There are folks who would scoff if I said I'm not in good shape, but they are thinking in absolutes and I am thinking in relatives. Relative to the shape most people are in, I'm in good shape. Relative to the shape I want to be in and feel I need to be in to be able to do the things I want to do, I'm not really in very good shape. I'm slow and heavy and overweight and injured.
Last weekend, visiting our family in Ohio, I ran about 13 miles on Saturday, running 20 minutes and walking 5, feeling fairly good. I ate a peanut-butter-and-jelly sandwich en route to get used to eating while running for the ultra. This sat with me OK and I guess gave me some energy, since I felt pretty good after finishing.
However, since we've been "home" in Maryland, I've been feeling sluggish, swelled-up (legs, ankles), and sore. Just the same, I've been running the 10.5-mile "Lake Loop" every 2-3 days. Today was the third time.
Tuesday: 10.5 miles in 2:01, 11:35 pace, ran 30 minutes, walked 5. I dragged and ached and could hardly walk after I finished, not from fatigue or soreness but from my injuries acting up. I rested two days before tackling it again.
Friday: 10.5 miles in 1:51, 10:38 pace, ran 10 minutes, walked 2. I only dragged and ached the last 2 or 3 miles, but still could hardly walk after I finished due to my injuries (Achilles and piriformis area, both on the left side.) However, I felt ready to go again after only one rest day.
Today, Sunday: 10.5 miles, 1:48, 10:22 pace, ran the whole time except for only infrequent short walk breaks, felt only mildly lame after finishing, feel fresh as a daisy now an hour later, except for my heel/ankle and butt. I have a massage treatment scheduled for tomorrow.
So I'm going to aim for every other day this week, same 10.5-mile loop, and then do my final pre-marathon 20-miler on Saturday -- maybe 2 laps of the Lake Loop, or 5 X 4-mile out-and-backs to get used to that, since that's what my 50-mile ultra is, yeah, 50 miles of 4-mile out-and-backs. We runners out there will get to know each other really well!