Welcome to a belated update, summarizing last week's antics. Being basically bed-ridden for the past couple of days delayed this, but, better late than never, right?
6 March - 40 minutes (6 miles) in the morning, 55 minutes (8 miles) in the evening
7 March - 21 minutes (3 miles) warmup before weightlifting, 88 minutes (13 miles), in part with the Monday Night Fed Hill Run
8 March - 50 minutes (7 miles) feeling absolutely awful from nothing but donuts to eat at the range all day . . .
9 March - 115 minutes (15 miles), run between 0230 and 0430 - there's some Ash Wednesday observance for you, then later on, another 15 minutes (2 miles), after work, just because.
10 March - 25 minutes, "Kilimanjaro" hill program on the treadmill, which, as I recall, was kinda difficult (3 miles)
11 March - 73 minutes (10 miles), including 5x(3 x 1/5 of a mile, or about 960 meters), on the wacky track (where one loop equals one-fifth of a mile) by Harford Community College. 90 seconds rest between reps, running at just a few seconds over 6:00/mile pace.
12 March - 76 minutes (11 miles), broken up multiple ways, accumulated over the course of helping with the "5th or 6th" Annual Pub Run
Total Time: 558 minutes
Total Distance: 78 miles
A slight drop in mileage from last week, but not too much suffering in the quality department (then again, the "quality" of 960-meter repeats, wherein the exact splits required to demonstrate effective output given level of effort are fairly obscure, is debatable). Also, the first three days of the week (counting the really-late-night Wednesday long run), plus Seneca Greenway on the prior Saturday, represent about 84 miles in four days, which is some of the highest mileage density I've ever put in (outside of a 100-mile race being thrown in, of course). Expect maybe a mileage drop this coming week, as being sick for a couple of days put a damper on my training, and as of right now, it's not entirely clear how quickly I'll ramp back up (although a couple days of rest seems to have done my legs some good).
In closing, I'm following up my discussion of "winning" last week . . . with what will inevitably be an overly-thorough overview of "success." This one has been bouncing around my head for a while, so bear with me while I knock it out:
If you've ever wondered why somebody like me can achieve (at least occasional) success, while somebody (maybe like you) always seems to finish second, then you should probably stop reading now, because this will go in one ear and out the other. And if you aren't really wondering, because you are, by many accounts, pretty successful, then there's not really a good reason for you to read this . . . but then again, a little reassurance never hurt, right?
As I see it, there are three components to success:
1. Talent: Somewhere inside, you need to have aptitude in the area in which you wish to be successful. Either you have natural ability, or you have a knack for picking up a skill quickly. Either way, there is a certain measure of judgment involved here. Knowing how much natural ability is enough, or how fast is fast enough to pick up a skill before you get frustrated and quit and blow the whole thing, is a guessing game worth millions if you're good at it.
2. Opportunity: Relative to your talents, you need to have an opportunity to make them pay off. Whether this is the opportunity that you make or the opportunity that you take is one of those "gray area" debates that I won't delve into here, except to say that in any event, you have to have your eyes open at all times, lest you miss an opportunity.
3. Will: Here's the one where I think people have the most trouble. It's fun and exciting to see that you have a talent, and it's similarly fun and exciting to think about opportunities. What is almost never fun and exciting is having the will to effectively merge the talents with the opportunities. Inevitably, strong will manifests itself in (perfect) practice, patience, and persistence.
In conclusion, to illustrate the above principles, below is a picture of the Canton Can Company Chipoltle on its "Grande Opening" night:
You'll notice that instead of the usual crying and complaining about how difficult it is to put a picture in a location where I want it in a post, I recognized that I had at least some aptitude with HTML, and an opportunity to do it right this time, so with a little bit of will to get the job done, I did it, and recognized success.
(Also note that I only ran by the Chipoltle to take a picture, but did not eat there on opening night, in part because it would have been sacrilege to eat there when I did the "Strides of March" workout on my own, and in part because it was super-busy. However, I congratulate all those who successfully ate there last night.)