Regrettably, it has been over a year since my last post. Over the past year, I have been on a self-induced maintenance program with my running. In short, I have struggled significantly to get out more than ~2x per week. It has been hard for me to determine what exactly was the cause of this sudden decline with my running, but there have been a few personal and family issues that have simply made me not motivated at all. Inside, I hate myself for having this feeling. I always prided myself on being Mr. Determination, and all of a sudden last July...it was gone.
After the e2e marathon last June, I essentially took the remainder of the summer off. I was hoping that over this time, my Achilles issues would clear up - which it didn't. I began running a little bit in the fall season, with hopes of entering in some of the Thetis XC events, but alas, getting into a regular training pattern never happened. I did sign up for 2 races in the fall, but due to sickness, I withdrew at the last minute for both.
I was encouraged at the start of 2012 and had some big hopes that a fresh year would wake me up into a new found motivation pattern. Again, this never happened. Life became difficult with some more personal issues, and I basically used running as a stress-relief and a form of escape from some of the other crap in my life.
On a positive note, I used the nice weather in the late spring to inspire me to do my first race in 8 months - the Sooke 10k. However, the race was a bit of a wake-up call, as after the 5k mark, I had to stop and walk due to lack of fitness. The 41:xx time was humbling to say the least. I felt like I was in good speed shape, as I was looking better with my training quality.
Two weeks later though, I ran a solid TC10 in ~38:30, which I was very pleased with. I was now consistently running 3x per week, and even though my distance was horrible, my speed was decent. I then put in a few longer training runs (17k ish) and then entered into the Oak Bay 1/2 Marathon. Once again, I was good with a clocking of ~1:27. Definitely not where I was the previous year ~1:23, but I was satisfied that 3x per week could bring me such results.
My most recent race was the Sidney 5k, done on July 1. I had a solid race and finished 10th overall with a time of 18:20. This reaffirmed that I was in good shape, but still didn't really have the endurance. So then I banged out a couple more distance runs ~20k, and then singed up at the last minute for a Harriers Club Run - 27k in the Sooke Hills.
The group that day was an all-star group. There were 12 guys, who I would say, had an average of 37 min/10k time. These were a pack of studs I was with, and I was just hoping the distance would not kill me. It was also my first run with my Nathan Hydropack in over a year, so I was excited to back on the trails for a lengthy one. In short, the day went great for me, and I was strong throughout. I really enjoyed the social aspect of it as well.
This run coincided with another thing that happened that week. Through the running grapevine, I heard that a fastee from Nanaimo - Jeremy Clegg - was attempting to run the West Coast Trail in record time. I read the report on his attempt, and it sounded all-too familiar, as it was almost a replica of when I did it back in 2007. His time was slightly faster in ~13:30.
I mention these past two things for a reason. These were two pretty big motivating factors for me. I am finally happy to report that I have my running mojo back. I am finally motivated again, and have my sight set on big things.
Last weekend, I went out on Sunday morning at 6am and ran 17k on the Juan de Fuca as a training run. 2h of solo running in God's country brings back the motivation pretty quick.
My goal for the summer is to maintain my speed and now increase my distance. I have made it my goal to run the 47k JdF Trail once again this year, but also know that I need a few weeks of serious distance in me to get me through. It appears as though there could be a couple other people who also may join me in the event, so I am super excited about this.
My running life is good right now, and I wanna just keep the ball rolling and stay healthy. Very excited and proud to say that I am motivated once again.