Running Blog, with a Little Joy and a Little Wah-Wah-Wah
Tuesday, February 07, 2017
Here's the group I ran with Saturday. The marathoners had left an hour before; these are all half marathoners, like me. I'm in the front row all the way to the right, wearing blue shirt from the Celebration Half Marathon I'd run the week before. See my lit arm band, shoe lights, and hand-held light. Light helps me feel confident as I try to stay alert for foot placement of every step. Staying alert for a 5 to14 mile run is asking a lot. Also trying to use good posture. It's easy to slump when focused down. I've now had 17 months and counting of running without a fall. And counting......
I am following a training plan, with my Galloway Program Director monitoring my Garmin results downloaded to Final Surge, trying to increase my speed for upcoming 5K races. Yesterday's mile test at 9:29 was better than my previous one this year of 9:40. However, I am very aware that in April of 2013 I ran an 8:47 mile. Not sure why I'm so much slower. Is it aging and VO2max decreasing? Is it less training? Is it running too cautious (or cautious enough) to avoid falls?
A mile test of 9:29 indicates I should aim for a 5K pace of 10 minutes per mile or a 31 minute 5K. PD Coach reiterates this as my reasonable goal. For someone with a PR of 27:33 that is a bit disappointing. I ran a 30:54 5K in August 2016. I feel fitter now. But I know that pushing harder than that would raise my risk of running injury (and falls, too, I'm sure). Also, I'm still 4.8 pounds over my PR weight. That is a factor, but I'm going in the right direction. It could be that my current 1200-1300 daily calories does not support my best performance.
I do say any day I can run is a blessed day. Certainly! How many 67 year olds cannot do what I can do? I am blessed. But I am fighting that inner voice that says it isn't exciting to race when you just aren't as good as you used to be just a couple years ago. I fight that voice with mantras, like "Fitter Every Step" and "Fit and Fine, Fit and Fine". I try to remain focused on the positives of being an older runner and all it does for me, including bringing neat and interesting running friends from several generations into my life (see above pix). Yes, life is good. There will always be someone faster than I am. And that is fine. I might never be as fast as I was. Perhaps that is fine.
And for me, it might not quite work that way. We'll see.