I have a week off from work. It's sort of a forced vacation...but I get paid, so I have no complaints. It's a "staycation" so I am spending a lot of time around the Fox Den doing odds and ends.
On Monday morning I ran an easy 8 miles and felt very good despite the 10 mile race in my legs just 24 hours before. Though, near the end of the run my legs were a little tired. That afternoon I ventured to Sky Meadow State Park in VA and hiked up to the Appalachian Trail for a night out under the stars.
I returned from the wilderness on Tuesday and ran a very easy 9 miles (most of which was done surveying the Father's Day 8k course) on the CCT/Towpath from Georgetown.
I ran an easy 7 on Wednesday morning and then went to run the Firebirds Mile at Gaithersburg HS in the afternoon. I was sort of up in the air about running a mile so soon after Cherry Blossom but told myself to not worry about it since it would simply be a workout or a "training through" race. I had to do "something" this week and had already decided to run 5xmile on Saturday...so I said what the heck. Additionally, Wiggy and I decided to run 10:00 for 2 miles AFTER the mile (ie - 5 min pace on tired legs). Still licking my wounds and blisters from Sunday during today's morning run, I reiterated again that this would be more a workout and less a race. I figured a 4:25 would be about that effort. We arrived at the scene and after a 3.5 mile warm-up we toed the line. Karl, our hired rabbit, led Joe and I through 400m in 65 and then 800m in 2:09 (Wiggy) and 2:11 (me). I felt very relaxed and worked on catching back up with Joe...if I could without straining myself. I couldn't close the gap but it felt as if I finished strong. Joe ended up (unofficially) in 4:22...and I (unofficially) in 4:25, or right about where I wanted to be. My legs felt pretty good but more importantly I didn't feel stressed/strained from the effort, though I never felt 100% "in it" either. After the race my throat was reeling from the effects of the cool evening (pollen-filled?) air. I swapped shoes and got on the line for 2 miles, but after 400m it was clear I wasn't going to go through with it. I labored to stay on pace and frankly I didn't feel like pushing it. This was meant to feel easy...and it didn't. I bailed after a 5:03 first mile and called it a day. This might be the only workout I've ever stopped short of finishing (aside from a tummy pull-out). I am not sure what to think about all this...so I won't. I will say that it was fun to mix it up a bit and try something fast. 15 miles for the day.