Wednesday, September 4, 2013

I like to take pictures of my Garmin

I'm sort of marathon training. I write "sort of" because I don't feel the same fierce panic to run a mega PR like I did last year. I am training though, and when I go through my training log I can plainly see that I am running much faster than when I was training for BayState last year. I'm just going to assume that's probably good and leave it at that.

I don't have a "training plan" per se, but I have run 70+ miles six out of the last seven weeks. In that time I've also run a 17 miler, two 18 milers, and four 20+ miles. From the picture, you can see that I enjoy taking pictures of my Garmin after the fact. What you don't know is that I've done all my long runs on the track to make it look like I'm faster than I am. I'm joking! Maybe...

Hmmm, last post I mentioned a fast mile and two mile race on the track. That turned out to be a bust. It was fun though. I had the opportunity to see my old high school coach, which is always nice, but leading up the meet I had been ill and my asthma had kicked it up a notch. I wound up deciding to go and use it as workout. I wound up running 12:04 for the two mile, which was fine for a workout. The mile took place approximately five minutes after the two mile, and so the 5:52 I ran was okay. Not really race report worthy, but okay.

My alumni meet didn't exactly leave me oozing with confidence, but that took place about eight weeks ago, and it seems at least some of my running mojo has been resurrected since. Two weeks ago I ran a 5K on the track. My high school was having a 5K track meet that was open to anyone. A 5K on the track is hard to pass up. It's so fast on the track. I get excited just thinking about it...Anyway, there were only perhaps three downsides: first it took place at 9:00 pm (when I'm generally in my PJ's thinking about sleeping...hey no judging), second my high school is about an hour away (meaning it messed up bedtime, yes that's a big deal in my house), and third I've been marathon training (you know, building a base, running long, not doing short intervals). The upside: it was on the TRACK! Obviously, I had to go. Also, it's nice to see my coach.

To make a long story longer, I wound up running 18:41. I would be lying if I wrote that I wasn't a tiny bit disappointed for like 10 seconds. For some reason, I had thought that it was (of course) reasonable to assume that I could PR with no 5K training late in the evening simply because I was running on the track. I mean, running on a track does make you super human. It seemed perfectly reasonable at the time. Once I really thought about it though, I realized my time was good for where I am right now. There was also the fact that I didn't come in last, which had been a real possibility. The meet had several heats and my heat was suppose to be for those who could run 18:30 or faster (no pressure). I'm proud to say that I was only lapped by two people, and finished somewhere in the middle.

Besides not coming in last, I'm also happy because I ran strong and didn't feel completely wiped when I finished. I did make a couple mistakes that may have slowed me down a little. The first mile was 5:45, and I felt awesome. I had tucked myself right behind a girl and guy. Like practically on their heels. I thought that was a good place to be, but after the first mile they started slowing down. I still felt great, but was hesitant to pass them too early into the race because it takes energy to pass people on the track and (I'm ashamed to admit) that I was nervous that I would pass them and die out before the finish. That's probably the one downside to running on the track. There were a lot of people watching and there was some self imposed pressure not to embarrass myself. By the time I did pass them, I had lost a lot of time. My second mile was somewhere around 6:10. By this point I still felt good, but I knew a PR wasn't going to happen, and think I probably mentally checked out of the race. My last mile was around 6:05.

In the end, it was nice confidence booster. Also, I wound up winning $100. The high school girl who ran about minute (or more) faster than me can't accept race winnings. Not great for her, but sort of cool for me. Besides the money, everyone who registered received a t-shirt, a $20 gift card to Marathon Sports, and a 20% off coupon to Marathon Sports. For a little race, that has to be the best swag I've ever received. The gift card doesn't have any fine print or minimum that you have to spend. It's just a gift card. Cool beans. The cost of registration was $20, so basically the gift card is the cost of the race.

In case you're wondering, yes my high school coach invented the terrific FRoller which can be found: Yes, I bought a FRoller for myself about a year ago (though my coach is so nice he probably would have given me one), and yes I use it everyday. I love it. It's awesome. Enough said.

Saving the best for last...who will be registering for Boston next week?


Ana-Maria RunTriLive said...

Oh, yeah, such a show off you are...doing long runs on the track, ha! Yes, you are getting faster and faster! Your training is going awesome and for the most part you are keeping the crazies on the down low (at least this is what I gather from spying on DM) which is good and won't overtire you! That 18:40 would have been a sub 18:30 without the pacing issues, which would translate in a sub 18 with proper 5K training. You'll take care of that after Baystate:) Hope everyone stays healthy for you:)

Tia said...

You ran a great 5K! It is definitely a challenging distance that (for certain results) requires specific training just like a marathon. When I knew I wanted to break 18 this summer I knew I would have to devote a few months to pure 5K training to get there. It felt strange never running "long" like I typically do and my mileage was a lot lower but that speed work is no joke! During marathon training an 18- something 5K is just fine by me!

You have been putting in lots of miles and some really solid tempo running too. I am sure Baystate is going to be your race!