Yesterday, I completed 10 (+1) miles for the Labor Day 5 or 10 Mile Virtual Run over at Mommy Run Fast!
It was perfect timing for me. I already had an 11 mile training run on the agenda for Sunday. So, when I saw this virtual run pop-up I immediately jumped right in! I even got into the race day spirit by sportin’ my SweatPink tank…
But let me back up a little bit!! I had no idea going into it that last week was going to be such a big week of firsts for me.
It started with our first group outing of the Moms RUN This Town local chapter that I started up only two weeks ago.
Then on Wednesday evening, my husband got home a little early from work, so I headed out for a run. For the first time ever I did hill repeats. It was horrible. I felt like my heart was going to rip right out of my chest. It was PAINFUL to get through. Yet I loved it?! And I’m totally doing it again this week!
On Friday our running group made it into the local paper!! I was beyond excited about it. I was a little less thrilled that my home number was included in the article, but as it turned out I only received one phone call and it was legit.
Saturday morning I met up with two members for a trail run. I’ve been dying to try trail running, but never got around to it. I have to say, I absolutely loved it. AND…I can easily see myself getting through the rest of this year’s races and saying goodbye to pavement for a bit, so I can spend some more time exploring the trails.
That brings me to my 11 mile run on Sunday. See, the way I follow a training plan is that I look at the mileage and I make sure I either hit it exactly by the end of each week or I may go a couple of miles over. Because of this, I feel like I don’t really have any direction with my running. I just head out and run as hard and fast as I can, holding back only enough so that I don’t tank before my miles are done. There are times when I feel like I’m running blindly. That I have no focus and that ultimately I’m just accumulating a whole slew of junk miles, without the promise of any improvement.
That’s how I ended up with my heart pounding out of my chest on Wednesday night. AND how I ended up with a 10:15 min/mi pace during my 11-miler yesterday.
I know that I consistently train at a faster (for me) pace than I should on pretty much all of my runs. For my long runs, I come down pretty hard on myself when my pace gets too close to double digits. That’s not really smart running and I know that.
I recently came across the McMillan Calculator. It tells you (based on your race day finish time) exactly what pace you should be moving at during each type of your training runs. So, just like I’ve decided to include hill repeats once a week to my running schedule I’ve also decided to pay closer attention to the pace I’m working at during long runs.
Yesterday I kept myself between 10:00-10:15 pretty much the entire way. A few times I checked my garmin and noticed I was getting closer to 9:45…at which point I slowed myself down. And ‘ya know what? It was the most comfortable long run I’ve ever had. Not one walk break. I felt great the entire time and afterwards I spent the afternoon out with my daughter running errands. I had plenty of energy left and not one bit of soreness.
So, here I am with 510 miles under my belt since baby #2 arrived, only 5 weeks out from my half-marathon and I’m just starting to listen to what all of these training plans have been trying to tell me?! Better late than never!!