Tag Archives: trot

The Pace to Race

Last Sunday was race day.

It was not as fast or as glorious as I had hoped it to be, but I finished the race vertical and left inspired to work harder and come back faster. So I think I can check that off as a success in one way or another.

As much as I would love to list my excuses for not hitting my goal time in an attempt to justify that it was the Universe’s fault, I was happy with how I ran four of the five kilometers. The first kilometer did me in but it was a learning experience. Or a reminder, anyways.

I could list all of the training runs I did in faster times, all the intervals I ran, and tell you about the days I didn’t feel like running but did it anyways. It doesn’t matter how good the workouts are if they don’t build on each other and if they don’t come together. In this case, neither of those may be the issue but my body just couldn’t do it.

And that’s okay.

The bar is set at 25:44.

And now I’m going to smash it.

I have three more races planned this year, because if I don’t keep challenging myself then how will I know what I can do. I am not running how I want to, but I know where I want to get to. My goal is to stay injury- free to race June, August, and October and improve on my time each run.

Just keep trotting.

RunFinish2

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25 Minutes

4 days to race day.

I have run twice in the past two days and my back is tighter than skinny jeans on an emo kid. It radiates up my neck into my brain and prevents the “stop making it worse” messages from reaching my body. My neck is so immovable I will have no choice but to be Frankenstein for Hallowe’en. Oh wait I am a 20- something female in Toronto… I meant to say “sexy” Frankenstein.

My goal keeps changing depending on the stability of my mental state, which I wish I could blame entirely on muscle tension. So I will put it in writing one last time before I race. My goal is to run under 25 minutes.

I work long days and I work hard. So what is 25 minutes?! I can do anything for 25 minutes. I’ve done this before, I can do it again. This is no crazy standard I have set for myself. It is just a time I have picked that will make me feel like I am getting back to normal. If this race doesn’t go as planned, then I am no further behind; the only difference is that the internet has documentation that I had a bad day. And my friends have Facebook so the internet has already seen me when I’m not at my best. Nothing new to see here, folks.

Whatever time the clock reaches before I catch it, I will be setting a personal best for my new self. No one will know what time I expected or if I have ever even run before. No one knows what it took to get me to the start line or what I will do beyond the finish. I will be running for myself, and I will be running for 25 minutes.

Forget about times, injuries, and training runs. Leave behind the disappointment and frustration of uncontrollable obstacles.

This is my first race back and that is unbeatable.

stopwatch2

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Hot to Trot

I should clarify the use of the word ‘trots’ versus just the word running. First, and most importantly, it rhymes with squats and gives me a catchy name… Also, as it turns out, my running form suffered post accident and my friends entertained themselves with my scurrying/ trotting/ Frankenstein shuffle when I was first attempting to run again. I used one leg more than the other and the bum leg would always hit the other one. As with all good friends, they don’t let me forget these moments and in their minds no pace will ever upgrade me from a scurry or trot.

I can hold a 4:50/ km pace now and it feels like I am going so fast that I borderline lose control going around corners. No these are not hairpin turns but your average street corners with pedestrians diving out of my way. If you can’t visual a 4:50 pace then just know that I am kidding about everything after that.

I used to get paid to analyze gait and teach running form and now I am rubbing elbows with the wheezers, the newspaper readers, and the feet slammers of the treadmill world. This is when I tell great stories of my past but my friends just laugh and ask me “why run, anyways” as they flex their muscles and compare (lack of) body fat.

Lifting weights is empowering and exhilarating but the runners high is a different breed. You have no equipment to push, it is just you pushing yourself. There can be no satisfactory slam of weights at the end of a set; it is a constant effort rewarded by the sounds of heavy breathing and footsteps responding to pavement. Sometimes running feels more rewarding because I literally feel like I got somewhere. Maybe that is illogical but I never promised logic here… 🙂

Whether you are pumping iron or pumping your arms, you got your workout in.

And whatever speed you move at, it all starts with a good trot.

shalane_OT_2010

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