01 March 2012

11 Speedy Miles

I think this wall needs a runner girl, don't you?
So I have been on a 5K "speed" training plan for the last couple of months using the Run Less, Run Faster plan in an attempt to PR at the St. Paddy day race on March 17th.  My current PR was set at that race last year -it was quite a surprise when it happened because I was just a week or two into my marathon training at the time and just did it for fun!  In fact it was in the middle of my 7 mile training run for the day.  1 mile warm up, 5K race and then 3 more miles!  Funny how it just happens like that sometimes.  So my current PR is 25:02 and my goal is to beat that in 16 days.  YIKES! 

Meanwhile, I have been adding some half marathons to my calendar and they are going to start sneaking up on me while I am busy trying to find some speed!  I added a few long runs into my training plan so I will have at least 3 "longish" runs completed before April 7th when I run the High Speed Pursuit Half Marathon in Boise with my long lost BRF (best runner friend) Cynthia.  I did a 10 mile run back on Feb. 3rd- I just ran a nice easy pace and enjoyed the day.  Then there is my eleven mile run from last Friday.  Lets talk about that one a bit.

LOVE these socks from Road Runner sports.  I now have
orange, pink and blue.  They are the best.
I wasn't sure what to do with these long runs as far as my pace was concerned.  When I did the 10 mile run I took a hilly route and it was sunny so I just took it easy.  But for the 11 mile I thought I would attempt to do the first 7 at my assigned pace (8:50) and then just do the last 4 miles easy.  Seems logical right?  But then somewhere in the first few miles I decided to just try and keep my pace for the entire run as close to 9:00 as possible.  Sure, no problem.  I can run track repeats in the 7:30's and tempos at 8:20- of course I can do a long run at 9:00!  FYI- the last time I ran beyond 10 miles was at the beginning of December.  And my fastest half marathon was done at a pace of 9:05.  Did these things occur to me?  Nope.

Anyways, I decided to head down the Scott Pierson trail for my run- it is just over 5 miles to the end of it and it passes by a grocery store so I can refill my water bottle and take a bathroom break if I need it.  I found a packet of Cytomax in my fuel basket so that was what I put in my water bottle, and I grabbed an espresso gel to take at mile 6.  Well, off I went and around mile 2 I decided to take my first swig of Cytomax- holy moly, I forgot how sweet that stuff is.  I felt like my teeth were rotting.  Not a fan!  So I knew for sure there would be a stop at the store, if for nothing else to get some water!!  Note to self- taste what you put in your water bottle before heading out the door. 

Allenmore Golf Course- taking my gel and watching the ducks in the pond.
At mile 6 I stopped for a minute to take my gel -I was in front of a golf course at that point and it was starting to rain.  I took a couple of photos, checked myself in on facebook (hey, at least people would know my last location if something happened right?) and set off to finish my last 5 miles.  When I hit mile 7 I saw my average pace was at 8:55 and I was getting pretty tired.  But I am apparently stubborn and just kept that pace up even though my legs were protesting. 

Should have been satisfied with that and took my
time with those last 4 miles!
Then I was at mile 9 and still under a 9 minute average- just 2 miles left!  Can't slow down now! What is wrong with me???  I wasn't racing anyone!  Sheesh.  Final time 1:39 with an average pace of 9:01- would have been a sub 2 hour half marathon if I had been racing.  Which I wasn't.  Just trying to get a long run in!  What is this 5K training plan turning me into?  I am a speed maniac- I have no control.

I never noticed that walkway before.  It made me want to go explore where it went.
I did pay the price for that one though.  I felt pretty icky for the next several hours- kind of like after running a hard race.  It made playing soccer at 10pm that night a little less fun, that is for sure!  I was pretty worn out.  So I think what I have learned is that I need to do these random long runs at a more reasonable pace of 9:20-9:30.  I will be doing one more long run before the April 7th half marathon-maybe I can control myself for that one! 
In front of the new Cheney Stadium- home of the Tacoma Rainiers!