Thursday, April 19, 2012

Sympathizing With Sisyphus

Sisyphus was a king in Greek mythology whose punishment was to push a boulder up a hill only to watch it roll back down and repeat that process for eternity.

I didn't have a boulder to push, but today I made a visit to the Never Ending Hill Of Doom and felt Sisyphus' pain.

Just getting to the Never Ending Hill Of Doom involves over two miles of hilly running. Then I planned to run up the Hill itself twice before heading home. But some days, things just don't feel quite right and I never got past that 'morning run' awkward feeling on today's run.

I'm sure a lot of it was mental... I already had it in my head that today was going to be tough, so it was. I definitely wasn't attacking the hill, and passively lifting your feet and 'catching a hill' as it comes at you always makes it harder. Halfway up the Hill, I decided that one time up was enough for today. I could run it twice next week. By the time I neared the top, I was only running by the loosest definition of the word. It was actually one of those jogs that is so slow you could easily walk as fast (or faster).

When I topped the Hill, I was tired, panting, and ready to run home. But for some reason, I made a quick decision, turned around, and ran back down the Hill. I had plenty of time on the jog back to the bottom to second-guess my decision to run the Hill twice. But every step I took on the way down was another step I would have to take back up, so it wasn't long before I figured I might as well run the whole thing and go home feeling good about sticking to my original plan.

Surprisingly, the second time up the Hill wasn't any worse than the first but it wasn't any better either. I ran/jogged to the top and then shuffled my way down the other side. By that point, I really needed to get home so I could get ready for work so I took a little shortcut on the way back.

Today was one of those runs that you only feel good about in retrospect. I felt awkward and less than my best the entire run. I felt weak and out of shape on the Hill. But I feel good about how much this morning's run will help me on the hills in Kansas City in June.

Goal For The Day: Hill Work.
Distance: 4.03 Miles.
Time: 31:31. 7:49 Avg. (7:12, 7:06, 8:38, 8:19, 0:13).
Route: 2 x Never Ending Hill Of Doom.
Conditions: 55 degrees. 7:30AM.
Run Details On Garmin

Notes: I'm sure some of the hills in K.C. will be longer than this, but I doubt they will be steeper. Hopefully, a few weeks of this will let me cruise over the hills in the half marathon like they aren't there.

Daily Miles: 4.03 Miles.
2012 Totals:
  Run - 268.37 Miles.
  Bike - 0.00 Miles.
  Swim - 6,550 Miles.

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