Wednesday, March 10, 2010

Recovery, Cross-Training, and a Hiatus from the Long Run

The stomach bug died a slow death 36 hours after its appearance.  I woke up yesterday morning feeling much better, but still not a 100%.  Considering a slightly elevated temperature and some lingering symptoms, it seemed best to take another day off work, lest I risk a relapse and/or infected others.  By late afternoon, I felt a return to normalcy.  Thankfully, Ezra, although suffering a bit Friday night, appears to have missed the brunt of the illness that struck down Nell and me for a day and a half each.

Easing back into the swing of things, I hit the gym this morning, where Heath did his best to annihilate my muscles and shock my body back into shape.  I've been more or less coasting since Heartland.  I took six weeks off after my 100 mile journey.  A few weeks back into training, I broke the elbow, leading to another two months off.  I'd been back about two and half weeks when the stomach flu hit, causing me to miss a few days.  I feel like the gods have conspired against me and my return to fitness.  I'm (relatively) heavy and (definitely) weak.  The goal is to drop ten pounds of fat and bring back the muscle that has atrophied over the past three months.  I've got the Warrior Dash on May 1, and I'd like to be back in good shape by then.  That gives me two months to get ready.

Oh, and in three days I'm running the Toughest N' Texas race in Waco.  I'd like to finish all three laps and knock back another 50 km, but we will see how it goes.  At this point, I've got nothing to prove, and I intend to listen to my body and call it if I'm not feeling it.

Waco will be the last long run until training for the Mother Road 100 starts in earnest in July.  I'll still keep a long run base of 15-18 miles, but I don't intend to run more than three hours at a time until then.

In the meantime, Jballs and I have decided to focus on speed.  (Say what?!)  Yes, speed.  Since shifting almost exclusively to ultras, my overall pace has slowed dramtically, regardless of distance.  For awhile, running a four hour marathon wasn't too big of deal.  I knew I could finish within a few minutes of four hours without killing it, and if I pushed a bit toward the end, I could make it.  Those days seem long ago.  Over the past two years, I've lost about a minute per mile on my pace. 

It's time to get it back. 

We'll see how it goes.

1 comment:

clea said...

The same thing happened to me when I went to ultras. I lost a minute to a minute and a half!!! I am using this whole postpartum thing as an excuse to run shorter and faster. Hope you feel better soon....I am sorry to miss Waco this year, but next year I will be back!


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