Saturday, May 22, 2010

Trying Something Different

I am at the beach today and could have run my miles down here, but decided to run yesterday morning so I could get in at least a little hill work. The race in Seattle will have some elevation, and so far, I have not run a lot of it. My favorite local 4 mile route has at least a few hills, short but steep.

The team is doing 8 miles this morning, but I decided to go for 9 yesterday. The route I run near my home has a 1.25 mile route through neighborhoods, a 1.3 mile circuit through woods on trails and past the school's ball fields, tennis courts, and track, and then the repeat of the 1.25 start to get home. That is 3.8 miles, but if you repeat that 1.3 mile circuit 4 times, it totals 9 miles. So that is what I did. Here is a map of my training route, tracked by the new DeLorme PN-60 GPS that I am Beta Testing. You can clearly see the out and back part, and the circuit part:
I’ve struggled with running lately. I’ve been doing a 2:1 run to walk ratio, time-wise, 5 minutes run, 2.5 minute walk. But I’ve been tiring. So I decided to keep that 2:1 ratio but do 3 minutes run, 1.5 minutes walk. I want to see how that goes, and maybe use it on race day. I was fairly pleased with it. The day was nice and cool when I started out at 5:40, and still dark, but it was dawn by the time I got to the woods. I loved hearing all the birds sing: wood thrushes, oven birds, cardinals, robins, blue birds. I saw three rabbits along the way, one of them a baby the size of my fist. It is amazing they know how to survive at a young age with no instruction from their parents. Their mom weans them and then has nothing more to do with them. “Good luck, son! Have a good life! Stay away from foxes? Oh, you don’t know what a fox is? Well, you’ll learn. Goodbye!”

So here are some statistics: 9 miles run in 101.5 minutes. Average pace: 11.28 minutes per mile. But every time I stopped (once for a pee break, three times to get stones out of one or both shoes, I stopped my interval timer but left my stopwatch running. So I was stopped 3.5 minutes and moving 98 minutes, for an average moving pace of 10.89 minutes per mile.

I did 21 full 4.5 minute intervals, and on the 22nd, I ran the three minutes and walked 0.5 minutes to finish the training. So that makes it 21.78 intervals to go 9 miles, or 0.41 miles covered for each interval. Given a walk pace of 14 minutes per mile, for each 1.5 minutes walked, I covered 0.11 miles, meaning I was running 0.3 miles for each 3 minutes walked, an average pace of 10 minutes per mile. Of the 9 miles, I ran 6.6 of it and walked 2.4, so 73% of my distance was running. You can tell I like to analyze things and figure them out.

So with only 3 more long runs to go before my race, it is getting late to still be working on a pace and strategy, but I am thinking that this might work well for me. Maybe as race day approaches, I can add 15-30 seconds to my run interval, or lengthen the run interval the back side of the course, and try to get under that 2:30 goal in my second half marathon! I actually felt like yesterday was one of my better runs – the cool weather helped, but I also think that this new interval helped as well. And today, I have hardly any soreness. I wish I had a few more weeks than I do to work things out, but since I don’t, this gives me more information to mull over before race day on June 26.


Cheryl said...

Hi your chat with the rabbit....please don't send them my way, I have enough of my own. lol

Gosh you do like to work things out. Seems so complicated to me, but hey what do I know.

I hope you achieve your certainly will not be for lack of trying.

Best wishes

Elayne said...

good luck Art with the final weeks of training! Seattle will be beautiful in June, we lived in Oregon for 3 years, such a wonderful part of the country!
Oh...great coffee and beer too!

Racn4acure said...

Thanks Cheryl and Elayne. I am hoping to do well, but that is really secondary to why I am doing this. It is not like I could win the race! Looking forward to sampling one (or two) of those beers! Art