Wednesday, August 22, 2007

The impromptu pace run

Scheduled this week is the first of two marathon pace runs, which was slated for Sunday. It called for 15 miles with 12 miles at pace (7:37 a mile or 4:45 a kilometre). Today, as it turns out, also called for the longest mid-week run of the program, a 14 mile medium-long run. Only a mile difference but significantly different paces.

I'm headed to DC this weekend and the forecast is calling for a high of at least 32C/90F with high humidity. At the back of my mind, I didn't want to attempt such a crucial run and have the weather do me in. I haven't gotten used to big heat waves this summer so far. I could just see myself packing it in because of the heat.

So it was clear that it would be good to get the pace run over with this morning. The only two factors working against me were the early hour (4:30 a.m.) and my still-sore legs from the 20 miler and race just two days earlier.

After the first mile, my legs checked out and it was left to me to try to tough out the pace in complete darkness. It was tough to keep up the pace, but the weather was awesome -- no wind, 17C, almost fall-like weather.

Here are the splits
1. 8:31
2. 8:57
3. 8:31
4. 7:46
5. 7:44

6. 7:43
7. 7:30

8. 7:34
9. 7:27
10. 7:36

11. 7:35
12. 7:36
13. 7:32
14. 7:37
15. 7:21

Total time: 1:57:16

Distance: 15 miles

Pace: 4:50Ks / 7:47 miles (including the 3 warmup miles)
12 mile pace: 4:43 / 7:36 (only a second or two faster than pace!)

It was a consistent run and most of my splits were within seconds of the previous ones. If the 12 had been 13.1 at that pace, it would have been about a 1:39 half-marathon (4 minutes slower than my PB). Doing a harder run of that length in a daily run is just something I've never really pushed myself to do.

I have one more marathon pace run at the end of September, a 17 miler with 14 at pace. I'm looking forward to it.

So as a treat, I have only two six milers and a 14 mile medium-long run left to do in the next four days. I'm sure i'll be glad once I hit steamy DC.

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