My journey as a long distance runner who started the sport later in life.
I have been slowly improving from my stint with acute bronchitis, or whatever it was. It wasn’t that cute, that’s all I know. I had asked the doctor when I could run again and she told me to hold off until Monday (tomorrow). At the time my mind was screaming, “But Monday is a day of rest!” Sunday is my usual long, slow distance (LSD) run day and it’s very mentally hard for me to wake up on Sunday morning and not go for a run; the Running Room having long ago conditioned me for their Sunday 8:30 am run clubs. It would be equally hard to throw on the kicks and go for a run on a Monday. As if!
Yesterday I took the old legs and lungs for a spin at Parque Fundidora, a very large, sprawling recreational park near downtown Monterrey, the site of an old metal foundry. I managed to keep pace and not die for two 1.5K stints with one of the kids by my side on their bike. Surviving that I figured I could go for a run today no problem if I kept it slow and casual. What’s the worst thing that could happen? I might have to walk? I long ago shook my concern with walk breaks. I take them when I feel like it, but mostly on a 10:1 schedule on LSD day. I also have Running Room to thank for this particular interval.
I am back from today’s LSD run and I am happy to report that it felt great, and I felt faster than usual, but it was no more taxing than extra speed ever has been for me. In fact, the extra speed felt natural. It got me to wondering: How long can a person go without running on a regular schedule and still lace up and have a good run anyway? I was fairly idle for two weeks, and in the past with my broken fingers I was idle for four weeks and still ran my 21K goal race at my regular pace. So, how long does it take to lose the conditioning you gain from regular running? I hope to never find out!