This morning I had my scariest workout for all of my marathon training: 10 miles with 8 at a tempo pace of 8:44. If you recall from a couple weeks ago, I totally failed at life for the last tempo run, by not fueling or hydrating properly. I normally do my speedwork on Tuesdays, but I'm switching around my schedule this week. Long run is going to be Friday at lunch (I'm off early, whoo!) then off to see the boy. As I had learned my lesson last time on my 18 miler, thou shall not complete speedwork and long run in close proximity. Can't get much further away from Friday then Monday, right?
Fuel! I drug myself out of bed early, ugh, just to eat, double ugh. I had a big ol' bowl of cereal with a nanner. After letting it settle, I headed out for my run. My warm up mile was a smidge too fast, but no big deal, right? Once the warm up mile was behind me, I started in on tempo mile #1. After trucking along at what I "thought" was my tempo pace, I looked down at the Garmin: 8:10. Uhh...whoops. For some reason my brain thinks that tempo equates to hard, when 8:44 pace should be just slightly faster than my normal pace that I've been running lately. That definitely did NOT compute.
Around the 2 mile tempo point, I came up on a couple that were just starting that appeared to be running in the 8:30-8:40 range. Perfect-o. You will be my rabbits until my turn around point! Drat! Shoe tying. I almost stop as well, because why give up the perfect pacers right? The guy told me to go ahead. I told him we were running almost the same pace, so I'd take my turn pacing for awhile. Turns out I do better with being chased than I do when chasing.
1. 9:23 (warm up)
At the turn around, they kept going (come back! It's your turn now!!) and I decided to really try to find this elusive tempo pace. I also wished that I had packed a GU, I could've used a little extra somethin' somethin' at this point.
I knew I wasn't close to my tempo pace on the last mile, but I always give it everything I have at the end of speedwork sessions, just feels good to go fast sometimes, right? And then I had a lovely cool down mile. When I got home, I quickly calculated my pace for my 8 tempo miles 8:33, whoohoo! My HM pace is 8:34....makes me want to run another one, ASAP. Since I was rushing off to work, I never looked at the final mile time, assuming it was 9:30ish.
When I got to work and uploading my info into my running log on Runnersworld.com, I was shocked to see that my cool down mile was 8:38! Almost spot ON what my tempo pace was. Seriously? Go figure. So despite the insanely sporadic splits, I ended up with 9 tempo miles (without realizing it) at a 8:34 pace.
Total run: 10 miles in 1:26:36 for a pace of 8:40.
After talking it over with my office husband (yes, we haven't divorced...yet. Although he have joked about how many more calories we're going to burn by walking SO FAR to visit each other; God we're nerds) this is my first tempo run of MARATHON TRAINING that hasn't been done on a treadmill. Plus, it'll be awhile before I need to hit that pace, since the marathon is just going to be done at "whatever pace gets me to the finish line without dying." And that's in no way going to be 8:44 pace. ;)
I found this picture when I was back home yesterday for Easter. This is during my 8th grade year (my final year running distance, thank God) at the regional track meet (the meet before the state meet). I'm in the green (of course), and I literally spent the whole season chasing that chick in blue in front of me. She was a year behind me, and of course competed in the same events as me in the Varsity and Jr. High track meets. I'm from a small school, so if you were good enough you could run for the Varsity team, which means I got out of a TON of school in the spring, heck ya! (Check out that forward lean, you can bet we were running into some STRONG wind, all 100 lbs of me. :p)
Anyways, back to the race. This was the 1600 m. (the mile) and it was my favorite distance. I loved being able to judge a competitors stride to determine how tired they were, and when to make my move. That was the only thing I enjoyed about distance running. :p I much preferred the sprinting where I could just run all out for 13 or 27 seconds (depending on the race 100 m. vs. 200 m.) and be done. Call me lazy. I think I got 4th or 5th in this race (no I didn't beat girl in blue). I did find my diary when I was at home with some race times listed in it, and at the beginning of this season I was running ~6:30, and my PR was 6:17. Not sure if that was this race or not. Ok, memory lane over. Carry on with your lives.