Comin’ Home with My Shield or on It

Well, the snow just started (again), weather guys calling for 2-5″ by tomorrow morning.  The potential was there for this to be the Yet-To-Be-Determined disaster to ruin what had been a great buildup for Saturday’s meet, but it looks like we just may dodge the bullet.  Granted, the truck isn’t safely parked in the field house lot just yet so Mr. Murphy still has a fighting chance to bite me, but so far so good.

HydroWorx Jedi training - willing to try anything....

Got on the pool treadmill yesterday as planned for an easy set of aqua-striders.  Warmed up for an easy 15 minutes, 12 x :30 with 1 minute shuffles in between, then cooled down until the stopwatch struck 40 minutes.  Preventative massage, out the door.  Tried to concentrate on stretching things out and working on my form as much as possible – since the pool slows things down just a little bit (with the resistance of the water), it is a great tool to work on your knee lift and drive.  I felt like I had a ton of hop in my step which was pretty much the point of doing what I did – rest, recovery and confidence.

Spent today not running.  Felt weird, had several thoughts cross my mind to hit the gym elliptical or take the bike out for a spin, but ended up just taking it easy.  Took down the exterior Christmas lights, thus ending my reign as the last (laziest) holiday holdout.  Seems sort of stupid to take down all those lights when I will just be putting them up again in 10 months.  Let’s put it this way – it wasn’t my decision….

Ithaca in January - not quite like the picture depicts...

Heading north tomorrow after lunch, guessing it’s about a 4 hour drive to Ithaca.  I hope to be checked into the race hotel with enough to get in a little jog before it gets dark, if not I ran through the lit parking lots last year so I’m guessing I could manage it again if I had to.  Will probably get some dinner with the family then to bed – being a hotel regular I’m not too worried about getting good rest on the road.

I mentioned the other day that I got a roundabout look at the field for the race – I don’t know all the guys, but know for a fact that I would probably not be listed on the big board in Vegas as the favorite based on resumes alone.  There are some guys with some fast times and recent titles that should make this a great race.  If I run what I think I can run I’ll be able to mix it up with anyone – I don’t want to even think about the great Catch-22 of “would you take a great PR if you knew you would come in second place”.  I hope to just run smart and hard, and when it’s over know that I left it all on the track.  If I do that I’ll be happy – and if everything falls into place I hope that’ll be enough to win.  Last year’s results give me the confidence that a.) anything can happen, and b.) it ain’t over til its over (Uncle Yogi again…).  I came into the 2010 race as a longshot just hoping to survive all eight+ laps (I’d never raced a mile on the track before in my life), ended up making up about 20 meters in the last lap to catch the leader and finish in 4:24.76 to win in a lean by .08 secs.  I feel stronger and better prepared this year so as I said before 5th Avenue, the hays in the barn.  Time to put up or shut up.  Go hard or go home.  Any other cliches I’ve missed…?


About Nick Berra

I am a 45 year old masters runner from Central Pennsylvania. I have been participating primarily in track events since turning 40 in 2009. This season has produced marks that I have not run in several years, I believe primarily due to starting a strength and flexibility program here at Elite Athletic Performance - I've felt stronger and faster than I have in a long time. That, coupled with lots of underwater running, has kept me healthy and fit - at this age those are things I no longer take for granted... I run USATF events with a team out of Philadelphia, the Greater Philadelphia Track Club. They are a great group who have played a big part in making the sport enjoyable for me again. I also run local races for HydroWorx Track Club, supported by HydroWorx here in Harrisburg PA. Their underwater treadmills and training center has proved to be a crucial part of my training, rehabilitation, and recovery programs. I set personal records in the 800m (1:56.06) in 2010 and in the 1500m (4:02:63) and mile (4:23.48) in 2011. Despite the fact that I am not getting any younger, I nearly PR'ed recently and set the M45 indoor world record in the 800 meters at the New Balance Armory in New York City. I ran 1:56.10, besting the 9 year old record by less than a second. I feel like there are still more big things to come... I am married and have two daughters. I am an assistant XC coach at my alma mater, Cumberland Valley High School here in Mechanicsburg PA. I am also a 1991 graduate of the US Naval Academy, currently working as a pilot for FedEx after serving 10 years on active duty flying in the Navy. Beat Army! Beat Army!
This entry was posted in 5th Avenue Mile, Aquatic Fitness, Competitive Races, Hydrotherapy, HydroWorx Exercise Pool, Resistance Therapy Jets, Running, Training for Runs, Uncategorized, Underwater Treadmill, Water Running and tagged , . Bookmark the permalink.

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