This weekend, I'll admit, I fell off the wagon. I suspect many runners go through this sort of post-race drift. Where your body is no longer as exhausted and tender as it was the 24 hours after your race, but your mind remains in a stupor.
I ran a few times last week, but nowhere near to the schedule I had set for myself. I kept saying, "Well, another day won't hurt. I need tor est. I'll get my long run in on Saturday/Sunday and it'll be fine." The same could be said about yoga, which I skipped on Thursday. Thursday was also my wedding anniversary, so it was a convenient screen to cover up my own laziness. In the end, I went through this weekend having logged 5 measly miles, versus the 15 I had aimed for, plus the Sunday morning yoga class.
But, like I said, I think that's to be expected somewhat and I'm past the point of beating myself up over it. Instead, I chose to re-focus on this week of training. This morning I got out for my usual 4 miler, but made the rookie mistake of trying to run it hard, which was dumb. What's worse, I KNEW it was dumb as I was doing it. Yet I continued on anyway. Needless to say, I flamed out in fine fashion on the return trip up to Mt. Vernon, although my overall time was still completely fine. So, I probably won't do that again for a few months...I hope. But it felt great to get back out, and the unseasonably warm weather (it's nearly 80 here today) made the dark pre-dawn run less painful. January's runs won't be so enjoyable, I think.
Training for what, you might ask? Well, nothing quite as singular as a half marathon, although I'm going to keep my eyes out for a half sometime after the first of the year...maybe in DC, we'll see.
No, between now and December 31, I'm focusing on some shorter races interspersed throughout the holiday season. The next likely candidate is a 5K in Charleston, SC, where my family is meeting for Thanksgiving. My uncle as rented a house on the beach near Charleston, and the $30 entry fee, coupled with the proximity and flat course, should make for a good race. That's about a month away.
After that, there's a 5K up in Towson called the Man Cave 5K, that looks fun. It's partially sponsored by the Big Screen Store (sells ungodly large TVs, recliners, and obesity), so some of the door prizes include a huge TV, recliners, beer, wings, etc. I have no hope of winning an age group prize, of course...but I'd take a free new TV that would be way too big for our apartment. I've not signed up for this race yet, though. Still tentative.
I did register for the 2012 Celtic Solstice 5 Miler on December 15. It's a great local race, and the typically bitter cold weather keeps a lot of unserious runners away. Not that I'm some hard core runner, but you get fewer walkers out there when it's 8:30 AM and below freezing. You got to REALLY like to run to do that to yourself! The way the registration works is they open it up to runners who want the race premium, which is usually a really nice shirt or, in recent years, a jacket. It's nice, but they also charge $65 for the race for those folks. To each their own...those entries help keep the non-premium entry fee low for the rest of us, so who am I to complain?
However, historically you've been able to register for this race without the premium, which makes it really affordable. As in, it used to be $20 for a well-organized race with a nice post-race spread. Now, it's $30, but that's still a nice bargain for this race. As it got more popular, they instituted a waiting list for this option. Usually by mid-November, they'd open it up to the waiting list and you could register for the lower price (sans premium, obviously). I've always done this, as I just want to run the race. This year was no different; I registered for the wait list way back in August. Last Friday, they sent the first 100 people on the list an e-mail with a password to use on Active.com to register early before they opened the race up. So I went ahead and registered on Friday to secure my spot. A. has no desire to run this race due to the cold weather, so she didn't register.
Beyond that, who knows? We're spending the final week of the year in Cincinnati, so we'll probably seek out a race while we're out there as well, but that's well down the road. For now, I need to make sure I get up tomorrow and get to the gym to re-start my dormant interval training routine!