Saturday, March 12, 2011

Back on the Bike and Almost Ready to Run


Friday and Saturday Bike Ride Commutes (3/11-3/12/11)

Today I dropped my baby off at the doctor.  She was having some health problems—things were rubbing together in the wrong spots, and there were some unsettling noises coming from her nether regions.  I’m a little lonely without her tonight.  My patio looks so empty without her chained to a post, waiting loyally for our next ride together.  I can’t wait to pick her up from the doctor on Monday.

But before we visited the kind doctor at the bike shop, I took the bike to work on Friday and Saturday.  It felt terrific to be back on two wheels after taking it easy this week in the wake of the half-marathon.  The wind has been fierce lately, so there were moments when it was tough to keep pedaling forward, but my legs felt good and rested.  Sometimes I had a bit of pain in my right knee, which was quite similar to a pain I felt during the race.  I didn’t mention it in my race report, but it was there and I just ran through the pain.  It was more uncomfortable than painful, but to be on the safe side, I’ll be doing short runs for the next few weeks as I ease my way back into sneakers and after-work runs.

Speaking of which, it occurs to me that I have no idea how to maintain my running base now that the race is over.  After previous half-marathons, I’ve always stopped running completely for a month or more.  I don’t want to do that this time.  In fact, I have a goal: I’d like to maintain a running base that lets me run six miles (or 60 minutes) easily at roughly a nine-minute-mile pace.  I have two questions regarding this plan of mine.  The first: how do I let my body recover from the race while easing back into running?  The second: how will I manage to run outside during a Texas summer?  I didn’t do much outdoor running last summer as I was training for this year’s half-marathon.  I biked outside and I ran on a treadmill, but I rarely ran outside.  This year, I think I am going to have to bite the bullet and learn how to get up early to run at least once a week.  I know I can do it for races.  The question is can I learn to do it just for the love of running?

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