I haven’t raced since the Brooksie Way Half Marathon in early October and realized that I’ve really missed racing during the last several weeks. I’ve been running regularly, doing speed work and tempo runs, going for long runs, running at different paces, etc., but I haven’t been training for a specific distance or race. My wife and I recently decided to run a 10K in a couple of weeks, and even more recently we entered a Turkey Trot race that takes place this weekend…we tend to enter shorter races like 5Ks and 10Ks at the last minute. We found a Turkey Trot with a 5K and a 10K that are run separately (the 10K starts an hour after the 5K) – there’s also an “Iron Turkey” option to run both races. Of course we picked the Iron Turkey option, thinking it’ll be a fun challenge. Well, it sounds fun until I start thinking about racing a 5K and then racing a 10K less than an hour later! And I’m sure it’ll feel slightly less than awesome during the last half of the 10K. But I love a challenge, and this will be a great way to find out how well I’ve maintained my fitness since the Brooksie Way. I’m especially looking forward to running the 5K because I only ran a couple of them during the summer and I feel like my recent speed workouts have gone fairly well. I’d like to get a PR in the 5K portion of the Iron Turkey, so I’m planning to run the 5K hard then seeing how it goes in the 10K. I’m running another 10K the following weekend, so if the 10K portion of the Iron Turkey doesn’t go well I won’t have to wait long to try for a better time.
As I mentioned, I’ve been keeping up with my training and trying to get in a good variety of runs at different distances and paces. Since the Brooksie Way, I’ve run distances from about three miles to 12.5 miles. I’ve been pretty happy with most of my runs and very happy with a few of them. I went for a pretty easy 10-mile run last Saturday and then an impromptu nine-miler on Sunday (I didn’t know how far or fast I’d run until I got going) – Sunday’s run was one of my best training runs yet as I ran it slightly above 10K pace but felt like I didn’t have to put forth nearly as much effort as I normally would to maintain that pace over that distance. My long runs have gone well, and I’ve been happy with my recent speed work. The weather has been all over the place…for example, the temperature around here has dropped about 20 degrees since yesterday. In addition to reminding myself that we’ve been lucky it hasn’t gotten colder and stayed colder sooner, I’ve been trying to look at it as a great opportunity to practice my cold weather layering skills (which need a lot of practice). On a shoe-related note, I’ve been using the Brooks PureFlow regularly, alternating them with the Launch for longer runs and with the Green Silence for shorter runs and speed work. They’ve been great and have continued to work very well for everything from 400-meter and 800-meter repeats to long runs. As I’ve put more miles on them, I’ve continued to feel that they’re very comfortable and versatile shoes.
I’m looking forward to racing this weekend and will be curious to see how it goes running two races starting an hour apart. Track athletes might do things like that fairly often, but unfortunately I’m not a track athlete and (to use a cliche and make a brilliant observation) I’m not getting any younger. In the short term, I’ll have another 10K to look forward to soon if the 10K portion of the Iron Turkey this weekend doesn’t go well. In the longer term, I’m still debating whether to try my first marathon in the spring or fall next year, and once I get that figured out I’m sure I’ll spend way too long deciding which one to try.
Are you racing this weekend? If so, at what distance(s)?
If you live in a cold-weather climate and normally run outside, have you started running more miles inside yet or are you still running outside as much as possible?