Tough Treadmill Tempo Run-The Old Sprinter Hates Them

This is the workout that I dread more than any other during the week – a long tempo run.

Personally, I don’t mind running fast for shorter distances i.e. 400’s or 800’s, even a fast mile once in  a while.

However the idea of doing a looooonnngggg steady state tempo run at a little faster than my planned Half Marathon pace is daunting to me.

Yes I know that it is necessary to do and that I have to get used to this pace and be able sustain it for many miles. However, I have always thought of myself as a shorter distance runner (5K’s primarily, you hurt for a little while and it is over and done with) and the longer runs didn’t interest me as much – especially when you have to maintain a uncomfortably faster pace for a fairly long time. So this change in focus to longer distances is something that I am still struggling with.

That old sprinter inside me from high school, still doesn’t understand why he has to run for such a long time and tells me his feelings on the ideas of running long distances whenever I do them. Some of the things that old sprinter says about long distance runners would astound you and are not appropriate for a PG17 blog.

That is the real reason I needed more structure, because I would have turned this into another interval work out instead maintaining the steady pacing. So how did the old sprinter do today?

  • 2.0 miles @ 7.3 mph – warm-up approx 8:13 pace
  • 4.0 miles @ 8.0 mph approx 7:30 pace
  • 1.0 mile @ 8.6 approx 6:58 pace – Just to keep practicing sub-7:00 for 5K’s
Time through 7.0, first 2.0 miles at 16:30 total time

This was done at 1% incline with one 5% incline for .1 mile for a little added challenge. The plan called for me to do a steady 7:30 pace for 5.0 miles. However, my next 3 races are 5Ks, with my goal 5K race at the end of April, so I wanted to work the speed part a little heavier at the end of my tempo workouts.

That last mile SUCKED! Especially the last .3. I really didn’t want to keep going, but I made it to the end and had to back it down to 3.3 mph for .1 of a mile. I am glad that I did it though, I know that I can go sub 7:00 and hold it even after already running 6.0 miles. Definitely a Confidence builder, but that old sprinter said this too much like work! along with a few other choice comments 😉

  • .1 mile @ 3.3 mph – to be able to breath again (something I enjoy doing) and get my heart rate down from 169 to back in the 120’s
  • 2.9 miles @ 6.6 mph – cool down

The worst part was that I forgot my water bottle and didn’t hydrate during the run. Experience has taught me that I have to keep it slower during the cool-down phase, if I haven’t been hydrating during the run. This also meant, that I don’t even try to do weights, just didn’t have anything left.  I went from 150 morning weigh-in to 146 when I got back home to shower. So this afternoon is all about re-hydrating.

Overall, another good workout in my Altra Superior’s, showing that they are not just trail shoes and they did well again with the Swiftwick Aspire 12 combination. I like the way that my legs feel during a run with this combination, none of that little toe pinching or anything, I can just forget about the shoe/sock combo and run.

I am now over 50 miles in the Superior, so I will be doing a 50 mile review soon.

A Challenge For Other Runners

P8040002I have a challenge for other runners out there. It was something that I did last fall and now that spring is almost here, I think it would be a good challenge to do something for another runner.

Have you looked closely at some of your running buddies lately, students you know or even family members who run?

Are their running shoes starting to really look pretty darn tired?

With the hard times many people are having right now a lot of runners are wearing running shoes that are worn out or pretty close to it.

How does that affect you and I?

With worn-out shoes, those runners are more likely to get injured or become unmotivated to run and are probably feeling very stressed about life in general because of what they can and can’t afford.

The other thing is if they stop running, we won’t have the pleasure of their company during our runs, being totally up front and selfish here.

If You Can

What I am proposing is – if you can afford to, sometime in the next week or two take one of your friends or a family member who is having a tough time, to buy them new running shoes.

Oh I many of them will say – no I can’t let you do this and the other things to try to talk you out of doing this. Don’t let them.

Tell them you are paying forward their running and that at some point in the future, when things are better for them, they will be able to do this for someone else.

You know your friends and family who are runners better than I do and how different ones might react to your offer. However, you might be surprised about how they react if you do offer.

The reality is

that we don’t really stop and think about how our friends and family are really doing sometimes and in my opinion doing something as simple as helping another runner get new pair of running shoes, so they are able to keep running injury/pain free is the right thing to do.

I can think back to times in my life where things were extremely tight and a new pair of running shoes were way down on the list of priorities, yet in order to keep running injury/pain free I needed new shoes. I would keep running in the old shoes and eventually get injured. Which meant that I couldn’t run and felt even worse about myself and whatever was going on.

Think about it.

It might make a big difference in another runner’s life and yours.

After all they say the Karma goes both ways.

What do you think?