Week 3 done and I've had a big learning point and a shock revelation. This week has been about speed; I am a speed freak.
First the learning point: you run better times if you keep a consistent pace. You wouldn't think that was critical, but the stats show it. I always, but always, start quick and end slow (and knackered!). I have negative splits, they need attention.
I tried running more slowly and I was amazed. I felt much better and I could run longer. At the end of my long run, I felt I could do another mile or so, usually I just collapse at the front door. What a revelation! I still am running too fast, I need to run slower and longer, but I can see where it fits in my preparation.
Now for the shock bit. This has made me think about pacing, what 'steady' and 'tempo' mean for me. Then I twigged (or twug??) - I have to nail my colours to the mast and set a target finish time. I now have to admit to myself and you that I want to do more than just finish. There, I said it! Of course I want to finish, that's the point and no mean achievement. But I have to commit to a time. It's scary. I need to be brave and bold.
I'm afraid I'm going to be a bit coy now and not reveal the magic number; partly because I haven't decided, but if I'm honest, because I don't want to fail. But if I don't set myself a challenging target, how do I know what I can truly achieve? I have to go for it.
Not trying hard enough is a pretty good strategy. If you do well, you're a star; if you fail, well you didn't really give it your best. But I could not hold my head up in front of my twitter chums if I didn't give this run my best shot. Look at the athletes I follow on Twitter and you'll see how shameful it would be not to try as hard as I can.
So, dear reader, I am going to set myself a goal, one that I might well fail to make. A goal that will stretch me in training and preparation and on the day. I have to do this or I will have failed at the first hurdle. But I hope you don't mind if I keep it to myself. It feels a bit too brave to tell you what I aspire to. You'll just have to trust me, at least for now.....
Here's the stats for this week:
- Monday tempo 3.1miles. 29.56mins
- Tuesday - 45 mins of spin
- Wednesday - Hill running and sprint finish 2.92 miles 30 mins
- Thursday - Treadmill steady 10k plus sprint finish 6.2 miles, 58.00 mns
- Saturday - long steady 13.2 miles; 2hr 14 mins 58 secs.
- Sunday - active rest 8.5 mile walk
So, 25.4 miles run, 4.2 hours running, about the same as the week before but with a spin class and active rest day. Feeling good.
With Christmas coming and Mum (I hope) coming out of hospital soon, my goal next week is to run as much as I can. My main run next week needs to be a very long and slow run, to see just how far can I go - I'm quite excited about it!
Thank you to everyone who's sent me comments, advice and support, I really appreciate it - thank you!