Saturday, December 5, 2009

Back At It......

Whenever I take some time off, I usually get a little antsy to get back at it in a few days. But, this time it was not the case. I think I just needed a little mental break from the tough season. Until two Sundays ago, I had run everyday since May 6th, so almost 8 months. Not only was this the longest stretch without a day off in my life, it was at a much higher level of running, with 21 straight weeks over 70 miles and a couple over 100. I probably averaged 25 miles a week more than last season! Also, competition takes a toll mentally. Every other week I would have to prepare myself for a big race. Sometimes it is hard for me to get into a competitive spirit.

Now there is no competing and just running. I am Running Free once again and this is what I love about running. Workouts and intervals aren't as fun and free as a long trail run in the forest. That is my view at least. That is what running this winter will be all about for me. Relaxing runs, trail runs, barefoot runs, and isolation away from competition!

Today I ran 6 miles in my Vibram Five Finger shoes. My last few runs have been with these or either completely barefoot. It is amazing how much different my form feels when I don't have an inch of foam causing my heel to strike the ground first. My back is straighter, my stride is shorter, and I am working my feet muscles to prevent them from getting weak! This will prevent any injury that even thinks about coming into my legs!

I felt really good on the run. I do not think I lost much fitness. Biking the past week let me still work my lungs. Thursday I had a nice ride with my good friends Ken Shonkwiler and Dirk Kostoff. Dirk did the entire 24 miles on a single speed bike and stayed with Ken and I pretty well. This was my first ride with more than one person. I had never understood the ability to draft in biking until then. It is so much easy to sit behind someone. We all took turns cutting the wind. I am planning on a longer ride tomorrow morning.

I have 4 finals left for next week and then it is time to chill and relax back home! Going to be a great winter.....


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