April 10th, 2020
Even with COVID 19 preventing me from meeting with my running group, I have been continuing to run 3 times a week. On Tuesdays and Thursdays I have been running shorter distances of 10-12km and on Sundays 20-24km. As the clinic is not meeting, Paul is sending out emails onto the training distances and workouts we should be doing, however as all the large races have been cancelled, Paul does not expect most of the group members to follow them precisely.
I follow the recommendations on Pauls emails as much as I want to. Each Sunday I run the distance he sets out (or more) alone. For Thursdays however, I just run, rather than trouble myself with specific workouts, as I often find these unenjoyable and dull. Running alone is significantly harder mentally than running with a group as there is no conversation to think about, only the pain in your lower body. On long runs I can often get lost in my thoughts, making the running seem to go much faster. However with Pauls Thursday workouts, I have to constantly be checking my phone or stopwatch to make sure I speed up or slow down at the correct times. This takes me out of my thought and makes a 60 minute run feel like hours. I still get the same amount of exercise without these workouts and by just running in my own way.
Since my last post I have also completed my first run of the half marathon distance! I went out one Sunday morning planning to run 18km but had more energy than that. I explored a new portion of the cross Canada trail and just kept going until I reached 12.5km away from home, which I then had to run all the way back. I ran an extra 3-4km over the half marathon distance as well.
Since then, I have pushed myself to run 29km! Similar to my half I woke up energetic and capitalized off of it! This was my most brutal distance yet and I had horrible cramping in my legs as soon as I stopped moving. It didn’t help that I ran up Burnaby mountain and along a hilly path, over 600m of total elevation gain.
On this run in particular, I realized that my water system is not effective for distances over 20km, even less so in hot weather. I have been carrying 3 small 63ml bottles, which is nowhere near enough on longer runs. I am working to find a system that works using a water bag, however the larger size creates issues with bouncing as I run. I am continuing to experiment with this as well as bringing more food, as according to Strava I burned 2800 calories!
With the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, I have been unable to meet with my mentor Paul. This is a shame as I still have much to learn from him and was working towards running together. With no meeting I cannot answer the mentorship questions assigned.
Going forward I hope to increase my distance and my speed. Before the end of May, I believe I will be able to run a full 42.2km Marathon. This would be amazing, as it was an ambitious goal from the start. For running the Marathon distance I would need to be cautious however, and actually follow a planned route. I also hope to run alongside my dad biking for water and snack refills.
Coming into the summer months, I am also struggling to adapt to the heat. As a true Canadian, I have physically adapted to running the cold. At soccer practices and track practice I have gotten in the habit of only wearing shorts and short-sleeve shirts in cold temperatures, rain or shine. With the temperatures now getting close to 20 C, my oxygen uptake is struggling to adapt to the heat. Although the first few hot runs may be tough, I should be able to adapt.