This is not me, my gym, the treadmills I run on, or anything I'm familiar with. But it might as well be since treadmills are treadmills...
To end week two of half marathon training, I ran an "easy" three miles on Saturday and a 90 minute long run on Sunday. Unfortunately, both were on the treadmill. The weather was mostly cooperative for outdoor running Saturday, but the only chance for me to do it was at a bad time, especially considering most sidewalks are still not clear of feet of snow around my way.
So I hit the gym Saturday and my "easy" three turned into a pretty much all-out sprint by the time I was finished. I was ramping up the speed and ramping up the incline and I just kept feeling strong. The plan was to complete the miles in about 25 minutes but I barely made it to 24. Even if I was indoors it was a great run. I could have run further and faster if I wanted to. There's no question about that.
Today the plan was to just finish a 90 minute run. I attempted the first one last week and conked out at 75 minutes. That was the first time I tried to run longer than 45 minutes since December 6, and this morning was the second time.
I set the treadmill to 6.8 MPH (about 8:49 pace), didn't try to kill myself with incline, and just went. I have to say that I felt great. My hamstring is still not quite 100%, but it's not a hindrance, and I finished up the 90 minute run and logged 10.26 treadmill miles.
It's funny sometimes because it's very, very rare that I feel I ran the best run I could have run. We're all our own worse critic, but I always know that like a football player leaving yards on the field I'm somehow leaving seconds or minutes out on the running route. Today was no exception. I feel that I could have run longer, stronger, faster, whatever, but I didn't. (Fun fact: the last time I felt like I ran the best I could have run was the 2009 Cherry Blossom 10 Miler... there was never any second guessing about that one.)
Anyway, week two is over and I'm feeling strong. Maybe I'm getting back into longer distance running shape, and I'm sure it helps that I've shed my holiday pounds. My only hope now is that I don't peak too soon before race day on May 2. And that I can manage to run outdoors again before then.
Let it be known that there's always some kind of running thing for me to worry about...