Monday, May 30, 2011

Post Marathon Recovery

Although it has been only a week since the marathon, it seems like much more time has gone by. The bottoms of my feet were pretty sore for a couple of days, so I didn't do any running until last Thursday. I decided to run at whatever pace felt comfortable and ignore my Garmin. When I reached the turnaround point at 1.5 miles I checked the GPS and noticed that I had forgotten to reset it after the race. I cleared it and ran home at about the same pace speeding up the last quarter mile. It turned out that the Garmin had kept Thusday's run seperate from Saturday's race. When I checked my average pace I saw that it was my fastest 3 mile run. Wow! I really tried to keep my pace slowed down a bit on Friday's 4 mile run. I know that it can take a while for my legs to heal.

My First Trail Run
Jon and Erin invited me to run with them at Buffalo River State Park on Sunday in order to get the feel for next Saturday's 10K trail race. It would be my first time running on trails. The day started with Lynette and I joining Jon and Erin at Applebee's for a pancake feed raising funds for the local men's roller derby league Rock City Riot. I know. You're thinking roller derby? Is that still around? Oh yes my friends. In fact Fargo has four women's teams that have been quite active for several years. I guess last year the guys decided to join the fun and started their own league. I went to both the men's and women's websites, and now I really want to see a match.

We were the first ones at Applebee's, and soon we were munching down some tasty pancakes and sausages. The guys from the team were doing the serving. They wore their jerseys and the names on the back were classic roller derby. One red headed guy was named Angus Beef. There was a Biff Quick, and my favorite, Egor Toboneya. I love being around people who live outside "the box."

After breakfast Lynette left for her sister Loni's house to see the grand-nephews (and other family members). Jon, Erin, and I left for the park. We started running from the parking lot near the swimming hole and followed the 10K route. I'm glad Jon had a copy of the course. He kept us from taking any wrong turns. The course starts on some wooded trails, but most of the run is on trails winding through the prairie. There were some wildflowers just starting to bloom along the trails. We saw some Bluebirds flitting around and had a Bobolink follow us for a bit. It was much more enjoyable than running in town.

Running on trails sure seemed less punishing on the joints, but the softer surface seemed to make it harder to keep a good pace. Some of the energy used to push off is absorbed by the ground. The first couple of miles were hard, but after that I got in the groove and the miles went by really well. We got back to the parking area having run just under six miles. Erin's ankle was hurting, so she decided to stop there. Jon and I started another shorter loop. After about a mile I split off and went back to the parking area. My total distance ended up being 7 1/4 miles. Jon took the long way back and ran just under 7 3/4 miles. It was a really enjoyable day. Jon and Erin are so much fun to be with. Thanks again for asking me to go along.

I think this week is going to be another recovery week with a few shorter runs. I'll save myself for the race on Saturday. I'd like to run some shorter races (5K or 10K) this summer. There are tons of them to choose from. I figure I can try and work on improving my speed and check my progress at these races.

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