Monday, January 08, 2007

Break out Run

From time to time in course of human events, a runner just needs to do what feels right and throw out the %@#$ing plan. I made it to Seattle in one piece (although I got a middle seat somehow) and after a productive afternoon in our Redmond office, I decided that it was best to run my 7 miler this evening instead of Tuesday morning. I need to be back in the office at 7AM on Tuesday and just couldn’t face getting up at 4:30am.

Although the temperature this evening in Redmond was 45, the high humidity made it feel much colder at first to this desert dweller. However, I left my tights at home, so despite how cold I felt, I was running in shorts. After work, I checked into my hotel, changed into my running gear and drove over to the Sammamish River trail for a quick 7 miler. I also brought along a clean shirt and a pair of jeans so I could go grab some dinner at my favorite down-town Redmond eatery – Big Time Pizza (best beer in Redmond and the food absolutely rocks)

After parking the car at the trail head and walking around a bit to warm up, I turned on my head lamp and started down the trail. After a mile, I looked down at my Garmin and was shocked to see that I was doing better than 8:30/mi; but the legs felt strong and I was really enjoying the cool air damp air on my legs. I kept cruising for another mile until I was passed by another runner. I picked up the pace immediately and stuck on the guy's tail. This guy was pretty strong and after my Garmin had time to settle out, I realized we (I use the word we very liberally) were cruising along at 7:15/mi. I can certainly run 7:15 for 5 or 6 miles, but I was suppose to be running a recovery run and was already running way to fast, so after a 1/2 mile I dropped off his tail and resumed a more sensible pace (it was fun while it lasted)

I got to my turn-around point at 3.5 miles in just under 30 minutes and was more than a little concerned that my excursion with runner boy would cause me to bonk on the return leg - and I had yet to do my stride outs. However, I was feeling pretty good as I headed back down the trail towards my car, so I just kept my foot on the gas and cruised along through mile 5 before I started the 10x100m strides. On the 6th stride, I got to pass 4 joggers out for a casual night run. Although I knew darn well that I couldn’t keep up a sub-7:00/mi pace for more than the distance of a 100m stride, it was still fun to chase down a group and pass them running full out. They didn't know I was pushing really hard and my recovery pace was much faster than their jogging pace, so I was in no danger of getting caught. With 10 strides on the return leg, I finished up this section with a negative split, well below 30 minutes.

Outbound – 3.5 miles @ 8:26/mile
Inbound -3.5 miles @ 8:04/mile

After the run, I walked back to my car and my glasses immediately steamed up when I closed the door. I drove the car (with the windows down) to a secluded part of the parking lot and walked around outside in the cold night air for 10 minutes before I cooled down enough to slip into my fresh cloths. After changing cloths, I motored over to the restaurant, only to find that it was closed for renovation (I must have missed the eMail when they asked my permission). Fortunately, I was able to find another Italian Restaurant near by to supply my required dose of carbohydrates. Like most towns, there are plenty of common chain restaurants in Redmond, but I usually avoid these when traveling alone. I like to find the smaller one-of-a-kind type of places where the chief has to live or die by the decisions they make on the food. This place, Frankie’s Pizza and Pasta, didn’t disappoint me. The pasta was cooked superbly and the meat sauce (which the waitress told me was spicy) was pleasantly mild.

I really appreciated your comments from yesterday’s post. For the past two days, I’ve stuck with a good diet and managed to get in a couple of decent runs (ignoring the fact that today was supposed to be a rest day). I hope the rest of the week goes as well. Maybe I am getting the hang of this taper thing.

Training for the week:

Mon: 7.0 miles, recovery w/10x100 strides; 8:15/mi avg pace


Taryn said...

Ooooh, Sammamish're making me homesick! Enjoy your time there and great job on that run!

Bob Gentile said...

Hey Phil, ya I hate middle seats, I usual get the window put the MP3 player on and sleep close to that window... last month when I traveled there was a crying baby-- I put the MP3 player on and the person next to me said he would give me $20 to borrow the player--lol I said sorry and went to sleep :)

Good luck out in Seattle, BE Safe!

stephruns said...

Sounds like you had a blast! Great Run and pace!!!!

D said...

I'm feeling sorry for you right now Phil. Tapering sucks! It sounds like you had a great run and then some challenging runs. Just keep in mind that you have trained hard and right now your mind may be playing tricks on you due to this crazy thing we all know as the taper. Your heart rate is staying very low. Great indication that you are fit and ready for this marathon!

Angie said...

oh man that sounds great! the run, the food, the weather, mmm.

Chad in the Arizona Desert said...

Great job, Phil. I sounds like you are in tip-top shape for a great marathon in a couple of weeks.

Hilda said...

Great way to combine traveling and running even enjoying it!

J~Mom said...

Sounds like a great run and dinner!

Ewen said...

Next time I'm up that way I'll be looking for "best beer in Redmond" or "Frankies"! We were always looking for 'one-of-a-kind' places :)

Nice run Phil with some handy speed in there.

You are right about the photo - although I prefer the Arizona side of the Colorado ;) We were amazed as we drove south to see what looked like sand in the distance. Then these unexpected massive dunes appeared!