June 3, 2014 by scratchtype1
This past week saw me run a lot of miles, 46.9, and a few unsuccessful efforts to write on here. But I seem to be stuck in a triggering town and have been unsatisfied with the efforts to write about thoughts I’ve had stemming from a quote from Milan Kundera, things I’ve thought about while running, along with bit of an irrational fear I have when I cross an overpass on a route I run. Because of that, I ended up pulling out the copy of Richard Hugo’s The Triggering Town and browsing through it. The most important concept in Hugo’s book is nothing about technical ideas about poems, but about how to let the imagination take a writer to where they need to go.
Which is something I struggle with a lot. Perhaps it’s lack of imagination, perhaps it’s I don’t trust imagination enough, perhaps I just suck as a writer. Or perhaps it’s that often I want to assemble all the steps and put them all there, I don’t have enough trust to take strange leaps and trust that while it may not be apparently cohesive, there will be a cohesion simply because all the thoughts I have do have some level of interconnectedness.
For today, I will just write some shit and not worry about it being anything interesting or noteworthy even. Perhaps there is a resemblance between running and writing. Some writing isn’t going to be hard or glorious, you just get it done to help you get to where you will be ready to write something more substantial.
Today is the anniversary date of The Wet Walk. So it’s been just about a year now that I began to live more barefoot. It’s been worth it.
I’m slowly getting smarter about running. Yesterday I did a very easy 8.5 mile run. The legs were feeling pretty good and I was quite tempted sometimes to open up with them. But I kept it easy and controlled, because I knew that today was going to be for a tempo run and I wanted the legs to be ready to go hard for at least 25 minutes. That’s what got done this morning, did a total of 6.75 miles and around 3.17 by the Garmin’s measure were tempo pace. I got going a bit too fast during the first mile and that was maybe influenced by the chase instinct. As I had descended a long hill down to the level area of roads, I saw there was a runner/walker with a dog up ahead. She was just run-walking something leisurely and I was catching up some while I approached the point where I would pick up the pace to that comfortably hard level.
When I accelerated to tempo pace, the gap began to close more rapidly and eventually at a crossroads she went right as I did too because I wanted to keep to the level stretch of the roads. I passed her shortly after that turn and ran up to where the road begins to dive down and turned myself around. As I passed by her again, to hopefully quell any trepidation she may have had about an unknown man running by her like this, I said, “I like to use this level stretch runs for tempo runs.”
She smiled and said, “That’s a good idea!”
After all that, I settled things down some and kept a good steady pace. It felt like there was improvement over the prior week’s tempo run, and perhaps that indicates that there has been improvement in my body’s ability to buffer and use lactate. Plus there is the psychological adaptation as well, with 2 prior tempo runs, my mind has become comfortable with running at greater effort for a sustained period like that. As a result, I was able to run like that for ~27.5 minutes and feel good with it. It might even be of benefit towards more strenuous efforts, I know I could run faster than that for a 5K and be able to push myself even when it starts to hurt some. Not that this tempo run hurt any, it was still comfortable, but there is enough stress there to give me a glimpse of what I will need to think when running a 5K hard.