Tuesday Vandy-Montana and I did hills instead of our usual Tuesday Track workouts. We picked out a more secluded street (apparently he doesn't like to showboat in front of commuting traffic as much as I do...) which also turned out to be a shorter hill than normal... but, also a steeper hill. Awesome.
Honestly, I didn't expect to keep up. He's a dude... with more leg strength and with much faster PR times for marathon, 5k, 5 mile (okay... any and every race distance) and it's not like we do our actual track intervals together, either... but, I don't know... I didn't think I'd be that much slower than him. But... I was. The first one... I thought... okay.. well, I'm just not fully warmed up yet. The second one... he darted ahead immediately and I thought I could catch him by the end... but there was no hope. He smoked me in every one. And by the 5th and last one... I was wayyy behind him.
It's the good and bad of running. On the one hand... there are so many different levels of running. Which is good, because you see that you can constantly be improving yourself... but, it's also bad, because it's frustrating. You can't just go out and buy a new, different pair of running shoes and instantly improve... You have to really work at it.
So, this morning I headed out for my planned 7 miler and as I got closer to the track... I decided to stop and sneak in some "easier" intervals. I didn't want to do anything too fast. So, I opted to do 1200s at just a little above 5k pace. I had never done 1200s before and expected to absolutely hate them. But, as soon as I finished the first one, I found myself thinking... hmmm... I should have done 1600s instead. For whatever reason, I liked them WAY better than the usual 800s that I do.
I didn't wear my watch, so I only know rough estimates of my times (from my ipod). My goal was to run them around 6:05/6:10. The first one I did close to the 6:05, maybe even a little shy of that. The second I got in around 6:10 and the last one... I killed... I came in well under 6:00 (5:55ish).
I'm feeling really good these days. I'm running faster and stronger than I ever have, I'm getting leaner and more physically fit. My next race isn't until the half marathon on February 14 and I'm getting antsy. I'm not sure I can wait that long to test myself...
In other news... After keeping up with my regular strength training for 4-5 times a week for a couple of months now... it's time to bump up some of my free weights. Woo hoo. I'm headed out tonight to pick me up some heavier weights.