On Friday we did our long run. Because it is winter we went to the gym and ran on the treadmill. (we've been doing this since the Rudolph run in early December). I was determined that I was going to do the treadmill for the entire 90 minute workout....not 60 on the treadmill and then move to the elliptical. So to change it up a little we decided to do 3 - 30 minute runs. Now on Thursday after our weight workout we went up and ran for 15 minutes on the treadmill and I had an awsome run...never went below 6.0 for speed...even went up to 6.5 for a while. I felt great! So of course I thought I could start out like that for this run, but nooooooooooooo! Let's just say the legs let me know in NO uncertain terms that was NOT going to be the case. I slowed the beast down to 5.8 and ran, then to 5.7 and ran. I did finish that run and I had done my normal 3.some-odd miles...Then we started our 2nd set. I slowed the treadmill down to a 5.5 pace and low and behold - it felt good! Even though I had already run a little over 3 miles, it felt good! I could breathe, it didn't hurt, I didn't have to stop running to breathe! Wow! That hadn't happened in a while! While I didn't run as far, I did run better this second 30 minutes. The final 30 was a real struggle. I did a run/walk interval type run just to get through the time. When all was said and done I had completed over 8 miles in 90 minutes, so I wasn't too awfully disappointed.
Now the point of all that was to say that I think I've been trying too hard to increase the speed again. I slowed down from the get-go for tonights run, started at 5.5, and felt good...so after 20 minutes I upped it to 5.6, and felt good...so after 20 minutes I upped it to 5.7...not so good. I did start to have problems breathing and had to hang on a bit so after 10 minutes I went back down to 5.6. In the 62 minutes we ran I completed 5.8 miles. Not the best mileage I've ever done in that time, but it felt better than it has felt since November.
I think I'll just slow down and smell the roses for a while and try to work on the distance rather than the speed. After all, my next race is a 1/2 marathon right now...Sure I'd like to finish in less than my 2:27 time...my hope is by increasing the amount of time I can run without stopping to catch my breath will decrease my real race time in the end. I guess we'll see in February!
Tomorrow I go back to school...back to the daily grind...back to some fun and friends....I have mixed feelings about this, I have really enjoyed my vacation time and for the first time in ages I wasn't antsy toward the end...I was still content to spend my days at home working around the house, reading, spending time with my husband - kids - and grandkids, taking care of the dog. Now it is time to get back...here is to wishing the best for the kids in 2009.... that it doesn't feel too much like this for anyone!