No races, yet I am breaking all my records for mileage. I'm running more than ever, yet the body is hanging in there just fine - no injuries or even sore spots to speak of. Without race goals, this year is about adjusting to running more and seeing how that goes. Well, it has gone exceedingly well!
In January I committed to 4 days a week for the whole year. Ever since age 18, I've always thought I needed rest days. For 30 years I never ran more than 3 days a week - sometimes much less. Then even when I got more serious for the last ten years, I usually ran 3 days a week, with 4 when I was in marathon training and very occasionally would do 5. I ran too hard usually, and felt like I needed rest days.
Well this year I am discovering that I don't need to pamper myself. I've just been gradually increasing the miles. Doing less speedwork since track club is cancelled and there are no races. In April I switched to 5 days a week and committed to it, and have hit 5 days for 16 straight weeks. This week I'm switching to 6 days a week and I'm going to keep that up for at least 8 weeks if all goes well. I have not run 6 times in a week since college! But now it seems normal to just do a run every day. Because I really have little else going on in my life.
I'm looking at 198 miles for July which is a record for July, after record highs in June, May and April. I passed 1,000 for the year last week, much earlier than ever and am on track for over 1,800 miles which is a huge record since high school. So I'm feeling great about the endurance. The speed is still not what it was a few years ago, but it's getting better. This year is all about endurance. Because I do have a new goal.
Chicago cancelled, and my planned local backup in Big Bear cancelled, so I figured my Fall marathon plan was dead. But then I checked St. George again, and they recently said they are still planning to have their event on October 3rd. So I went ahead and signed up. It's a downhill marathon which promises to be even easier than Chicago to get my BQ, as long as I don't trash my quads too much. So I am re-energized and motivated and excited to have something to train for. With nine weeks to go, I have averaged 43 miles/week for the last 8 weeks, and I'm going over 50 this week, and hopefully for the next 7 weeks. My long run is already to 15 so I am readier than I have ever been at this stage. Just need Covid to stay out of Utah and my body to stay healthy.
Tomorrow I am doing a 13 mile run which is almost all downhill, about 1,000 feet down from the local peak down to the beach, and than 3 miles flat on trashed quads. We'll see if I can train my legs for the beating they will take. Then two easy days and 16 on Sunday. If I survive this week I will feel pretty good about my chances.