If movement through mountainous terrain teaches us anything it is that our action, although familiar in its form, is constantly changing and adapting to the reality of what is underfoot. We learn to be fluid in order to more efficiently negotiate technical, unyielding paths that are leading us to our momentary summits, only to turn around and repeat our steps backward. We practice this movement again and again, sometimes on the same routes sometimes on different ones, in order to refine our craft to its simplest form. In the midst of the ever changing paths before us, the rhythm of our breath and sound of our feet plodding along provides us with the consistency needed to move ourselves forward.
After taking the month of September off to let myself heal, both mentally and physically, I entered October with a new plan for training and racing. I realized that my free wheelin' training from before just wasn't working great for me, and so I needed to make some changes that would help me perform well, the main one being a need for some level of consistency. So, for the month of October I settled into a routine that incorporated a temp/interval day, a speed work day, a couple of long run days, and one day off. This plan allowed me both the disciple of structure as well as the freedom to tweak it as I saw need. Also, the day off ensured that I would be able to put in a proper effort when it came time to do my speed and tempo days. Now, I know this "new" plan is nothing ground breaking, but it seems to be working so far. As my body adapts to it, I am sure that there will be need for change and refinement in the future.
|Chamoun cruising down from Baldy.|
As it is right now, I am happy with this last month's work. I ran to a third place finish as the Saddle-back Mountain Goat Marathon this past weekend, and I hope that is a sign to the success of my changes. I felt that I ran the race well, except for forgetting to drink enough water (amateur mistake), and I know the areas I need to work on for the future. That, coupled with constantly receiving updates from Strava that Chris Price has broken one of my CR's, tells me that I will always have work ahead of me, and I am excited for the hope of improvements to come.