Sunday, February 2, 2014

Boston Training Week 7, Turning 32

Thoughts on my last week as a 31 year old... looking backward...

Upon turning 17 I was...

  • Running indoor track at a svelte 140 pounds, just broke 5 minutes in the mile for the first time
  • Remember getting accepted to UNC on my 17th birthday but I was convinced I was going somewhere "far away" for college
  • Remember being a stress case worrying about a ton of high school crap that in the end never mattered
  • Remember the rest of the world was raving about some other 17 year old named Britney Spears, but I didn't care because I was too busy brooding and listening to Radiohead's OK Computer and being an angst-ridden high school senior in Salisbury, NC...

And at 22...

  • Working my first full time "9 to 5" (plus) job, sharing a two bedroom apartment near a shopping mall in Manchester CT
  • Remember going to a townie bar on my 22nd called the Hungry Tiger and drinking several Guinness with some other coworkers who were a year out from school (all of us missed college) and thinking it was much more tame than my 21st
  • Remember freezing my ass off all winter (made this one here in NC seem like a joke)
  • Remember being miserable being away from Megan and NC
  • Remember listening to a ton of REM's "Automatic for the People" and The Verve which I'm sure didn't help me feel any better
  • Remember Outkast's "Hey Ya" was the song of winter '04
  • Was running a fair bit mostly on weekends in the ice and snow, but was in no sort of great shape or routine.

At 27...

  • Working and living in Richmond VA, a town I moved to only for a job, which in 2009 after the market collapse was a good thing for a 27 year old to have
  • Remember doing tons of my own made up Crossfit at the Y and in my sketchy rented row house basement, but not running much at all (ended up running my first post-college marathon later that same year)
  • Remember killing time playing lots of Guitar Hero that winter when Megan had class until 10 PM every night
  • Remember listening to The Strokes' "Room on Fire" and the Yeah Yeah Yeah's "It's Blitz" (Kelly Clarkson's "Since You've Been Gone" was the hit song from 5 years ago but I had to look that up)
  • Remember overall being 27 and 2009 as being spectacularly dull - too old to have college type fun, but too young to feel really "grown up" and know how to spend my free time.

Going into 32...

  • Back in the Triangle, which is where I hope to live for many more years
  • Own a house.  Feel stable in my job and career.  
  • Running about as fast as I was at 17, but can go much further... and much more consistent and self-disciplined.  
  • Drink "better" beer than when I was 22  
  • Save more money than when I was 27
  • Have much more responsibility in my work but able to keep the stress in perspective much easier.  Things that used to take me hours to do now take minutes (or delegated).
  • Going to as many concerts and shows as I was in my mid-twenties, but go to bed and wake up much earlier
  • Still always finding new and interesting things to listen to on runs or drives to work - Mates of State, Neko Case, Lucius, and The Front Bottoms are on current rotation.  
  • Lorde is the same age I was in 1999.  Beyonce still has it at 32.
  • Happily married, looking forward to "whatever comes next..."

Sure, early February is a lousy time of year to turn a year older, but I'll say that I feel much wiser, more confident, and overall more fulfilled going into 32 than any of those other periods of my life.  And if the last few years are a trend, then I have nothing to worry about going into the next few.  Our twenties are overrated.  Experience is underrated.

Monday:  6 at Brixx at 6, washed down with a Mother Earth Dark Cloud

Tuesday:  7.5 miles, I didn't mean to hammer this run, but something about cranking up Kanye's MBDTF and getting out just before the (anti-climactic) "snowstorm" hit pushed me to go tempo pace for a good 7 and a half mile circuit down the ATT to O Kelly Chapel and back.  This is a popular training run for me in the fall and on a good day I'm usually 52-54 without pushing too hard.  On this run, I broke 50 easily, splitting a sub-40 10K for the last part.  That used to be a good race time for me.  The fact I can just go out and do that on a random Tuesday is a good confidence builder that I'm staying on track for a sub-3 at Boston on the right day.

Wednesday:  7+ miles;  went out for a snow run on the ATT and some single track hunting trails near Scott King, much slower

Thursday:  rest

Friday:  8 miles total with intervals; 4x1000 at 10K pace (3:39-3:43), 10 minute jog, 4x600 at 5K pace (2:04-2:06) at Wally Wade in the dark, solo, but not as cold

Saturday:  8+ miles on ATT with Megan on bike, one of those "I'm just out here for the miles" runs.  

Neutral Milk Hotel at Cat's Cradle in the evening.  Jeff Mangum's voice might be a love it or hate it type of deal, and I'm obviously I'm biased.  This is one of those bands I wish I had discovered sooner.

Sunday:  16 miles on ATT from Rise with BCTC guys.  I was only aiming for 12, but ended up feeling pretty good and going out a bit longer, and then pushed well into the sub-7s for the last 4 miles (closed at 6:43-6:38-6:30).  Am getting really sick of the ATT, so really glad to have company.  Ordered the largest donut on the menu later, because after this week, I earned that one.

53 Total Miles

January Total:  188

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