Friday, March 28, 2008

Turning the page

This coming Sunday is the April Fools 10k run. This marks the end of my Jack Daniel intermediate program. If my left knee holds up, I expect to PR in this race. My lifetime PR for the 10k is 49:56, which I did somewhere around 1988. My last 10k was in December where I ran 54:17.

I could not really run this week because of my knee so hopefully it will be up to snuff on Sunday. If it holds, I'm going to attempt to go sub-45. This would be an amazing achievement for me. I remember that race in the late 80's, after I had run under 50 minutes. I couldn't imagine EVER running faster than this. I talked to this guy who had just started running and he had finished in 44 minutes and change. That's where I was confronted to the fact that some people just run faster than others. All you can do is work with what you got.

I remember ACCEPTING the fact that I would NEVER run under 45 minutes, let alone do it at the ripe age of 44. I don't know why but it just seemed impossible.

Training programs change everything. Back then, I just ran. No intervals, no speed work, no nothin'. I followed programs from two books, the latest being Jack Daniel's Running Formula. I have made incredible improvements in my running, from a 30-some minute 5k in September to a 21:45 5k two weeks ago, all that in about 6 months. I followed the program as closely as I could.

After this race, I will need to follow one of his key advice: take a break. In my case, this won't mean stop running completely but I will stop following a structured running program for a few weeks. As I mentioned in previous posts, I intend to participate in a few triathlons this summer so I will concentrate on cycling and swimming during that time. I will still run, but just for distance with the goal of running the Sulphur Trail 25 race on May 24th.

I believe I need this rest. My knee is not giving me problems for nothing. It might be that I won't be able to make the 25k run in May. That's ok. There will be others.

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