Friday, March 30, 2012

Change of Direction

Lots of neato stuff going down.

So back when I got back from USA XC I wrote a bunch of stuff about how great it was to be "coaching" myself! Well...ignore all of that. A few weeks back I had the great opportunity to get to be a part of the American Distance Project that was started up here in Springs by Scott Simmons and Renato Canova last summer. I will admit that back when that got off of the ground RIGHT when I was leaving to go to the so-called Running Mecca of Boulder, I had to grit my teeth a little. I was like, "Crap. I can't believe it. We've never had a training group in Springs EVER and right when there is one I'm going somewhere else to find one. Go figure."

But stuff has a weird way of working out.

Lots and lots of some ways I feel like a freshman, being well behind Ali and Adrian in most runs, the freaky part of that is that my mileage is a lot higher than it was, but nowhere near their's, and nowhere near where it'll probably end up being, but thus far I am pleasantly surprised that after an initial freak-out phase where my mind was boggled from looking at the training schedule, it's not nearly as scary as I thought it would be. Ali has said to me more than once, "All you can do is try!" Which is true. Try something first, then freak out later if needed. Not only that but I've gotten to learn a gazillion things that I never would have really thought about doing on my own. No, on my own I really got pretty good at running about 60 miles a week and that was about it. In any case, I feel ridiculously fortunate, without any spectacular PR's to my credit, I know that there are not too many coaches and awesome groups like this that would take a chance on someone like me. I am SOSOSOSOSOSO thankful to have Scott's knowledge and guidance to point the way and a such a great group of honest, motivated people to emulate.

Running has a lot of "one-percenters". That's been the biggest thing I've figured out so far. I've learned a whole new slew of drills, figured out that bloodwork can actually be pretty relevant, and thanks to a recent visit to biomechanist guru Jay Dicharry last weekend in Virginia at UVA-Charlottesville along with Ryan Bananahands Hafer (who lived up to his namesake by consuming 5 bananas in a single day on the way home), I know a lot more about my (lots) of weaknesses and, more importantly, how to fix them.

As an aside here, Charlottesville is an awesome town. Besides Bananahands and I having to share living space in a hostel with a gentleman whom I am almost certain was a serial killer (although he claimed to be merely a government spy on a volunteer basis) it was a great trip!

So while the laundry list of running stuff seems ever-expanding, it's all good stuff and I'm really excited to see where things will be in a few weeks, a few months, and a ways down the road.

Payne Train OUT.

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