Sunday, July 16, 2006

Running scared

Today's 20 miler went like a dream but it got a little scary at the end (more later). Woke a few minutes before the alarm at 615 which was a good sign that the mind/body were in alignment and ready to go. Evil Runner still tried to make me roll over for a few more winks but he was quickly overruled. After a quick breakfast of cereal, juice and coffee I got geared up with gatorade, a gel, the mp3 player with the latest Phedippidations episode (this week's topic was Overtraining of all things!), a few bandaids in strategic locations and was out the door and on the road by 7am.The conditions were perfect this morning with a thick cool fog which hung over the area for most of the morning and held the temperatures down in the mid-teens! Much nicer than the predicted 29 which I was trying to avoid with the early (for me) start. This is a look off our front deck just after the run around 10am with the air temperature still only about 17C (60F).
Here's the same view a few hours later after the fog had burned off and it was up to 25C (80F).

Today's plan was for 20 including 2x5mi at MP during the run which had me a little nervous but starting off with an easy 5 mile was well within my range. I think the medium size breakfast that I have so soon before these runs doesn't help for a fast start but pays dividends later in the run. The fog was quite thick with my glasses were continually fogging up as I easily made my way along the ocean bay where we live.

The warmup loop ended back home where I refilled the water bottles before heading out of town into the mist to start the 1st 5 at MP. The terrain here is quite undulating as Andrew can attest but by beginning at the crest of a hill I at least had a running start. The Garmin also turned out to be a nice tool in that it can track your lap pace during each lap. I was able to regulate the effort a bit using this feedback to push on the uphills and to stretch it out on the downs to gain some time back while staying close to the goal pace of 7:30. The result for the 1st 5MP in 37:14 for 7:27/mi pace with average HR at 137. The effort felt reasonable and not overly hard but it was quite nice to slow down for a rest break of 4.5 miles.

Strangely enough during this easy run break, after giving permission to the body to slow down to a recovery pace E.R. took over and established a jogging pace of only 8:45. He is one lazy sucker isn't he? But we'll get him back, just over this hill now, no point in starting at the bottom of a steep hill now is there? Besides the marathon I'm training for is flat and downhill with a net 200ft elevation drop and only 2 small hills.

The 2nd 5 mile set at MP was harder and had me running scared trying to maintain pace over a couple of long hills over the middle miles and a gradual uphill over the last mile. Again I worked the Garmin watching my pace, pushing on the downs and working on the ups and also did more counting and work on the form and turnover. Somehow after the pace slowed a bit in mile 4 I was able to pick it up in the last mile and ended up with the 5MP in 36:35 for 7:19 pace and HR of 144. A little fear of failure can go a long way to help hold pace! Finished the 20 miles in 2:42 with a short cool down but no dip in the pond today as my left foot was bloody from being rubbed the wrong way by the new shoes. I'll need more bandaids or will have to cut some more bits out of the shoe.

Overall a rather satisfiying run in that the MP bits were not as scary as first feared; they weren't easy but weren't overwhelming either. The average HR was good and my legs were not as tired from the miles as suspected either. Spent the rest of the day relaxing a bit, watched the Tour and the horrible crash with 3 bikers going down at speed, ouch, it hurts to watch that! Then spent some more time in the laundry room helping to apply more paint, followed by relaxation and beer on the gazebo. What a great day ;-)


Dawn - Pink Chick Tris said...

Heh Mike! I just popped over to catch up. Good job on your 20 miler. I've pretty much taken this week off but will get right back at it this week.

Phil said...

Mike … a very impressive 20 mile effort this morning. I was particularly impressed with your 7:19 pace on the second 5 mile portion at MP.

And what a beautiful area for running. I spent a day in St. John a few years ago and fell in love with New Brunswick.

I just found your blog so it will be very interesting to follow your adventures as winter approaches and those of us living in the deserts of the South West US stop complaining about the heat and start basking in the sun shine. Even when it cools off down here, I won’t be running anything like a 7:19 in the middle of a 20 miler. Your blog is inspirational.

Susan said...

That battle with Evil Runner is always the hardest. Nice 2o miles - awesome pace.

Unknown said...

Thanks for clarifying that 7 a.m. is early for you, but not necessarrily early. I waited until 7 yesterday to do my long run because I knew the guys I was running with like to sleep in.

Mr.Cornelia said...

Good to hear that you beat the fear! Never stop enjoying the runs (even with a bloody left foot) ;)

Olga said...

I am fuzzing out - I was sure I left a comment this morning...anywho, great run, fear or not!

Olga said...

I remembered - I said I liked your "secret" running goal:)

The Servant said...

Great run. Isn't the Garmin a wonderful tool? I'm jealous, I haven't ran more than 25 kilometres in months, let alone 20 miles. Kudos.

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