Ladies and Gentlemen of Level Legion, here is the thrilling conclusion to One Week With Tim Ritchie. When we last left him, he was going to bed on Wednesday night. Did he wake up on Thursday morning? Will he drink coffee? Did he go for a run? We really purposely worked that cliff-hanger in there. In all seriousness, it was a good look at the importance of a down week for an elite competitor, and it offered good advice for all of us. Okay, enough stalling. Let’s see how the rest of Tim’s week went.
Thursday July 12th
8:00am – Alarm. Consistent sleep is a key part of rest. Rest is a key part of high training. Ergo, consistent sleep is a key part of training at the highest level! Go to bed, people!
8:01am – You know the deal by now – pretty happy at this point of the day.
9:00am – Mass, it’s all good!
10:00am – Do nothing. Seriously, I did nothing all day.
6:00pm – Arrive downtown to meet the Boston College Athletics Dept Corporate Challenge Team, of which I am a part. Despite this being my three weeks of rest, I decided to sneak this one run in so I could help out my team! We had snazzy BC shirts and were ready to rock. My coach was on the team with me and suggested I ought to at least do a mile warm-up so I don’t hurt myself, especially since I’d be sprinting off the line after having not run in 18 days. Sound advice!
It was hot and humid when the gun went off, so I decided to roll just behind the leaders to see how this thing would shake out. Five minute pace after a few nice days on the couch was pretty tough, but racing is a real love of mine and I was happy to be out on the road. At the halfway point of this 3.5-mile race, I made my move for the win. It was enough to break from the pack and establish a nice lead going into the last, long, straight mile of the course. With a half-mile to go, I really started to feel the heat, humidity and couch hours setting in and I thought “Oh, sugar! I better hold on to this thing!” As I looked back, I saw second place within range. I rounded the bend onto Charles St, pretty sweaty and tired, but able to stick it out to break the tape.
This was a fun race and my team was so excited to see a BC employee win. Some photos later and trophy in hand I was able to meet up with the team at PF Changs for some grub and a few beverages. Snagged a ride home with Siobhan Breagy of New Balance, got some Wendy’s on the way, all was good in the world.
Running is a gift and should be enjoyed! Tonight was an example of not taking a race too seriously. Run when you can, rest when you need to and race because you love it!
Friday July 13th
8:00am – Woke up – sore!
9:00am – Mass, praying to avoid the chaos of Friday the 13th!!
10:00am – Do NOT go running. Despite the brief detour last night, I am still on break until Monday. The soreness of the race helps squash the motivation to run anyway. Watch a little of the Tour from the couch.
3:00pm – Work at Heartbreak Hill Running Company (HHRC)! Great store in Newton, check us out! Sell some shoes, give out some free running advice, listen to a great soundtrack, close up shop.
Saturday July 14th
8:00am – Awake and glad to be.
8:01am – The best part of waking up is Folger’s in youuuuuur cup!!!
10:00am – Full day of work at South End Athletic Company (SEAC), sister store of HHRC. Shoes will cost you but the advice and the banter is free all day.
10:00pm – Early to bed tonight to fight off a pending cold (sick in summer?!). When I do start running on Monday I want to be healthy and ready to rock and roll.
Sunday July 15th
8:00am – Up and at ‘em. Last day of the rest phase.
8:01am – ….
10:00am – Back at SEAC for a full day of sales.
5:00pm – Sunday Mass, like all the others, but even better.
10:00pm – Off to bed, but tonight’s dreams will not be full of sugar plum fairies. Rather, the past three weeks have done exactly what they were meant to do. My body is rested and recovered from the miles and the races of the past six months. My mind is refreshed from having to be laser focused and driven. My heart is hungry to get back to work. These past three weeks have been some of the most important weeks of my training for the whole year. Without them, all of the work behind and the work ahead would not be able to happen on the level that it does. It was a great three weeks down and when I start up on Monday – I am coming back with a vengeance!
That’s it?! Oh sugar! I want more. That sugar line might be one of my favorites that we’ve published on here. Again, great stuff from Tim and sound advice for all us: enjoy it to the max while you do it, but be sure to get plenty of rest and give yourself the chance to recover. Watch out for Tim in upcoming races and here On The Level.