Today I got called "old school" by an old guy*.
Today's workout (which was a really good one, I might add, but I'll get to that) I was joined by Chris Bittinger--or "Bit" as he is sometimes referred to. Upon discussing the day's mission while warming up on the trails around Monument Valley Park (while he calibrated his GPS...or Garmin....or whatever that was...), he asked me how I typically determine my average mile pace in a workout. I just told him that since I start workouts in the exact same place pretty much every time I do them (the exact place in this case being the little bridge up by the parking lot at Monument Valley) and that the distance from there to this random little tree a ways down and around the trail past the Second Bridge (the Bridge-to-Bridge bridge, I know, I know...the terminology is terribly confusing. Don't even get me started on Upper Loop, Big Loop, Small Loop, Middle Loop, and Around the Water Fountain) is a mile, then I usually just check my watch when I pass the Little Tree Down Past The Bridge-to-Bridge Bridge to see where I am at and then just try to maintain that pace. It's all very technical you see. With that explanation he laughed at me and called me old-school. I call it being Technologically Impaired. I don't have a heart-rate monitor, or a GPS, or a Garmin, or any of those fancy bells and whistles. I do have a stopwatch however, and I would really like a measuring wheel. Anyways, the point of this is that I am not very techno-savvy, however I justify this by saying that the Kenyans don't have Garmins, and they're pretty decent at this running buisiness. But even if I did have any of those things it would take me about two years to figure out how to use it, by which time it would be obsolete and it would be necessary to learn how to use something fancier. It practically boggles the mind.
I was really happy though post-workout because it was by far the best workout that I've had since early March, and last Sunday was my longest long-run in an equally long time. Plus, it was incredibly helpful to have someone pushing me the whole way, I forgot how much I like not doing the workouts solo. The occasional solo run or workout isn't bad, but having someone else to pace off of is immeasureably helpful and actually reminded me of how to be competitive. I was starting to think I forgot how.
And thanks to the help of Chris's Garmin or GPS thingydoo or whatever, we could determine how much ground was covered and pace per mile more accurately than we could through the use of my Bridge to Little Tree Down Past The Bridge-to-Bridge Bridge Measurement Method. However I still can't invest in one of those things because he spent the cooldown overanalyzing things worse than I already do without it. Nonetheless, technology is amazing!
As long as the wheels stay on, the future is looking bright and shiney!
*For clarification purposes and in defense of Chris, he is actually not "old." He is, in fact, a pretty kickass middle distance master's guy. I just consider anyone older than me to be "old(er)", and anyone younger than me to be a "whippersnapper". So he is "old" only in that context. And since they say that you're only as old as you act, that makes him about eight.