Another reason I do tempo runs

I like the effect tempo runs have on my running, but they are torture to me while I’m running them.  Yesterday was my third tempo run and for the first time I made my goal of running 3 miles at a tempo pace! Thanks TJ for encouraging me to do this run.  I really was dreading it.

About half way through the run I starting feeling tired and my body was saying it had enough.  This time I didn’t listen to my body and I pushed through.  I kept telling myself that I was in charge of my body and that my body wasn’t in charge of me.  It reminded me of something I read in the Bible where Paul says, “…I beat my body and make it my slave…”

I think this year of running has made my body my slave where in the past I was enslaved to my body. Contrary to what my body tells me, I drink a gallon of water a day, I eat less, I run more and I have given up pizza.  Okay that last one was a lie.  I love pizza.  My body wins on that one.

So, although I hate tempo runs, they make my mind stronger then my body.

I guess some people call this being disciplined.  I waited 49 years to achieve this.  I guess an old dog can learn new tricks.

I love running.

Chicago, Jacksonville, Boston marathons – Information overload

Information overload last night.  TJ and I are trying to decide where to run our first marathon.  RS will go also I assume, if he can stay well.  Anyway, our choices are between the Chicago Marathon or Jacksonville Marathon.  In the end, money may make the decision.  I love Chicago and my lovely wife and I have friends up there as I have mentioned in the past.  But we also have great friends in Jacksonville, although I’ve not been to Jacksonville in a long time.  Anyway, it ends up that Jacksonville’s marathon is over $100 less a person than Chicago!!!  That is $300 more that TJ, RS and I would have to spend to enter the Chicago marathon; let alone travel and accommodations.  Both offer a fast course and the average temperature is about the same at the time of each race.  Jacksonville’s is in December, so that would give us a couple of months longer to get ready.  Remember, TJ is trying to qualify for Boston on his first marathon.  I dream of qualifying for Boston on my first.

So, if there is anyone in Chicago who reads this, could you run by Ballydoyle Pub and ask Phil if he would like to sponsor us?  Just tell him our favorite song is “Sweet Home Alabama” and he’ll know who we are.  I know, it is a pipe dream, but isn’t that what blogs are for???

Finally, onto yesterday.  I LOVE running the day after a tempo run.  It is like my body has said, “hey, as long as you aren’t going to run as fast as you did yesterday, I’ll do what you want”.  I ran 6 miles at an 8:30 pace and could have gone for more.  I stopped because of today…  The dreaded hill day.  It feels like this hill  goes straight up for about 5 miles, but it is only about 1/8 – 1/4 mile.  It is straight up though.  My goal is to make it 3 times, as I did 2 last time.  TJ can do 6 – how does he do it?

So on to another day of work, looking forward to heading home to my lovely wife, kids and dog.  I’ll say hi as I head out to run the mountain.

I love running.

Tempo run #2 – Half marathon training

I am working on my speed lately and doing different types of training to get my speed and endurance up for our half marathon in 18 days.  Yesterday was tempo run day.  It was very interesting to run.  This was my second tempo run as I ran one last week also, but I approached this one differently to see if I could get a better result.

First, I ran it my first day back to running this week.  TJ, RS and I take Monday’s off to rest, but it all starts again Tuesday.  TJ likes to run a regular run on Tuesday, and that is what I did last week, but as I mentioned yesterday, I think I need more time between my hill run and my long run, so running my tempo run on Tuesday will make my hill run on Thursday and I’ll have 2 days before my long run on Sunday.

So how did it go?  Well, I decided to run 2 miles before increasing my pace to the ~7:00 mark.  I felt good and think it was beneficial to run 2 miles before rather than last week when I only ran one.  The tempo part (starting mile 3) seemed easier than last week.  In fact it seemed much easier for the first 1.5 miles even though I was running the same route.  Then the last half mile was a killer.  I end my second mile going up an incline, not large, but it does hit hard after running that fast.  By the time I got the second mile completed, I was spent – just like last week.  I decided rather than going down hill to my home, that I would continue straight and see if I could make 3 miles – nope.  I got about a 10th of a mile further and had to slow down.  So I just ran mile 5 at a slower recovery pace.

My goal is to make 3 miles at my tempo pace, but just doing this for 2 weeks I know it will take more time.  So here is the interesting part – I ran my first two miles at a medium fast regular pace and my tempo miles slower than last week but still under 7:30 pace.  In the end, I finished the 5 miles two seconds slower that last week.  Two seconds.  Here is the breakdown for anyone who is interested (or for me to look back on to compare):

Mile 1 – 8:46
Mile 2 – 8:34
Mile 3 – 7:19
Mile 4 – 7:21
Mile 5 – 8:52

I ran all five miles in 41:08 this week and in 41:06 last week.  So I guess my tweaking didn’t make much of a difference, except the fact I felt better during the tempo part for a longer time, but I also ran it a bit slower.

That is it. Another run down

I love running.

Half marathon prep – 24 days and counting

Yesterday was hard…

To begin with, I did an incredibly dumb thing and reduced that amount of Ibuprofen my physician told me to take.  My thought was that since I was feeling better and taking some really good fish oil, maybe I could reduce the amount of Ibuprofen I take.  Bad thought.  My back hurt so much yesterday, I wasn’t sure I could run after work as has been my habit.  The good news is I didn’t let that stop me.  I have learned over the past 10 months that if I want something or someone to talk me out of running, then I won’t run.  With all that I have, I want to finish a full marathon (planned for this fall) and be able to add my name to my siblings as having completed such a feat.  Of course it will be about 20 years later than they, but better late than never.

Okay, onto the prep.  According to the run plan that TJ helped me develop, yesterday was a tempo run.  My plan was to run 3 miles between 7:23 and 7:29.  I must say I was a bit worried with the way my back felt, but after work I got on my running clothes and shoes (Saucony Type A5 – great racing flats) and started my mile warm up run.  At the end of the mile, I kicked into my tempo run.  Here are the splits from my run:

Mile 1  – 8:87
Mile 2 – 7:05
Mile 3 – 7:06
Mile 4 – 8:31
Mile 5 – 9:14

My plan was to run 3 miles in the mid 7 minute pace.  I made it 2 miles and had to slow down.  I try to always keep my goals I set, but as TJ said, I ran my miles too fast and much faster than my plan.  It was really hard to do 2 miles, but three… not gonna happen.

I did get my 5 miles in and did an overall pace of 8:11 which is good for me.  Also I ran a 5K based on the middle 3 miles in 23:34 which is my second fastest time and that without anyone around me for motivation.  Overall I’m happy and now my goal is to get to 3 miles next week.  It gives me something for which to prepare.

Today is a regular run for 6 miles and then tomorrow, hill runs.  Why do I punish my body this way!  I guess it is because the pain of the run is long forgotten after the results come in.  I want this half marathon to be my best.  Of course being my first one it will be, but still I don’t want to look back and say, I could have done more.