Tuesday, August 3, 2010

Drafting the Battle Plan

First, apologies to those who have heard this story before…

I’ve always liked to run and was always, when placed against my peers, fairly decent at it. I ran well in high school and got pretty good (1:59, 4:35, 15:51, 27:55) but not great. My hope was to “be all I could be” when I got to college. Unfortunately that never materialized. I got better (1:57, 4:18eq, 15:30, 25:30), but never got great. I was envious at the times being run by those I competed against in high school. I wanted more, but by the time I graduated college it seemed my time had past…or had it? Running was always front and center and my world revolved around it. I loved the solidarity of it as well as the social aspect of it. I loved knowing my competitors but I loved to beat them even more. Still, I was not as good as I wanted to be. I graduated college in 2002 and ran for fun for the next 4 years. Then, in the fall of 2006, everything changed…

For some reason I decided to training for the Army 10 Miler. My goal was to run 54:00, but I ended up running 53:22 (5:20s). Impressed and wanting to see what else I could do, I decided to race a 10k a month later. It was here that I first donned the singlet of the Georgetown Running Company. I glanced around at the starting line and noticed others wearing the blue and white Brooks top. We smiled and nodded at one another. I knew no one. I ended up running a personal best (32:47) in hellacious conditions that included 40-degree temps, wicked wind and horizontal rain. When the weather stopped and I regained my normal body temperature I made the pledge to double my commitment to the sport I had placed on the backburner for nearly half a decade and see what I could do. That was about four years ago.

To be honest, I accomplished the goals I set out to achieve, but with running and racing we keep moving the goal post when we realize we can achieve more. This is what I’ve done, but when would I stop? A few years ago, I enacted the “2011 Plan” in which I would continue with the intensity until the fall of 2011 and then stop down. I would still run, maybe race, but I wouldn’t throw the same amount of effort into training. Perhaps I’d do something else with my free time. Start a business? Start a family? Who knows? I was fine delaying all of these “life things” knowing I had given it all I could when I had the chance. Like Sean Astin said in The Goonies “this is our time”…or more appropriately here - “this is MY time”.

And so it is. I’m not done yet. I still need to see what I can do in the half and the full. This is my time.

The worst of the summer SHOULD be behind us.

I just received a new job, which SHOULD keep me local.

I SHOULD have enough in the bank to get me to Chicago.

And, I SHOULD be running again by this weekend.

I have 9 weeks. If things go well next week and my pain is behind me, I am to enact a truncated training regime to get me ready for 26.2 miles.

I am getting ahead of myself though. Today I rest and lick my wounds.


Towpath said...

It's impressive how much you've achieved in the last 4 years. I remember talking to you about running in the summer of '06 while working at AV. You said you were only getting about 30 miles in per week because you were too busy going to happy hours. You spoke of running as if it was something in your past, but obviously, you turned things around that fall. I'm hoping in 2011 I can have my own resurgence.

KLIM said...


though, in fairness, I was spending more time concentrating on my profession and going to happy hours to be amongst colleagues/work professionals...not necessarily to do keg stands.

In 2012 I will be living vicariously through you.