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The Loop

A Week of (Social) Distance



Deciding to run Sugarloaf instead of trying to get ready for that Maryland race sure turned out to be brilliant, didn't it? Not that Sugarloaf is a safe bet either, but at least there's still a chance that mid-May might still have a small race in a small town in a less-populated state. Granted, the drive will be longer since I can't go through Canada right now. But maybe by May.

If I'm being perfectly honest, I'm starting to feel ambivalent about running a marathon this spring at all now. Does this affect my daily running? Not yet. I've just added another reason that getting out for an hour or two, shuffling along in the sun (or clouds) on the (quieter than normal) streets is therapeutic. And we all need therapeutic now as ever. 

The thing about marathon training, though, is that I have a goal that keeps me going on those in between days that are supposed to be slow - I know they're supposed to be slow - but they feel like they're slow because I just can't go any faster, not because I'm trying to go slow. That's when the voice in my head says I really don't have what it takes to run marathons anymore. Forget that I just did one a few months ago. I must have crossed an invisible age line between then and now and I'm done. Then I read about a dozen or so guys in their late 50s and early 60s who are still running sub-3 marathons. What? I guess I can keep shuffling along for now.

Working from home this week. Other than no talking to anyone, which I didn't do much of before anyway, the biggest change is that I'm saving tons of gas and an hour or so on the roads commuting. Selfishly, I've taken all of that extra time and put it into my sleep schedule. I used to get up at 5:30, ate, did some reading and left the house at 6:20. Now I sleep until 6:20, snooze the alarm once, eat and read a little, then go to the dining room and turn on my laptop. I thought I'd have an extra half hour in the afternoon as well with no drive home, but that's been eaten up by a couple of late Webex meetings and my dad, who called on Monday, 5 minutes before I was going to wrap things up and go for my first work from home run. He was trying to get some pictures my cousin sent him off of Google Photos onto his hard drive. An hour and a half later (he's 87), I'm pretty sure I got him settled and the pics removed from GP, although he then asked me how he could show me the pictures. "If they were still on GP, you could just share the folder with me. Let's wait until I come out there next month."

Of course, now it looks as though I'm not coming out next month. Have to wait to see those pictures.

Runs in the last week:

Thursday - 0 miles. Dental implant that morning.

Friday - 8 miles. 48o and WINDY (24, with gusts to 40?). 9:09 average pace, because the last 3 were into the wind. Momma! Out near the far corner, a woman came onto Eight Mile from a side street in front of me. Then she turned south on the street where I was going to turn south. I caught up to her a quarter mile later and ran for about that far with her before she turned again. That was long enough to talk about the craziness and cancelled races. Hope she didn't think I was creepy or infected. Definitely sped up; that was the faster mile of the day.

Saturday - 10 miles. 36o but no wind, which is always nice. 8:48 average pace. Over the Power Road footbridge and around Shiawassee Park. Couple of short but very steep hills around the midpoint of this route, then a nice gentle slope home. Doing just 10 miles on a Saturday almost feels like cheating, doesn't it?

Monday - 0 miles. It was one of my Sunday School kid's birthday. so I had set up to drop off some ice cream for him (a birthday tradition I started last year). Since I'd made arrangements with his folks and my co-teacher, I didn't feel like I could bail, so when Dad took all my canceled commuting time with his Google photos issue, I didn't have enough time for the workout I had planned. By the time I was ready to run, it was starting to rain and I just wasn't into it. Slacker.

Tuesday - 8 miles. 52o and sunny. Don't know why but I felt like total crap this run. I'd pushed out Monday's tempo to Tuesday and I'd imagined that the extra rest day would make it better. Instead, there were stomach issues and I felt like I weighed an extra 10 pounds and life just sucked. Had to stop at Ollie's Discount store for a pit stop. The old cashier was all worried that I was sweaty and it was cold and I was going to die. I promised her I was plenty warm. Despite how lousy I felt, 3 of the tempo miles were under 8:00, and the worst (8:22) was into the teeth of a 15 mph wind, so that's a miracle win, really.

Wednesday - 6+ miles. 46o, overcast. Meh. I'm seeing so many more people outside on my afternoon runs than I'm used to. Walking their dogs. Walking with their kids. Walking with someone else. Walking along. Sometimes just standing on the sidewalk talking to their neighbors. One good thing coming out of this whole mess.

Thursday - 10 miles. 9:05 average. Same as Wednesday, except threatening rain. Decided to skip intervals this week and just get back on the schedule. Going north I get some hills, so that's a reasonable trade for intervals. Started sprinkling in the last mile so I sped up (8:24) before I got drenched.

Decent response to my query about some virtual races in Loopville. Thinking maybe one every month for a few months. Different distances. Something to rally folks since there are no races anywhere. Details coming. Let me know if you have any ideas.

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Why not a loop mini Olympics, and that lets everyone do a variety of distances and you don't have to calculate equivalent race times. 

On the track: 100, 200, 400, 800, 1 mile 

On the road: 5K 10K 13.1

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19 minutes ago, eliz83 said:

Why not a loop mini Olympics, and that lets everyone do a variety of distances and you don't have to calculate equivalent race times. 

On the track: 100, 200, 400, 800, 1 mile 

On the road: 5K 10K 13.1

Not a bad idea. I'll poll our committee.

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