A faster long run …

Sunday’s 20 miler went down well, despite all my grumblings the day before about how I wasn’t in the shape I needed to be. That may still be an accurate assessment but I ran yesterday’s long run with a good effort at a faster than planned pace. I think part of this came from reading this post by Mike (or his mystery coach) over at his Running with Lydiard blog. You see, you have to train faster to get those later used fibers in shape. My assessment is that I have been training/activating those fibers to be fuel efficient at a slow pace, but not to be fuel efficient at a faster pace; maybe Pfitzinger’s schedule deals with that later down the road and I am just jumping the gun – leading myself to injury, ruin and destruction. I hope not.

So Sunday’s run was a cold one. The ipod mini had a half charge but only lasted twenty minutes (I attribute that “melt” down to the cold – the battery couldn’t take it). So, for most of the run I was left to my thoughts – as it probably should be.

I started out at a sub 140 HR and ran the first six or so uphill miles at 8:20-8:00 pace. Things went smoothly. I did, however, have to run in the road a lot because of the slick icy conditions on the sidewalks. Probably a good thing the ipod wasn’t working, as I was better able to pay attention to the crazy drivers around me. Miles 7-20 felt strong even after the uphill part on a reverse Boston course.  You will also notice that the pace remained steady even during the hill stretch from miles 12-16. The splits looked like this:

Mile Pace Avg HR

7 8:00 141
8 7:58 140
9 8:01 149
10 7:58 146
11 7:49 151
12 7:38 148
13 7:47 153
14 8:04 151
15 7:23 156
16 7:35 156
17 7:19 162
18 7:41 162
19 7:40 159
20 7:41 162

At the end I was not really trying to run sub 7:20 it just happened. I was moving along, felt good after having conquered the uphills with little problem and kept the pace flowing. I did consciously decide to back off the pace the last three miles once I saw the 7:19. That didn’t seem to lower the HR but that’s okay. I had a lot in the tank and felt like I got those fibers working. I am glad, though, that today is an off day. It is really cold out and my legs are sore. It will be nice to have a rest. I may need to run on the treadmill tomorrow because I am not sure I will be able to put in the effort required in this weather with the still icy sidewalks.

So, that was a pretty good week after my first 70 mile week in a long, long time. I am feeling pretty strong, just not fast. I need to work on getting that toughness back – by that I mean the ability to push the harder effort pace for a longer period of time; to run tough. I sense that is coming. It just isn’t happening yet.

2/4/07 20.1 miles/2:38:41/7:55 pace/148 HR

Week total: 66.8 miles

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February 2007
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What I am reading:

Again to Carthage, Robert L. Parker

Music I am listening to:

LCD Soundsystem, This Happens Gorillaz, Plastic Beach

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