Thursday, April 10, 2008

Learning Experience

Today's lesson brought to you by Key Run Workout #2: a 5 mile tempo run at mid-tempo pace.

The lesson: apparently, I can't run 5 miles at a 7:30 pace. (a goal pace based on my half-marathon pace 3 years ago.)

It probably didn't help that I ran the first fast mile, well, too fast. After a 1 mile warm-up, the first tempo mile clocked in at 7:16. Whoops. I kept it in the ballpark (below 7:40) until about halfway through mile 4 when I hit another uphill section and just couldn't keep it up.

I could blame it on the fast start, the hills, the headwind, even fatigue from my "recovery workout." But really, I know I'm still being a little optimistic about what kind of condition I'm in. I'm testing the boundaries right now, basically just to make sure. This might also be considered "setting myself up for disappointment."

Another observation: my pace varies quite a bit moment-to-moment. The logs routinely present an uneven sine wave representing my speed -- a line littered with peaks and valleys. I suspect that it's in large part due to the lag of the GPS giving me a pace measurement and the ensuing hysteresis as I try to hit a specific pace. I'll have to try and not look at the watch so much and see how it goes.

Clearly, still a work in progress and always something new to try and figure out.

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