My training has been out of wack for the past week.  Beginning last Tuesday, I scratched a speed workout after getting sick on the track (3 times!).  I ran a great race at the Turkey Trek last Thursday, but since then had done no running.  I decided not to run my first 20 mile training run on Sunday for fear of illness, then Monday and Tuesday I just couldn’t seem to get out the door.

This turned into a week long viscious cycle in which the less I worked out the less I wanted to.  But then, I began to kick myself more and more for falling behind. And, the Austin Marathon is 2 1/2 months away!!

Finally, yestersday I was able to break the cycle.  I went to bed super early the night before; I laid out all my running clothes; and I planned to get to the high school track early for an speed workout in which I would use 800m repeats as a form of self-flagellation and whip myself back into shape.

All was going according to plan, until I stepped outside and saw SNOW!!  A quick survey of the landscape revealed that the snow was sticking to rocks, bushes, grass, and (my guess) high school tracks.  My two options were (1) go to the track and risk scrapping the run because the track is covered in snow; or (2) Run on the relatively dry and immutable asphalt (I am proud to say that jumping back into bed for an extra 2 hours of sleep was a distant third option).

I went for option 2.  It was wet, cold, slick, and dark; but I managed a good 3.5 mile tempo run.  It felt great.  I think I needed to do something to prove to myself that I am still hardcore and dedicated enough to run a marathon in February.  Running in the snow at 5:00am did just that.  Also, I realized that a short evening run of 2.5 miles gave me a six-mile day, which isn’t so bad.

As for the track repeats, the whippings will have to wait until Friday.

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Below are some great articles and blog posts that I have come across recently:

Coach Dean Hebert has an excellent post on goal-setting.  His philosophy of effectively setting goals is different from mine, but maybe it will work for some of you.

From Men’s Health.  A good article on how to fight off a cold/flu at each stage, from first contact through the onset of symptoms.

Finally, here is a post that I am studying this week from The Running Laminator how how to “Rock” a twenty mile training run.