Friday, August 24, 2012

I loved it that...

- I knew when I started out up the first hill and it didn't feel so great that it was just because my muscles needed to warm up and loosen up and my heart needed to get busy pumping that good oxygen to those hard working muscles.

- when I got up that hill and started a very, very gradual downhill to flat section, I felt like I was running, not just plodding.

- when I was on another downhill section and saw my shadow, I noticed that it didn't seem like I was lifting my knees very much.  I know my quads are stronger from all that biking, so the thought of lifting my knees more wasn't scary.  I did it and went faster.

- when I reached the bottom of the hill just before the 1 mile marker, I told myself to just push it up the hill, no problem, and though I can't say I went faster up the hill, I didn't slow down.

- when I got to the top of the hill, my time was faster than I've ever run that mile.  Yippeeee!

- the second mile was easier, even the hill right before the 2 mile mark. (Why do I have a course in which I have to push it uphill just before I reach the mile marks???)

- when I felt tired on the third mile, I started talking to myself, telling myself, "You can do this. It's flat.  Keep going," and on the hill at 3 1/2, I told myself, "One mailbox at a time and then you're at the top."  Along the way, I smelled pancakes and greeted another runner.  And then, just like that, I was at the top.

- the last little uphill grade didn't feel much like uphill and the last downhill to the driveway felt fun.  Yes, you read that right ... fun!  I could stretch out my legs and push it down the hill, knowing that I was almost done!!!

Do I love running?  Well, I loved a lot of things about my run this morning and I feel eager to run again.  I'm not dreading it like I used to.  I feel stronger.  I trust my legs and lungs and I've learned how to be more mentally tough with myself, pushing myself harder instead of wimping out halfway up a hill or when I start to feel tired.  I have learned that when I start to drag, sometimes the best thing to do is start pumping my arms and lift my knees and run harder.  Crazy, huh?!

Do I love running?  Well, let's just say I'm no longer a hater, I'm liking it a whole lot better, and I think I'm well on my way to loving it.  With a month to go before the triathlon, I'm pretty happy to be in that place.

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I didn't do that brick workout yesterday.  Finishing the quilts and getting them mailed took a fair amount of time so I decided, rather reluctantly, that it would be a rest day.

Today, I did my 3 mile run in the morning, worked in the kitchen for awhile, and then did a speed workout on my bike.  Here's the speed workout Coty told me to do:

-ride 2 miles fast, as fast as I could go, keeping up a consistent hard effort the whole way.

-Rest 3 minutes or so, pedaling easy

-Ride another 2 miles fast.

I repeated this, going out 2 miles and back twice, riding a total of 8 miles at a faster speed.  I'm fortunate to have a great place to do this workout - a fairly straight, not too hilly, not too heavily traveled road with a 2 mile section that starts at the town ballfield and ends at a church.  It's really nice to have those parking lots at either end of the 2 mile stretch so I can just coast around and not deal with any road traffic before starting the next sprint.

Good workouts today!  Think I earned the yummy dinner we're going to have tonight!


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