Thursday, March 23, 2006

Still blogging away

Been away on a work trip for a few days and just got back today and I'm now able to report in on this final week of heavy training thus far. It figures that a heavy work week also coincides with the running but 'go figure'. Anyway, some creative planning and early mornings are keeping me on track but the desired intensity has been less than desired due to being overtired mentally and sleepwise.

Tues morning; up at 6:30 for a dreadmill run of 6 miles in 51:30 wearing the almost shiny new shoes which were recently modelled in a long run with Andrew. Dusted them off with a brush and they were perfectly fine on the mill once again. Later that day we made the journey to Yarmouth, NS for meetings planned for Weds. This involved a 1 hour drive to Saint John and a 3 hour ferry ride across to Digby. Of course this happened before the recent sinking of a ferry in BC and so we weren't worried at all. Once there we had a couple hours of meetings after which I snuck off for a quick 4 mile run before supper. Then later that night I was working till midnight preparing my final presentation for the next day, always right to the last minute, right?

Tossed and turned all night and up the next morning before the alarm at 6am. After a coffee and a bit more work it was out for another quick 4 mile dash before breakfast and the all day meetings. In case you didn't know I work as a biologist for the Fisheries Department and my job is to assess the local herring fish stock and report the results to our 'clients', the fishermen, processors and managers. There were about 50 people all eager to hear the latest results on the stock status and the meeting went reasonably well. At least they didn't throw things at me anyway! But still a long and stressful day and I was glad to be able to fit in another run after the meetings before supper.

The plan was for a 12 mile run with 6x1200 @5k but in my stressed tired state I just played it by ear, thinking that I'd run for about 6 miles outbound and then retrace my tracks the same way with the intervals. However, about 40 minutes into the run a very large dog came after me and he only backed off because the owner was calling him. I'm not sure it would have been a very good outcome had he not been called because the dog was not at all intimidated by me standing my ground and waving my arms etc. The main problem for me now became the return route was barred by this obstacle and so I changed the route into a large loop (I've run this area before and know the roads) but ended up on a busier highway and a strong cold headwind that was not conducive to doing hard intervals. Finished the 12 miles at a slower pace in about 1:38 and then out with my co-workers for a nice meal. The chocolate mousse cake was delicious!!

Today it was another 6:00am wakeup but then immediately on the roads to catch the early ferry to Saint John. This time with the strong winds and big waves on the ocean we were having some second thoughts but only for a second. It was a nice smooth run with only some slight rolling for such a large boat. Home at last shortly after lunch but feeling spaced out tired.

After settling my gear it was time to head out for my most unfavorite run, but thankfully last 15 mile midweek run of the program. Over the next few weeks there will more and more of these lasts as things wind down. Today the only goal was to 'survive' this long tough run started with the fuel gage near empty. Even with a couple of bottles of gatorade it was tough sledding from start to finish. The weather was totally bizarre with sun, cloud, rain, sleet, clearing, sun, cloud, more rain-sleet, snow and of course lots of headwind at 15-20mph for the 1st 7 miles. It was not pretty and think I was rained upon at least 5 separate times during this one run! At least it kept me distracted for parts of the 2:12 slog which I was determined to finish. Did stopping and walking ever feel good today!!

Tonite I'll just relax and catch up on all my blogs while following the March madness with a bowl of ice cream. Might even sleep in tommorow morning too ;-)


Unknown said...

Sounds like you put in the tough work and earned some ice cream. I think I'll join you.

Olga said...

Nice running out there, Mike! Hang in there, have an ice cream for me too.
At least your "biologist's" job has a meaning for fishermen, my "biologist" job is stricktly on the bench for the "future" breakthroughs in science.

Dawn - Pink Chick Tris said...

Wow and I thought I had a busy week. I'm sleeping in tomorrow...will be so nice.

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