Monthly Archives: April 2005

Here We Go Again

Start time: 04/30/05, 8am
Location: W&OD Trail
Distance: 3 miles
Average pace: 9:15min/mile

Another year, another jaunt through AIDS Marathon! I suppose the weather gods were doing their best to make sure everyone knew what they were getting into since it rained the entire time. Ugh. In fact, it rained so much that the underpass right before the turnaround marker flooded out, so technically it was something like 2.95 miles. Tsk tsk tsk. I once again went out a little too fast and ended up with a time that’d put me in the 10:30 group, but knowing that it was not following the rule of “comfortable pace you can hold a conversation at” for thoat first mile and a half, I stuck with the original plan of the 11:00 group. Happily, Julie ended up landing in the 11:00 group (shocking the hell out of her, but I knew she could do it), so we’ll be running together for another year after all.

Race for Hope 5K tomorrow morning. Please, no more rain. I’d like to get a new PR on my journal page of the website!

Howdy, stranger

Start time: 04/27/05, 5:45pm
Location: W&OD Trail
Distance: 4 miles
Run:Walk ratio: 5:1
Average pace: 11:25min/mile

Julie and I headed out after work for another 4-mile spin, and about half a mile in I said, “Wow, that looks like Mark heading our way.” Turns out it was, so he turned around and ran with us since he’d just started. Mark’s missing this Saturday’s time trials because he’s going to be running the Frederick Marathon on Sunday, but we chatted about who would be in which group. Hopefully he’ll end up joining the 11:00 group; not only is he a nice guy, but I think he could handle it really easily based on his recent race results!

Afterwards I talked with Julie about maintenance runs and she was fortunately in favor of doing them a little faster after another week or so—she says it makes the Saturday runs feel easier, which is so true. I haven’t minded running the 11:30min/miles with her because she seemed a little nervous about the idea and it’s nice to be able to run with someone else, but picking up the pace a bit is a good thing in my book. (Especially since I’ve been running 5-mile stretches at 10min/miles for a while now!) Since we probably won’t be in the same Saturday group anymore, it’s nice to still get some running-together time in.

Trying out the new ratio

Start time: 04/25/05, 6:00pm
Location: W&OD Trail
Distance: 4 miles
Run:Walk ratio: 5:1
Average pace: 11:30min/mile

Julie wanted to give her projected new pace a whirl, so we decided to head out after work and try 5:1 on for size. I let Julie direct the pace and she did great; didn’t have any problems keeping the 11:30 going and by the time the 4-miler was done, was feeling really good about being in her new group this year. Yay! (I knew she could handle 11:30 but doubt is a powerful thing. I should know.) Depending on how our schedules are, the idea of getting our twice-a-week maintenance runs in together after leaving work is a good one, at least for May while it’s still nice outside. (Once it gets a little hotter, running before work might become a necessity. Either that or later at night after we’re both already home.)

Time Trials

Start time: 04/23/05, 8:00am
Location: W&OD Trail
Distance: 3 miles
Average pace: 9:20min/mile

A bunch of the people in our group wanted to have our own mini 3-mile time trial on Saturday, so that’s all I got around to doing in terms of running. (Run three miles at a comfortable pace, round up to the nearest half minute, then add one minute on and that’s your training pace.) I took the first mile waaaaay too fast thanks to trying to Randy on a subconscious level, and the other two miles were a little disastrous in comparison. If I hadn’t done that, it probably would’ve been a 9:40min/mile pace, which puts me squarely in the 11:00 group for next week. Here we go again…

3 miles x 2

Start time: 04/19/05, 6:00pm
Location: W&OD Trail
Distance: 3 miles & 3 miles
Run:Walk ratio: 4:1 & just running
Average pace: 11:10min/mile & 9:20min/mile

I went running with Julie after work today to have a “3-mile time trial” with her. I’ve done several with myself to know what group I should be in, but it was time to see how Julie was doing. Julie’s unfortunately had the remnants of a chest cold that just won’t go away for almost three weeks. (She really needs to go to the doctor to get it looked at to make sure it’s nothing more serious!) We headed out and halfway through the first mile Julie asked if we could take a walk break. She just couldn’t get a good deep breath going on, unfortunately, and as the three miles went on we slowed down more and more. When we finished it was with an 11:10min/mile pace (33:30min), which would place her in the 12:30min/mile training group. It’s an improvement over last year, certainly, but I know that if she could get rid of the cold she’d do much better. She agreed to call the doctor tomorrow morning and hopefully she can get it licked. (I also advocated her waiting until the “second start” on May 14th to start training so she can get fully healed.)

After it was over, I went and ran three more quick miles by myself. I was huffing and puffing a little bit towards the end, but still quite pleased with my finishing time (28:00min). If nothing else, my 5K on May 1st should go quite well… especially since I don’t have to run 3 miles right before starting the 5K! 🙂

Sallie Mae 10K

Start time: 04/17/05, 8:00am
Location: Hains Point
Distance: 10 kilometers
Finishing time: 1:00:21
Average pace: 9:44min/mile

It was just Pam and me for the Sallie Mae 10K this morning; we stuck together for the first two miles, as my legs started to loosen up and I just enjoyed the fresh air and the sun beating down and shining off of the Potomac River. After two 10:30min/miles, I picked up the pace a bit; I knew that my previous best for a 10K was at a 9:50min/mile pace, so all I could think in the back of my head was that I’d ended up “80 seconds behind”. That doesn’t sound like much but when the entire course is only 6.2 miles long and you’re already 2 miles in, that’s a lot for me. I’d been doing a 4:1 run:walk ratio and I kept it up for miles 3 and 4, where I started to shave off a little bit of time; after mile 3 it was down to 70 seconds behind, and after mile 4 just 50 seconds behind.

I took one final walk break about halfway through mile 5 and then it was running all the rest of it in; when I hit mile marker 5 I was “behind” by just 20 seconds. I knew that if I kept up the pace I was on I was pretty well set to beat my old PR. As I hit the final marker with two-tenths of a mile to go, I glanced at my watch… tons of time to spare, thank goodness. I was now ahead of schedule by about 30 seconds. I got one final boost when about 250 feet from the finish line someone started sprinting past me, and I wasn’t ready to let this stranger win; I picked up the pace myself and ended up racing him across the finish line. (I won, ha ha.) The final result, 1:00:21, knocked 39 seconds off of the previous PR.

I have one more 10K scheduled (the Capitol Hill Classic 10K) on May 22nd. I think if I drop the walk breaks after the first mile or two I can knock off some more of those remaining pesky 22 seconds; it’d be nice to get a sub-hour finishing time one of these days. Until then, I’m happy with today’s victory. (Pam did really well too, coming in about ten minutes later. No PR for her, unfortunately, but I know she will next time. Things just didn’t seem to be aligning for her today.)

Another quickie

Start time: 04/14/05, 6:30pm
Location: Local neighborhood
Distance: 3 miles
Average pace: 9:28min/mile

I was actually planning on a 5-miler yesterday but right as I was heading out the door, the phone rang and it was invitation for dinner with a friend of the family who was in from out of town. So, two quick zips around the “long loop” and I called it a day. The Sallie Mae 10K is this weekend so that should be entertaining to see how that all turns out.

A quickie

Start time: 04/12/05, 8:00pm
Location: Gold’s Gym
Distance: 4 miles
Average pace: 10:38min/mile
Time: 42.5 minutes

It kept threatening to rain this evening, so I gave up and went to the gym… and oops, I forgot to update my credit card expiration date information. Ah well, it didn’t take long to sort out. That’ll learn me!

What a beautiful day

Start time: 04/09/05, 9:00am
Location: W&OD Trail
Distance: 6 miles
Run:Walk ratio: 4:1
Average pace: 12:45min/mile

What gorgeous weather this morning… in retrospect, I wish I’d run a couple of additional miles after I finished up with Katie and Manda. It was a nice run, though; I let the ladies pick the pace and relished the time spent with them. When AIDS Marathon starts up again this year we’ll almost certainly be in different pace groups and I’ll miss being with them every Saturday so I want to take advantage of the conversation and companionship while I still can.

3 miles, no waiting… er, that is, walking

Start time: 04/05/05, 4:30pm
Location: Local Neighborhood
Distance: 3 miles
Average pace: 9:36min/mile

Decided to have my own mini 3-mile time trial to break in my new running shoes as well as to see what pace group I might end up in this upcoming training season. I ran it straight through, no walk breaks, and had a 28:48 finishing time, which gives me a 9:36min/mile time and would put me squarely in the 11min/mile training group. Wow.