Yesterday's training schedule called for 10 miles at a 12:08 pace. For my usual trail running, this might be a little ambitious, but I thought it would be just a litte bit easy for the road. There I go thinking again!
It was overcast and about 37 degrees when I left home -- I'm off in my shorts and tank top, freezing my ass off for the first 3/4 mile but completely comfortable after that. The roads are pretty clear. My first 2 miles are on heavily travelled roads, and I have to pay a considerable amount of attention to traffic and properly crossing the road. There is definitely an adjustment from trail running! After the first bit, though, I find that I've picked a good route and the run is mostly flat with very light traffic. Oh, though . . . where the hell does one pee? There's no way I can run 10 miles without having to pee at least 2 or 3 times -- this is very difficult for a female to accomplish on a wide open road surrounded by 3 feet of snow. I just hunkered down and peed on the roadside, hoping no one came while I had my pants around my ankles. I lucked out!
I figured I could easily keep it below 12:08, and planned to run at a pace that felt comfortable, whatever that was, and if it was above 12:08, well, speed up. Here's my splits:
Just breezing along the first 5 miles, almost no attention to pace or anything, wow! I'm a rockstar!
OK, so now I'm looking at Gary the Garmin a little more, seeing all kinds of times, I guess I'm getting a little tired though I still feel good.
OK, so maybe paying attention to pace is a good overall plan, because it sure is slipping at the end! I try to speed up a bit, but am enjoying running slower more, and this is why I'll never be fast.
Yeah, so there's some hills in the last couple miles, especially the last mile. I suck at hills, though I don't actually hate them like I used to. I should do some hill repeats. This last, unavoidable hill on my way home will remain my nemesis all winter, and I plan on being able to run up it, nonstop, at a decent pace, by the time I leave the roads for the trails. Right now, slow and I gotta stop -- once!
Average Pace = 12:00. Does that mean I filled my goal of 10 miles at 12:08, or did I not make it because my pace wasn't consistent? I'm finding it interesting to train with paces in mind, because mostly I couldn't care less -- though a sub 5:00 marathon would be nice! It's also becoming more and more interesting to pay attention to how my body reacts to things and gaining more awareness of what I can and can't do.
What I CAN do is run 10 miles, comfortably and enjoyably and, dare I say it, easily. 3 running years down the road, and this still amazes me, although by now it shouldn't. I'm looking forward to my upcoming training and finding out if I love 20 miles as much as I love 10 (at whatever pace). I hope so!