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Running Easy and Whining Still –

Well there, I did something very surprising this morning – I ran with my Garmin.

Okay, it really is not all that surprising, but due to my old Timex Ironman biting the bullet the other day (it is only 11-12 years old – what’s up with that), I had to use my Garmin for another easy run.

When I got done running yesterday, Bennie was dog tired, today when I got home, he was rip raring to go and wanted to play, while all the old human wanted to do was sit down and lift his legs.

Which is not the end of the world or anything like that, but I really wanted to start weaning myself from the world of GPS, daily graphs and artificial reasons to run faster, when all I really want to do is run easy, comfortable, relaxed and enjoy the run without having to worry about looking at how I did.

So I set out with the idea that I would do my 7.0 mile Goodhue O/B course and not look or think too much about the Strava pacing graph after the run.

Well that was the plan…it didn’t work out quite that way.

I went through the first mile and when the watch buzzed I automatically looked down and saw the 9:16 mile split. Now in my hazy brain, I tend to believe that I should be running easy at 9:00s not 9:16, so of course I might have picked it up just a little.

Of course I had to look when my Garmin buzzed to tell me it was 2.0 miles. The 9:06 second mile was closer to that magical 9:00 minute pace, so I relaxed a little and of course the third mile was slower again.

The next two are mostly downhill with just some little bumps, so hitting the magical 9:00 minute pace was not a problem. Yes, I looked each time the watched buzzed me. It has me drooling like Pavlov’s dog and I have to look and see how the mile splits are behaving. Of course, I could turn off the buzzer, but every time I go to do that I get distracted and get to looking at some other cool feature that the Garmin has that I could try, and end up having even more buzzers and beeps enabled.

When I got to 5.0 miles, I looked at my heart rate and saw it was still under 135 bpm, which surprised me, since the last two miles were sub 9:00. After running the hills it was a lot higher to say the least.

Usually I attempt to make the last mile my fastest mile and today it was definitely the slowest one of the day. The humidity at almost 90% had finally reached out and slapped me upside the head and by the time I got to Stevens Hill, it was raining sweat off the brim of my hat.

At that point, I have taught myself through the school of hard-knocks that to take the foot off the throttle and just coast back to the finish. So I did, but going up the hill, I was wondering what kind of a dip it was going to show on Strava graph today (it was a big dip).

As you can see even though I really didn’t plan to look at the results on Strava, I could not resist reviewing the data and yes, thinking about what this graph would look like during the run, did impact how I ran.

For easy and recovery runs, I really do not need all of this information. What I really need to do is relax and just run the miles, without the distraction of thinking about what a damn graph is going to look like when I get done.

Now this information is great when I am racing, doing a long run or even a speed workout, but on one of my daily training runs it is information overload for me.

It was a good run and it was above the 9:00 minute overall pace, which is a good thing, but I would have preferred to have had a steady effort that resulted in a 9:20 pace overall, which seems to be closer to my actual easy nowadays.

Still a nice 7.0 miler in 1:04:31 and I actually felt decent just about the whole run.

After lunch, I checked the mail and had nice surprise my new Timex Ironman was sitting there waiting for me to open it up and start using it.

There are a few things that are different than my old beast, but it is pretty intuitive. The only thing I have to figure out now is how to enable the tap, but I saw it on YouTube the other night, so it won’t be that hard to get it set up.

It will be interesting to see how things work out with my new addition.

Although the wife did comment on its being sort of bright. 🙃

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