Training has gone well this season and I'm in the mood to race so I hope to jump in 3-5 races over the next few weeks, both XC and road. Unfortunately I trained for the marathon and have done no running faster than MP - 10s for about 8 weeks and prior to that my speedwork was only at 5K pace so this isn't the best prep for fast xc and road races. I also of course ran a marathon two weeks ago which itself is not good prep for fast xc and road races. So my Craig Cup last saturday was my first speedwork of the fall. I was hoping to do more speedwork Wednesday but my calves are shot from the perfect storm of marathon/craig cup/low heel shoes so I ran easy at Back Cove instead.
Physical Therapy 8K race report:
Today was my second speed workout and it was again a race - the Physical Therapy 8K in Brunswick. I had not run this race before but Floyd L., David R., and some other FODs have run this over the past few years so I was hoping to see them. The race is also free for MTC members so that sealed the decision. I punched 17:45 5K into MacMillan's calculator (which is 13 s faster than my PR but I feel good!) and got a goal time of 29:15 or 5:53/mile. I didn't see Floyd or David or any Dirigo masters but I did see Bob Ashby, who has some impressive marathon times. I also had a nice starting line chat with Mike Bunker who took my A&P class a few years ago and is a wicked fast former USM steepler. I took off at what I was hoping was 5:55ish and pretty quickly found myself alone in 5th place with a decent gap both in front and behind. It largely stayed this way for the rest of the race. I hit mile one in 5:56 and felt good. I hit mile two in 5:53, again good. I hit mile 3 in 5:56, again good but about 3s slower than I wanted. Very soon into mile four I caught and passed the fourth place runner. We had turned into a wind and I was hoping to share the pulling but he was hurting. Mile four is a slight hill - about 80 feet in 1/2 mile and it was against a slight wind. Both seemed pretty trivial but my mile 4 split was 6:07. Ouch, I was hurting throughout mile 4. Mile 5 was just brutal. I was slowly catching up to the 3rd place which was a woman that I didn't recognize. But I couldn't catch her. I was spent. Last .9x mile was at 5:59 pace. Finish time 29:42, 4th overall, 3rd male. Mike Bunker cruised in for an easy win and Bob Ashby cruised in for an easy 2nd place. The woman turned out to be a former Brown U. runner Jenna Krajewski. I was a teeny bit disappointed with my time. Its about 2-4s slower than my equivalent MD5K/B2B times but I was hoping to have gained speed since then. It was also much harder than my B2B - I was really hurting today but the B2B seemed so easy.
I won a $50 gc to Soakology Foot Sanctuary and Tea House. Which is good because I need some physical therapy. I have both calf and lower back soreness and could use a good massage (not sure about the seaweed treatment though). My lower back mm. have been sore for about a month and last Friday was notable for being the first time that I've not run because of pain. After finishing up a meeting at USM, I was putting my backpack into the car and got a shooting pain in the lower back that felt very much like how my back felt when I played golf in high school. Yes golf really torques the back. Its not a continuous pain at all but a rapid, shooting pain that occurs when the back twists and bends just so (it's very hard to replicate consciously but not accidently). It happened again while driving over to Back Cove. At Back cove I took 2 steps and realized that each pounding foot fall hurt. So while I've taken rest days (and weeks and months) for fear of aggravating an injury, I've never actually not run because it was too painful until Friday. I tested it out with a little running in place yesterday and it felt fine but skipped the TMR SMR nonetheless. Today it was no problem. Hopefully a little soakology will put it to rest.