A couple of months ago I ran a 10 km race and although my finishing time was close to what I had predicted, it was nothing like what I used to be able to do. "Eh," I deceived myself. "I'm not training like I did back then. I could have pushed a bit harder. Just need to build up my conditioning." Yeah right. A few weeks later, I ran four hundred metres (a quarter mile), at what for me was flat out lung-bleedingly fast. And then I looked at the stopwatch and did some math. To be fair to me, there was a slight uphill grade, but were I able to sustain that near-sprint pace for ten kilometres (6 1/4 miles) I would finish five minutes behind the thirteen years ago me. I was never awed by my speed back then. If I placed well, I thought I was lucky that the fast people were having an off day, or at another race. And I remember even back then looking at the international 10k race winners' times and realizing that I couldn't run one kilometre at their average 10k pace. And I bet even now that there are people with no particular health problems who can't run a single block at my current 10k pace. Isn't it amazing to have so much variation in one species?
Why am I being so coy about my speed? It's not that I'm ashamed or secretive about my abilities, but that there is so much variation. I recently discovered that a friend had done a 10k and the time she was proud of was a third again longer than the time I was calling slow. So I'll just let us own travel at our own speeds and be proud of our own progress.
I've already taken thirteen seconds off that quarter mile, and have to go out with a GPS to find out what distances I'm running otherwise. I should also check out a library book on some kind of proper training regime, in case alternating running as fast as I can over short distances and as well as I can over long distances while hoping the two converge doesn't represent the latest in athletic science.
And today's simulated approach featured an arrival from the east to follow the 26 DME arc for the NDB/DME RWY 13R into Whitehorse. It's tricky because there's a 15 degree turn at the beacon just 3.3 nm from the threshold so you have to make the turn and track outbound to the missed approach point. I gave myself clear night skies and saw the runway ahead of me as soon as I made the turn. I'll have to do it again with poor weather to practice my outbound ADF tracking.