Thursday, March 29, 2007

"Don't Waste a Good Day"

I remember reading this quote in some old issue of Running Times where members of a training group in Kenya were being interviewed (if anyone else remembers where this is from please let me know). I thought about these words two miles into the run today as I worried about getting home in time for Kiera to get her run in. Everyone slept in until 6:30, which is quite amazing, and as a result our schedule was much tighter than usual.

My original plan was to take things fairly easy today after two days of decent paces in a row. The evening run with the The Running Shop yesterday ended up being a record breaker for 10K (6:40 pace instead of the usual 7+ minutes per mile), so I figured I would just lope along and perhaps throw in 6x200 strides en route. However, at two miles in I noticed I was already down to 6:40 pace and I was feeling good. Since I only had about 65 minutes for a 70 minute run I decided to just press a little and turn today into a steady progression run, with the goal of getting to close to my aerobic ceiling by the end of the run. After about ten minutes of this I was tempted to look at my pace but instead I resisted the urge in order to avoid racing myself.

I think it's a good idea to just go sometimes when it feels good, which was the meaning I took from the quote. Finishing a run strong and seizing the opportunity a good day provides is what running is about. I know this might sound strange coming from a guy who obsesses over daily paces, but much of that is me trying to get the most out of the training time I'm willing to give to the sport. When I just stumble into a day like this it's nice to just enjoy it for what it is- a good run.

Training: 10 miles, 1:02:26, 6:15 pace
Yesterday pm., 6.2 miles, 41:25, 6:40-ish pace


Mark said...

i think we have a "feel good" theme going here :-)

Omniscient said...

In addition to having a good day, I think you are beginning to realize that pace can often be irrelevant (at least in my experience). Granted, you need to run at a pace that allows for the intended effort but I strongly believe there is no right pace. I guess I just get irritated when many of the readers criticize your propensity to run sub 6:50 pace for most of your runs. If that happens to be a comfortable pace for you, then, I really wouldn't consider going slower.

Anyways, I guess the young guy is just venting or revealing his lack of experience.

Patrick said...

I totally agree of going with the flow when you're feeling good. Its the best way to learn to read your body, something thats invaluable in races. Just don't be afraid to let the pace lag on days you don't feel your best. Thats my big weakness. I have this threshold that I don't like to let the pace drop past, even on easy days (usually 7:00 miles). But I've seen some Kenyan training logs that show they'll start out a lot of easy days at 9:00/mile pace and some days they'll go 6 miles in 45 min for their a.m. run. Its all about recovery. Its good to hear that you and Eric are hitting it hard as of late. Spring time speedsters. Keep it up.

Mike said...

Thanks for the comments guys. Lack of experience, eh Jason? You seem to know quite a bit more about running fast than I do even though I have 13 years on you. Mark, I'm glad you're feeling good, even if you have to resort to chopping up your shoes. Patrick, I'm glad you're tapering. It means I might finally run more miles than you for a week! Good luck against Crowther, you guys should have a great race.

Abadabajev said...

Hello Omniscient

I'm sorry if you get irritated with many of the readers criticizing. The blog is public and Mike has provided a comment section which tells me feedback is welcomed.

There are 2 things I can do at this moment.

1) Critic to the best of my abilities and provide feedback which might influence Mike in a positive way. May I underline the word might.

2) Blow sunshine all day.

I can’t do #2. Honestly, I try, but I just can’t. LOL

Omniscient said...


I think irritated was slightly too caustic of a choice.

I enjoy reading everyone's comments on the blog daily and respect the opinions of all readers. The trouble with distance running is that there is no coverall solution to run fast. Shit, I have been doing the same workouts and hitting almost the same interval times as a teammate who ran 13:13 for 5k last year. However, I am not even in the same area code of 13:13. I think what I am getting at is merely the fact that everyone is different. If I have learned anything from running the past eight years, it is "listen to your body". Most of my PR's have come off of running mileage and spontaneous threshold runs (based off feel of course). Therefore, how I feel on a day to day basis guides what pace I will run--easy, moderate, or hard.

Alright, I am getting a little long winded. My apologies to the audience.