5 miler in Columbia
2 slumber parties with Caitlin
This week, friends, is ground zero. A baseline. A starting point, if you will, for my 2011 fitness. I say that because, contrary to what you might believe, I haven't truly felt fit at any point during this year. I was fit enough in Birmingham to nab a Trials qualifier, but in reality my progression leading up to the race was capricious at best. Don't get me wrong, I definitely nailed a few tough workouts, but for a variety of reasons I was lucky to squeeze in one of those per week. I only completed one long run of 20 miles or more, and my marathon "simulation" inadvertently took place during what was supposed to be an actual race attempt at Houston. Come late February, several down weeks plus an onset of seemingly insurmountable ITBS essentially wiped out the two months following Birmingham.
But that was then. Now I feel strong and healthy. I don't feel fit, exactly, but I feel like I'm finally setting the foundation for getting there. Saturday's race--which Caitlin recapped brilliantly and thus saved me the trouble of doing so--was a harder effort for me than I would like to admit, but I'm okay with that. If 29:30 on a hilly course is my baseline, then I'm excited to see what I can do with a dozen or so weeks like this one under my belt. As summer approaches, the goal is consistency in training and incremental fitness gains. There is no reason to shoot for the moon right now. The Trials are almost nine months away and the real marathon training won't begin until November. When that time comes, I plan to be ready with a solid baseline of fitness and an insatiable hunger for success. The payoff will come in January, but the goal begins now. I'm ready.
Sunday, May 1, 2011