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What next?


On the ride home from the airport tonight, Beth asked me, "What are you going to do in the off-season?"

Although my first thought was, "Sit around, eating bon-bons, gaining weight and just healing," I did pause long enough to think about her question and give her an honest, non-flippant answer.

I'm going to continue with my Monday-Wednesday-Friday morning fitness classes at Velocity Sports. Partly because I've already signed a contract with them for another six months, partly because I really like the instructor, and party because inertia keeps me going that way. Tuesday and Thursday mornings I'll stsart back up at the yoga/pilates fusion class I've been going to off and on. It's a good stretching program, if nothing else. I don't feel I get a good "workout" going, but I do use my abs for about 3 minutes. That part, the stretching part, and fact it gets me up in the morning so I can keep my regular sleep schedule means I'll keep going.

The part that I'm toying with, however, is the third idea I had for what to do over the winter. A few years ago, I asked Lisa what her fastest mile time was. My plan was to add a minute to her time and try to run that time.

I didn't realize when I asked that her personal best was a 5:30 mile.

Meaning I just set my goal at 6:30.

Gee, that's only 45 seconds faster than I've ever run a mile, and that success was on a treadmill with the machine helping me along. My fastest ground time was around 7:45.

I mentioned my goal to Kris, and, in his wonderful, adorable way, he immediately drew up a training schedule that would, in his words, have me running gazelle-like to a 6:30 mile.

I didn't make that mile time that year, but I'm seriously considering trying this winter. Until I commit to it fully, it's just a idea, but I'm thinking I'd like to try. I'll dig up the program Kris designed and add a tweak to it. Following the thought, "A person cranking out 7 minute miles never learns how to move his arms and legs fast enough to run a 6 minute mile.", I'd like to try Kris' workout with a twice-weekly or so workout where I run a 6 minute pace as long as I can around the track.

A 6 minute pace is a 90 second 400m. That's a completely doable pace for one lap. So, I start at one lap and run that pace for the lap, then continue for another 100 meters. If I can keep up the pace, then I'll keep going. I might try 50m increments instead of 100m increments, not sure. But, my watch has an interval timer on it, so I can use it to beep at me at 11 second intervals: I'll need to have run about 50m in each of those 11 seconds.

With this plan, I'll be learning how to move my arms fast enough to run a 6 minute mile.

Of course, the goal is a 6:30 mile.

I just need to decide if I want to commit to it. If I do, it'll be a lot of hard work, but oh so very worth it in terms of personal satisfaction in the end.