Pushing myself - 10.3 miles done

I was planning on a tempo run today but that was modified a bit but I can't complain. My expended effort was way up there and I achieved my goal. Run well and run hard.

Today I ran with my dear hubby and my goal was 10 miles. We ended up completing 10.3 miles by the time we got to the store door to take a post-run bathroom break and grab some post-run snacks.

We started out at an easy pace to allow for a good warm-up. Once my Nike+ told me I had completed one mile, I informed my dear hubby it was time to pick up the pace and I started going. Shortly afterwards I checked in on my pace and it was around 7'30". What? I was originally thinking a tempo run for a few miles at a pace around 8'06". My dear hubby was behind me and I wanted to see how far I could sustain this fast pace for myself. So I pushed the mile and decided to change my plan and do a couple of fast one miles.

At the start of mile 3 I slowed up and did a mile at a slower pace and hubby joined my side again...kind of....he was a bit ahead of me but I was running with different goals today. It wasn't just distance. I wanted to incorporate training to increase my speed and performance.

Once I was informed I had completed 3 miles I picked up the pace again and the only thing I communicated to dear hubby was "tempo" as I took off. Moments later I checked in on my pace and it was sub-seven. What? Really? Moments after that I felt exhausted and I can't tell you how many times I just wanted to let up and give up on pushing this mile. I lost count. I kept finding new targets to run to and honestly found the second target before I reached the first. I kept checking in on my pace not wanting to let myself give in since my rate of perceived exertion was way up there. I was dying! But I completed the mile and was surprised that within minutes my breathing returned to normal with the easier pace.

We reached the turnaround point at 5 miles and as much as I hoped to do another mile fast, I felt beat. My hip ached and we were running into a strong headwind. I wanted to slow to nothing but kept going as fast as I could. At one point my dear hubby commented on my slow pace. I kind of asked for it but even though I knew I was struggling, I really didn't want someone calling it to my attention. (He apologized many times afterwards so no harm.) But if you look at my splits, you can see my toughest time.

My legs were aching. My hip wanted me to stop but I knew it was my body resisting. I knew this training and running on empty with tired legs was very important to my marathon training. I was going to do the final 6, just like the final 6 in a marathon, and it may be tough but I will succeed! Failure is not an option.

I slowly began increasing my pace and focused on Matt Holton's advice to run positive splits. I didn't worry about slowing down to a pace I don't normally run but focused on increasing it in the final miles. And guess what? I achieved my goal!

I did increase my pace even against that nasty headwind.

So how do I feel about today's training run? I think it was awesome. I ran hard, I ran when tired, I remained focused, and I didn't give up. But there is also that little part of me that wished I maintained a sub-seven minute mile for that whole 2nd push. Really, I couldn't get those 2 seconds back! Perhaps next time.

Where we were going

Where we came from


  1. Looks like you were moving the last 3 miles - 26:21 (faster pace then all of your 5Ks?). I am sure you can get that last mile in under 8. Keep it up! The more you train like this the easier it gets to race like this.

  2. @Matt, thanks for the additional analysis. Now I am amped to not only cut my mile time under 7 minutes for speedwork but to cut back the time in that final mile. You are right. I should shave those 9 seconds off!

  3. You ran some fast miles! To run the last miles fast like you did - that's really hard!

  4. @ Tina, Thanks! That run kicked my butt in a good way. I have another take at the same format in a month so I am anxious to see what I can do after incorporating my other training runs.


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