Saturday, January 26, 2013

Race Recap: Red Shoe Run 10k

I was really prepared to haaate this race, but it really surprised me, and I actually ended up loving it.

First of all, this morning was freeeezing.  Well, ok... it was 36, so not technically, but that is damn cold for Columbia.  I had to break out my running pants for the first time since last year.  Second of all, I was a total idiot on Friday - I had set myself a calendar alert to go pick up my packet, got the alert, and then promptly went home without picking it up.  That meant I had to get there even earlier than usual this morning.  Also, this was the first time that J didn't come with me, so I didn't have a cheering section/photographer.  So anyway... at 6 am this morning, I was wallowing in all of this and not feeling super pumped.

I had heard that the course has a "brutal" hill at the start, which is actually a big part of why I wanted to run it.  Y'all know that I've been obsessing about the hills on the half course, and I wanted to see if I could handle them at HM race pace.  My plan wasn't necessarily to try to hold pace on the hills themselves, but overall.  My goal was to try for about 8:55 average if I could... but instead I ran about 8:48, finishing in 54:41 for a new PR!

*Official results gave me the 54:41.

The splits are all over the place - I felt really good, but I was getting freaked out by low 8s on the Garmin and kept trying to talk myself into slowing down.  Also, you can tell which were the hilly miles (1 and 4) and which were the downhill miles (3 and 6).  I definitely need to work on giving a more even effort, but in the end, I'm really happy that the hills didn't bother me (though I wouldn't characterize these as "brutal"), and I came away an unexpected PR.


Monday, January 21, 2013

Making changes.

Ok, so obviously I am failing at my resolution to post more regularly here.  Good thing there are 49 weeks left this year for me to get my act together.

Anyway, let's just be honest... a big part of the reason I haven't been posting is because there isn't much to post.  I haven't been running as much as I should be, and when I am, I'm definitely not following my training plan.  Some of the missed runs couldn't be avoided - I had a little health issue pop up that meant I couldn't sweat for a few days (all is 100% fine now) and I had to work late a few times to get caught up from the holidays.  That's all good.  It happens.  But there were definitely times when I could have gone for a run, but I chose not to, even though, as stupid as it sounds, I actually wanted to go.   

The truth is that I kinda hate my training plan.  I'm not a high mileage runner and I'm not an every day runner.  That is the part that I got right when I made this plan.  What I got wrong was scheduling every single run as an intense run in order to make up for the lack of mileage.  I mean, this week, I had myself scheduled for 800 repeats, a 5 mi progression run, a 10k race, and 4 mi pace run.  While I'm sure there are tons of runners out there who wouldn't flinch at that, it's way too much for me.  No wonder I don't want to go do that and no wonder that my legs still feel beat up all the time.  Of course, I could've just disregarded the plan and gone anyway, and I have done that several times, but then I feel guilty, like I'm not doing what I should.  That is stupid.  I made the plan for myself; I can change it.

So.  The plan has changed.  I had been playing around with the Runner's World Smart Coach tool, and then Kate wrote a post last week about how it has worked for her, so I took that as a sign that I should give it a try for these last 6 weeks.  It scares me a little bit because I feel like it's a LOT less, but it also sounds kinda nice that I will only have to do one longer-ish weekday run AND Sunday is back to being a rest day, so I feel like I have a little bit of freedom back in my weekends too.  As always, I tweaked the plan a little bit (i.e. 10K this weekend, a trip to Florida, etc.), but I think this is going to be much better.  I'm not convinced I'm going to be able to run a 9:02 pace on race day (too many hills!) but this was never meant to be a PR attempt, so that's fine.

Here is the new plan:



Mon
Tues
Wed
Thurs
Fri
Sat
Sun
1
Jan. 21-27
Rest
3 mi
easy
5 mi w/ 3mi @ 8:54
3 mi easy
Rest
Red Shoe 10K
XT
2
Jan. 28-3
3 mi
easy
Rest/XT
1 mi + 2x1600 @ 8:23 + 1mi
3 mi easy
Rest/XT
8 mi easy
Rest/XT
3
Feb. 4-10
3 mi easy
Rest/XT
5 mi w/ 3 mi @ 8:53
3 mi easy
Rest/XT
9 mi easy
Rest/XT
4
Feb. 11-17
4 mi easy
Rest/XT
4 mi easy
Rest/XT
3 mi easy
6 mi easy
Rest/XT
5
Feb. 18-24
3 mi easy
Rest/XT
5 mi w/ 3 @ 8:49
3 mi easy
Rest/XT
10 mi easy
Rest/XT
6
Feb. 25-3
3 mi easy
Rest/XT
1 mi + 2x1600 @ 8:18 + 1 mi
3 mi easy
Rest/XT
11 mi easy
Rest/XT
7
Mar. 4-10
3 mi easy
3 mi easy
1 mi + 1x1600 @ 8:16 + 1mi
Rest
Rest
RACE DAY!



Like I said, not a lot of miles at all, and a definite decrease in the intensity, but also something that feels much more doable for me.  I'm actually excited about it instead of feeling nothing but dread and guilt.

Today was a planned rest day because I went to Barre on Saturday and did 6 easy miles yesterday (i.e. at about 10:20 pace as prescribed by the Smart Coach).  The flat parts of that run were definitely very easy and I had to fight to stay slow.  But the hilly parts - holy crap - I definitely had to fight for the pace on those.  

I'm not sure how I'm going to be able to run a similar course for twice as long and about a 90s faster per mile (which is what Smart Coach assures me I will be able to do), but I guess we'll find out!