I ran 7 injury free miles Saturday. I even had a couple sub 12 minute miles there near the end. I was pleasantly surprised. I ran with a couple of friends, who are faster than me of course, and I managed to keep them in sight for most of the run.

Today I was able to squeeze in a "quick" 3 miles in between classes. Fueled by my fast miles on Saturday, I was determined to see how fast I could run (my own version of speed work). I was rewarded on mile 1 with a 10:04 pace, but it went downhill from there.

I run on this ~1.8 mile loop around my neighborhood. About 1 mile of it is flat, the .8 is hilly. So I was able to keep ~10 min/mile pace for that first minute, which was almost all flat. I paid for it on the next mile, which dropped to a 12 minute mile. Even with the hills, this is not a reflection of my smart running. It's a reflection of my lack of impulse control. I KNEW that I wasn't able to keep a 10 min/mile pace over 3 miles with HILLS. But I decided to try anyway.

My last mile was an 11:20. I probably could have kept an 11 minute pace for all 3 miles if I didn't decide to try and kill myself in the heat.

Better planning is needed in the future.



4 miles on mixed terrain in my Vibrams, and no calf pain! I think I've finally gotten acclimated to my "toe shoes", at least on flats and moderate hills. Had the same ankle discomfort on this run as I did on Saturday, but this one went away (or maybe my ability to ignore it has increased) after about 2 miles. I did stop and stretch it at least twice.

Unlike Saturday, these miles were sub 13s (yay!) and I'm hoping to be back around 12s by the end of April. Also, the trail I ran was the one around my development. I ran the whole thing, twice. I was very excited. I haven't been able to do that in quite a long time.

Tomorrow is cycling and/or swimming. Training is back in session!


The Longest (6) Mile(s)

My goal for today was 6 miles in my Vibrams. I'm slowing increasing my mileage in these fancy shoes. I want to run injury free and the last few weeks with these shoes have given that to me. I'm not saying I'm a convert, but it's hard to overlook the fact that I haven't had IT band pain since I started running in these gorilla feet shoes. I could be getting stronger. I could be losing weight. I could be running with better form. Or it could all just be in my head. Regardless, I think I'll ride out this experiment and see where it takes me.

Back to my 6 miles. I went out later than I wanted to (I was aiming to be putting foot to pavement no later than 9:30, I probably got out around 10:30) and it was warm! What happened my my lovely running weather. My impromptu 3 on Thursday were in nice high 60s. Cool, and comfortable... But I digress.

I went to Irvine, the closest place I can think of that has a nice flat running path, and ended up running into some friends who were just finishing their runs! Had a good chat with one, talked about running the Vibrams and my lack of pain (which I shouldn't have, jinxed!) and then I took off.

I barely made it through the first mile, my ankle felt weak, unstable, and pounded (what did I tell ya, I jinxed myself!) But did I give in? No, damn it! This is a bean free weekend. The time when I'm allowed to focus on myself in my long runs, not worry if my run is going to be cut short by loud fussing or other toddler distractions. So I stopped and stretched/worked it out, and went on my way.

Halfway through mile 2 I couldn't take it anymore, stopped stretched and set off. After both mile 2 and mile 3 I had to stop to work out my ankle, but as it wasn't so much pain but discomfort, I powered through. I was all prepared to rinse and repeat after miles 4 and 5, but I didn't happen. Miracle of miracles, I didn't need to stop.

Yes, you heard it right, I ran 6 miles, with negative splits, ending faster (better!) than I started. It felt awesome. I'm glad I didn't call off the run the first (or second or fifth) time my ankle bothered me enough to stop running. I'm glad that I listened to my ankle and stopped to work it out. I'm ecstatic that I kept running (pun intended) towards my goal.

My run today showed me more than the level of my endurance. It was an actual metaphor for my life right now. Yes it's painful and hard and it really SUCKS. But I'll work through it, and it'll end up alright. In fact, it'll probably end up better than alright. I might even end up with negative splits.



I wasn't planning a run today. I was planning a swim. I really should have gotten one of those in, but that's a different story.

But running brings my sanity. Brings me balance, brings me peace. And if there was a week I needed balance and peace anymore than this one... well, it hasn't been for a long time.

In between my Anatomy & Physiology lab and lecture, I ran home to get lunch, and decided to run. It was only 3 miles (all under 11:30, BTW) but it was a little of what I needed.

If you don't run, I can't explain to you, convince you, that running can bring me peace, can bring me balance, can help me find my sanity. But it can. I can lose myself in my music, in the cadence I feel in my steps. In the commands I give my muscles. Just me, the outside, and the forces I apply/are applied on me.

I am stronger for it. And this is it. One of the things that is going my way. One of the blessings I will be counting everyday until there are too many to recite. I have (mostly) injury free running. I can take this with me anywhere, everywhere.

I can create my own peace, if only for a few miles.