Hard Repeats and Expectations

We got lucky, most of the storm missed us. It was supposed to start sometime between 1:00 AM and 5:00 AM, but didn’t until I headed down to the gym at 10:00 AM. Even then when I got home at 12:30 PM, the snow wasn’t sticking to the roads at all. Although looking out the window we now have around three inches, the storm itself is just about over.

In other words not a big deal. πŸ™‚

As you can see down-back was rather icy and slick with that little coating of snow from yesterday, so no running down there for a while, especially since walking down there with Bennie can be an adventure. However, I had planned on going to the gym to use the treadmill no matter what the temps or road conditions were to get in a quality workout.

I really wanted to push myself a little harder than I have in a while and see if the old body would hold together. Although I was a little concerned with my left upper calf area, it felt off after walking down back this morning. I thought that I might have tweaked it just a little walking on the ice.

What did I end up doing?

0.5 @ 7.2 mph – warm-up

0.5 @ 9.1mph – this is about as fast as I want to go for a while. It is almost 30 seconds above what I consider my 5K race pace and I don’t think that I could hold this pace for the full 5K distance with my current level of fitness. This pace was more to push me out of my comfort zone.

0.20 @ 7.0

0.30 @ 9.1 mph

0.20 @ 7.0

0.30 @ 9.1 mph

0.20 @ 7.0

0.30 @ 9.1 mph

0.20 @ 7.0

0.30 @ 9.1 mph

0.30 @ 7.0

0.30 @ 9.1 mph

22:43/3.1 — I was so tired at the end of these repeats that I forgot to turn-off my Garmin for a short time – maybe 15-20 seconds elapsed, before I started breathing semi-normally again and realized that I hadn’t shut it off.

Breathing can be a pretty big deal.

I do find it pretty amazing what a difference that 0.3 mph on the treadmill can make in how I feel during a run. Last week, I ran 8.8 mph for the repeat speeds and felt pretty strong through the 5K portion of the run. When I kicked it up to 9.1 mph (supposedly a 6:35 pace), it kicked my arse – bad today.

Although it might have something to do with wearing actual race day shoes that were 2.5 ounces lighter last week too. At those speeds and effort levels the extra weight does make a difference. Which means that next week I will keep it at this speed, but use the RunFasts versus the Tempo 9s. Yeah, this pace/effort level on the treadmill does push me to work harder and it doesn’t put as many limits on my running.

The left calf did bother a little to begin with, but seemed to loosen up more as I got into the workout and by the last fast repeat, I had stopped noticing it.

Then I wanted to get some more miles in, so after walking for a quarter mile I started to run again. This time I started out at 7.2 mph and by the time I got to .1 I decided that if I wanted to make 3.0 miles alive, that I either needed to slow down or head outside where I would definitely run slower. I didn’t feel like getting all geared up, so I slowed it down to 7.0 mph and probably should have slowed down to 6.5 mph, but me being me – I kept it at 7.0 and sucked it up.

I was beat and the legs were tired, but I wanted to force myself to run a little faster on tired legs than I normally do, so I kept going and finally the body recovered enough or is the brain recovered enough to get through the rest of the workout. I think it is more about the mental side of the game than the physical and to be honest that is the part I need to work on the most.

The mileage is still off on the Milestone (it was quite short – by over a .50) and I had to calibrate it after the fact, so the pace and splits probably ain’t all that accurate.

I have been using the Milestone Footpod to track my running in the Tempo 9s and while it didn’t show any big surprises for this run (still a heel striker), it just re-emphasized to me, that in order for me to run like they suggest or meet their “good” metrics it is more about me running faster than having great running form all the time.

The faster I run the more efficient my form becomes. Unfortunately, I cannot run that far with this body anymore at those more efficient speeds.

Yeah, I also ran this workout in the adidas Tempo 9s and guess what, I didn’t think about them at all during the run. So they done good.

A tough workout where I pushed against some of the limits I have set for myself both physically AND mentally. Could I train at these speeds very often, no. Can I train at this 9.1 mph for repeats yes, could I race at that speed – to be determined, but I am not going to purposely set limits on what I can do versus what I am supposed to do as an old fart – not yet anyway.

You never know what will happen, go out hard, run hard and finish harder, the times will take care of themselves.

All I know is that nap sure did feel good after that workout.

A quality workout in the books.

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