I've been able to walk out the door at work each night very near 5 p.m. to remnants of day light. I was able to smile. I don't mind it being dark by the time I drive home, but leaving work in the pitch black has really thrown me for a loop this winter.
Tonight called for the dreaded speedwork. I've thought about it often since last week. I'm hybridizing my program from the first timers and Runner's World version. The first called out 4 x 800; the other 8 x 800. In a stroke of genius I settled on 6 x 800 with 1:30 rest breaks between.
Thanks to the (much needed) rain we had over the weekend I knew the local dirt track would be the local mud pit. I hate going round in circles there as much as I detest the treadmill, so I mapped out a stop light to stop light route on the local streets.
I needed a street with plenty of room (ample bike path) and few cross streets. My chosen route had one driveway and one lightly traveled cross street. Gmaps told me it was 0.4853 miles long. The standard 800 meter track is 0.4971 miles. Probably close enough for government work, but I still adjusted my real times to their 800 meter equivalent later.
I ran about 2.25 mile warm up to get to my designated starting light. Off I went. My first "800" came well under my goal of 3:48. I walked around for 1:30 and then took back off up the other side of the street (you gotta run against traffic, safety first, right?). The back trip took just a couple of seconds longer. Back down again and I was half done. After the trip back up I was pretty confident I was going to beat this speedwork. The last two "800's" were run with a smile.
I ran the same route back for a total of 7.5 miles. After some calculations back home my 800 equivalent times are: 3:36, 3:38, 3:34, 3:42, 3:35 and 3:44. It felt really good to have gotten this session under my belt. Battle won. Still smilin'.
After dinner, Bryan wanted to go to the gym. We did some work on the lateral machines and then headed off to the bikes. I got on one of the recumbant Lifecycles and took it pretty easy. When I was done Bryan was still pumping away on one of these babies. I jumped on the empty one next to him for 10 minutes more. Those things give you a pretty decent workout. It is my new favorite machine at the gym.