September 11, 2011

Going Slong

The Osprey I Saw Today
One of my favorite runs is going slong. I walk out the front door with no particular route planned. No particular destination. Just my Nathan, GPS and heart rate monitor. I start running—really, really slow—with nothing to prove other than time on foot. Time to myself. Time to melt. 

Today I did just that. Walked out the front door, and headed south. Toward my old stomping grounds as a kid. I passed through the baseball diamond where I pitched as a little leaguer. Along the coast highway past the place I worked as a buss boy as a young teenager (the Chinese restaurant is gone). Through the park where I take my girls. Then along back bay drive where I’ve run countless miles. Countless being a large number.

Slow, methodical, fat-burning bliss. That is what going slong is all about. Slow and long. Slong. Heart rate always under 140. Am I coming off an injury? No. Am I out of shape? Not really. Then why slong? Its simple. I’m building my base all over again. I’m shifting my protocol slightly by not focusing just on miles, but time. My goal as I enter the next year is to slong 20 hour weeks before I start to tighten the screws for racing. Its a hunch that I have. Focus on base today, recover better when tighten the screws tomorrow.

Coast Highway - Near the old 'Kams' Restaurant
One of the fringe benefits of going slong is that you notice things much more. Like an Osprey perched above your head. Have you ever seen an Osprey? I did today. It was pretty cool. I was taking a pit stop and heard a really loud noise. I looked up and saw it. Perched atop a utility pole. I found out that Ospreys migrate up to 430 kilometers per day. When they migrate, they have a tendency to fly at night. They usually mate for life, and they are unique in that they are found every continent except Antarctica.

Slonging. Try it some time. I think you’ll like it.


Rachel said...

this sounds wonderful. one of these days i need to take a break from all these races and just run for the sake of running. enjoy the base building - nothing beats having a strong foundation : )

Romanoliz said...

sounds like a pretty good idea, although my distances won't be quite as long as yours I'm sure... but one day!

EricG said...

I love going slong. I also like saying slong. It sounds more fun than LSD (thats short for long slow distance not lysergic acid diethylamide). From now on slong it is. Peace E

Will Cooper said...

going slong or LSD...going slong. I never liked saying LSD for the reason you point to eric. thanks for the reminder. "slonging it" is another slant on the term.

shannon said...

Although "slong" wasn't previously in my running dictionary, it is now. Running hard all the time can lead to injury, or at a minimum increase the amount of recovery time needed between runs, but going slong is quite enjoyable and, more importantly, doesn't cause as much tissue trauma.

Happy trails and slonging to you! :)