1000 meter repeats at Zilker Park. Beforehand Gilbert said, “minimum five, maximum eight.” After my fifth repeat, Gilbert said, “The men do more than five.” Ok. I did six. Some others, maybe not just men, did eight.
Typical morning. No wanna wakey-wakey. Hungrier than normal. Kick something in the dark. Granola bar, park at Barton Springs, trudge to Zilker, pitch black, muggier than usual, warm up, wait for the group. Group seems large. Drills seem crowded. Talk to Pat and Andre. Listen to the other group banter, it all melts into one: “I’m in I.T …. blah blah Oracle conference …. yada yada doing the relays … foo bar recovery run….”
Repeats start. My group seems big. Some familiar faces, some not. You can tell who’s gonna struggle after couple hundred meters. Didn’t seem too bad. Water on the road. Gnats in the mouth. The two buddies up front give good pace. The repeats click off: 3.43, 3.47, 3.42, 3.35, 3.33, 3.23. After the first couple of repeats the big group is a small group. After the fourth repeat the small group is you and the two buddies up front. Gilbert goads me into doing a sixth repeat and I try to hammer it. I’m confident at the start and stay in control. I like how one can run by feel. I stay in between the two buddies, one of them starts to seperate and I try to stay with him, the other one falling back. I can’t catch the first one, but I’m happy when I finish only 4 seconds behind. This one felt good.
Then one of the big dogs finishes and declares, “Number Seven. 3.17”.
Other thoughts: Sometimes you’re running light and free, and sometimes you’re just trying to keep your shorts clean and not drop a deuce on the backstretch.