Last week one of my workouts was a brick workout. I had to ride my bike on the trainer for 1:40:00, with a lot of hill repeats and then I had to go for a 4 mile run.
Needless to say, my legs were TRASHED after the bike. But, I headed out on my run. Before I headed out on my run I had tweeted that I’d be lucky if I could keep a 10 min pace. My friend Vance tweeted back saying I should try for a 9 min pace. I laughed at him and said I don’t know if I could ever do that. The only time I can keep a 9 min pace is if I’m on a treadmill. He quickly responded back with “Well, have you tried?”
His response stopped me dead in my tracks. Had I ever tried to run a 9 min mile besides on a treadmill? I mean, on a treadmill it’s fairly easy basically because it forces you to keep that pace. Running out on the street it’s harder to keep that pace. But, it made me think. I’ve been running and doing triathlons now for 3 1/2 years. Have I ever really TRIED to run a 9 min pace out on the street? No, I haven’t. I’ve just gone out & run and if I happened to be faster than a 10 min mile, then bonus for me!
So, last night, I had to run 5 miles. I headed out on the run and I was determined to really push myself. I didn’t know if I could keep a 9 min pace the entire time, but I was going to try.
I run with a Timex Ironman watch. It has a GPS and a heart rate monitor in it. It’s really nice. I got a sweet deal on it. So I strapped that on and headed out on my run. I started out slow. I knew if I tried to run a 9 min pace right out of the shoot, it wouldn’t happen. I’ve done that before and have failed miserably. You end up bonking after the first mile or two. So, once I got to about the 1/2 mile I decided to pick up my pace. I kept looking at my watch and was keeping between a 9:00 – 9:15/mile pace.
I had to stop at the 1 mile mark and get more water and use the restroom. When I stopped, I stopped my watch and it read that I ran the first mile in 9:23. Sah-weet!!! I was pretty stoked. I got my water, used the restroom and then was on my merry way again.
I’ll tell ya this, I was looking forward to every red light I hit. It was really muggy and hot. I was sweating bullets after the first 1/4 mile. Plus, at every red light I was able to stop and catch my breath.
I finished my 5 mile run in 0:46:53, which gave me a 9:18 pace overall. I figure if I keep pushing myself like this, eventually I won’t have to stop at the red lights and catch my breath.
But, I’d never really thought about pushing myself on the run. I thought I was pushing myself on the run by just getting out there. It was a nice reminder from Vance. It was greatly appreciated.