Thursday, January 17, 2013

Benchmarks

It's been months since I've ran anything other than the same slow and monotonous pace that always seems to become a steady beat through my legs no matter what the distance. 

And I can't take it anymore.

I've needed all those easy and relaxed miles that have lacked focus and logic. Finally giving my body the rest and recovery time it had been craving for months and months wasn't really an option. Not feeling obligated to do workouts and clock a certain mileage has done wonders on all those open wounds that hadn't really gotten the chance to heal from last year. Now feeling rejuvenated and refreshed, I'm finally feeling physically and mentally ready to start moving out of my comfort zone once again. 

Having lost the majority of my stealth running fitness in the past 7 months or so, it's really hard for me at this point to guess where I am physically. Mentally my head is still where it was last year at this time, where no workout seems impossible and outrageously crazy dreams are like kerosene for my relentless heart. Realistically, I know that's not the case and that I'm in desperate need of some type of benchmark to place my current fitness that the slow and steady paces I've been clipping aren't going to show me.

Yesterday came time to put my money where my mouth is.

2x10 minutes @ estimated threshold pace
Followed by 8x15 second hill climbs


It was windy.
My legs were screaming.
My eyes were burning.
My mind felt unsure.
But it all felt amazing.

This was no walk in the park, and by that second set of 10 threshold minutes my legs were pretty spent. But it just felt good to be moving forward again with deep breath and a steady focus. And those hills were a b*#$%. But now I know where I stand and that I've got quite a bit of work ahead of me if I want to have another one of those amazing years in 2013.

Wore the new Brooks Cadence 2's,


and I think I may have found the shoe for me.
Pure love for pure project.
Brooks never disappoints me.

Maybe it was all in my mind, but when wearing these kicks I feel light and as if my cadence is as steady and quick as it's ever been.

Currently rotating these puppies in with my Ravenna's, where they hopefully will stick around for awhile.

15 comments:

  1. I have slacked in running several times in the past years and basically had to start from scratch. And it was always horrible - six weeks of aching legs and slow and painful miles until my body got used to running again.
    But judging by your distance and pace, that't not the case for you! Way to go! I have to train quite a bit in order to get to your pace!
    But there is a difference between training hard and just running for pure pleasure, and if you felt that your body needed that, you definitely did the right thing!
    I love those shoes, by the way!

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  2. Wow! Amazing workout! I'm feeling inspired now. I have a tempo run on the agenda for today, and you've got me pumped up for it. Thanks!

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  3. Way to go! Awesome workout. For me, nothing beats running fast for long periods of time and the exhilaration I feel afterwards.

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  4. I feel like I'm in this same place (lightyears slower) learning to run fast again after not doing that for too long. Great workout! Love the kicks!

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  5. I love my Cadences as well! I feel like they were designed with my foot in mind.

    I will be completing my first round of speedwork in months tonight! I'm nervous. It's been so long, I feel like a speed virgin. Plus, I don't want it to upset my PF.

    Nice run, lady! Way to go.

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  6. Just out of curiosity, do you have a high arch? I do, and I think that's why the cadences feel so nice. They're also great because I run on my midfoot so there's no need for a bulky heel.

    Did you notice any chances from the original Cadences and the Cadence 2?

    Sorry to bombard you with shoe talk!

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  7. Hills, outside. REAL hills. Jealous.
    I need to get some in my routine but they will have to be done on the treadmill, not a hill to be found in my neck of the woods :(
    I am currently trying to persuade my husband that we NEED to go to Chicago this year, say around October time for a nice weekend break (of course I'd run the marathon whilst there - pure coincidence! ;)).
    Glad you're back to some hard work, I don't agree that it's 'out of your comfort zone' though, sounds to me like working hard is slap bang in the middle of your comfort zone :)

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  8. Speedwork! Haven't done this in a while. Looking forward to breaking a 5 minute mile in 2013. Brooks silence shoes are my favorite :]

    Great post!

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  9. awesome work! I too have combined these shoes with my Ravennas and am pleasantly surprised.

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  10. Sweet workout. I bet it felt great to be finished :). I am wearing the pure flows now, but I want to try out the cadence soon.

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  11. Well, the first half of this post sounded familiar until I got to the part where there was 6's.....Yes, this is not familiar-ha! Nice workout and I bet you felt awesome after!!!

    I just ordered Ravenna's! I've been wearing the Cadence for about 3 weeks now and then just got the Cadence2 today. Same color even. Maybe they will bring me 6's-ha ha!

    Hope 2013 is fantastic for you Britt. Looking forward to watching this amazing year for you:)

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  12. I'll bet that felt great after the long break. I have no doubts you'll come back quickly with your talent.

    I am currently loving the new model of Pures, the Drifts. Awesome shoe!

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  13. I'm falling into that slump/comfort zone right now....logging in easy, comfortable miles on the treadmill. So not me, but sometimes you have to give your mind and body a break. There are too many other things in my life that are stressful right now and that need my focus. To put the added stress on myself to live up to my expectations with running would be too much right now. I'm just running to run and kind of enjoying not worrying about the numbers right now, but I'm sure in a few weeks I will be itching to get back out there and give it my all.

    Nice run, and welcome back from your "break".

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  14. I had no idea you were a brooks fan - I am feeling like brooks pulled one out from under me and I don't know what to do! You know the pure flow 2's didn't work for me:( But I LOVE LOVE LOVE the pure line and refuse to let it go. I'm told by the shoe store that the cadences will not work because they are for slight overpronators, and if the original pure flows work, then I shouldn't wear the new cadences, BUT, I was also told I slightly over pronate in my left foot - I guess my question is, did you wear a "stability" shoe before the cadences? I feel like from reading about them, they don't seem like a major stability shoe and I might be ok in them for my minor left foot pronation. I've never had issues with sneakers! AHHHH! I might just order the cadence 2's and see how they work...sorry for the long comment, I'm just wondering how you happened into the cadences over any other pure shoe...
    and, very EXCITED to see you come back super super strong:)

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