Thursday, November 8, 2012

A taste of my own medicine

First, I wanted to thank everyone for their warm, supportive thoughts on my last post - both in comments and by e-mail. I apologize for the enigmatic post... I needed an outlet but feel I cannot divulge details that concern someone other than myself in a public forum so I will leave it at that. But I do thank you all for your thoughts.

So, I tried to get my head together for a work-out today. Not surpringly, my running has been lackluster and random as of late. My streak ended the day after I wrote the post about my streak. I found that commiting to running every day made running so chore-like and unpleasant that I grew to dislike it. Not a good thing to say the least. Also I was having trouble keeping the hard days hard and the easy days easy because on those days when I was running the minimum just to say I had run, I would tend to do it as fast as possible just to get it over with so my "easy days" were a 6 km tempo. All in all, 17 days. Took one day off and felt immediately rejuvenated.

Today I actually e-mailed one of my running buddies to tell them what work-out I was doing just so I would feel accountable to someone (there are disadvantages to being self-coached). She kindly suggested I test her after every interval with my time. While I felt someone pathetic to need this kind of monitoring, the gesture on her part really got me to commit and I so much appreciated her observance. Amazing how having an observer can make a difference...

So this post is called a taste of my own medicine because I have been recommending this work-out to various people in the past few years but I have not done it myself for a long time. The concept is that one does a warm-up followed by a tempo run to increase the workload a bit before the intervals so that each interval is "worth" a little bit more. Mmmmonyka has done many of these in the past few years but I had not done one in probably over five years (do as I say...). Anyway I planned:

20 minute warm-up
3 km tempo
5-6 X 800 m

I actually did:

20 minute warm-up
3 km tempo in 12:06 (tempo pace used to be 3:50... sigh)
7 X 800 m (was super pleased I got in an extra interval, after four my friend texted me and said "commit to doing 7 so you can bow out at 6" and so I committed to doing 7... and actually did them). Times were not stellar but better than anything lately: 2:52, 2:49, 2:48, 2:47, 2:46, 2:52, 2:48.

Based on this, I think I am probably in about 10:45 shape for 3000 m which might be my next race depending on what kind of mental state I am in on race day. On the other hand, I also found this random marathon on the web the other day. It looks like everything a marathon should not be: cold, windy, monotonous course, no spectators, not enough runners to make a decent pack (typically fewer than 100 finishers). I'm thinking of going... I could actually get up super early (4.30 am), drive to Albany (NY) run the marathon and be back the same day. It would be exhausting but definitely memory making... we'll see.


  1. Oh, I think this marathon would be perfect at this point, and so would be marathon training. Do it, do it! And if you plan to visit Boston during your trip, feel free to stay with us (5 miles from downtown).

  2. Cool, I am doing this workout on Saturday, we can compare ourselves:) (Ok, not really. Do not worry, I will not try to run 2:45s. And I will do longer tempo and only 6 intervals. And on trails. Sigh.)

    Also, texting people after each intervals?!? Don't you regret that you did not get a cell phone little earlier? You could have had fun like this a long time ago:)

    If Albany was closer I would come to chear on you and set up a provisional aid station just for you (and maybe for AM?:)). But it is just too far :(

    You sound to feel little bit better. I am glad!

  3. First time reader here. Glad to find your blog! This sounds like a tough workout. It's been about a year since I have done anything that had both tempo and interval in the same session. It sure keeps things interesting that way!