Wednesday, May 30, 2012

May 2012 Summary / Summer Track Week 1

Rumor has it we had a winter this year.  I think I missed it.  At any rate, with Memorial Day behind us, it is effectively summer now in North Carolina, even with the summer solstice a few weeks away.  It is now safe to wear seer sucker, just leave your Borat bikinis at home.

And with June right around the corner, it is now decidedly miserable to try long runs out on the trail, thanks to the horrific 3 H's of an NC summer:  the heat, humidity, and horseflies.  As such I've hit my 'wall' for long runs just as I was getting into shape.  More complaining on this topic below.

Bloodsucking fiends

Thankfully my running club (Carolina Godiva) sponsored a weekly summer track event at UNC to keep me occupied and satisfy that racing itch.  The longest distance this year is a 5K.  Not too many long runs required to be decent.  On the track that is 12 1/2 painful laps.  Just don't lose count.

First week in, I attempted all 5 events, and even set a personal best... in the mile race walk.  That makes one lifetime attempt.

Compared to last summer's first week

Mile:  27 seconds slower
200m:  1 second faster
mile race walk:  first ever try this year
800m:  2 seconds faster
5K:  27 seconds faster

Before last summer, averaged 35 miles per week the month before; this year averaging closer to 25 thanks to injuries to [fill in the blank] from January through March.  Nowhere near the level of fitness, but somehow actually better in everything other than the mile...

May in numbers:

117 miles through 5/30

568 pullups

Ran in 6 counties; Wake, Chatham, Durham, Orange, Hyde, Dare

Longest run:  16 miles

I attempted a run from Cary to our house in South Durham, having Megan drop me off near Davis Drive Middle.  I meandered my way to the ATT.

This was a tough run for 2 reasons

1) heat; I thought the parking lots off the Tobacco Trail had water fountains.  I was wrong.  6 miles into my run, I did not have a refill.  This made the last few miles all the more painful.  Probably shouldn't have your longest run of the year thus far also be on one of the hottest days of the year too...

2) unholy horsefly attacks; these make it all the more difficult to go a leisurely pace.  Anytime you slow down, they find it all the more easier to land and feast upon your carcass.  My reaction is always to pick up the pace, which 14 miles in on a hot, muggy evening with a low distance base, was a good way to end up in an ER.  So I ended up calling Megan to pick me up at 16, less than a mile away from home.  I was done.  Which was good, because the next day I felt that slight twinge in the achilles that would have probably turned into another 'out for 3 more weeks' injury had I pushed it any further/harder.  So thanks you nasty #$%&@#s for saving me from that fate.

Best run:  6 mile run on a Friday afternoon in Umstead Park out and back on Loblolly Trail, listening to Archers of Loaf's "Icky Mettle".  This was probably the last clear cool day here in 'Raleigh-Durham'.

June goals:  avoid injury, low 30s for miles per week, up to 35 by month's end

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