Friday, February 19, 2010

Race ready!

After work I actually got on the bike trainer. The hour of power if you will – well the 45 minutes of warm up / cool down and 7 intervals. But the HOUR OF POWER sounds so much better. It is so hard for me to get motivated to do a session in the evening. It is something that I really need to work on – I would like to make some time for a few quality sessions in the evening. As always, I felt better for having done the workout.

On Thursday morning I went to the gym for a tempo run on the treadmill. Once again you have to take the treadmill with a grain of salt. I don’t really know how fast the belt is moving or the equivalent pace. I do, however, always try to use the same machine. My training plan, the FIRST plan that I have been roughly following, only called for a 6 mile run. It would be a good warm up / cool down with the working set being 3 miles at a 6:45 minute pace. If you remember I ran 8 miles on the treadmill last week with the working set consisting of 6 miles at a 6:40 minute pace. So today’s workout did not seem sufficient. I know that this is part of the taper but – come on – this is where I prefer to work harder. And just to justify my working harder - the FIRST workout plan that I am following is for a 3:15 marathon time – I am going to try to be quicker than that!

So I did my easy 1 mile warm up at 10 minutes per mile and then cranked the treadmill up to a 6:40 pace. The first mile was easy so I decided to increase the pace each mile for a total of 4 miles in this working set. I increased the speed by 0.2 MPH and the splits came out as follows (mile number / time / Ave HR):

Mile - 01 Time - 00:09:58 Ave HR - 129
Mile - 02 Time - 00:06:40 Ave HR - 158
Mile - 03 Time - 00:06:28 Ave HR - 168 
Mile - 04 Time - 00:06:20 Ave HR - 175
Mile - 05 Time - 00:06:13 Ave HR - 181
Mile - 06 Time - 00:09:51 Ave HR - 145

Although the paces did indeed quicken, I continued to feel strong. The 6:40 pace was as if I could go forever (forever being about 10 miles - maybe a little longer). The 6:28 wasn’t much harder. The 6:20 could have been a solid 5 mile effort. At the 6:13 pace it got harder although I could have pulled this off for a 5K – and who knows, with a kick at the end I might have had a new 5K PR’d. After the 4 working miles I shut it down. I think I could have held the 6:13 for another mile (but my average heart rate was creeping up – 181 was what I averaged for a 12K – 7.5 mile – run back on New Year’s day – so I know I have a little more top end). But I played it smart. I know that I will not gain any speed or physical fitness these last couple of days before the marathon. This is the time that you are more likely to mess something up!

I never got out of my hard comfort zone. The intensity was up but the recovery should be quick and easy. I am not going to push too hard this late in the game. I am ready for the race!

This weekend I am running 10 miles at race pace.


Aimee said...

I love "The Hour of Power!" I may have to steal that..:) I usually have to do my trainer rides in the evenings, and it is pretty difficult to find the energy to hop on my bike and get it down. But, once I do I always feel good about it and I'm glad I didn't just sit on the couch and watch t.v.!

Your tempo run was FAST! Good luck with your 10miler.

Jon Gilchrist said...

yeah...the hour of power sounds so seductive....or like I need to dig in my pocket and give some money for