After a 5 day rest period, I jumped back on the running bandwagon with full-blown enthusiasm. If you know me, then you know I don't sit still very well. It's amazing they don't actually tether me to my desk at work. I'm waiting for someone to ask about my frequent trips to the bathroom one of these days. Give me a break, I'm well hydrated!
Last night I pulled on my Elixirs and went out for an "easy" 6 mile run around the Village. I was feeling great and my quad felt fine, so I picked up the pace a little. "Run like KT" I thought. KT is my "wicked-fast friend," AKA "the girl who likes to take her pants off," AKA "Speedy Gonzales". I ended up blowing past my neighbor and made it back to the park by our house before I looked at my watch.
49 min from my front door to the park, which is about 6 miles. The first mile was around a 9/mile, after that I don't know where the mile markers are, but John has measured it with the GPS and I think it was about 6.5 miles total. What I thought was an easy, fun pace, turned out to be about 8:10/mile. Nice! Maybe some of KT's speed is wearing off on me. (For the record, I've never seen KT drop her pants. She just gets embarrassed when I call her wicked-fast).
Then this morning we met for 5 miles and she thoroughly kicked my butt. I keep my mouth shut and try to keep up while KT gives encouragement and counts down by tenths. "Great job! 0.4 to go!" We did 5 miles, approximate splits: 8:10/7:20/8:30/7:30/9. Clearly, I was dying by the end. But did you see those 2 miles below 8 min?? Training is so much more fun when you see improvement. I've done speed work before, but I think this is the first time where I'm working hard enough for it to pay off. You can't slack off when there is someone else with you.
So two fast runs in less than 24 hours and no problems with the quad. I'll take it easy on hills yet this week. More noticeable is that an 8:10 pace is now pretty comfortable (for runs less than an hour). I used to dream about running that fast consistently and sub-8s were pure fantasy. I think I'm well on track for Heartland, even with 5 days off. In comparison, last season I clocked a 7:58 mile once, and I was ecstatic about that. I think I'm getting better with age. :)
2 days ago