Last night it was 2 degrees outside and the air was sharp and cold, so I escaped to the gym for speedwork on the treadmill.
I used to hate the treadmill but I'm beginning to appreciate its charms. I like that I can set it to a pace and run evenly, without slow or fast lapses. I like that I can program in hills and make them last as long as I wish. But mostly, I love the treadmill because it causes me to sweat.
I love to sweat. It's the best of things.
Yesterday I did speedwork ladder: .25 miles @ 7 pace; .50 miles @ 7:30; .75 miles @ 7:41; 1 mile @ 8 pace, and then back down again: .75, .50 and .25. I kept the treadmill on 1 incline setting.
I hit my paces with effort but not agony. I love when that happens!
The only negative point is that after I finished my second interval, this muscular guy in a tank top hopped on the treadmill next to mine, looked over and smiled.
"I see you're running on your heels," he said (I wasn't; I had been watching my feet in the mirror). "You're gonna ruin your knees."
I nodded but didn't answer.
"Your arms are too stiff," he continued, "and your steps are too big. You're gonna mess up your legs."
"My stride is fine," I told him. "I've never had an injury."
"Soooo," he said, glancing down at my legs. "You run much?"
"I'm training for a marathon."
"I trained for a marathon once," he said. (The whole time he's walking, not running, on the treadmill.)
"How fast did you run?"
"Oh, I didn't run I just trained." A pause. "So where is this marathon?"
"I love Phoenix! Hey, have you ever been ..."
"Sorry," I said, "My next interval is coming up." I strapped my headphones back on and cranked the treadmill up to a 7 minute pace.
The dude stared at me a moment and then began running (stomping the treadmill), striking down hard with his heels, his arms swinging wildly, his knees wobbling with every step. After my interval was over he tapped me on the shoulder.
"Hey," he said, "how far is a marathon again?"
This dude was trying to give me running advice and he didn't even know how far a marathon is! Get real, okay.
But there are more important things happening. Like the Beebs, who is ready for Christmas, or at least tolerating Christmas, since her owners do stupid things like attach a hideous red bow around her neck and situate her beneath the tree.
Poor Beebs, she has since a hard life!
It's 8 degrees outside. It's supposed to reach 9 in an hour, which is when I'll pull on mass layers of clothes and head out the door for a 10 miles run.
Cheers and happy running, everyone.