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Half a Mile From Tucson, By The Morning Light

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Re: Half a Mile From Tucson, By The Morning Light

Post  Michele "1L" Keane on Tue Nov 06, 2012 4:14 pm

[quote="Chris M"]
Dave-O wrote:
Cassidy's All Star soccer season started yesterday with our first practice. I have 4 girls I've had before but a lot of new faces. We'll practice twice this week, have a scrimmage, practice twice next week and then the All Star Tournament is the following weekend. Only downside to that is that its the weekend that the Schueys are here for the JFK50. So unless I get some kind of tournament scheduling miracle with the first game being late late morning, I likely won't be able to be out at the course to run some of it with Schuey and KB Fitz. But we'll host them at our house before and afterwards and I'll have to get the race stories afterwards. Bummer because I would love to go out and run parts of the race with them and serve as their crew/support.

It might workout. I'm still thinking of coming Chris - but it may be that I fly in/out (now that I cancelled flights to NY and AZ, I have lots of banked $$ to fly to Dulles. I certainly can't run with Schuey and Kev, but I can certainly be crew and assist Lisa (whom I assume will want to be there) with Kristina. Let me know how far you are from Dulles and if that would work??
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Re: Half a Mile From Tucson, By The Morning Light

Post  Chris M on Tue Nov 06, 2012 4:37 pm

We live about 15 mins from Dulles. Its the closest airport to us. You are of course welcome to stay with us for any part of that weekend and depending on when you come in and leave, I can likely provide the ride from/to the airport. I think Schuey plans to stay up at the race site itself Friday night as its an early race time but whatever works (staying with us and going from there) is fine. The Schueys will arrive Thursday, I think? Our house is open and ready for however long you want to stay!
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Re: Half a Mile From Tucson, By The Morning Light

Post  KBFitz on Tue Nov 06, 2012 7:11 pm

Michele "1L" Keane wrote:It might workout.
Chris M wrote:Our house is open and ready for however long you want to stay!
It sure would be nice to have you out on the course Michele with Lisa & Kristina. Chris lives literally in the back yard of IAD. The Schumachers will likely stay in Hagerstown, a short drive to the start. As is my tradition, I will drive up to Boonsboro the morning of the race. You are welcome to ride with me in the wee hours and we could put you up here in DC on Friday night to ease the logistics of that. [Yes, I am mad, but that's what I do.] I don't know if Vivian will drive up the morning of the race or not. We'll poll the troops this weekend, see what's up and make arrangements for you & Lisa as formal crew for an informal bunch.
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Re: Half a Mile From Tucson, By The Morning Light

Post  Chris M on Tue Nov 06, 2012 7:31 pm

KBFitz wrote:
Michele "1L" Keane wrote:It might workout.
Chris M wrote:Our house is open and ready for however long you want to stay!
It sure would be nice to have you out on the course Michele with Lisa & Kristina. Chris lives literally in the back yard of IAD. The Schumachers will likely stay in Hagerstown, a short drive to the start. As is my tradition, I will drive up to Boonsboro the morning of the race. You are welcome to ride with me in the wee hours and we could put you up here in DC on Friday night to ease the logistics of that. [Yes, I am mad, but that's what I do.] I don't know if Vivian will drive up the morning of the race or not. We'll poll the troops this weekend, see what's up and make arrangements for you & Lisa as formal crew for an informal bunch.
Just let me know beer preferences for Saturday PM so I can stock accordingly...
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Re: Half a Mile From Tucson, By The Morning Light

Post  Michele "1L" Keane on Wed Nov 07, 2012 4:40 pm

Ok, I'll tentatively plan on flying to Dulles on Friday afternoon and leaving on Sunday late morning. I'll take you up on a room for two night if that is ok, Chris, and I'll get a car so that I can drive out to the start early and meet up with Lisa.

I'd fly to DC, Kev - but Cleveland in a United hub - so Dulles, it is.
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Re: Half a Mile From Tucson, By The Morning Light

Post  Chris M on Wed Nov 07, 2012 11:08 pm

Michele "1L" Keane wrote:Ok, I'll tentatively plan on flying to Dulles on Friday afternoon and leaving on Sunday late morning. I'll take you up on a room for two night if that is ok, Chris, and I'll get a car so that I can drive out to the start early and meet up with Lisa.

I'd fly to DC, Kev - but Cleveland in a United hub - so Dulles, it is.
Done and done. Email me at chris.mckee@gt-t.net and we'll get all the details squared away. Kevin is good at all of the logistics management so he'll help us formulate a workable plan. But as the Motel6 guys say "we'll leave a light on" and you are welcome here for as many nights as you want to stay.
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Re: Half a Mile From Tucson, By The Morning Light

Post  Schuey on Thu Nov 08, 2012 12:39 am

Sorry to inform everyone that I have made the decision today to not run JKF this year. I look at my 200 dollar entry fee as a donation to the AP trail. I'm very sad to say that we will miss seeing you all. My heart and mind is not completely focused on running 50 miles and my life has not been all that easy of late. Mainly my work schedule and work has been very busy and to be honest I'm completely exhausted!! As do to another co-worker who refuses to be a team player the only day that I can't get off from work is Thursday. Which then means Lisa and I would have to jump in the car and start driving back to Chicago right after I finish running 50 miles so that I can be back at work on Sunday night. So the stress of this has made this whole thought of running JFK this year not fun. And the reason I do this stuff is because it is fun.

So with that being said JFK will have to wait until next year for me. Sad

Unless I can find some cheap airfare to fly the family out on Friday and we can fly home on Sunday.

I must also add that it has been extremely difficult for me to train over the last month. Since Lisa has gone back to work I have had no choice but to do all my training during the week at 2am and even 3am in the morning. And then get 2 to 3 hours sleep and then get up and take care of Kristina. I came to the conclusion that this was not only unfair to myself but also to Lisa and Kristina. Last week was so rough do to London did there time change and therefore I had to stay here at work an extra hour which meant I was not getting home until 2:30 or 3:00am in the morning.

Now the good news is this and I'm letting the cat out of the bag Lisa. Lisa just got a new job that she starts on Nov 19th making more money than her old job. The best thing about this new job is that it is something that she is very excited about and more important it is a flex job which means she will be working from home!!!!! Which mean the Schumacher's will be going back to a normal lifestyle and I can come home from work and go to bed and train during the day!!!

Chris so sorry for the hijack in your blog!!! Rest assure everyone I will be training very hard for Boston this year and I have big big goals!!!
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Re: Half a Mile From Tucson, By The Morning Light

Post  Michele "1L" Keane on Thu Nov 08, 2012 10:02 am

Well, I'm hijacking again, but based on the above, I won't come either as I was just a tag along to help with the baby, etc. I'll post the rest to Schuey's blog.
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Re: Half a Mile From Tucson, By The Morning Light

Post  Chris M on Thu Nov 08, 2012 9:14 pm

Ah bummer but I totally understand. Your schedule is so crazy and there's been so much upheaval if your life the past 6 months (much of it good!) that it makes sense that you cannot be committed in full on BULL fashion to the JFK50. I'm mostly just seflishly disappointed that we won't see you guys and get to hang out. But as far as not coming to do the race, I think you are making the right call.

Hmmm.....so you save those vacation days.....any chance you could get off the afternoon of Saturday, December 8 until the afternoon of Monday, December 10? Becuase if so, a plane ticket to Tucson might come your way and you could jump in and do a little pacing for me or just hang out and drink beer. Scott is going to go but not run at all. You would have no expenses....just working out that time away. Ah, Lisa will kill me for even bringing it up. With her going back to work, that's probably a bad idea too. You'll see the whole gang come April in Boston and I'll make up a business reason to go to Chicago real soon.
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Re: Half a Mile From Tucson, By The Morning Light

Post  Chris M on Wed Nov 21, 2012 12:00 pm

Kind of getting towards the end of Tucson training and these next 4-5 days are pretty key as the last pre-taper push. The plan:

Tomorrow - run a 5k hard and hopefully win a homemade pie as a prize. I was 4th last year in the AG at this race and only top 3 get the pie. Some fast old dudes run this race for some reason. I'll have my work cut out for me. Its hilly which I hate and suck at but I should be somewhere in the 18s.

Friday - run easy on some trails near my brother's house in Maryland where we are staying

Saturday - entering a low key ($10) race that is a 10 miler around a state park. More hills. I'll do it as a marathon pace run.

Sunday - this will be hard - heading way out west in Virginia to a place my buddy knows where there is some kind of 4 mile long hill. The plan is 18-20 total miles but taking that hill twice, going slow jog up and then goal MP back down. That's 8 miles (downhill) at MP in the 18-20 but coming right off of the 10 at MP the day before. Gulp. If I can nail these 3 specific workout days, I'll be pretty happy. And then....taper

I went over the details of the Tucson race plan with Dave yesterday and he's cool with it. The course divides up into segments well:

Start to Mile 5 - rolling hills - gotta take it easy here - goal is actually a little over 7

Miles 6-10 - most significant downhill on course - 6:30-6:35 for this section

Miles 10-14 - hardest part of course - a 2 mile out and back to the BioDome with some significant climbing. Gotta relax and recover in here and fine with giving back signficant seconds

Miles 14-25 - gradual downhill. Back on normal MP pace of 6:45-6:50 but with a -1% grade gravity assist

0.5 to go - a nasty short uphill. That will suck. No plan other than to hopefully be close enough to the goal to grit through it. Then on to the finish. My buddy Scott is actually flying out to Tucson with me to help cheer me on and provide any handoffs I need. I think I'll have him hand me a bottle at both 10 and 14 (same spot on course) and then if he's up for it to have him jump in at 24 and keep me going. And then a monster Mexican food fiesta afterwards. My cousin Jimmy is living in Phoenix right now and claims he's coming down. But he's a 20-something year old and their plans tend to be pretty fluid. He'll get unlimited food and drink if he makes it down to Tucson and that may be enough to draw him down there.

Its pretty quiet today at the office and so we are going to close early and then I'll head up to my brother's house this afternoon. Jennifer and Cassidy already went up there this morning and my In Laws came in last night. My parents will show up just for Thanksgiving itself and so its 12 total for the meal. And then we are just going to stay up there for the weekend. Weird going on a "vacation" only 40 minutes from our own house but it will be fun to just relax and hang out with family over the next few days. RGIII and the Redskins versus Dallas on Thursday at 4pm. My Dad and I will try and talk the crew into allowing the TV on for that even while we are at the table but since we are the only 2 Redskins fans there, we might be in trouble. Go Skins!
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Re: Half a Mile From Tucson, By The Morning Light

Post  Chris M on Mon Nov 26, 2012 11:41 am

Had a good Thanksgiving break. Soooo nice not having to work for 4 days! I did win a pie at the Turkey Trot on Thursday. I paced the 5k like a complete idiot, of course. There was a downhill right at the start and then flat the rest of the first mile and I went hammering out way way way too fast. First time I looked at my watch, I was at 5:20 pace (!!) and did the whole mile at 5:40. All of which might have been OK if it stayed flat but then the climbing started and I was cooked. 6:40 2nd mile which is just embarassing! Towards the very end, 1st and 2nd in my AG passed me and I didn't have enough left to fight them for the spots. Ugh. Still, pie prize to 3 in each 10 year AG so I snuck in there and got er done despite some bad execution. Pineapple upside down pie which was good. We already had Pumpkin and Apple and Cassidy wouldn't let me get Pecan because she claims she doesn't like nuts. Next year, I'm getting Pecan.

Better job of following the pace plan Saturday. 10 mile race over a lot of hills. It was super windy that day which wasn't fun. Plan was first 5 miles pacing Gillian (Cassidy's best friend) and then 5 on my own at goal MP. Gillian is running the XC AAU National Championship this upcoming weekend so this was her last workout. For the first 5 with Gillian, it was to be 2 7:30s and then 3 7:00s. Did it perfectly and she got a 35:59 for her workout which was dead on. Then I ran the 2nd half at 6:50 pace although the pacing was a bit jagged due to all the hills. Not an easy run. I've done 10 mile races as pre-marathon pace runs and felt great. But those have all been in nice flat races in DC. With the wind and hills, I felt like this was quite a bit north of "easy" although certainly not killer.

Sunday was pretty wild. Scott (my buddy and Gillian's Dad) took me out in Virginia to Mount Weather. Weird place. It is FEMA HQ and where the Federal Government would go hide out if there was an attack or disaster in DC. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mount_Weather_Emergency_Operations_Center It sits atop of a big hill that we set out to run. Plan was park at a General store and then it was 1.3 miles to the base of the hill over rolling terrain and then 4 miles STRAIGHT UP. Did all of that pretty slow although my heart was hammering doing that much climbing. Then 4 miles down and I went at my goal MP and Scott went slow. Met back up with him at the base of the hill and then we went back up to do 4 up/4 down again before finishing with the 1.3 cooldown back to the car. So 18.6 total (I ended up doing about 20 because i would jog around while waiting for Scott to finish the 4 down portion) with 8 miles downhill done at goal MP. 6:45/6:40 for my two "down" sections so a bit fast but this was seriously downhill stuff and it felt like brakes the whole way. The whole 4 mile hill is rough and there's a 1.5 mile section at the bottom that averages 8% grade. I don't know that I would want to run that mountain again. Too steep to be enjoyed either going up or down. But I survived the run and feel more or less fine today. So, taper time. I'll go very easy today and the one workout this week will be the full Yasso 800 x 10 either Wednesday or Friday. I want to do it outside at a track. Not sure what I should do for my final "long" run a week out. Schedule says 13 miles. I guess that's a good number. Do I do some MP as part of that? Hmm.
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Re: Half a Mile From Tucson, By The Morning Light

Post  Michael Enright on Mon Nov 26, 2012 11:57 am

You don't know whether you'd run the mountain again? C'mon, that's crazy! Never run that thing again...

Pie race sounds awesome, and nice job snagging a pie!
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Re: Half a Mile From Tucson, By The Morning Light

Post  Chris M on Wed Nov 28, 2012 5:25 pm

Probably like most runners, I have a couple of bread and butter staple runs I do. These are the routes/paces/mileage I do most often. Certainly there are a bunch of different length runs I do on the Washington & Old Dominion Trail starting/ending at a parking lot near my house at Clark's Crossing Park. I know every single piece of pavement for about 5 miles out in either direction from there and am pretty familiar with the next 5 as well if not with perfect imprinting. Today at lunch, i did the run I probably do often as a staple. 7 mile run on the treadmill, TV on with close captions and iPod on with tunes, first 6 miles at 7.5 mph (8:00 pace) and last mile at 8.9 mph (6:44 pace). If I'm in a mega mileage period - definitely not right no - I won't do the final mile faster but generally that's the same run I do over and over again. Takes 55 minutes and if I time the start time right, I watch one hour long show on TV or two 30 minute sitcomes. An easy run and a nice way to knock out some mileage in the middle of the workday. I can usually keep the getting ready and quick shower after to under 20 mins and be gone from the desk a total of 1:15 which is really not too bad. Anyone else have "staple" runs/routes they do over and over like that where you know the pace and routine cold?
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Re: Half a Mile From Tucson, By The Morning Light

Post  JohnP on Wed Nov 28, 2012 11:24 pm

Due to where I live, I run the same few staple runs all the time. I have one route that is seven miles out. So I use that frequently for runs up to 14 miles. There's another route that is 4 miles out so I use that for runs up to 8 miles. A lot of roads here don't have sidewalks or shoulders so I wind up running those few routes almost all the time. I also know them like the back of my hand.
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Re: Half a Mile From Tucson, By The Morning Light

Post  mul21 on Thu Nov 29, 2012 12:18 am

I have a regular 6 mile route for recovery runs that I run all the time. I also have a 10.2 mile loop I can extend out as far as needed by just extending the outward part up to 8 or so miles. The normal turn around is at 5.1, which provides a nice spot to drop water for longer runs or even for the 10.2 on exceptionally hot days.

Those, along with the 10 w/6 @ tempo on the mill, are probably my most common ones by a long shot.
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This Is The One!

Post  Martin VW on Sun Dec 09, 2012 11:52 am

One hour to go..weather is perfect..C'mon bud!

Damn, why no on line tracking?!?
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Re: Half a Mile From Tucson, By The Morning Light

Post  Matt W on Sun Dec 09, 2012 12:01 pm

Martin VW wrote:One hour to go..weather is perfect..C'mon bud!

Damn, why no on line tracking?!?

My thoughts exactly. Anyone hear how it went?
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Re: Half a Mile From Tucson, By The Morning Light

Post  Martin VW on Sun Dec 09, 2012 12:17 pm

Matt W wrote:
Martin VW wrote:One hour to go..weather is perfect..C'mon bud!

Damn, why no on line tracking?!?

My thoughts exactly. Anyone hear how it went?

Still running. It's 9:15 there, 7 AM start. Should be less than 10K to go!

I don't think he has a support team there...I had a chance to go to Tucson, by coincidence, but it fizzled out. Really wanted to go and root him on!
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Re: Half a Mile From Tucson, By The Morning Light

Post  KBFitz on Sun Dec 09, 2012 12:47 pm

I'm getting split updates for Ben. Updates for Chris have not arrived. Here are Ben's:

Ben Z at the 6.1 Mile Split in 40:08.

Ben Z at the 12.7 Mile Split in 1:24:33.
Pace 6:30 min/Mile.
Estimated Finish Time: 2:50:30.

Ben Z at the 19.3 Mile Split in 2:08:41.
Pace 6:46 min/Mile.
Estimated Finish Time: 2:57:34.

UPDATE: Ben finished.
Ben Z at the Finish in 2:55:38.
Pace 6:42 min/Mile.
Time of Arrival: 9:55:22.

Though you would think there would be a premium on it, reliable and timely in-race updates are rare. I'll post any info I get on Chris ... if I get any info on Chris, that is.


Last edited by KBFitz on Sun Dec 09, 2012 1:23 pm; edited 4 times in total
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Re: Half a Mile From Tucson, By The Morning Light

Post  Martin VW on Sun Dec 09, 2012 1:07 pm

Well, if he did it, he's done. Hope to get an email as soon as he gets to his phone. HM results are up on Active.com.



I have a good feeling !!!
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Re: Half a Mile From Tucson, By The Morning Light

Post  Ben Z on Sun Dec 09, 2012 5:09 pm

KBFitz wrote:I'm getting split updates for Ben. Updates for Chris have not arrived. Here are Ben's:

Ben Z at the 6.1 Mile Split in 40:08.

Ben Z at the 12.7 Mile Split in 1:24:33.
Pace 6:30 min/Mile.
Estimated Finish Time: 2:50:30.

Ben Z at the 19.3 Mile Split in 2:08:41.
Pace 6:46 min/Mile.
Estimated Finish Time: 2:57:34.

UPDATE: Ben finished.
Ben Z at the Finish in 2:55:38.
Pace 6:42 min/Mile.
Time of Arrival: 9:55:22.

Though you would think there would be a premium on it, reliable and timely in-race updates are rare. I'll post any info I get on Chris ... if I get any info on Chris, that is.

Yikes! It told me 2:55:31 at the finish. If that's accurate I PRed by 5 seconds. If 2:55:38 is accurate I missed it by 2 seconds. I fear 2:55:38 is accurate now as my watch was 2:55:40. Geesh.
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Re: Half a Mile From Tucson, By The Morning Light

Post  Chris M on Tue Dec 11, 2012 11:33 am

Hey all, yeah, Tucson was a bust. Its really a great race and conditions and the course are well set up for a PR. But I was struggling way too early on with a couple of the early mile rolling hills and my problematic right knee was barking at me with every step. The plan was the first 5 miles at just over 7 and then 6-10 were downhill and I was in the mid 6:30s. I hit mile 10 exactly on plan at 1:08:15 but when the course went on a 2 mile out and back, I was D-U-N done and falling sharply off of the specific pace plan. I really had no desire to muddle through to a non-PR, non-sub3 finish and so I stopped before the half as my buddy Scott was right there. I'm going to the same doctor who did my ACL surgery on the other knee years ago to see what's up with my right knee. I don't think its anything real serious. Maybe just tendonitis? The bigger issue for me is that I'm fried mentally on the marathon sub3 quest. I've been going at it for awhile and I need to take a break from that specific goal as its made running a real drag for me. I'm going to back off to a focus on other distances and see if that restores me both physically and mentally for coming back to the marathon. I'll run Boston 2013 of course becuase I want to keep my streak going and that will be #4 in a row. But my only goal there may just be to BQ for 2014 and that's a 3:25. So the current idea is first to get 100% healthy again and then to get back to enjoying running a bit more with some quicker but shorter runs, fewer long long runs and maybe look to do some races in the Spring to try and get PRs at 5k/10k/10 mile. But even that feels a bit far off right now. I just want to get back to running being something I look forward to and enjoy doing. The past 6 months, it became a drag for me and the training reflects that with too many missed workouts and really subpar results on the ones I did. I haven't really NAILED a good training run in months and months. Lots of mediocre mileage in there in terms of both quality and quanity. And blah in terms of anything I did with tune-ups. Just not a cycle that had any high moments. That's not fun and also an indication of being a bit overcooked on all of this. So, a full reboot of the system coming and I'll see where that takes me.

But Tucson itself was great! I'd never been there and its a strange but beautiful place. Very dry, nothing much growing there except for cactus. But amazing mountain views and nice crisp air. My buddy Scott who is fully on the injured list right now with pf in both feet came with me. The hotel (El Conquitor) was awesome and we enjoyed just hanging out and watching movies during the downtime. I also got to meet up with my cousin Jimmy on Sunday to watch all the NFL games at a bar. Jimmy grew up here in the DC area but lives out in Tempe now. It was great to catch up with him.
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Re: Half a Mile From Tucson, By The Morning Light

Post  Michele "1L" Keane on Tue Dec 11, 2012 11:47 am

Sorry to hear this, Chris - and I am glad that you posted as I was getting a bit concerned. You did the right thing though, so no harm there. Hopefully the knee thing is nothing. It may simply be ITB issues or even tight quads/glutes which often cause my knees to hurt. You have put in a lot of work over the last few months and you deserve the rest. Rest, recover, re-energize and I will see you in Boston in April. Happy Holidays!
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Re: Half a Mile From Tucson, By The Morning Light

Post  KBFitz on Tue Dec 11, 2012 12:01 pm

Good to hear you're alright. Full reboot. I second the motion and join you in that camp. Cherry Blossom has been good to you in the past. Perhaps you'll have a spring in your step this Spring. Here's to a successful reboot!
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Re: Half a Mile From Tucson, By The Morning Light

Post  Mark B on Tue Dec 11, 2012 12:30 pm

Sorry about the race, Chris, but you did the right thing. No sense in adding to possible damage.

It sounds like you're perilously close to burn out, if not already over the edge. Count me as another voice for a reboot. Rest, recover and rededicate yourself to finding the fun in running again. If it's shorter distances at higher intensity, great. If it's longer distances (I can see you rolling your eyes, but I'm serious here - it might help you) at a purposefully slower pace, that's great, too.

Either way, shift your focus away from goals for the time being and instead embrace the process. You just might be pleasantly surprised.
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Re: Half a Mile From Tucson, By The Morning Light

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