You know you had a good week on the grind when on Sunday between waking up late and your midday nap walk to the grocery store you find yourself daydreaming of running a world standard out of the slow heat. It’s been a while since I found myself daydreaming about grandeur like that, I think it means I am in a good place mentally again, excited about what I am doing and where it is taking me. Every PB I have ever had in recent memory was during a time where I would daydream about racing fast, so I will take this as a good omen of things to come.
The currents of my life have changed this week, what was recently turbulent and spiraling pool of negativity has now changed course and meanders towards new pastures. Over the past several months, ever since I came back a refreshed and new person in the fall, I have been building this complex net of lies to myself, and unreasonable context of others, judgment of which I have no right doing, and becoming this person with a terrible new habit of bringing negativity into the lives of others. In my honest defense I did not do this intentionally, I did it on a subconscious level for reasons I do not understand. I do however take ownership of my actions, intentions and mistakes, full ownership, and accept myself as wrong in order to right the ship and change my path. This week I took a decisive first big step to righting my wrongs by apologizing to someone very close and important to me. The air is clear again, I have rescued myself from a frustrating fog, and now I can finally look forward and see a dream within my grasp, if there is any truth to my belief in myself I am about to seize it.
I don’t have much to report or talk about this week except more frustration with my current circumstances. My ankle refuses to fully heal, I keep getting new aches from other muscles trying to compensate for it, I am stuck cross training on the bike and in the pool, the weather is unrelentingly cold, the footing is a nightmare, and so in general I am a little frustrated with the choppy flow of my life right now.
Things are not good in my world right now, I am not healthy or capable of running the way I want to be right now. I have a plethora of issues plaguing me at the moment and the list only seems to grow from week to week instead of shrink. On my left foot, from a few weeks ago, caused by bad footing in the snow and tight turns on the track, my left metatarsals are strained. I can tape them up and they are now maybe 90% but with the footing outside still bad and my other issues putting compensation stress on it, it just wont go away. On the right side of my body I am suffering from a freak accidental ankle roll from a stray block of ice that found its way under my foot on Monday’s warm up. The pain comes and goes, but it limits my range of motion, hurts if I push the pace, and locks up after too much abuse. To add to the clusterfuck I have going on, my right Achilles has also begun to act up due to having to compensate for the ankle. I am just a fucking mess physically right now and since both feet have issues, neither can compensate for the other, which is just dragging this whole ordeal out even longer. I am just so frustrated with the situation, I know on one side of this I have done everything I can to help remedy my situation, and the ankle roll was a factor out of my control, but I can’t help but be infuriated that I was in the process of doing something special, something I have worked towards and endured so much pain to achieve. Then right as I was there about to seize it, it gets taken from me by chance. All I want to do is run fast, I want it so badly.
I had some pretty good easy runs this week amongst the standard grind of workouts, it made for some nice relief and piece of mind during a time of year that I try to keep my eyes down and hide from the world around me that is cold and desolate. Around this time last year I was obsessed with over training, one year later I am obsessed with not over training, tie in the fact that my training partners keep leaving for warmer climes and my coach being caught up in his collegiate athletes’ season and I somehow find myself trapped inside my own head obsessing over obsession over my obsessions. It’s a weird time of year to be me, but on the positive side of things the sunset has aligned itself with the last few miles of my Tuesday/Thursdays easy runs and let me tell you it aint too hard to get out the door for some miles when you have a view like that waiting for you.
Some weeks are mundane and uneventful, some weeks are busy, and some weeks are even exciting, but this week, there was just a whole lot going on. This week had so much coming at me from so many different directions I felt like I was juggling glass globes filled with hopes, dreams and ambition while stumbling into war zone.
I have come to the conclusion recently that somehow, for some reason or reasons I don’t fully understand, some people close to and important to me have lost their belief in me. Maybe it is something I said or did or didn’t say or do. I am really not sure what has happened to cause this loss of faith, but it is still upsetting to me to look to them for that support only to realize it is no longer there. I don’t blame them for this, nor do I deny that they don’t have a good reason for abandoning belief in me, but I do want them to believe in me once again so I will dedicate my efforts to showing them that I am still worth believing in. They may have lost their faith in me but there is no reason I can’t give them something to believe in once again.
I am going to vent about something but do it in a really passive aggressive indirect sort of way. Just forewarning anyone who is stumbling across this. I don’t mean any ill will to anyone I am referring to by saying this but instead just want to illustrate my struggle in being able to handle outside influences within myself. I am the issue here not anyone else, but still I just want to say that if you don’t have anything nice to say, it would be appreciated if you kept it to your self.
Tough love was the name of the game this past week in my world of training. My motivation to run hard and run fast was definitely there, but I had it in my mind that I wanted to use that spark towards all out short speed/interval work, unfortunately what I wanted was not what I got, what I got was what I needed and what I wanted is going to have to wait.
My life this week had a lot of different things going for it. It was a solid week of training as I rocked a VO2 mile session on Monday, tempo into 400s & 200s on Wednesday and finished things off with a long fartlek effort of 8x3min on Friday. This may not seem like all that much above the standard line of training, but each effort’s fatigue bled into the next day and by the end of the week I was pouched. This was also my down week to recover but it certainly didn’t feel all that easy, which maybe/probably/ most definitely be due to the accidental social life I have suddenly developed, which involved a mildly wild new years party and beer and wings downtown while watching the world junior’s games. I guess vo2 miles and drinking games makes for a tough yet enjoyable week.
Merry Christmas post 2014! The sun is out, the ground is clear and you would never guess it was winter when you saw me out your window on Christmas eve running a workout in shorts. I am visiting home for the week and aside from the joy of seeing friends and family I get to run my old trails and loops, which is surprisingly one of the best parts of Christmas.
This week marked the unfortunate and undesired exit of someone very positive in my life. Well its not like they are gone from my life forever, they will continue to still be a positive influence on it but due to circumstances beyond our control they were forced to leave the country and head back home. I am pretty bummed about them having to go because of how I aim to build my life surrounded by great people who inspire me to be a better me and of whom I aspire to emulate the great things I see within them. It is also super unfortunate that this is the fourth person to step away from the immediate vicinity of my life since I returned from my summer soul searching and started this great new path chasing old dreams. I remember in the summer having a conversation with one of these people and telling them that I always intended to take on this journey alone and meeting all these great people to share it with was an unexpected bonus but in the end if they all left me I would remain here and continue this path alone. Now while I stand by my statement now that it has seemingly come true, I wish I didn’t have to continue alone.
Welcome back to track season ladies and gentlemen. This is where my where my climb truly begins, cross country season was the journey to the mountain, track season is the climb up towards the top. This week went so incredibly well for me, I am very proud of myself for the great decisions I’ve made to get myself here from where I was this time last year, and I am beyond happy that right now I am exactly where I want to be in both fitness and spirit.
I am a fan of simplicity, I find great joy in living a minimal life with only the simple things that matter most to me. However, I also have this chronic tendency to obsess and over complicate things in my head and I have found myself doing that a lot lately. Complicating and cluttering up my mind adds negativity to my world and brings down my life into an unnecessary slump. This is all in my head, I create these thoughts based purely on perspective and these small thoughts grow into these negative ideas that I cling too unnecessarily. I become concerned with how other people live their lives, what decisions they make, or don’t make, what rules their conduct themselves by and whether or not I agree with them. Where does this or that go? Who does what with the resources? Who gets something? what do I not get? Who gets treated differently? Who is accountable? Why are things the way they are and not another way? These are all nothing but thoughts I fill my head with because I have a negative perspective and I am making the world respond as a reflection to me. I admit I am wrong, I wrongfully judged others, and I have no right to tell anyone how to live their life. The world is simple and I fabricate complexity. The world has been good to me and the people who inhabit it have given me a reason to stay. My life is simple, my intentions are simple, and I found that asking myself the right question changes my perspective and provides me with a compass towards clarity in my mind. The question I asked myself was “would you pay $1200 for one, and only one, chance at chasing your dream?” My answer was a very simple and unconditional yes.
Consistent miles and rock solid efforts often yield an underappreciated gift, they give you time to think. It is almost like a calm before the storm, you just overcame the turmoil of getting fit enough to run great efforts and the future ahead of you holds promise of something special. However it is weeks like these, the calms before the storms, where the mileage almost takes a moment to catch its breath and look up, because you are now so capable of handling the efforts that you are able to gaze forward and wonder what it about to become of all of this.
This week was the second test of my fall fitness and my second attempt and breaking myself back into the world of racing by attempting to compete at a 10km cross country race. I knew this challenge would be tough, cross country running is a different beast all together and requires another level of toughness both physical and psychological. It has been an event I have always struggled with and I have never quite been able to conquer its simplicity but depth of character and resolve it requires to excel at it. Yet this is exactly what I need to be doing right now, tackling obstacles that seem unconquerable to me and not overly preparing myself so much as accepting where I am and trying anyways in the pursuit of growing to be more capable during the process.
This was the week I raced the second time of my fall season, it was a 10km cross country jaunt in a snowy park and lets just say that there were some lessons relearned the hard way for me. I had this race on my radar for a long while now so I had adequate time to prepare myself with a plan to be motivated about, and yet when I got on the start line I was left clueless about my purpose there today and if there is one take home lesson I learned for myself two weeks before nationals it is that if I am to race well again I will need to have a mission.
If there is one thing about my running that is consistent and predictable it is that the Monday after an 80 mile week I am a steaming pile of hot garbage. Hooray for consistency?
Post 10k race weeks can be a little rough to get going, never the less I still managed to get in a solid 80 mile week and while not spectacular in any particular way it was solid and I put in the sort of work that will make me what I want to be come July.
This week I made my return to the world of racing. Ever since I came out of college I have been in a habit of only racing when I am ready in intentional opposition to how I was always forced to race unready in college. Being a post-collegiate athlete is nice like that because I have no obligations to anything or anyone except myself so why not just save myself the trouble until I am absolutely confident that I am fit and ready to go? This is a great idea in theory and practice yet at the same time I was too committed to this mentality and it resulted in racing a lot less than I should have. So with my return to running this year with a renewed outlook I just went with my gut instinct that it would be a fun and challenging experience to race even thought I wasn’t fully prepared and just fucking go with the flow of doing my best. Who cares about being ready for every challenge in life, now I say just fucking throw me in there and let me learn and grow at the fast pace that comes with being on the razor’s edge.