to run on the trails. Sunny and beautiful again.
More deep thoughts later...
OK. I once read somewhere that each runner is "an experiment of one". There are general principles of good training that apply to everyone and need to be heeded, but there is wide leeway for each runner to work out the specifics.
Being on this blog has generally been good for me. Knowing that smart people who know a lot about training are reading my posts has forced me to think more about what I'm doing. It has also caused me to realize that my body can handle more mileage that I thought it could. This has resulted in much faster times, even as I work into my late 40s.
I have, however, become a little too competitive with regards to this whole mileage board thing. There are a handful of people that I am constantly measuring myself against and I find myself trying to match them mile for mile. This has caused me to abandon some things that I know to be true with regards to my own training.
For example, I am better off running 55 to 70 miles per week with two cross training workouts and two weight workouts per week. I race much better off of this kind of program than I do off of 80 mpw with no supplemental training.
Over the past couple years I have began to lift weights. I credit that with increased strength (obviously) and greater resistance to injury which enables me to train harder. A couple months ago I saw a picture of myself running and I thought I was getting too big. I have the body type that quickly benefits from weight training - I suppose it has something to do with the right combination of muscle fibers or something like that. So I have to be careful when I lift not to get too intense about it. Anyway, I decided to back off of the weights and cross training and increase my mileage so I would look more like a runner.
This has not resulted in faster times. Also, my body parts are aching more and I am missing the desire to run really hard. Generally I can count on feeling like really putting the hammer down once or twice every week in my training. But not lately. Lately I find I'm dreading hard tempo runs and intervals, so I'm just not doing them.
So, I'm going to return to the training mix that works for me. I'll have to resign myself to being on page two of the mileage board most weeks!