Tiffany and I have lived on the Northwest side of the city in Albany Park for over two years. Our neighborhood is one of the most ethnically diverse in the US. There a very nice bike/running path that runs along the Chicago River through our neighborhood, the next neighborhood (North Park) and then continues north into Lincolnwood and Skokie. I'd say 75% of my runs are on this path. It's pretty normal to see other runners and bikers on a daily basis. It's not uncommon to see people walking, pushing their strollers, walking their dogs or anything that you would see on a normal path. Last Saturday, I saw something else.
I think I was in North Park at that point, but that's not that important. I was coming up on a water fountain and I saw a man "using" it. His back was to me, but the path curved a bit. I was really hoping to get a drink because I was about to start my 4 miles at a 6:50 pace. As I approached the water fountain, I saw the man appear to completely washing his arms and hands in the water fountain. And he looked strikingly similar to this:
No bullshitting. Complete with the beard, clothes and headwear. This guy at the fountain's beard was a little more gray though. As I got to within 20 feet of the fountain. I had stopped my run and Garmin and stopped to see what this guy was doing. Sure enough, he was washing his arms, hands and face in the drinking fountain. He then turned and looked at me. Then he turned around and started to catch the water in his cupped hands and throw it around the fountain, almost in a pattern.
At that point, I turned around and started my four 6:50 miles and have yet to drink from that fountain again.
I promise not to compare this year year to last year too much, but I think it's appropriate after last week. Last year was the first year of my marathon training that I kept detailed notes on my training log. I still have some old plans from previous years, but not what I actually ran. Anyway, I ran a 16 week plan last year, so I would have just completed my first week. Last year's total Week 1 mileage(16 weeks to go): 30. Yep, that's right, 30. This year's 16 weeks to go mileage: 58.7. And I feel better now than I did when I peaked at 54 miles last year. Here's the breakdown of last week:
Monday- 5.3 Recovery @9:33, 130 AHR
Tuesday - 11 MLR @8:19, 154 AHR
Wednesday - 5 Recovery @ 9:36, 129 AHR
Thursday - 13 MLR @ 8:24, 160 AHR (Hot and Humid conditions made for a very high AHR)
Friday - Rest
Saturday - 8.3, w/4 @ 6:51 pace. 159 total AHR, with the lactate threshold miles at 172.
Sunday - 16 MLR @ 8:11, 148AHR
Monday- 5.7 Recovery @9:35 pace, 120 AHR
Tuesday - 11 MLR @8:15 pace, 146 AHR
Wednesday - 5 Recovery
Thursday - 9 GA Miles w/10x100m strides
Friday- 18 Mile LR
Saturday - Rest
Sunday-14 Mile MLR
62 Miles total
I also set a new personal record for miles in a month with 220 in June. The previous high was last August with 198.2. Because almost every week and month is a new personal record, I feel like this classic scene in Bull Durham after Ebby Calvin "Nook" Laloosh took the mound for the first time. Here's the manager and pitching coach discussing Nook's performance after the game:
Manager: He walked 18.
Pitching Coach: New league record!
Manager: Struck out 18.
Pitching Coach: Another new league record! In addition he hit the sportswriter, the public address announcer, the bull mascot twice...
Pitching Coach: Also new league records! But, Joe, this guy's got some serious shit.
So, I am headed into July feeling good and looking to continue the momentum of the first three weeks of training. Thanks for reading and I hope you have a great holiday!
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