1) Long Tempos
Every Tuesday, I've been running a tempo run in training for Carlsbad. And speedwork on Thursdays, and a sort of long run on Saturdays. (I like to get my long runs out of the way Saturday mornings so I can booze / bad food it up on Saturday nights without regret).
I'm loosely following the Hanson's training plan and it calls for weekly tempos that get up to 10 miles. So far, I've been upping the mileage one more mile every two weeks. I started at 6, and now I'm at the deathly mileage of 9. Frankly, I didn't think it was physically possible for me to run this far in a tempo before work. But here I am!
The fact that they've been going pretty well gives me hope. Hope that I'm not completely done improving as a runner. It kind of stands to reason that these weekly long tempo runs would help. You know....given that I've always been too lazy to do them in the past. Here's what they've looked like:
MORE GARMIN PICS THAN YOU THOUGHT YOU'D EVER SEE!!
EVEN ON INSTAGRAM!!
Basically it's been going pretty well. I think the best tempo was last week where I ran 8 miles at 7:10 pace and knocked out a 6:53 mile or something at the end. This week's 9 mile tempo was much harder and at a slightly slower pace - 7:15. Maybe going from 8 to 9 miles is harder than I thought, or maybe I should eat something besides fried eggs and Brussels sprouts the night before. No I'm not on some crazy diet, I was just feeling lazy on dinner last night and that's probably not optimal for an early morning long tempo.
Regardless, I'm really pumped at how this was going! My plan was to get these runs up to 12 miles and that sounds impossible at this point. We'll see though!
2) SMILE! Alexi Pappas (or is it Jordan Hasay?) said in some article that every time she races she tries to smile at least once. I've been trying to do that too! And trying to feel thankful for each run. I know it sounds lame but it's true. Each time I do a hard run, I've been trying to smile, at least once. The crossing guard by the school that I run around has fallen victim to my smiling and waving each time I run around the school. She probably thinks I'm insane.
3) Stability: Ok fine, this is something I can't really control, but I think it's really hard to train for anything when your life is unstable. And if you know me pretty well, you know that I struggle a lot with major mood swings. Right now, things are pretty good for me. I can schedule my long runs with certainty, and generally feel pretty good when I wake up in the morning. Sure, there are times when I wake up and feel like I want to punch myself in the face and am not ready to face the day, but for the most part, I am excited to get up and run. And that feels good.
So there you have it. Hopefully these things will help me to get to Carslbad as prepared as I can be to knock out a PR! Or at least not get killed by the hills.