Ice

We really dodged the bullet with the ice last week.  We got about 1/2-inch, then it warmed up just enough that while the next three inches of rain fell, we sat at 0.3C, which was too warm for any additional ice but cold enough that the ice that had fallen didn’t melt off.  We lost a fair bit of trees in the area, but nowhere near as bad as folks just 10-20 miles to our west and north.

But there was beauty to be found wherever you looked:

Speaking of ice, we went to Nashville Saturday night to see AC/DC, who are in the midst of their “Black Ice” tour.  It was a hell of a show, easily one of the best I’ve ever attended (and I’ve been to quite a few).  I had never had a chance to catch one of their concerts and was quick to snatch up tickets while I was in Iraq.  We were lucky to, since the show sold out quickly.

While it was pretty funny to see 53-year-old Angus Young still strutting around in his trademark school boy uniform, it was pretty clear from the onset that they were still a bunch of guys who love doing what they do.  I can only imagine that recording and touring for 35 years would really get to be a grind, but that wasn’t evident in the guys.  Angus and singer Brian Johnson were all over the stage the entire time, soaked with sweat from their efforts.

And what was really impressive was the wide range of ages at the show, from the young teenagers to the grandmothers who dressed as if they were teenagers (really, did you really think that you looked hot when you looked in the mirror?).  But there was no doubt that, regardless of age, they were all fans.  And with ticket prices starting at $90 per seat (and going astronomical from there), I guess you’d better be.  If you get a chance to see them, I’d recommend it.  Click on the pic above to go to The Tennesseean’s review of the concert, including the set list.

Finally, training is going swimmingly.   Except there isn’t any swimming.  Just running.  Hell, even if I wanted to swim, I couldn’t, since the local brain trust decided to wait until late fall to start an overhaul of the only local indoor pool, instead of doing it over the summer when all of the outdoor pools were open.

Anyway, I’m ramping up the mileage, slowly and steadily.  The ice storm threw a wrench in the works early on, so I had to reshuffle to load up my weekend, including pulling a couple of two-a-days.  All went well.  I’m pushing right up on 50-miles a week, which isn’t a huge, huge amount, but is the tipping point of having to consistently do two-a-day’s in order to increase and maintain the mileage.  Otherwise, I’m looking at starting to take a significant amount of time away from family every evening.  That’s not something I’m willing to do.  It was easy to do in Iraq, but it’s not a sacrifice I’m willing to make here at home.

So I’m at just under 40 days until the 60K and a few 60-mile weeks are scheduled.  The beauty of having done my 40-miler last September is that I’m really not concerned about the distance.  Don’t get me wrong, I’ve got a healthy respect for it, but there certainly isn’t the pit-of-the-stomach feeling that I had a month out from that run, or a month out from my IM-distance race.  Perhaps that moment will come, but I am confident that each run is building towards a successful run.

And every run lately has been a huge boost in confidence for several reasons.  The biggest is that I am consistently negative-splitting my runs, whether they be 5 miles or 15 miles.  And not at pedestrian paces either.  I’m beginning to wonder if it’s the switch in my training plan.  Since I started using Training Peaks in mid-2003 to track my workouts and build training schedules, I’ve been on a 4-week cycle, with every fourth week as recovery.  Once I turned 40, TP switched to a 3-week cycle, with every third week as recovery.  Although I’m only a few cycles into it, I am definitely seeing the benefits of more frequent recovery weeks.  Gotta love the recovery!

Speaking of recovery, that’s what this week is all about.  And I’m already relaxed.

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