The last time I hit the road for a race was on 4 July, the Milo Marathon. After Milo, I went on a three-week hiatus from running. Some of it was necessary (i.e., recovery), and some of it was totally involuntary (i.e., work, other commitments). In hindsight, however, I would say that it was a much needed break from running. It was all good.
Too good, even. As in, "way out-of-hand" good. During the long lay-off, I did not engage in any form of exercise or physical activity to keep my fitness level up. Let's just say I simply felt lazy and enjoyed the surplus of free time that used to be gobbled up by running. The cherry on the sundae was my relapse into an old - and very bad - habit: Smoking. Yosi Kadiri paid frequent visits, and we rocked it like it was going out of style. Who can blame us? The brewskie was just too damn good. And while we're at it, throw in a missed race, why don't you. I skipped the takbo.ph runfest because it was held the morning after my belated 35th birthday inuman with my closest buddies.
This past week, I cleaned up my act and finally laced up my running shoes. A 5k last Monday, 8k Tuesday, 10k Thursday, and another 5k yesterday. There was some huffing and puffing at first, a few pains and some soreness here and there. Don't ask about my times. The rust was obvious, but I think 28 kms spread over four days did the trick. And tomorrow, my participation in the Rexona Run 21k race will formally mark my re-connection with the running world. They say it will be a flat and PR-inducing route. Given my relative lack of preparation, as well as a fitness level that is just absolute crap right now, I'll leave the competitive spirit in the closet and settle for a safe, relaxed, and injury-free run. That sub-2:05 half-marathon can wait, and I'll have to stay happy with my 2:09 personal best - for now. Lord, please make it rain tomorrow.
Tomorrow's half-marathon will also mark the start of my preparations for my next marathon, CamSur on September 26. After tomorrow, my Sundays will again be reserved for the LSDs that will propel me to that elusive sub-5 marathon finish (positive-thinking!). All told, I've got my work cut out for me in the coming weeks. Wifey will understand (I hope).
Absence does make the heart - and feet - grow fonder.