I haven't run in a few days, and knowing it was really hot, I didn't really want to suffer in it for too long since I'm just starting regular runs again. But I didn't want to go slow and just try to "get by" - I wanted fun. So I sucked back a litre of water, ate a sandwich and got ready. When the time had come, I put on the hard-and-fast playlist on my iPod Shuffle and stepped out. My goal was to run as hard as somewhat-uncomfortably possible while keeping myself from getting light-headed or heart-attack-y. The loop was roughly 4k, door to door.
I started out feeling pretty good, but the heat and humidity quickly pushed my HR into the 90% realm, where it stayed for the next 17-odd minutes. I wanted to work on strength, so I keep the cadence a bit lower and pushed hard with the legs and hips. It worked well, and I managed to keep the heat affect away for about 14min before things really started to get hard. At that time, I noticed my Polar HRM reported that I was at 102%maxHR - I guess that means I need to set my maxHR more accurately. :D
I backed off a bit to catch up to my heart, and continued on. I made it to the top of the incline near my start point and hit the killswitch at 3.5k. HR was at 98%max, and I was completely soaked with sweat. I took the extra 500m to walk back and really cooldown well, and then stretched for about 10min (that's long for me). Then I hit the shower, dropping the water temperature every minute to cool off.
And actually, I feel good from that. Not wiped out, not dehydrated, but I feel like I got something out of this run too. Just enough muscle work to get a bit stronger, and some good mental focus work to keep wanting to move stuff forward.
And speaking of moving forward, after seeing the fantastic results from Training Payne (a fellow Canadian who's qualified for the 70.3 worlds next year), I've been considering some form of coaching. TP recommended MarkAllenOnline.com, which he uses. Looking at the site, it looks pretty interesting and flexible. And the prices aren't all that bad either. I'll have to consider that against the local coaches here (who easily kick butt here in local races), and really be honest with myself - do I need a coach, or do I just need to HTFU?