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Monday, December 12, 2016

Feeling fine

Boy, I hope I don't jinx myself, but I've been feeling just fine lately! I feel strong, rather fast, and not at all injured. Two years from my last hip surgery, I am finally starting to feel normal: not just pain-free, but comfortable with my gait and stride.

Last we left off, I had a hamstring strain. It was mild enough to only make me take a few days off running (and take more easy days), but it didn't do well in races. A few weeks later, and it's feeling much better, almost unnoticeable. I bought a compression sleeve, but it improved so much by the time the sleeve arrived in the mail that I never had to use it. I had planned to use it while running, so I bought this nice Zensah sleeve, since it looked like the grippy top band would keep it in place. I'll have to report on that another time, though, since I only wore it post-long-run once and didn't need it during the run.

My training these days has been as follows:
Sunday: Easy soft-surface
Monday: Short, moderate pace with the Louisiana Running Company. This is after work, so it always feels harder, since I've been on my feet and under stress for nine hours.
Tuesday: Early track with Harrell Track Club. I skipped that this week because I was too tired to wake up at 5:00 am.
Wednesday: Easy
Thursday: Tempo. I mean, I've done two tempos. Way to go, Grace. I did five miles, which felt easy and fast at about 6:55, and seven, which was in windy weather and was a struggle at 6:57 pace.
Friday: Off.
Saturday: Long.

So, my long runs lately have been downright fast! And I've felt great for them! Last week I ran 12 miles with the final seven at 7:15, 7:17, 7:15, 7:15, 7:02, 6:59, 7:07. I didn't intend to speed up, but I did, and that single mile under seven really surprised me. It didn't feel that hard at all. Then this week I had a rough start: I got up late (I'd volunteered to clean up after our church Christmas party the night before, and it was midnight before we got home) and started feeling shaky and weak three miles in. I ducked into the house and ate a piece of cake - tada! As good as new! After that, I finished really strong, despite lots of wind. Splits were 7:36, 7:33, 7:53 (cake break), 7:46, 7:28, 7:12, 7:02, 6:57, 7:07, 6:51, 7:04, 7:15 (traffic stop slowed this mile), 6:53, 7:10 pace for final half mile. Obviously the temperatures in the 40's make a big difference, but I am still really happy without how good I've been feeling. Plus I just love winter running, especially around Christmas when all the decorations are out!

What's your winter running like? What's your favorite running season?

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