Saturday, September 12, 2009

Intervals Of Insanity

One year ago, this very same weekend, I read in a plane to NY Marc Parent's first newbie chronicle. I wonder what my airplane neighbors thought of me as I found the article extremely hilarious, and had definitely to laugh out loud. I got hooked. From that day, Marc became one of my favorite writers in Runner's World. In many of his stories we can see a little bit of ourselves. This week I saw myself more than ever.

On Monday my plan called for 3 easy miles.... I got up in a gloomy Seattle day, and after a nice cup of coffee, went very determined to attack a hill. I'd say THE hill. My plan was to move my Tuesday intervals to Monday, and to spice them up.

Fortunately, it was Labor Day. Not much traffic around 84th St. in Mukilteo. But the people that drove by (nobody walks that hill) blew the horn, clapped, or looked at me as if I was an absolute alien. And indeed an alien I was. What is this woman doing, during a Holiday, at 9 am, running desperately uphill? Nobody is attacking her... Nobody is chasing her...

The following day, for my amusement I read Marc's last chronicle. He, without knowing me, depicted me in his Intervals Of Insanity. The description was all mine, though with a small difference. My insanity was developed uphill. Yes, a 6-degree hill. Are we that insane? We are. How come? Because. And it is a chosen, conscious insanity. We enjoy it, I did...every feet going uphill. I felt so challenged and motivated that after jogging down, without waiting, I went and attacked the hill again. Eight intervals of 0.125 miles. The max HR was 177 and the fastest I ran uphill at whatever point was 7:09 min/mile.

All sore throughout the week didn't matter. The week was accomplished with one single mile going uphill. Indeed it was. It felt insanely good.

Saturday I ran a 10K to replace my "run fast day". I have concluded I can't run fast by my own, unless something is pushing me. The race: Iron Girl, a women's only event, with 25 hundred participants, in the best running spot in Seattle: Green Lake, with a perfect still summer sunny day and low 60's F.

At the start I repeated myself MANY times: "Lizzie, you are not racing, you are just running faster than you usually do." I tried. During the race I tried to picture the Go-Zone racing strategy, and my response was a "not a chance". I can't imagine putting the hammer down at mile 3.2 and then sprint for 1.2 miles at the end.... I'll stick with that strategy for the 5K only.... at least for now...

I completed in 1:00:31, 8 seconds better than my previous PR, though longing breaking the hour. Next time.

I was fortunate to see among the crowd my good friend Melinda and joined her and her friends for the post race party. Melinda got 3rd in the 5K with 23:47, for a good 7:40min/mile... And she just got this year into my division, so I hope and will work to become her rival... Not because I want to beat her times, but because I will be running at my dream pace.

Division 16/29 - Overall 220/538.

Lynnette Smith, Melinda's friend (# 3125) placed 3rd in the 5K in her division with 21:19 and 6:52 min/mile.... I was surrounded of pure talent today!!!!!