You guys … I knocked SEVEN MINUTES off my previous best 10-mile time this weekend by doing something I’ve never done before. Normally on long runs I go at at very slow, easy pace the entire time. On Saturday I decided to treat my 10-miler as a progression run.
In the past I doubt I ever would have been able to do this, but since I only ran a total of 2 miles the previous seven days my legs were feeling really fresh. Plus, since I’m not currently training for any distance races, I figured if things went wrong and I couldn’t finish the 10 it wouldn’t be a big deal.
Also, I decided to do the run on the treadmill that way it would be easier to increase my pace (and I could enjoy the A/C since it’s really hot and humid here).
Around mile 7 I had to decrease my pace and let my legs recover a little bit, but then they started feeling good again so I included strides into my last two miles to finish strong.
The whole run was awesome — I felt great but afterwards my legs were sore. They definitely let me know they worked hard and wanted to lay down on the bed for a while : )
The best part of running the 10 and getting a big PR is that it confirms what I’ve been thinking for a while: that I haven’t been pushing myself enough on long runs. My coach always says to just take them nice and easy, but I have been suspecting that this thought process has been holding me back from making progress.
I know long runs need to be slow and easy, but they should also increase in pace after a while, right? I’ve been running the same pace for long runs for months now… so I’m really glad that I went for it this weekend. This will give me the confidence I need to increase my pace on future long runs, slowly but steadily. And hopefully it will help me race better too.
Speaking of racing, I was reading through a running blog on Friday, and saw this saying in the comments:
I really, really like this and thought about it during my 10-miler.
I’m not sure who to give credit to since the comment was by someone who didn’t leave a link. I Google’d it but only one other result showed up that didn’t have a source either. If you wrote this, let me know so I can give you credit – it’s awesome.
Hope you had a great weekend and are hitting the work week with energy!
How do YOU know when it’s time to increase the pace on your long run? Or do you just do it naturally?