Monday, September 22, 2014

I'm Back

It seemed like a good idea at the time.  At a running expo I attended in March, I signed up for a half marathon in September.  I thought that would give me something to work towards as I returned to running after taking two years off and gaining a lot of extra weight.  (The early days of coming back.)
I had been running at a reduced rate for three years and dropping some of the extra weight but I had a long way to go to get back near where I used to be, which was running 30 miles a week and racing 30 times a year.  My main-stay was a co-worker, Lia, who became my running buddy on our noontime runs of four to six miles three or four times a week.  She was coming back from maternity leave even as I was coming back from my chronic ankle injury.  (A group of my co-workers heading out from the office for a noontime run.)
Our first efforts were pretty pathetic, running out a couple of miles and then sometimes having to walk back.  But eventually our 12-minute miles became 10-minute miles and we became able to run a six-mile route regularly.  Our pace improved to nine-minute miles or slightly better and recently my weight returned to within 10 pounds of where it used to be before my injury-induced layoff.  I bumped up my running from four to five times a week and my mileage from 10-15 miles per week to 15-25 miles.  (Lia was usually game to run, even during inclement weather.)
In the three years since my return, 2011 through 2013, I had run three sub 30-minute 5Ks and one way over 30 minute on a 100 degree day, a yearly Memorial Day 3K in the 16-minute range and a 50-minute five mile trail run.  I had a base of about six miles but the furthest I'd run in five years, my absolute long run, was nine miles one time.  The half marathon I signed up for in March, the Navy-Air Force Five Miler and Half Marathon on September 14, 2014, seemed like a good motivational tool to ramp up my game.  (We ran during good weather, too.)

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