TITLE: What a Difference... AUTHOR: Eugene Wallingford DATE: August 30, 2009 6:28 PM DESC: ----- BODY: ... two weeks can make. Then: I do the second week of 4x800m repeats. My times are in the target range, but on the high end. The recoveries are slow and hard. I feel bad for several days afterward. Now: I do a second week of 5x800m repeats. My times are fast, even below the target range. The recoveries are steady, controlled, and in good time. I am tired that day but otherwise feel good. Then: I run a 16-miler in rain, wind, and then steamy sun. The run starts badly and gets worse. It is a challenge just to finish. My time is slow, and I feel bad for several days afterward. Now: I run a 16-miler under a cool sun, with a gentle northern breeze. The run starts on stiff legs but feels good within a mile or so. I feel a spring in my step at 8 miles. I give my pace a little bump at 12 miles. For the last mile, I finish strong and steady, even a little faster. Overall, I run 30 seconds per mile faster than last time. I am tired and stiff, but mentally I feeling good. Then: 39 miles. I am not sure I will be able to go much higher in the coming weeks. Now: 40 miles. I'm feeling like I might want to throw in an extra mile in the coming week, though caution talks back. The thought of 18 miles next Sunday sounds like a challenge, not a punishment. A couple of weeks ago, I must have had a cold or some other bug that slowed me. I've recovered. Right now, I am wondering how to get more sleep. This good habit is coming back more slowly than other training habits. Mostly, though, I feel hope. -----