Monday - Smithfield, RI - 7.1 milesI am a stupid, stupid man.
Reader, please note how I concluded my write-up of last Friday's run: "I should stay out of the wet woods for a while and let my ankle heal up but it's hard not to take advantage of these fall mornings."
Sound advice. No need to stop running of course. Roads are fine. I just ran 17 miles yesterday and only aggravated the ankle when I traversed the one rocky section of beach. No, no, roads are fine. Just stay off the trails for a few days. And indeed I had planned on keeping to the roads this morning. But it was a beautiful day. And the forest sings a sweet siren song.
So it was that I found myself lacing up my Brooks Cascadias and donning my orange hat and vest as I ventured into the Fidelity woods. I first went and explored the ATV trail that I ran last week. I wanted to see how far it went. Answer: not far. After it passed the water tower on Rocky Hill Rd, it immediately became overgrown and then ended after a few hundred feet. There was a single track trail that branched off (also overgrown) which I took but it also quickly led to Rocky Hill.
I then jumped on Hanton City Rd to explore some of the trails to the south. I found an interesting old dirt road now rocky and overgrown. It went downhill for a while until I hit some No Trespassing signs. I think I was near a small house on Washington Blvd. I turned around and made my way back up the hilly trail which was a good workout.
I still had plenty of time before I had to head into work to shower so I made the fateful decision to try to reclaim my Tricksy Singletrack segment which had been taken from me on Friday. The culprit was a fellow Fidelity employee who bested my time in the rain and dark. I salute him! But I wanted to relaim my prize. So I hit Tricksy and began moving at a good clip. I didn't look at my pace - I was focused on watching where my feet landed. Nevertheless after maybe 4/5 of a mile I hit a downhill section and my bad ankle twisted down and inward. I swore loudly in my fashion and tried to continue to run but my run became a hobble and my hobble soon became me clutching a tree as profanity poured from my mouth in exceptional fashion.
I walked for a bit. Tried a half-assed jog. Rolled my ankle a little bit more. Cursed. Walked. Jogged a bit more. Cursed. Eventually I reached civilization and was able to jog the rest of the way back to my car. It hurt. I've turned this friggin' ankle pretty frequently for the last few weeks but this one felt worse than the other times.
I walked into work very upset with myself. I had no business being out there, pushing the pace on technical trails covered in leaves. Chasing an imaginary record that I had created in the first place. Yesterday I used the Wordens Pond segment to find a reserve of energy I wasn't sure I had. But that was on roads where the danger was minimal. Hopefully I've learned my lesson. I plan on keeping to roads for a couple of weeks. I want my ankle to heal up so that I can be ready for the Lil Rhody Runaround next month.
Thursday- Bryant University Track - Smithfield, RI - 8.9 milesThat's more like it.
After the disasterous finish to Monday's run, I was anxious to see if it would affect the track workout I had planned for today. While my right foot is still sore at times and hurts if I turn it in certain ways, I was happy to find that there was no pain when running on road or track. I plan to keep to my word and stay off the trails for a couple weeks to let my ankle strengthen.
I ran a mile warm-up and once again entertained the girl's field hockey team with my huffing and wheezing. 4 x 800m with 400m cooldowns between. I tried to maintain an honest 5k pace of 6:30. I think for the most part I stayed on pace although at times I was a little fast or slow. Then 5 x 400m at about a 5:50 pace with 200m cooldowns. I have no idea how hard I'm supposed to be running these but it seemed like a good speed that left me walking for a moment after the last couple. I need to start mixing up some other distances into these speed workouts. Any suggestions?
I took to the local roads for a few miles to cooldown afterwards. Tried to take a local segment on Roger Farm Rd which proved to have a monster hill. I was completely spent when I got to the top. I think I took it but won't know for certain until I load up the run later tonight.
Overall a great run. I'm looking forward to the Charlestown Police 5k at Ninigret on Sunday. I definitely think I'll be able to set a PR on the fast, flat course.
Friday- Bike Path - Wakefield, RI - 14.7 milesI had the day off and opted to do my long run today since I probably wouldn't be running long with a 5k on Sunday. I've never actually run the bike path in Wakefield so I thought it would be a different and easy run. I parked at the Narragansett wall and took the bike path to Ministerial Road and back.
I was tempted to explore the trails I passed at the Tri-Pond area (I recognized them having been mentioned in other blogs) but I stuck to my No Trails Pact and continued down the bike path. As I approached Ministerial I saw more enticing trails that headed off to who knows where. So tempting! At the halfway mark the blister on my pinky was starting to aggravate me but I tuned it out after a while.
The run began to drag on the way back. This trip probably would have benefited from taking a different route back but it would have made it longer than I wanted. I began to feel tired after 10 miles or so. I think I was feeling the effects of the previous day's longish run.