I have been running a bit more since I arrived back into the USA. Pretty soon after getting back I ran a quick Cupid’s Run 5k in New Brunswick, which although it was snowing (lightly), was a lot of fun.
I trained a bit more just to get my mental state into handling a good long run. This was all in preparation for the NYC 13.1 Half Marathon in Queens. I ran this in 2:03 on a beautiful, but brisk morning and then aggressively consumed food to replenish all consumed energy on the run. My thoughts on running distances at the Half Marathon level and under are as follows:
Train enough that you know what it feels like to run 5 and 10k distances. You should have a good idea the level of effort required to complete the run and the time it will take to rest and recover.
I thought about bringing music (iPhone) to the 13.1 mile run, but I decided against it for a few reasons; namely nice to just hear people running all around you, hear your footsteps, hear people cheering you on, and hear the live music and such all around you. My advice would be to just absorb yourself in the experience.
Think about “now”. It’s easy to get spooked by thinking about the remaining 10.1 miles after you finish the first 3. The best bet (for me) is to just get into a nice rhythm and enjoy the experience of now, not the thought of completion later. That feeling of completion will become ever more on your mind when you are coming up to to the finish line. Then you can (if you still have the energy), just go for it and get a nice sprint to the finish in.
I usually run with my Vibram Running Shoes running shoes as I really feel comfortable with the whole idea of barefoot (or close to it) running. Now I know I did something a bit stressful to my right foot and I am thinking of sometimes running in some regular running shoes just to balance things out. I have been running with Vibram Five Fingers for about 3 years and have been really happy with the results and feel of running with a connection to the ground and the freedom of my toes.
Of course my slight injury to my foot may be due to the fact that I ran 22km’s a few weeks ago, then pushed out a good 8km run a week later without much stretching. I am going to take it easy on my feet and start a better stretching routine. My dad has been itching to get into running, so I think a nice 5km starter race would be fun to do with him before I start on longer distances again.