It’s been two weeks since I successfully completed a fartlek run and, even then, I didn’t feel so hot in managing it. Of course, I was in San Antonio at the time and existing solely on carb-heavy nacho platters and cheeseburgers but, I digress. Let’s just say I’m back on home soil, running familiar pavement and I’m hoping it goes a tad bit better. So help accomplish this goal, I have another ‘tough guy’ standard lined up, the Led Zeppelin ‘III‘ album.
On their first two albums, the Zeps unleashed a relentless barrage of heavy blues and rockabilly riffs, but this is the album that provided the band with the necessary room to grow musically.
While there are still a handful of metallic rockers, ‘III‘ is built on a folky, acoustic foundation that gives the music extra depth. And even the rockers aren’t as straightforward as before: the galloping (and I use that term loosely) ‘Immigrant Song‘ is powered by Robert Plant’s banshee wail, ‘Celebration Day‘ turns blues-rock inside out with a warped slide guitar riff, and ‘Out on the Tiles‘ lumbers along (kinda like yours truly) with a tricky, multi-part riff. Nevertheless, the heart of the album lies on the second side, when the band delve deeply into English folk. ‘Gallows Pole‘ updates a traditional tune with a menacing flair, and ‘Bron-Y-Aur Stomp‘ is an infectious acoustic romp, while ‘That’s the Way‘ and ‘Tangerine‘ (all strategically placed at the beginning of the playlist to provide for a nice, relaxed warm up) are shimmering songs with graceful country flourishes. The band hasn’t left the blues behind, but the twisted bottleneck blues of ‘Hats off to (Roy) Harper‘ actually outstrips the epic ‘Since I’ve Been Loving You‘, which is the only time Zeppelin sound a bit set in their ways.
I will say this about today’s run to begin with, it’s as cold as muthafucka outside and I’m figuring that snow cannot be far off. So not having to goose-step through 3ft. snowbanks or concentrating on keeping my footing on slippery tire tracks is a good thing. Having said that, the run was an epic fail.
Well, maybe not epic…but it did sure as shit suck.
It all started out well enough with a decent and comfortable 5:25-5:30min/km pace just like Tuesdays run. Things looked optimistic and ‘ol Thunder n’ Lightning seemed to be turning over well; even the first two 4 minute intervals went well. But by the 3rd interval, my energy level and, consequently, my pace began to wane. Of course, by this time I was turned around and running into the wind, but still. I just didn’t have the hutzpah to continue the good fight. The 4th interval I barely made it through at all and just two minutes into the 5th and last interval…I died a slow, horrible death.
And all to ‘Gallows Pole‘ no less.
How ironic is that?
Still, in the same duration as my usual running time I still covered 10.53k which is almost the same distance as in previous attempts that this particular workout (click HERE) and I did maintain an average pace of 5:48 min/km even with and extra two minutes of shameful walking thrown in. That’s only a second off my previous pace and only a 100m off in total distance. That’s not terrible, right? I did absolutely murder my San Antonio fartlek though (click HERE)…so maybe this run wasn’t a total loss.
I think the real learning lesson here is that I went out without enough in my belly. I ate breakfast an hour earlier and still went out running at the same time (noon). That’s almost 4.5 hours with only a small yogurt 15-20 minutes before heading out the door…likely not enough, hence my miserable death at the top of Thunder Bay Rd.
Okay, so lesson learned.
Loud. And. Clear.