rmc28: Rachel, in running tshirt and leggings, holding phone and smiling into mirror (runner5)
[personal profile] rmc28
This should have been a weekend run but family visits and fractious toddler got in the way. Then it should have been my Monday lunchtime run, but I forgot to pack my sports bra in the running kit (and no, cannot run in my everyday bra).

So it was a Monday evening run.  A slow mile to warm up, a mile "as fast as I can" and then half a mile walking to cool down and half a mile slow running to finish the distance.  Rather than set up a mixture of timing and distance intervals in RunKeeper, I just set up the distances, and used SIT to set the run-walk intervals for the whole run.

My previous MM time was 10:36, so I set my walk breaks for an 11min pace: 2:30m run: 1 min walk.  On the warm-up I deliberately ran slowly as well as taking the breaks.  The switch to the fast run came part way through a running interval.   Each run interval of the fast mile felt very long and each walking break very welcome.  I felt limited by my ability to breathe more than anything else, but managed to keep going along the edge of that limit, recovering in each walking break.

I was very very grateful for the walking cool down when it came, and it was at that point that all my muscles started letting me know that they were tired too, thank you, not just my lungs.

I made myself wait until I'd finished the whole run to check my splits for the new MM time, and was pleased to find it was 10:16 - twenty seconds faster than four weeks ago. (Approx 6:23 min/km.)

This brings down my long-run training pace and predicted race times a bit too - the training pace is now 9:31 min/km, my 5k pace 6:43 min, and my half-marathon pace 7:39.  I have signed up for a half-marathon on 2nd March, which is now less than 8 weeks away.
rmc28: Rachel smiling against background of trees, with newly-cut short hair (Default)
[personal profile] rmc28
Magic Mile is aJeff Galloway thing, used to calculate what pace one should be training at, as well as what pace one can expect to run various distances under race conditions.  Normally I work in km, but for this I put everything into miles on RunKeeper.  1 mile slow jogging warm up, then 1 mile "as fast as you can", then a few minutes walking to recover and running to make up the distance.

I set up run-walk intervals in RunKeeper, aiming for somewhere between 11 and 12 minutes for the "magic mile".  In fact I did it in 10:36, which pleased me immensely (translates to a 6:35 min/km pace). 

Using Galloway's calculator, this suggests my "racing time" for a 5k would be about 34.5 minutes and for a marathon just over 6 hours.  Which won't win me any prizes but isn't a terrible beginner-marathon time.

The calculator also suggests a "training pace" for the long weekend runs which seems extraordinarily slow - slower than I've been managing, and implying a lot more walking and a lot less running.  I think the theory here is that the long runs are meant to feel really slow - they're about building up stamina, not speed,  and doing so in a very conservative way to prevent injury and increase recovery time.  Like walking breaks themselves, it feels very odd, but it is consistent.  (There is a very telling review of Galloway's 5k app which goes "well, I did all this stuff that seemed like it was going really backwards, and I did shave loads of time off my 5k but I still don't really agree with it."  It's like the reviewer hasn't considered that maybe they got faster because of the bits they disliked.)

The "magic mile" is repeated in the marathon training programme every few weeks, I guess to allow adjustments.  I'm hoping that I'm still on a beginner's upward curve and I'll be faster next time.

I had a hunt around for interval-timing apps for these long slow runs I'm planning, and found Simple Interval Timer which does what it says, makes audible beeps even while I'm listening to other apps and will be rather more bearable for long slow runs with lots of walking breaks than RunKeeper-voice saying Next Interval.
rmc28: Rachel, in running tshirt and leggings, holding phone and smiling into mirror (runner5)
[personal profile] rmc28
I found a marathon training plan to suit my lifestyle! Jeff Galloway's website was linked from C25k.com, where I originally found information about Couch tp 5k.  The plan consists of 2x 30 minute runs a week, an "easy walk" and a long run.  The long run gets longer over time - I like the rhythm of how it develops with long-short-long-short and then long-short-short-long-short-short as it gets into the really long distances.  Anyway, it turns out that with my Saturday 5k, I'd already effectively completed week 1.

Mr Galloway is also very keen on walking breaks and has some sensible-sounding reasoning about giving muscles a chance to recover and preserving strength to keep up pace all the way through.  I felt a bit resistant to this, especially because I never used to be able to run continuously for any length of time before c25k.  However, the walking breaks are clearly part of his plan, as much as the relatively light training programme, so I felt I should at least try them.   I felt that doing the 1min:1min suggested by my 5k running pace of 8min/km (approx 13 min/mile) would drive me mad, so opted for 2min:1min as the ratio for the next-fastest pace.

I set up a workout in RunKeeper to do the timing for me, and also set up my own spreadsheet version of the plan.  This translates the raw plan-from-the-websites into the units I use; then on another sheet I have my own copy of the training plan, with rounded distances in km and dates against week numbers, to help me forward plan and think about events that might be possible to enter next year.

Then I got a filthy cold and spent four days mostly in bed.

Thursday was my first day feeling fully well again, and I decided not to push things by running immediately, but took a lunchtime walk instead.

Today I decided I was feeling well enough for a full long run, and did 6.5km with the run:walk breaks.  I'd dialled down RunKeeper notifications quite a lot - only distance, only at full kilometers, as well as the timed changes of pace.  I found it fairly easy to adapt to and not as irritating as I'd feared.  I finished feeling quite tired but not exhausted, which is what I'm aiming for in terms of pushing my limits (also, I can't afford to exhaust myself on a Saturday morning - I have too much else to do at the weekend).

After I finished I found my overall pace for the 6.5k was 7:40 min/km, faster than any of my continuous 5k runs.  So I am cautiously convinced about walking breaks on longer runs, but I'm going to up the ratio to 2m30: 1min for the next long run, and I'm just going to run continuously for my weekday zombie runs.
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