The Number 5

This is the number five:


Can we say “five,” boys and girls? I certainly can. I can also say that I hate the number five. No,  not because this marks week five in the countdown to marathon madness. This happens to be a “down” week in training, which lazy me is always in favor of. I’ve also had a remarkable week of training, considering that it’s all been accomplished inside:

Sunday — 5 miles on the treadmill. The “Matrix” was on. It’s really fun to run during the scene where Neo and Trinity rescue Morpheus from the agents.

Monday — Cross Training. Had a great spin class with the infamous instructor, who is certainly onto the fact that I never cheer when she asks me to. Eh. One week, she threatened to the start the class over if she didn’t hear a little more enthusiasm, and I called her bluff.

Tuesday — 3 miles on the treadmill. The movie was “Dead Town,” which I found annoying. Of course, I only saw the last 30 minutes of it, so I might have been missing out on something.

Wednesday — 5 miles around the track. This is where I start impressing myself. I’m really bad at falling into the trap of saying, “oh, speedwork isn’t that important. I’m tired, and it’s not like I’ll be running fast anyway. How about a 5-mile easy run, instead?” I had already come to this conclusion on Wednesday when I saw that “The Waterboy” was the movie for the day. Somehow or other, at 6:00am just about the last thing I wanted to sit through was Adam Sandler’s antics (if the movie was “The Wedding Singer,” thought, that would’ve been a different story). I thought about running on one of the non-movie-theatre treadmills, but I hadn’t brought my ipod and I definitely need some distraction for 45 minutes of ‘milling it. Then, I looked at the indoor track. Hmm. Technically, the training plan says “6×800” today. Hmm. I ran a mile warmup (11 laps, ugh) and positioned myself where I could see the big clock at both the start and the finish of the rep (I’d also conveniently forgotten my watch). With some determination and more than a little arm-flailing, I managed a 3:20 average for my 800s. I also have a snazzy “indoor cough,” which makes me feel like a real runner and brings back the glory days (sarcasm) of indoor track. (Sidenote: You know those shirts for cross country that say, “my sport is your sport’s punishment”? Well, indoor track is like punishment for the punishment. Blech. There’s also something about running fast indoors that makes you cough.)

Thursday — 4 miles on the treadmill. The movie was “Dan in Real Life,” and it made me wish I was watching “The Office” instead. I’m very sore today, which just might have something to do with the honest-to-goodness speed workout from yesterday.

Friday — O, glorious rest day. I love you!

Saturday — 12 miles with ME. I know this hasn’t happened yet, but you can count on ME not to let me slack off. Anyway, I’m at that stage in training where 12 miles for a long run is something you look forward to because it’s over so quickly. “Less than 2 hours? Really? Hot dog!” 

No, I hate the number five because if there is a “5” in the hour position on the clock when I wake up, it means I’m going to be bleary-eyed and grumpy the rest of the day. It doesn’t matter that I’m getting up to run, and exercising in the morning usually wakes and peps me up. It doesn’t matter that I was asleep by 9:15 last night, so I definitely got eight hours of sleep.I still staggered into the gym like a zombie, and when the nice gentleman at the check-in counter asked me how I was doing, I grumbled, “tired.” As I contined my zombie stagger towards the locker rooms, he replied, “I’m sure you’ll be wide awake after zipping around the track for awhile. I saw you up there yesterday, and you are quite a runner.”

This week, I’ve seen the dreaded “5” three times. And I hate it…but I love having a good week of training and being told that I’m “quite a runner”. It’s a very complicated thing. Looks like I’m now a walking running New Balance commercial.


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