This has been the best disappointing year ever! 200 miles per month averaged, despite barely creeping near 200 miles a couple of times the last few months.
A Running History
In 2006, I started running. By virtue of every race being my first at that distance, I set 4 personal records [5km, 15km, half-marathon, 4km]. I ran my first race, a 5k race, in 33:44. That's a pace of 10:52 per mile, which is a slower pace than my worst marathon finish out of 8 marathons.
In 2007, I set 9 PRs. 10 if you count the 9.2 mile leg that I ran for a fundraising relay race. Among those were:
- 2 - 4 miler PRs
- 2 - 5k PRs
- 1 - 10k PR
- 1 - 10 miler PR
- 2 - half marathon PRs
- 1 - marathon PR
In 2008, I started the year on fire and feeling invincible. I ran a PR in every race [6 total] through my second marathon in May. I beat my first marathon time by almost 55 minutes. I followed up that marathon performance with my worst marathon performance ever, 8 minutes slower than my first marathon time. Angry about my performance, I destructively ran hard, started getting injured, and proceeded to insure a prolonged injury by trying to bounce back too hard after a few days off. I recovered from my injury and hobbled through a marathon, and went on to run a 5k PR a couple of weeks later.
In 2009, I quickly injured myself out of being able to run any races until late spring [a 5k]. From there, I slowly built up mileage, peaking out at 70 and 80 miles per week toward a November and December marathon. I PRed in November and had a fairly strong marathon in December.
This year, I had the usual trifecta of PRs in the Louisville Triple Crown of Running -- 5k, 10k, 10 miler. Unfortunately, my 10 miler performance had me horribly disappointed. I had mediocre and uninspired training for the next few weeks leading up to my spring marathon, with a stomach bug circulating in the house the week prior to the marathon. I never got noticeably sick, but I didn't have the guts [literally] to finish the marathon.
Since my spring marathon attempt was little more than a 16 mile long run, I went straight back into marathon training, setting my sights on Chicago-10/10/10. I ran a 5k race after a high mileage week [80 miles?] in early August, and broke down during the subsequent 60 mile weeks. I took 3 weeks off with lots of stationary cycling, and managed to get back into the swing of training 5 weeks before the marathon. Chicago was a disaster.
Again, I tentatively trained through the marathon. This time the Flying Monkey marathon was up. Not exactly the "redemption opportunity" that one would hope for after crashing and burning on a flat marathon course. Nonetheless, I ran 22 minutes faster than my previous Flying Monkey marathon and 17 minutes faster than my Chicago time. While 4:08 is not exactly a good marathon outing for me, I was still very happy with some level of redemption for the year.
With Monkey over, I was a measly 140 miles or so from 2400 miles for the year with 5 weeks to go. 35 miles per week was going to be easy, even with travel, Thanksgiving, and Christmas. Then a nasty little sinus infection struck the day after Thanksgiving. I've felt bad before and managed to go out and trudge through 15-20 miles. I did a 22 miler with a sinus infection two weeks before my first marathon. It felt bad, but not much worse than sitting around feeling miserable.
This time, I've had two weekends where I just didn't care to start running a long run, much less go the full distance. I've had a fairly persistent cough for 5 weeks. The doctor last weekend had me x-rayed for pneumonia [two opinions later, both came back negative]. The cough is mostly on its last legs now, but I've had to take things far easier than I can stand. Nonetheless, 2400 miles are in the books. 150 miles more than last year.