Slowing Down

I’ve been frustrated with my running lately. That could be because I’m now running on the road and it feels like a setback from the treadmill, where I had really made some substantial progress. I know it’s not a setback, but not being able to run as far as I can on the treadmill without walking feels like a step backwards.

I realized that one of the reasons for this though is pacing. On the treadmill, the speed is set, the treadmill moves and so do I… at about an 11:30 minute mile. Under my own power, I’m running faster than that, at some points I think quite a bit faster than that because I’m tired and I just want to get to the landmark I’ve set for myself where I can walk again. The problem with this is that I’m so shot when I get to walk again, I’m walking for a longer time than I should and I’m negating any shortened run times.

Ok, so today I went to the track where I could measure my running distance a little better. I don’t have a heart rate monitor yet and when I run in the neighborhood, while I know my total distance, I have no idea how far I’m running before I want to or need to walk.

On the track this morning though, I got a pretty good gauge. My first loop, I jogged about 3/8 of a mile before walking for 30 seconds and then jogged another 3/8 of a mile before walking 30 seconds. I intentionally made myself run a little slower than I’ve been running….by the third loop around I kept at  a steady jog pace for 2.5 laps around for 5/8 of a mile, 30 seconds walking and then ran again until I finished my 2 miles. I continued on for a third mile but as I had planned to walk this, I surprised myself by walking/running half and half.

I was really pleased with my run this morning. I did a lot more running than I’ve been doing, and much shorter recovery walks,  and all it took was slowing down a little. When I can get to the point where I can run an entire 5k, then I can start working on getting faster. I’d like to get to the track a little more often but it’s tough because there’s usually something going on at the school. Maybe it’s time to invest in that heart-rate monitor.

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One response to this post.

  1. Posted by Sarah on May 26, 2009 at 4:59 am

    You might try getting an interval watch and running for x minutes then walking for 1, also known as the Galloway method. It makes running intervals outdoors a little easier. You’ll likely find you’re running faster and stronger in those running intervals.

    Reply

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