Sunday, June 17, 2007

Embracing The Suck

Sunday- 22miles- 8@7:45, 3@6:15, 7@7:50, 3@6:18, 1 c dn

Embrace the Suck is a phrase I have heard in the military to respond to someone who is complaining. Or as a way of thinking. Like a philosophy for dealing with what you know will be a bad situation. That was my attitude tonight. I know the Jack Daniel's tempo / easy hour/ tempo workouts always hurt. So I figured I might as well REALLY make it so tonight as it will most likely be my last HARD effort here in Egypt.

Thus, rather than an easy 2-3 miles warm up I did 8 miles in 62 minutes. Sucked down a gel, then jogged over to my trusty 1520m road loop for the 3 mile tempo run. I was thinking (wrongly) that I needed to run 5:53 per loop to hit my lactate threshold pace..but should have been aiming for 5:58. anyway I ran well:

3x1520m continuous- 5:54, 6:04, 5:49= 17:47

I was pressing more than I should have and then beginning my "hour jog" I figured out why. I was aiming for a pace that was a bit too quick. I settled into my hour jog at just sub 8:00 miles and really bonked after 4 miles. I stopped to hit a gel and drink some water then did another 3 miles. Then I began round two with 18 miles already in my very tired legs.

3x1520m continuous- 5:55, 6:03, 6:00= 17:58

Wow! That was hard, but actually the second session felt smoother than the first and went incredible well. I actually felt better once I started running the tempo pace than I did just prior. All I could think during the run was: Damn...I am pounding out mile 19, 20, and 21 at a crisp pace, in the June heat of the Egyptian desert....No one else is training this hard! Probably because they are smarter than that.

As I am 4-5 weeks out from race day I am really stressing my body recently. It is endurance time and I am feeling the efforts. I am feeling a lot of little aches/pains right now. In the last 7 days I have run 81 miles with 23 of them at lactate threshold. That is a lot. Come July 21st. 8:30 pace better feel like a cake walk!

So this closes out 365 days on the ground in Egypt. 2,947 miles. Hoped to get 3,000 but just missed it. I am definitely not the same man that came here a year ago. I have dropped about 7 lbs and have increased my fitness multiple levels. But, mentally I am different as well. Hopefully better......I certainly love the USA more. We all should.


brian & jenny said...

Thanks for the post. It sounds like you had a very fruitful time in Egypt on the running side! Glad you're coming home. Good luck in Vermont on 7/21. Do you have a goal you're shooting for?

WynnMan said...

Well you completed a great chapter in your life that you will always remember. Looks like Vermont will be right in your wheelhouse


Loomdog said...

The goal in Vermont is to run a 100 mile PR (sub 16:28), but what I really want....have wanted for a long long to run a hundred consecutive sub 9:00 miles. A sub 15 hour 100 is something I think is just incredbile. Since Jenn Shelton did it this Feb at RR. I keep thinking that hell...if she can do it. Then I CAN do it. On the old Vermont course or on RR I think I could. But, the VT course has been changed twice recently and now has more trail(slower) and is longer- (as much as 4 miles longer). So I will give it my best but sub 15:00 might not happen there.

Addy said...

Wow...what a great way to end your time in Europe. Sounds like you've put in some awesome training and will be more than ready for your race, though that goal is crazy! You definitely seem ready for it though :D Can't wait to see how it goes!

Trail Goat said...

Way to suck, Greg!

Holy moly - sub-15, Greg. I guess I don't dare to dream. I was thinking that if I had a great spring of training I could have an outside shot at sub-17 at Vermont this year. Go for it! Hopefully the weather will be as nice as it will be in California for Western States this weekend.