Week 36, 2013: What the...

Last week when I was relating the stories of my night-time running and encounters with animals I forgot about one such episode. One day as I was going for my night run, I left home, turned the corner walking towards the car and right there, in the middle of the sidewalk I saw 5 raccoons walking directly towards me. At first both they and me froze, surprised by this unexpected encounter. And then after few seconds of staring at each other they all stood on their hind legs and started hissing, evidently trying to intimidate me. Cutest sight ever :D. I wish I had my camera with me. Instead the photo on the right, grabbed off internet will have to do. It was kinda like that, just a bit less spooky as there were 5 not 20+ of them.

But I'm digressing. Training. So, even though I had Sunday off I felt kinda tired on Monday and only went for an easy run.

On Tuesday I did CrossFit and was planning an evening run, but after CrossFit workout I was so exhausted that I called it a day.

Then a fast run on Wednesday, where I essentially matched the time of the last week, although this time during the day, so with sun and wind against me.

Thursday: CrossFit again and again I'm too tired to do anything afterwards.

On Friday I was planning yet another hill run on Black Mountain. By the time I got around to it it was late, but this time I made sure to take the headlamp with me, so it seemed yet another night run on Black Mountain was ahead of me... Or not. Just after I started running my headlamp started misbehaving. It looked like the battery was dying. And it was pitch dark so there was absolutely no way to run without it. Happy or not I had to cancel the training. Now, the scary part is that I was kinda happy; or rather relieved that I did not have to run. I'll come back to that at the end of this post.

On Saturday I did the overdue hill run from Friday. Again it ended up being at night but I made sure to get new batteries for my headlamp so all was good. I thought I was pushing hard and going at a good pace... small digression: I do this route fairly frequently. Even with my terrible memory and orientation I start to know all the turns and twists of the route. However, I do not have any "split" times. It's partly on purpose: if at every moment of the run I knew how I fared compared with previous runs that would be an excellent motivation to push harder and improve those times. Now, tempting as it is, I don't want that. Those training sessions are in large part meant to be preparation for my 100 miles race and there I won't have this kind of incentive. Instead I'll have to find motivation to keep going elsewhere and so I do not want it be any different in training. Anyway. In the end I finished just a couple of seconds faster than last week, keeping an amazing consistency on this route in the last couple of weeks.

I ended up the week with a long, night run on Sunday.

Now, I don't know what's going on with me lately. I feel constantly tired. My training is in shambles because I feel tired so often. Since I was injured not once did I go for one of my weekend long exploratory runs. Yes, I did some long runs but they were all along the Bay, on a familiar route, with no hills. It's just that on weekends lately I never felt like doing a lot of driving followed by even more running.

The funny part is that this could work backwards. I mean, it's precisely for those weekend runs that I loved running so much. The thrill of exploring new places, being out there in the nature, that's the essence of what I think is great about running, with the drill, regular weekly runs being, frankly, a bit of a drag. So now that I deprived myself of them, maybe it's no wonder I have a hard time finding back enthusiasm (and strength) for running?

But frankly I think it's more than just running. I feel tired and lethargic in general; at work and with everyday things. I'm not sure what's going on but I don't like it much...

Next week I'll be running the 50k on Mount Diablo. My goal? To survive. Seriously. I like to have ambitious goals for events like that, but not this time. Between my injury, followed by spotty training and the difficult course of Mount Diablo, I really just want to finish. Ok, I'll admit, I silently hope that it won't be my slowest event ever, but also, honestly, I do not hold hopes for making it the fastest one. On top of that, lately the temperature here at midday revolves around 30C and if that's going to be the case on Sunday, it's certainly not gonna make things any easier... Let's see how it goes.

Update: I just learned that the race is going to be postponed due to a fire on Mt. Diablo :/

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