Of all the things that I expected to tell you this week, the fact that I ran 31.25 miles was not one of them! Wait, let me say that again, the fact that I did 3 strength workouts, assorted yoga, and ran 31.25 outside miles was delightfully unexpected.
Monday: weights and 4.25 miles
Tuesday: ladder up! I've been trying to figure out how to casually throw speed work back into the mix and I remembered an old "inspired by the treadmill" workout that I had set up on my Garmin. 1 mile warm up, then 0.1 miles fast/0.1 miles slow-0.2 miles fast/0.2 miles slow-0.3 miles fast/0.3 miles slow-0.2 miles fast/0.2 miles slow-0.1 miles fast/0.1 miles slow x 2. The reason that I use distance instead of time for a workout like this is so that I know where I am distance wise during the run (I didn't know until recently that all I had to do was push the down arrow to see total distance during the workout, and anyway the difference between one minute and 0.1 miles is a few seconds). For pace, I'm just targeting <11:00 minute, so nothing too crazy fast, I'm just trying to remind my body that it know how to run faster than a 12 minute pace. 5.75 miles total (all that I had time for between sunrise and my first meeting of the day).
Wednesday: weights and running rest day. Though I did make it a point to get my "rest day commute" of a short outside walk to get from the couch to the upstairs office.
Thursday: 6.25 miles with a mile warmup, 1-2-3-4-5-4-3-2-1 ladder, and 0.25 mile cool down. The roads looked fine, but within the first half mile I encountered a few slick patches and you guys know that I don't mess around with ice. Conditions were fine for walking but not for running. Hmmm...what to do...the options were to go half a mile home to the treadmill or half a mile to "Speedwork Park" (my name for the park with a flat dirt walking trail where I do speed work and virtual races). I hadn't been to Speedwork Park in quite a while since all of the rain and snow we've had for the past few months had turned the trail into a mudpit. But with a good week of dryness the trail was dry and non-icy. I finished my workout just in time to call into a meeting, and walked home while attending said meeting. WFH running win!
Friday: weights and 4.5 miles. This time I drove to Speedwork Park so that there would be no repeat of the slip n'slide. Yes 5 loops of the trail is a bit repetitive but totally worth it for a non-treadmill winter running option.
Saturday: 7.25 miles, which is the furthest I've gone since October. There was not one patch of ice to be found, so I was able to get crazy and run the town instead of sticking to my neighborhood. My pace was slow but everything else felt right, and in particular my legs still felt fresh afterwards.
Sunday: by rights it should be a rest day, but I felt good and the weather permitted so...3.25 miles with mile 2 alternating fast/slow.
So What's the Plan, Stan?
Eh, darned if I know. As long as the weather holds up I'll be outside, and when it inevitably doesn't then I'll be back on the treadmill. I'm feeling pretty fly from 6 weeks of consistent strength work and yoga. I'll keep pushing the ladders in the hope that my body will get the hint and pick up the speed.