2013: By the Numbers.
Well it is still sort of considered the new year, so Happy New Year!
The length of time it has taken me to update for the year ahead is a strong indicator as to how busy I am recently. I have a pretty stacked year and I am going to take it more seriously than I ever have. A part of that reasoning goes back to the end of 2012. I had my VO2 max and lactate threshold tested. For those of you who have not had this done, the best way I can describe the experience is intense. Imagine: running on a treadmill with a heart rate monitor snugly around your torso, a scuba-style mouth peace attached to headgear so it can stay in place while you run, and a clothes pin to ensure you do not breathe through your nose. Every 3 minutes as the speed in increased, your finger is pricked to have blood sample taken. All the while, the cord running from the mouthpiece is not long enough to allow for much variation so you have to stay in the exact same position on the treadmill with everything else going on around.
After about a week I had a sit-down with one of the coaches who walked me through the numbers. I had really good ones too. No doubt the first look at my profile had him state with no doubt “you are a long distance runner.” My VO2 max is at an elite athlete level, which honestly does not mean much other than my body has the capacity to propel me to better race results, I just have to train it properly. I was given understanding of where I am and how to train to get to where I want to be. That involves a lot of speed work and a lot of slowing down my long runs while tracking my heart rate so that I am operating in the lower registers of my zone 1.
I bought a heart rate monitor. I’m logging my runs in my journal right beside inspiring quotes and my thoughts from the day (those that know me well know I journal a fair bit). I have no idea if this will help transform me into a better runner, but I am definitely willing to give it a try.
So here’s to 2013.
12 months. 6 ultras. 2 100-milers.