‘Cause here we have been standing for a long, long time, Treading, trotting trails for a long, long time…
It’s June. Of 2022. What. The. Hell. Happened? It was just New Years. I know it was. New Years’ Eve: I was going to go celebrate the new year at an old friend’s place, and then run the traditional New Years’ Day 5-mile race put on by my local running club, after volunteering to mark the course.
What really happened, was I started to feel kind of sick. Given the coronavirus was making it’s winter surge, I didn’t think hanging around in closed quarters seemed like a good idea, so I messaged my friend and said I couldn’t come. I felt well enough to go for a midnight hike up the nearby mountain with another group of friends, figuring the outside air would be a qualitatively different situation.
Come morning, without having celebrated with libations (so I knew it wasn’t a hangover), I felt awful. Good enough to head down to volunteer at the race, but not good enough to actually do anything and certainly not run. This started off several days of home COVID tests (all negative) and eventually an urgent care PCR test (negative for COVID AND the Flu). Apparently I had just a run of the mill upper respiratory infection.
That just wouldn’t go away. Like at all.
The rest of the year to this point has been dealing with the loss of fitness because I can’t seem to breathe deeply enough. My race performances have all suffered, my usual training runs have been slower and harder. This is not what I’d imagined.
Here’s the recap of my race year to this point:
I’ve run 3 Marathons, each progressively slower than the one before, culminating with the most recent tire fire. The first, a flat and generally quite flat Clearwater Marathon; the second, the Boston Marathon where I took my time and enjoyed my race, but ultimately finished 41 seconds over 4-hours, and most recently Vermont City where everything came apart by about mile 23 when cramps derailed my 3:45:00 effort and landed me at more than 4:20:00.
I ran a Boston training run a few weeks before at a respectable pace which felt nice, but I also recently ran a 5k that was probably my slowest in at least 5 years – July 2017. I ran the Stu’s 30k race 1 second faster than I did in 2018, which saved me by 1-second from my slowest time.
I’m hopeful for getting my stuff back together the second half of the year, but the first part of my running year has been not been great, Bob. I’ll work on cutting out the excuses and actually work a plan for my next marathon in October. In the meantime, I’ll work on enjoying my runs.