Showing posts with label slowness. Show all posts
Showing posts with label slowness. Show all posts

Saturday, April 5, 2014

High winds and slow paces

Today's run (street): 3.1 miles

There was a point in this morning's run when I told myself, after calculating my final pace, to remember how windy it was today. I know from many track workouts how wind can restrict speed. I once ran 400's where my pace varied by over 15 seconds depending on which direction I was running. Today's run, in terms of perceived effort (PE), felt much harder than Thursday's, but I ended up running 10 secs per mile slower.

The purpose of today's run to was to maintain my targeted half marathon pace over the prescribed three mile workout. That's exactly what happened on Thursday's 3 miler, but I barely broke a 10 minute pace today. During the few times on this run, when the wind was at my back, I felt like I was moving. That made me feel good about my form. I'd like to be running the easy 3-milers at around a 9:20 pace, but I'm not there yet.

The Runsketeers are doing a long run tomorrow morning. For me it's seven miles, TPP is doing 11 and SIOR is doing 16. We're trying to coordinate our rendezvous so we can all run together. Between our different paces, start times and meeting points, it's an interesting math problem. The route we chose will be hilly (I'm told). Seven miles of that should help me make progress on my endurance, but I'm expecting to be sore by the end.

Thursday, October 24, 2013

A run most difficult. Please explain why.

Today's run (street): 3.5 miles

Today was a tough one. I don't know why I had so much trouble getting through the run but it was a heavy-footed plod from start to finish. There is nothing I can point to that would explain my struggle. I got a good night's sleep, have no symptoms of a cold and the weather was cool and dry. Yet no matter what my mind was telling my body, my body answered, "Don't expect much."

Yesterday's route seemed short and I was surprised at the end to see the distance I'd covered. Today was opposite of that. My route was circuitous and I expected to consume most of my miles within the northern part of the neighborhood. I had a time target, but I wasn't as pressured as much as I was yesterday. I thought I was racking up the distance until I reached my turnaround point and saw that I was well short of my expected mileage. When I approached my home street, I realized that I needed to run another half mile to make my goal.

Although I ran at a sustainable pace, I felt like I was carrying an extra 30 pounds throughout the run. This wasn't the first run I've had like this, and I know that tomorrow's may be far better. I hope that's the case. One bad run is a statistical probability. Two bad runs in a row is a trend.

Monday, January 7, 2013

The problem of running too fast

I have two friends who tell me they simply cannot run slowly. When running alone, they claim to always push their pace to a level of discomfort. They have a difficult time easing up when their coaches tell them to slow down during training sessions. If these guys weren't two of the nicest, most secure people I know, I'd chock it up to macho posturing. After thinking about it, I'm beginning to understand their perspective.

Unlike my friends, I can run slow anytime that I'm asked. But ask me to walk slowly and you'll get a different response. I often find it maddening to walk the streets of NYC, especially in midtown where I work, where my path is constantly obstructed with dawdlers of every type. I've always been a fast and impatient walker. This trait that makes for efficient travel across the city, but it can really annoy others who aren't in a rush.

I envy my fast running friends because I really do enjoy the experience of moving swiftly on a run. I just have trouble sustaining an urgent pace unless I'm in a race. I'd always assumed that a person who can walk fast for miles would also be able to run fast for long periods. Sadly, that's not the case. I know I've become competitively complacent since October's Town Of Oyster Bay 5K. Perhaps now is the time for me to start picking up the pace.

Saturday, July 2, 2011

Fast twitch recruiting failure

Today's run (street): 4.6 miles

No problem with that, bud
The leg weights were doing their job as I made my way around the hilly loop in a nearby business park this morning. I tried for speed but my legs wouldn't -- or couldn't -- respond. I reached the apex of the hill and tried to let loose. My speed improved but not measurably. The weights just overwhelmed me. But here's the thing: I wasn't wearing weights.

All week I've experienced a lack of responsiveness in my running. I've thrown in some fartlek's along the way but the result, at best, has been fast lumbering. I planned to start off at a brisk pace this morning to see how my legs felt but I struggled to recruit anything resembling a fast-twitch fiber. I managed through the first mile until I found my rhythm but a glance at the Garmin showed me that I was not moving very quickly.

I'd had an extra hour's sleep last night and even took a GU gel 30 minutes before my 7:00 AM start.  Even with that, the fluidity and power that I counted on never showed up. After I completed the business park loop I turned into the adjacent neighborhood and ran those streets. A glimpse of my shadow revealed my static motion and it showed that I was hardly lifting my legs as I ran.

When I turned left to exit that neighborhood I passed one of those safety signs that parents put at the end of their driveways to alert drivers that kids are playing nearby. The big letters on the sign said SLOW and it made me laugh. I don't think I could have moved any slower. Yet, through it all I didn't find the run taxing in the least and I'd wished I'd worn my heart monitor so I would know how hard I was actually working.

I'll blame 25% of my performance issues on the high humidity and 50% on my failure to push myself harder. The remaining 25% is mystery. I wish I had actually been wearing weights so as to provide a reasonable explanation for my glacial pacing. I'm thinking of doing a bike ride later today and I definitely plan to do some speed work tomorrow. I'll recruit those fast-twitch fibers even if I have to bring back the draft to do it.

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