Tuesday, December 16, 2008

Hurts So Good!

Oh yeah, baby. I am feeling the confidence boost of not giving in to the fear of running "fast (for me, relatively speaking)."

Last night was my first Pfitz lactate threshold run of this training cycle. I'd nonchalantly visited the McMillan training calculator page earlier in the day to figure my training pace based on most recent results, and reality knocked me upside the head when I discovered the pace range I should be hitting now. Couple the more brisk pace with the fact that I had to do it in the evening, on the treadmill, and I was a little scared.

I ran the first few miles on a relatively brisk clip, and then started the first of four miles at the prescribed 15K to half marathon race pace. The instinct to reach up and power down the treadmill speed was strong at first. I fought the urge to do the easiest thing and power down a bit, telling myself to just relax and see how long I could hold that pace. Then, if absolutely necessary, power down-but keep repeating that "faster you run, faster you're done" mantra. The truth of the matter is also that if I want the best odds for a BQ in April, I've really GOT to push myself and do things that are uncomfortable during training.

The first two miles went decently, but then I started to doubt myself. I opted for a quick attitude adjustment at this point, choosing to begin counting off laps for certain people. Four laps were for various individuals with serious health issues who either cannot run now, or couldn't run in the past due to those issues. The final four were for each of my four kids. I couldn't believe it when the last mile was completed....these tempo runs were a bit of a struggle last summer and fall. They feel better now, relatively speaking.

After my run, I had a nice bowl of the Tired Daddy's crock pot chili and a True Blonde pale ale (whoops.....so much for that "no beer during the week" thing), and slept like a log overnight. Pfitz calls for a four mile recovery run today, but I am planning to gently boost my mileage this time around, and will do five or six instead. The other tweak here is that I'll take those easy miles VERY easy so that the medium long run that follows isn't an exercise in futility.

I'm coming back to edit this post, because I can't believe I forgot to include my big news for the day. I officially ponied up my money and registered for the Eisenhower Marathon in Abilene, Kansas on April 11th! We already had lodging arrangements, and my Dad's made his plane reservations to come hang out with the little monkeys while Frank and I make the trip, but I'd really been itching to make it official. I feel rededicated to training as it is, but parting with hard-earned money really helps add to that focus.


Oz Runner said...

woo-hoo, coming to Kansas...ha

nice job on the run...I have a real hard time running on treadmills, not sure why..I think I prefer running outside in the cold to running on a treadmill. Good luck with your training...do you have a certain plan you follow? Is that what you refer to as the Pfitz run?

TiredMamaRunning said...

Thanks, Oz Runner! I have a very hard time running indoors as well-hence my finally succumbing to iPod usage some time last year. A little music, or various podcasts, make it a little more tolerable!

Yes, Pfitz is short for Pete Pfitzinger, who has written several books on running, one of which is "Advanced Marathoning." Don't be scared off by the title-it's a good read for runners of all levels (I'm certainly not "advanced"!). Pete is an exercise physiologist and was an Olympic marathoner in '84 and '88, and he does a great job of explaining the whys and hows of his training plans.

I'm using his 18/55 plan (18 weeks, maxing out at 55 mpw) for the second time now, but am making some slight tweaks to it, like adding a few more miles overall, taking the recovery runs easier and the longer/harder runs on the schedule harder. We'll see how it pans out!