As anyone who has taken Psychology 101 knows, Pavlov was able to condition dogs by ringing a bell when he fed them. After a short period, the dogs would begin to salivate merely at sound of a bell and thus conditioning. I too found myself conditioned. However, I was conditioned to reach for my iPod on my way out the door before every run. I, however, have fought my conditioning and beat it down. I went for a run today and was miles away from the house before I realized that I didn’t have my iPod with me. It felt freeing.
It’s been almost a week with out my iPod and I can’t believe how much I was missing, the trees are greener (well, actually browner) and the sky is bluer (well, it would be if it wasn’t so overcast). I feel more connected to the running process with my mind open and free. Jennie asked me the other day what I think about on my runs and I found it hard to explain. I told her it was almost like dreaming. My mind bounces around from subject to subject and then when I get home, I can’t remember any of it. There are times when I am thinking about how my arms are swinging and others were I am focused on my foot falls and still others were my mind completely wanders away from running and to the abstract.
Anyways, enough rambling on about the zen of running iPod-free and on to the rest of my week.
Monday was a typical swim & run day. I did 2500 yards in the pool and felt extremely sluggish the entire way. I just couldn’t get into a groove. I felt like I was sinking the entire time and couldn’t find good positioning for the life of me. I wanted to quit earlier, but made myself keep going. I felt somewhat better using the pull buoy; at least I didn’t feel like I was sinking at that point.
That afternoon, I went on a 6 mile run. Towards the end of my run, my stomach started to act up. This hasn’t happened in a couple weeks, but unpleasant nonetheless. I decided to push through the pain rather than walk. I have found that despite the feeling, when I get home, it never – how can I put this delicately - comes to fruition. I was able to make it the final mile back home without being forces to find a emergency bush; very thankful for that. It gives me some encouragement that I don’t need to worry about it so much and to just HTFU.
Yesterday, I did 90 minutes on the trainer. I had hoped to bike outside because the weather was decent, not great, but nice enough to ride outside. Unfortunately, I got caught up in work and by the time I could break away it was 4:30. By that time, it would be getting dark within in a half hour. So, on the trainer it was. I caught up on some back episodes of This Old House which made the time go by fairly quickly.
Today was another swim/run day. My swim went much better than Monday. I did a series of 200 yard intervals with some drills totaling 2500 yards. It was busy at the pool today, so I shared a lane the entire time. At least I shared it with another good swimmer, so it wasn’t too bad. Then, later in the day, I went out on a 5-6 mile run and ended up doing 8 miles. It was one of those days where I just felt great the entire way. I comfortably held an 8 minute pace with the final mile at 7:22.
So far, it has been a great start to the week. Hopefully the rest of week follows suit.