Wednesday, November 23, 2005

17 minutes

Downeast runner Andrew recently wrote about "magic numbers" in training in his great blog. Three has always been one for me, three miles to be exact. Tomorrow I race a 5K for the first time in awhile, and the 3.1 mile distance, while difficult, has a special place in my heart. For my previous marathons, when I lived more central in Tucson, I did several tempo runs, as Pete Pfitzinger suggested. Most of these took place at Reid park, where there is a flat, paved 3 mile loop around its peremiter. These tempo runs started at 4 miles and grew to 7 miles by the end of my training program. I would also do some of my marathon pace runs on this same path. When I would get tired I would say to myself, "just one more time around the park", or "you can always run three more miles." Regardless of how many loops were left, taking the effort one loop (or three miles) at a time made it easier for me. The same holds true on my longer runs now, as I often repeat the same mantra when I come back on the road from "dog-poop trail" or the winding road the seniors use (depending on which direction I run my loop), where I have three miles to go until I reach the garage.

Tomorrow will be my ultimate 5K time-trial, complete with hay bales and water jumps. At least that's what the race website suggests. It should take 17 minutes, maybe a bit less if I have a great day, maybe a little more if the course is tough or if things don't go my way. Either way, it's only one more time around the park (even if this time it's actually through it). The goal is to have fun, run fast, and win something. Age group winners get a turkey, and second place gets a pie I think. I think I'd rather have the pie, especially after looking at the lack of space in our fridge.

Arthur Lydiard's marathon schedule has me running several 5K time trials; I've done one in 16:50 and another in 17:08, when I was pretty tired from the show at the gallery. My official P.R. is 16:58, which I ran back in May. Lydiard calls for running "controlled" during these efforts, but I'm giving it full-gas tomorrow. Wish me luck, I'll be wishing you a happy and safe Thanksgiving.

Training: Yesterday's p.m. run changed from 6 by myself to 4 with Haiden in the jog-stroller. She really wouldn't let me out of the house without her, and it was fun. She is getting pretty heavy though!
Today: 8 miles, as I slept in too late to fit in 10. 57:15, 7:10 pace with 6x100 strides. Felt slow at first, finished feeling very fresh. Two days of only 8 miles in a row should leave me feeling fresh for tomorrow.


Love2Run said...

There is something to be said for 'controlled'. I find that you're more relaxed and can often run faster than expected with something left for the end... Good luck!

Mike said...

Should have listened to you Mike, I was pretty fried by the last mile!