Saturday, April 21, 2012
They say that having a running partner helps keep you on schedule and I definitely think that I would have progressed much faster through my C25K training if I had had a partner, rather than taking 6 months to finish a 9-week plan. But yesterday, my experience was just the opposite. I had gotten myself out of bed just before 6am, getting ready to meet up with my old friend Steve for an early morning run, when I got a call from him calling to cancel due to rain. Now, I would have been willing to run rain or shine, but Steve wanted to bail, and who am I to argue with such a seasoned athlete?
Of course, it's easy to think that I was willing to run and get soaked when it's a hypothetical. I could have proven it by going out and braving the rain by myself. More realistically, I should have probably taken advantage of being up early and spent some more time in the pool. What I actually did was go back to sleep for about an hour and put off my final run until the afternoon.
On the other hand, the run ended up being so great that I have no regrets. The weather improved to low 50's with partial cloud cover—perfect for running! I headed out to do a 4-mile 10K race pace run, but turned left leaving the hotel instead of right, running along 148th avenue. Turns out that this route is much more flat than my run on Wednesday; my total climb was only 139ft, which is not quite Midwest-level, but pretty close. I also managed to hit my target pace of a 10:45 mile spot on for the last mile split and was only a second/mile off for the 4-mile average! My heart rate stayed in the 160's for most of the run and, most importantly, the whole run felt like a very pleasant level of exertion: hard enough that I enjoyed the run, but not so hard that to do any convincing of myself to keep pushing forward.
In fact, I felt like I could have easily kept going for quite some distance. This makes me think that for the actual 10K race, I can push myself a little harder and aim for a 10:30 pace. The course is also more flat, which should make it easier to keep up a faster pace. I think I'll practice that pace during my run on Wednesday to make sure to get a good feel for it. 6 days left!