My list of upcoming races has been slowly dwindling as the season is in its final month for Minnesota. The Square Lake Short Course is on September 12th and then the TC 10 Mile is on October 4th. I'll spend the next three weeks training for both races and then concentrate on the 10 Mile. I've been thinking about what goals I have for these last two races.
The Short Course race is longer than a regular Sprint but shorter than the Olympic distance. It will be a .5 mile swim, 18 mile bike, and a 5 mile run. My understanding is that the bike and run courses are very, very hilly. Hey, at least the swim course is flat! Ha... ha... Hills and I are not the best of friends. Gentle, long upward slopes and I are good buddies, but steep hills are my enemy. I've never done a hill workout before, but I think it's time that I put some on the schedule. A 5 mile run after a hilly bike ride will be a real challenge for me. My training for Square Lake will focus on the run. Even if my time is slow, I want to run the whole way and conquer the hills.
Luckily for me, I understand the the TC 10 Mile course is also very hilly (note sarcasm). My Square Lake run training will fit nicely into my training for this next race. In addition to running, I'll be continuing to address some physical issues I've been having. Since the 14 mile charity run I did at the beginning of August, I've been struggling with hamstring tendinitis in both legs. I mentioned that people were asking if I was limping or hurt, so I decided it was time for some medical intervention. I got my hamstrings worked on, did some ART (Active Release Technique) Therapy, and I'm doing exercises to strengthen the hamstrings. It's all working and they are feeling better, but my pace is consistently 30 seconds a mile slower than it really should be. My goal for the TC 10 Mile right now is to forget about pace and get the training miles and exercises done. If I can make it to race day injury free and run the race without pain, that will be a success. I love running in the fall and winter, so I want to be healthy when the race is over so I can enjoy the cooler temps.
So I guess I have a lot of hills in my future. I'll do my first hill workout this weekend. I'm a little nervous about it, but it will be fun to try something new. I was nervous for my first track workout and it turns out I like track workouts. Unfortunately, I'm not optimistic!