Anyone with half a brain would predict I'd be slow today. I was. So why am I disappointed, stressed, etc.? I'm human! I'm trying to stay positive though. A friend at work reminded me that this is supposed to be FUN. She pointed out that it's not like I'm ever going to the Olympics or the World Cup, after all! I have to be realistic - I'm a master's racewalker of moderate talent and nothing more. I'm doing this because I enjoy it, and I have to keep my competitive side a little bit reined-in or I'll be disappointed.
I know my technique was solid, though. It felt right. It also was tiring after yesterday's track workout. I tried not to ask myself "If I can barely do 10km, what am I doing a 15K race on Sunday for?" but couldn't keep the question out of my mind. So I tried to answer that positively: I'm doing the race because 1) I'll feel MUCH better after a few days adjusting back to proper technique, 2) I love to see my racewalking friends, and 3) given 1) I'm still likely to break my PR of 1:29:03. So there.
I pretty much phoned in the last 3-4km today. I didn't push it at all because I knew that would be counterproductive.
Total time: 1:05:06 for 6:30/km with ave HR 141.
And I was tempted to bike to work this morning - it's gorgeous out (60F (15C) for my workout! High of 90F today!) - but didn't, since I need to save my legs for Sunday. I'm stupid sometimes but am trying to be careful this week.
Garmin data here.
More debriefing about my technique issues.
My coach and I had a long FB chat about things. He said I've allowed a bad warm-up habit to become a bad habit. A bit harsh, perhaps, but it's the truth and I shouldn't shrink from it. I'm glad he can tell me the truth (though I will admit I wanted more sympathy! Sometimes what we want is not the best, though.) It wasn't intentional at all, but it happened. But Jim was positive about things: he said it was easily enough fixed and that I'd be walking much better by the end of the week. We have thrown in a couple extra workouts to try and get things moving in the right direction.
I regret not catching this sooner. I've been a bit concerned about a soft right knee for a while, and delayed videotaping myself because I couldn't find someone to do it and didn't think of the tripod method until last weekend.
On the plus side, I suppose this does show that I have pretty good body awareness (I suspected something was wrong) and that I need to learn to listen to the inner nagging voice a bit sooner. Jim and I were discussing when this first happened and he argues it was after the SLC 1/2 marathon (April 21) because my knees are straight in those pictures. I think it was before that that I first had issues with this though - on April 17 I had hip pain from the previous day's workout. I think that was IT band problems from "running" - i.e. RW with soft knees. Perhaps I was legal in the SL Half; I might not have ingrained the bad habit by then. Hard to say. I'm embarrassed that I was walking around like that though :(.
For sure I was doing something wrong by April 24 - I had quad spasms during/after the workout and that was obviously (in retrospect) from bent knee. Bent knee = using quads much more = spasm when you are not used to it.
Well, now I have a few weeks of a bad habit to undo, and not much time to do it. In addition, I've been training the wrong muscles for several weeks minimum. This does not bode well for my race. That is disappointing. Part of me wants to cancel the trip and save the $ to go do a race when I am better prepared, but the reasons in the 2nd paragraph above mean I'm still going. I just have to (somehow) get a new perspective before then. One day at a time.