Week #4 is in the books! Yeowsy! This is the first time in this program that I've felt the effects of a long run. So far, everything up until now has been easy. Now it's time to respect the distance. What do I mean by that? I've done so many long runs that sometimes, I felt like I may have dismissed the distance as "easy". I can whip a 10-12 miler no problem, even only after a week after a marathon. The difference between then and now, was I used to just run without any kind of goal. It didn't matter how long it took me, or what shape I was in. I would do them just to do them. Now I have a clearer focus, a tool that I can understand and a goal that is attainable.
Thirteen miles for a long run is still fairly short to some people, but for me, if there's some kind of goal time or pace I'm adding to it, it can be very grueling. By respecting the distance I mean, no cockiness. I want to give the distance my sincere all.
For the last 4 weeks, all my long runs have been short, between 8-11 miles. I can get away with no walk breaks. But today, I felt like I should have included the walk breaks. By the end of the run, I was a bit more tired compared to the past few long runs. The walk breaks would have helped delay the fatigue. I know its not just because of the hard training during the week. As soon as I got home, Hubs commented, "Are you alright?" That's when I know not only do I feel tired, I look it. Next Sunday's long run is 14 miles, I will be including the 30 second walks for every half a mile. That means setting my watch to remind me to do the walks and lowering the volume of my ipod so that I can hear my Garmin alerts.
The course today was an extension of yesterday's run. I turned around at the 6.5 mile mark. Lots of small rolling hills. I had to go over my Wednesday night hill again, but much slower this time. I felt the residual from yesterday's pace work and it showed up today in my effort. Even though I was more tired in the end, I finished strong and pulled a 9:31 pace for 13 miles. I am quite happy with that. Most importantly, I ran with a negative split. I ran the first 6.5 miles at 9:37 pace and the second 6.5 at 9:26 pace. I was a bit faster in the second half. Now if I can only master this negative split thing and translate it over to when it really does counts, such as in race, then I am set.
For Week #5 the schedule looks like this:
Tues 7 miles easy mid week long run
Wed 35 min tempo
Thur 3 recovery run
Sat 7 miles easy
Sun 14 miles easy long run
We're moving quite fast. I cannot believe we're 97 days away from NY!