Friday, January 21, 2005

Where have I been?

Wow, I can't believe I went all week without posting! I thought about it often, but I've been kept late at work every day, which makes me grumpy and puts me way behind schedule on everything else in my life. It doesn't help that my classes have started. It's all online, but it still requires a bit of time and effort.

I'm working out again, which is great. But I still have some lung congestion. Nothing major, just enough to make me cough. I've been hitting the albuterol inhalor pretty hard trying to bring everything up, and I suppose I'll be needing a new one soon. There seems to be just enough grainy, sticky stuff in my lungs to irritate, but not enough to keep me from doing things. Once I'm moving, the adrenaline brings everything up nicely. But I can't run or ride my bike forever and as soon as I stop, that annoying tickle comes back and I'm coughing again.

Oh well. It gets better every day.

Which is more than I can say for my job. I've come to the realization that it's the arbitrariness of all the silly new rules and the complete lack of control I have now that makes it all so frustrating. Nothing like being a middle manager with nothing to manage and no authority to make decisions. When it all gets to be more than I can handle I turn passive-aggressive and just shut down. Not good. I'm having to make a conscious effort now to do the opposite of whatever my first impulse is, just to keep things moving. Well, at least I'm not the only one in this boat. I have plenty of company.

I've had sort of a revelation about my running after watching the marathon last weekend. I couldn't help thinking about all the fast (okay, faster than me) runners out there, wondering what they've got that I don't. Certainly there are some who seem to have no business being faster than me, such as the age group winner for the women's 64-69 age group, who did her marathon in 3:33. Wow. I could only do that in my dreams!

Or so I think.

After considering the matter, I've realized that ever since my first season of distance running, my focus has been almost exclusively on endurance over speed. The experience of building up my distance that first season was so painful that I said "never again" and have been very successful in keeping a good mileage base for my long runs. I've gained some speed as a matter of course, but not a lot.

So okay, I've proven for several years now that I can run long. But I've done little to build strength or speed. So what would happen if I made this my focus? I've decided to find out. I've decided that being slow is simply no longer acceptable and I'm going to do what it takes to get faster. There's no reason I shouldn't be able to bring my times down and maybe get my Boston qualifying time next year. What have I got to lose by trying? I'll keep maintaining my distance of course, but it's time to push the envelope a bit.

In other sport news, I've been invited to a weekend bike ride. Unfortunately it's supposed to turn colder and I have a feeling I'll have to decline on account of my lungs. But all is not lost since the first organized ride of the season is next weekend! So here's to a great spring cycling season!

This Week's Workouts
Monday: 30 minutes elliptical, 30 minutes treadmill
Tuesday: 45 minutes core and strength training, 45 minutes elliptical
Wednesday: 45 minutes core and strength training, 60 minutes Spinerval (2.0 Time Trial Special)
Thursday: 45 minutes core and strength training, 30 minutes interval work on treadmill
Friday: 45 minutes core and strength training

No comments: