Okay, so maybe the Leonidas meme is a little over the top. But after the last several days of having my training runs feel like running through water, having a decent run felt like Sir Edmond Hillary conquering Everest.
One thing I noticed is that I am running at a pretty good clip when I do trail & track running, even on my long and easy runs. In itself, that is unsurprising – my inability to pace myself is nearing mythic status (at least in my mind). But I am consistently running at what was my HMP from the 2013 Columbus Half. That’s probably a little too quick.
So, to judge if my pacing is at least part of the issue with my poor training, I went to the treadmill again. The goal was an LSD run with an enforced consistent pace. No running too fast when the belt is moving under you!
And, in part, it seemed to work. While not a effortless, podium-style run, it felt better than I expected.
I pulled out the big guns this morning: Salted Caramel GU.
My initial thought for why my runs have been subpar was lack of nutrition, so I wanted to ensure that I didn’t forget my pre-workout gel this morning. I had forgotten that I picked up an extra packet of Salted Caramel at the Team Toledo Tri Expo, so finding it in the gel box made my morning! It seems a little thinner than other GUs, but still more viscous than Hammer Gels or PowerGels. And the taste? Absolutely delicious – more than an equal to Chocolate Outrage & Espresso Love.
But enough loving on the GU (for now…).
I went to the UT Rec Center for my run this morning. I’m still a law student for a few more weeks, so my ID will get me in for a bit longer. For today’s run, I wanted to run long and and a constant pace. The treadmills at the YMCAs are all locked into a 30min max. So even if I could stay on the treadmill for multiple sessions, it would require stopping and restarting my run. The rec center treadmills do a 95 min run if you chose “Quick Start”, and the treadmills are never full because of the track on the third floor.
I settled on 7.0mph as my pace for this run, for absolutely no good reason other than it is slower than the roughly 8.5mph I am doing as current HMP. It felt reasonably sedate and I was able to pay attention to SportsCenter as I ran. I learned a lot about the Pacers losing to the Cavs and got to see highlights from MLB Opening Day.
This continued for just under 3 miles, then I bonked again. Just like before, it was sufficient to drop me down to a walk and I can’t explain why. But the good news is that after a quarter mile walk, I felt recovered and was able to knock out another 4 miles at a slightly slower pace. 7 miles isn’t much of an LSD run, but I will take the win where I can get it.
It must be noted that this better run comes after I increased my calories by adding in the Clif Bar yesterday. So I’m going to continue with the diet modification for the next several days and check to see if my running improves concurrently. I believe it will, or at least I hope it will.