living in the now

Still rambling about running. Sometimes other things.

Putting all these pieces together

After getting so wrapped up with numbers last year, I’ve backed off keeping such close track this year of where I am mileage wise. I think I check things once or twice a month now compared to last year in which it seemed like I was doing it every other day. With Baltimore Marathon training I am keeping closer track of my weekly mileage, but I certainly feel like I'm not obsessing about it. It’s quite a relief, actually, and I’ve been able to focus more on the quality of my runs much more than I have in the past.

My average everyday runs are generally about 20-30 seconds faster per mile, often even faster, and the results are showing up on race days.

Now comes the time to focus on both quality and quantity – the higher mileage days and weeks are important, but so are making sure I’m running with good form, mixing up the types of runs I do and maintaining better paces so I have less time on my feet. I’m a big believer now that spending less time on my feet (higher leg turnover) on runs is key to preventing future injuries.

That said, I actually am spending more overall time on my feet with walking twice a day at work. I think that time of extra movement is helping me recover faster and giving me more energy day to day. That’s another blog post for another time as I continue to figure out those benefits.

So … while I have shifted my focus a bit, I did some mileage counting before I started running this week. I’m going to hit my 500th mile before the week ends. Coming off my injury, that’s a big deal to me. A year ago I hit the 500th mile at the end of June, and to be just 3 weeks off that pace does a lot for me mentally, especially after what I wrote about a couple of days ago.

Also this week, I’m aiming for my first 30-mile week in 9 months. I've already had three runs of a wide variety to get close to halfway -- a run in the heat that forced me to walk, a run in the rain with stomach issues and a very hot (heat index was at 95) progressive run of miles of 8:59, 8:29 and 8:01. Just like getting back to 20 miles in a week at the end of April, getting to 30 will feel special.

Image: graur codrin /