Friday, February 5, 2010

A Sense of Achievement

"You have to wonder at times what you're doing out there. Over the years, I've given myself a thousand reasons to keep running, but it always comes back to where it started. It comes down to self-satisfaction and a sense of achievement."
- Steve Prefontaine

Training Update
With two colds and the birth of my new daughter, I still stuck to my training plan the best I could.

Week 1 - 10.27 miles at an average pace of 10:59 
Week 2 - 5.91 miles at an average pace of 10:24 
Week 3 - 3.12 miles at an average pace of 12:45
Week 4 - 5.89 miles at an average pace of  10:16

Strong Week 1. Week 2 started with a sore throat and 3 days of rest. Week 3 started with the birth of my daughter and ended with a full fledged chest cold which included a Z-Pack for treatment. Week 4 I rested, recovered, and raced.
Overall I proud to accomplish my January goal and the result of the training was a PR in my target race. I would have liked to be more consistent with my weekly training mileage but given the situation I did my best. The illnesses are just part of life. I can say that the motivation of my fellow runners really made me stick to the plan. Special thanks to the "The Brad" 

Race Report
On January 30, I participated in the Jag 5K Spirit Run. It was an overcast, cold morning with temps in the low 40s. I talked my sister, sister in law, and sister in law's friend to running at the last minute so along with The Brad, we were a team of five. My original training plan goal was to finish under 30 minutes. Due to the training interruptions (illness & childbirth), I revised my race goal. My 5K race PR was 33:54 so I was targeting sub 33 minutes. Challenging but not impossible given my current training load. 
I took a different approach to this race and warmed up with a little 4 minute jog. This felt good but in the future I will try to warm up closer to the start of the race so I don't have a chance to cool down.
I felt good at the start and finished first mile in 9:29 (way too fast). The first mile is slightly downhill which contributed to the fast start but with the course being a loop we would finish on an uphill. I walked through the first water stop (maybe 20 seconds) then got back on pace. At this point my shins were bothering me (the left the most). I pushed through it backing down the pace. My body was telling me to walk but I knew I could push further. Thanks to mental focus, nano goals (just get to the next tree), and a killer play list, I made it to the second mile in 10:24. I walked through the second water stop (maybe 20 seconds). At this point I was hurting pretty bad but I didn't want to stop. I kept thinking if I could go a little farther it would get easier. I repeated my mantra "Are you an Athlete or a fat guy trying to lose weight". With one kilometer to go a fellow runner was about to stop and I said to her, "One K to go, keep it up!" She kept going and so did I. The last half mile was all uphill the downhill we had enjoyed earlier. I was 10:30 at the 3 mile mark. I lifted my pace with everything I had left for the last .1 and watched the timer click 30:15 as I crossed the finish. Once my eyes were able to focus (either from the effort or the cold) I was elated with an unexpected PR.
I finished 80 out of 157 overall and 15 out of 17 in my age group (30-39). I feel really good with my results. Last year this was my first 5K and I finished barely under 40 minutes. A year later I ran almost 9 minutes faster. That is called self-satisfaction and a sense of achievement. And that is why I run...

Mile 1 - 9:29
  Mile 2 - 10:24
  Mile 3 - 10:30
  Mile .1 -   :51

Training Plans

I'm working on my training plan for February. I'm adapting a Galloway training plan to incorporate speed training with tempo runs and easy long runs. I'm considering a 5K near the end of the month. More on all this later. Thanks for reading.

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