OK, smart running people, help me out.
Tonight was week 5 of the trail running series. With the rain and fallen leaves, the first mile of the course was full on sketchy. I really had to dial it back through all that single track. The result was a 9:24 first mile. Slow, slow, slow. But, I stayed upright and no turned ankles, which was key. I really worked hard once I got off of the single track. Really hard. Final time was 25:28. That works out to 6:58 per mile over the final 2.3 miles. (I know, 3.3 miles is a strange distance, but work with me here.) Here's the thing: the 6:58 average was brutally painful. On Monday, my 21st mile was a 7:30 and didn't hurt nearly as bad. Why is that? Am I at some weird anaerobic/lactate threshold? Am I a big wuss? Any ideas?
Whatever the answer is, I'm really happy with my effort today. Really happy. If the first half wasn't so sketchy and the rest of the course wasn't so soft from the rain, I'm pretty confident I would have gone under 25, which would be pretty solid on this course. Best of all, I felt strong. I was able to really dig for a little extra. Even felt smooth on the cool down. Overall, a good day.
I'm going to introduce a new feature here at Snowman Says: The PF Factor. Each day I post, I'm going to rate the badness of the plantar fasciitis on a scale of 0 to 5. 0 being no pain or discomfort. 5 being excruciating, unable to walk pain. That's the PF Factor.
Today's PF Factor: 1.
No pain at all today. Just a little tightness from time to time. Stretched the calves as much as possible. I didn't even notice or think about it while I was running. I paid special attention to how it felt when I started my cool down. I didn't feel it at all. Good stuff, and all systems go.