Monday, November 17, 2008

Driving the Knees

I need to shave. Not my face; I'm letting that shit grow into an all-natural balaclava.

No, I need to shave my 5-K time. There is a race this weekend that I may or may not run. (Decision is pending the Viper's ability to be convincing and violate his own caveat on behavior in the process.) The other option is a local Turkey Trot 5-K I just found.

However, my running of late has not reflected training for a short, fast race. My last visit to the land of intervals was three weeks ago, and it wasn't a very impressive showing. The categorization for most of my runs has been either "easy" or "long, slow distance."

This weekend, I decided to change that.

Recently, I saw the movie Into the Wild and read this article by Jon Krakauer, which appeared in the January 1993 issue of Outside magazine. Aside from a tragic adventurer, Chris McCandless was a runner. The description of McCandless's "Road Warrior" training ritual in the article inspired me to take a more intense approach to my runs.

Saturday, I ran a new route, during which I found my latest mantra, Drive the knees. The resulting pace was nothing short of ... mediocre. My pace has been a solid 9:40 per mile all month. Saturday, my pace was 9:32 for four miles. Eye-popping, I know.

Sunday, on my six-miler, I took the same approach: Drive the knees. The result was much more favorable, an 8:45 pace.

I'm not sure the new intensity in the knees will show up if I race this weekend, but it feels good to pick up the pace. Perhaps, like Nitmos (gag face), I've just grown impatient with the slower training.

This weekend, I logged 10 more miles. Just 150 more to go.

10 comments:

Sarah said...

Thank you; you just reminded me I need to alert Vanilla to my 9-second shaving of my own 5K stubble.

Good luck with 1) your Turkey Trot and 2) meeting your goal for the year. 150 miles in 6 weeks...no problem.

I'll most likely be doing the Aurora Turkey Trot which is a 4-mile race. Why 4 miles? Who knows.

chia said...

150.. psssh you have that shizz covered ;-).

So what is this "driving of the knees" buisiness you're blathering on about?

Nitmos said...

Here's to hoping that, if you are looking to McCandless for advice, you don't eat unknown, overripened bush berries for nutrition. Then, it will be you again making the (frozen) gag face.

Ms. V. said...

Yes, and don't go setting up camp in the winter so you can't make it back in the spring.

The book was amazing, and loved the movie too.

Vanilla said...

Long, slow distances create long, slow runners.

Some famous runner said that, but I can't be bothered to look up who it was and appropriately credit them for it so I'll just pass it off as my own.

Seb Coe maybe???

Jess said...

Advice that changed my running: If you want to race faster, you have to actually run faster.

Some days though, that's easier said than done.

Xenia said...

You have shit on your face? Why does this not surprise me.

S said...

I'm apparently the only moron that decided you meant you needed to shave your knees from your title and first sentence. Sigh. Anyways, good luck with shaving your 5k and the 150 miles :-)

Ted said...

By the way, I have enjoyed the book immensely. Do wanted to see the movie as well.

You will do great for the Turkey Trot and you can get the job done by doing 150 more miles.

Blyfinn said...

I would test out the knees at the turkey trot. What have you got to lose. Shave a few seconds off the 5K and throw it in the gag face.