I usually need a day off after a Run day followed by a Strength day, mostly due to a need to recover from the strength session. But today, I really felt in the mood to run in the morning. It waned a bit during the workday, although I was still looking forward to it for the most part in the evening. After dinner, followed by looking for photos from Saturday's race, I went out to the fitness room.
It's odd how the days right after a hilly race that I feel really really in the mood for hills. I would've thought that my legs would be tired, but they're kind of itching for it. I think it might be the slight soreness in my shin muscles (tibialis anteriors?) that want to be worked out a bit.
So hills it was. I was also in the mood for wearing my Brooks Trance 8s. I normally save those somewhat less cushioned shoes for my grassy park runs, but I wanted to use those today for some reason. They're a bit lower to the ground (hence the less cushioned feeling?) and just seemed very appealing when I was going through the options in my head on my way home from work.
So... I started with a 1 mile warmup. Actually, when I started the run, my left achilles was a bit off for just a minute or so, and just before the run, I had been feeling a little tired enough that I was just going to do a normal run, but once I got going, I went back to the idea of hills.
So... 1 mile warmup @ 1 degree, going from 7-7.3mph. Then, at 7.3mph, 3 x [0.5 mi @ 1 degree, 0.5 mi @ 5 degrees], 1 mile shakeout/cooldown @ 1 degree, going from 7.3-8mph.
In terms of mile splits, it was 8:23, 3 x 8:16, 7:52. I was tired enough after the third hill rep that I didn't want to do a fourth, but flat running was just fine.
When I was checking my blog feed today, I saw these videos of Usain Bolt's footstrike (found on a Runblogger post), and it was beautiful:
So I focused on having the same land-with-your-feet-right-under-you and push-off-with-your-toes mostly, and I was amazed by how doing those two things really super minimized if not eliminated my heel striking. And it felt so fluid!!! To maintain this, I had to butt-kick more, and that worked really well. Really - take a look at these videos and try to mimic it. It was like a totally new sensation of running!!!
I've watched form videos before, but those other runners' movements weren't so simplistic and copyable as these seem to be, it seems. I don't know what it is. But I'm excited to try this more, and to see what it feels like on completely flat runs and runs outside on the grass and on the road.
I was eager to refuel afterwards with 2 small oranges and salmon.
5.0 in 41:03, 8:13 ave. 75 degree gym.