Random Rantings and Ravings from a Slow-Poke Runner in the Heart of the South. (A Weeekly (sort of) Blog about running and just about anything else)

Saturday, August 19, 2006

Made it through the week...

I was really discontented with my running when I started this week. That bled into my blogging (or lack thereof). It is really frustrating that I have to deal with the ankle two weeks before the 14.2 miler and I am no where near the paces I had hoped.

I pushed myself out the door Monday morning to run at the 1/2 mile track below the gym. After the 3-miler, I felt the familiar euphoria that keeps me lacing up the running shoes morning after morning. I slept in Tuesday morning and still a bit worried about the ankle. I chose a nearby park and enjoyed the scenery. I didn't want to push things so I went just a little over 4 miles. The hills and heat got to me but the run went fairly well. My ankle was still holding up pretty good so I was a little encouraged and decided to push a bit during my Thursday tempo run.

The tempo run included a plan for a mile warm-up and 5 miles at about a 9:15 pace. I was on track the first two miles but actually ran faster the last four. My splits were 9:43 (warm-up), 9:16, 8:57, 9:00, 9:02, and 9:07. I was finally feeling like I was heading in the right direction. Friday's easy run was uneventful and I decided on a 12-mile long run for Saturday morning.

I wanted to run real close to a 10-minute per mile pace and was doing pretty good the first few miles. When I got around 6 miles I could start to feel the tiredness set in and told myself that finishing was more important than pace. But at 8 miles, I was still on track at a time of 1 hour, 20 minutes. I was on track if I could keep up the current pace. That was a big IF!

I finished off my 2nd powergel at about 8.5 miles and threw my wrapper in a garbage can I always use. I decided to use the nearby water fountain for an extra sip of water but was shocked by a splurge of acid reflux went I bent over! I had to stop for a few seconds to catch my breath and take in some water from my camelbak. It surprised me more than anything but I got going rather quickly.

At mile 10 I encountered several large dogs running the streets. I am not exactly scared of dogs but encounters while I am running make me anxious! They were about 50 meters ahead of me and I started walking to see what they were going to do. They went off in the woods, apparently not interested in me, so I started running once again.

The last 2 miles were pretty hard! The sun was beating down and it was getting hot. I had started later than usual because I couldn't one of my podcasts to download into my computer. I was starting to feel the difference! Had I been able to make it through these miles a bit quicker, I may have managed the pace I desired but I couldn't pick it up. I finished at a 10:18 pace. :-(

I will plan a shorter long run of 8 miles this Friday, the last long run before the race. I am going whitewater rafting on the Ocoee River Saturday so I am getting it in earlier in the week. Hopefully, I won't feel too wiped out as a result!

I am only 2 weeks from race day so I have to rethink my original goal time of 2:15 (for 14.2 miles). At this point, 2:25 may be much more realistic. I guess this goes to show you that if you are a beginner like me, you must give your body a rest week in one of these 12 week race plans to give your legs a break. If you don't give your body a rest, it will take a rest anyway one way or another!


Blogger Phil said...

Shane .. don't beat yourself up over the pace. You ran the distance. Actual race conditions will be different. Remember how fast you went in your first 10k? Once you get in the race, the fact that you are running with people will bring up your pace a little. In fact, your biggest problem will be keeping your pace under at the beginning of the race

I think that one of the problems you had today was the fact that you put in some serious mileage on Friday a pace faster than you expected. You're just not to the point where you can run a tempo workout on Friday and then bang out 12 miles on Saturday. I wouldn't try it. I always put at least one and usually two easy days between my up-tempo runs and my long runs. This gives your legs time to recovery.

Also, don't fret about the race. You've already proven to yourself that you can do the distance. Over the next several weeks, get in a few runs that include running your race pace for short distances (use 800s or 1600s) make sure you insert recovery jogs between the intervals that last at least as long as the time you exerted yourself. Get a feel for the stride and cadence of your race pace. In otherwords, practice racing.

Once you get in the race, you can depend on this practice to hold back during the excitment of the first few miles. If you get through the first 10 miles of the race at your set pace and feel you've got plenty of gas left in the tank, then start speeding up a little on the last few miles. There's no better feeling of kicking hard over the last mile and seeing the finish line coming into sight.

Also, keep in mind that (as trite as it sounds), running is a journey. Each race is an unique experience. This won't be the last 1/2 marathon+ you'll ever run, so you need to get your mind prepared to run the best race you can on that day.

You've come a heck of long way in a few short months. Just imagine where you'll be a year from now!

6:08 PM

Blogger Phil said...

Shane ... were's the race report? How did you do?

4:59 PM


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