It seems like giving a full month to recover (read: no trying to “sneak” a run in) everything is back on track. With Big Sur Marathon just 3 weeks away, it’s turned into a crash course training program. I’ve been wavering back and forth about making this a “fun” run vs racing it. As much as I want to bag it and just run it, my heart tells me to go for it. My level of fitness before the injury was definitely in BQ shape and for those that know me in real life, my mental capacity to do these races is sky high. I don’t accept anything else. This is what makes it so hard for me to just lay back.
Which brings us to this weekend. I had 20 on tap to see where all the pieces are these days. For those that have never gone through a stoppage in running, it IS TOUGH to come back. It’s like starting over again for the first few runs. Where running an 8 minute mile was a non-issue before, I’m definitely huffing a bit more. It’s annoying but I know it won’t be as hard to get back to where I was before. I know I can run sub 7 minute miles without issue now during workouts and races. I know I can run a much faster marathon than my current PR. That’s the part that gives me hope for the end of April. This past weekend I met up with my running buddy, BK, for a 20 miler. I met her up at her place at 5:45am which made for a 4am wake up for me.
The plan? Get 12 miles in before the 10K at 8am in Central Park. Ambitious? Sure. Doable, yes! We ran along Morningside Park and along Riverside Park which brought spring like views. I definitely think spring and fall in NYC are always amazing. Check out the scene below at around 7am with no one buzzing about yet!
We made it to the race with time to spare. We started around 8:40 pace and by the time we were tackling the hills in Central Park our pace was hovering closer to 8:10-8:15. The plan for the 10K? I was originally going to try and go for 7:45s but immediately decided to go more based off of effort right now – which settled into 8min pace. I ran an unexciting 49:50 – over 6 minutes slower than the 10k in January However, given my bounce back, I took this as a victory. I finished with an easy couple miles to round it off at 20. To say I was exhausted would be an understatement! I napped my heart out when I got home I finished the full 20 in 2:50, good for an 8:30 pace. Not bad given all the time off.
With just three short weeks to go, this will be my last intense week before taper-me-silly time arrives again. I am hoping for the best and to see what I can do out there. Next weekend will be a dry run starting at the time of the marathon, wearing my outfit, etc for 18 miles. Mentally, I want to be there.