Today was my longest trail run since I started my Three in Three Challenge . I started at the concrete bridge and ran to Far Gate and back. The portion of the trail between MADD and Far Gate is the most difficult part of the Northshore Trail (a little more hilly and some technical stuff... rocks and roots, etc.). So although this run was only a mile or so longer than my last long run , it was a more challenging run.
With that said, when I finished the run I felt like I could turn around and do it again.
I have been focusing on trying to convert from a heal strike to a mid or forward strike. I think the change in foot strike is the reason why I had so many calf muscle problems over the last month. However, I have been working daily on strengthening my calf muscles and its paying off. On this run I alternated between heal and forward foot strike every few miles and didn't have any problems.
By the end of this run, my legs were tired, but I felt like I could have easily kept running. I was under a time constraint so I couldn't keep going. Otherwise, I probably would have pushed it further just to see how far my legs could take me. Those days will come... hopefully soon!
I had no problems with my lungs on this run. I don't even remember coughing at the start of my run like I normally do. I think my lungs are finally healing from quitting smoking .
Once again, my mental state is excellent. I am still every enthusiastic about my runs and can hardly wait to get out there each day. My rest days are almost cruel--I know I need to rest, but I'd rather be out there running!
Learning: Forward Foot Strike
As already mentioned, I am focusing on converting to a forward foot strike. I am following the advice from Lee Saxby in his " Learning the Skill of Barefoot Running " video. I'm getting the hand of it and my legs are responding well. The change almost feels natural. More practice needed.
Week 10 of my training program