1. One of the great things about moving to Boulder is that suddenly I live in the same town as two other Sonja ponies. Great for us, hair-pully-outy for her, I am sure. Both of them had a MAF test on the schedule for this morning. I knew that my first week back would definitely include one, so I decided to get one up on Sonja and crash theirs to see exactly how much fitness I've lost in the past several months. This is the moon, by the way, along with Mikki breaking into the track.
believe that I have found the recipe for the worst MAF test in the
history of my training. Two weeks coughing up little pieces of lungs and laying in bed.
Add in suddenly living at 5400' instead of 0' and stir briskly. I'm not
even sure it could be called running, more of a bouncy walk. And I'm not stressed about it at all. I've actually been in a bit of a funk this week, missing my family and being sad about being apart from them at my favorite time of the year (Christmas season). A chatty warm-up and 4 incredibly slow miles was exactly what I needed.
No, I don't think I'll ever figure out how to keep my hat on straight but at least my hair was brushed under there.
2. This fall was rough, I've talked about it before and I'm not going to blather on about it again, but my training hasn't really been executed consistently since June. I'm not sure I "needed" several months of stress and change but I am FINALLY excited to get back on a strict training schedule again. The MAF test this morning was horrendous, yes, but also incredibly motivating. I know that the only way my fitness will go from here is up, and I'm actually looking forward to being a slave to my HR monitor again. I've been in the pool twice this week, which is twice more than I've been swimming in any week since B2B, and I feel rested and slow. I threw in some roughly half-IM-paced hundreds and was pleased to see that they were not quite as sluggish I expected, although significantly slower than I was swimming a few months ago. But none of it makes me cranky, which is weird in itself. It actually makes me happy, it's proof that I let my body chill out and rest and get fat during my off-season. Hopefully I can remind myself this in two weeks when I get a buttload of hard intervals in the pool and can't make any of them.
3. All that said, I'm finally ready to start thinking about 2013. I signed up for IMLP, as you will recall, and have planned nothing else. Running an open marathon is something I am interested in tackling, and I have one in mind, but I'm not sure about the timing so it's still a maybe. I'm going to spend some time tonight and tomorrow investigating races, and then will take my list to Sonja who will probably cross half of it out. I'm also considering not racing much at all this year - a marathon and an ironman might be enough. I'm a little worried about not having those tune-up races in there that I am used to as fitness tests, but in general I enjoy training so much more than I enjoy racing. I'd also certainly love to save the big pile of money that it takes to race and travel. My 2013 plan when I signed up for IMLP was "no races where I have to get on a plane," which is obviously not happening now that I've moved 1800 miles away. But we'll see. I feel this way now, but I might get the itch come March to start jumping in a few things, or I might not. I've raced a lot the past few years, and I'm curious about what a season of little racing at all would feel like.
So that's my Thursday with some numbers thrown in, friends. Tell me about your race planning. Are tune-up races important, or would you consider a season that only includes two big ones?