Today was my first long run under my the new modified Hanson training plan, (click to see what I am talking about), where I broke it into three sections a warm-up, the workout and easy run/cool-down.
Surprisingly I actually liked doing my long run this way, I didn’t feel pressured to keep hammering away at the run, like I usually do and finished knowing that I could have run a lot further.
The other important thing that I learned today is that I am not in sub 7:40 pace shape for outside longer distances. Running on the treadmill is good, but is a lot different than running faster outside. I have a feeling it will also help to not have to bundle up quite so much too. It was still chilly even the thermometer said 42F, there was a 20+ mph wind, straight out of the north to contend with. Luckily it was at my back most of the way.
I had planned on running at about an 8:18 pace for the workout portion of my run and was feeling pretty good, so the last two miles I picked it up to see if what I thought was a sub 7:40 pace and learned that it wasn’t. Also, while I probably could have continued to run at the pace I was for another few miles, I am not ready for that pace yet for 6.0 or more miles.
I guess that is why we start training for faster pace/distances weeks/months ahead of the race date. Kind of an obvious observation – duh.
Here are the three different sections of today’s long run:
The first 2.0 miles I just ran comfortably to get the kinks out and get myself ready mentally to run a little faster.
This was the hard part of the workout, 6.0 miles at sub 8:18 pace. The first 4.0 miles I was very consistent coming in a little faster than I expected, but within 10 seconds of my goal pace.
Then I wanted to know if I knew what a 7:40 pace felt like and came pretty close for last two miles, but not quite, so I am going to have to work on that sub 7:40 pacing. I was very happy with my consistency of my pacing, but next weeks 6.0 miles scheduled for the sub 7:40 is going to be a LOT tougher workout.
The final part of my long run
Again I was very please with my pace, I wanted to be in the 9:00 to 9:30 range for this part of the workout. I did go up and over Leighton Rd. Hill, which is one tough hill for me
That first part is a STEEP uphill that really gets your attention and then you have few more rolling hills to deal with after that. The picture at the start of the post is looking back down that sucka.
I really enjoyed my long run today, I didn’t feel as though I had to start out hard and my body loosened up and relaxed and was ready for the harder part of the work. Then when I started the 6.0 mile portion, I was able to start out quick, have my form already dialed in and could focus on just working hard for those 6.0 miles.
Once I got that part of the workout over with, my obsession with the clock ended and I just ran comfortably (well once I made it up the hills) and didn’t stress about the pace at all. Which is a lot different than other long runs that I have done, where I would try to hammer those last miles too, in order to get a good time/pace for my run.
Instead I just ran relaxed and enjoyed the last couple of miles.
I also learned that for me Peeps make a great pre-run fuel and need to figure out how to keep some around for my long runs and races this year. Unfortunately, once they are in the house, they don’t last very long around me.
Mileage for today’s long run – 13.13 miles – time don’t care. Which is a big change, because I have been focused on keeping them below 2:00 hours on this course.
Overall, I was extremely pleased with this run, it showed me that I am not in as good a shape as I thought and that I have a lot of work to do between now and my half marathon on June 23rd.