Friday, January 22, 2010

Easy Does It

After Monday’s and Tuesday’s double outing a swim workout would have been the ideal recovery program. Unfortunately, due to my own stupidity I did not arrange another class in time and my swim coach gave me a Friday slot instead. Not wanting to spend an entire day without a workout *gasp* I dragged myself out of the door for 5 miles. Unlike on Sunday I had no problem keeping with the slow pace. I just ran however slowly I could. The first mile felt rather awkward but I soon got into the groove. This recovery run worked wonders. By the time I got back home the legs felt worlds better than at the outset and they did not bother me again.

In order not to get too used to the constant slow pace I want to keep a bit of speed in my training. This is also important to strengthen the legs, which will be beneficial in the ultra. But, in all honesty, I’m merely repeating what I’ve heard elsewhere. Don’t be fooled into thinking that I actually know what I’m doing. Anyway, Thursday’s plan called for a set of mile repeats, just 3 of them to start with. I didn’t want to kill myself and set a target of “under 6:30”. Basically, anything faster than HMP would do me. Even so, I was rather apprehensive before the workout. Speedwork, even reasonably doable sessions, just don’t sit well with me. The real challenge was the weather, though. Gale force to strong gale force winds tied with heavy rain was the forecast, and they were not far off. But as soon as I dared myself out of the house I found the conditions “not that bad”. My usual escape route on stormy mornings is the Ard-na-Sidhe road, and that’s where I was headed for. The narrow, twisty road with its little hill in the middle is not entirely suited to speedwork, but I figured it was better than being blown about elsewhere. Once the speed portion of the morning got underway I concentrated more on running relaxed than pure speed and was reasonably pleased to see the first mile pass in 6:23. The next one, slightly downhill but against the wind, went a tad better in 6:19. I lost my concentration on the last one (something I keep doing) and ended up with a slow 6:27 mile. Ah well. 6:20 is probably fairly close to my present 10k pace, which is a good pace for mile repeats if you don’t want to overdo things.

I was all set to finally return to the pool when I got a text message at 4:52 in the morning from the swim coach. I’m not entirely sure if he had sent the message so late or if it simply took a few hours to reach my phone, but the swim was off and after thankfully managing to get back to sleep I did another 6 mile recovery run in the morning. I kept myself amused by studying the stars in the clear sky, until the only bright spot that was left was Mars and I was back home. The pace was a bit quicker than Wednesday’s, but the HR has definitely dropped again compared to a couple of weeks ago. I take it as a sign that training is going pretty well so far.
20 Jan
5 miles, 44:31, 8:54 pace, HR 131
21 Jan
7.5 miles, 57:06, 7:37 pace, HR 152
incl. 3x1 mile @ 6:23, 6:19, 6:27
22 Jan
6 miles, 49:19, 8:13 pace, HR 135


  1. Don't worry Thomas, I won't be fooled ;)

    5am for a swim is pushing the friendship. 6.30 for my run this morning was hard enough!