Tuesday, July 25, 2006

Any guesses as to how hot it was tonight at my speedwork session?

93 degrees...that's how hot. The humidity wasn't too bad though, and there was a slight breeze, and I only felt like I was going to puke for the last two miles instead of all five miles. So I guess it was a pretty good session. Tonight we did six repeats. We did them as an inverted pyramid and then a traditional pyramid, with the idea being that you would speed up over first three repeats and then slow down a bit over the second three. All I can say is that I did not get faster...but I stayed just under the recommended goal times for each of my repeats though, so I feel like I still got something from it.
Speedwork sessions have become kind of frustrating for me as the summer has progressed, primarily because I hate to finish at the back of the group, and most of the runners out at these sessions are F-A-S-T. There are guys there that run five minute miles. I've found that as the weather has gotten uglier around this neck of the woods, a lot of the people who started the sessions (and many of them who were slower than me) have dropped out. This leaves me as one of the last finishers pretty much every time. I have to keep reminding myself that I'm only competing against the clock and that to ask my body to run too much faster is going to only lead to trouble. It's very hard to convince myself of these two items though.
The other reason that speedwork sessions has become slightly frustrating is because some of the "seasoned" runners are just plain mean and/or rude to other not so experienced runners. There is one guy that I always see on my long runs who also comes to speed sessions and he's always got comments for slower runners that I'm sure he thinks are "helpful" but in reality are just ignorant. So far he's not said anything to me specifically...which is surprising considering he's had something to say to just about everyone else, but God help him when he opens his fat trap to me. He will definitely get an earful.
Fortunately, there are also some runners at the speedwork sessions who are truly nice people. A lot of the fastest runners are also very encouraging to the slower runners. There are a couple of guys (five minute milers) who always stand at the finish line and clap and cheer every other racer in. Every Tuesday when I see them doing that I always promise myself that if I am ever that fast, that is how I will conduct myself. I don't want to forget where I came from.
As far as the running itself goes, I felt like even though I don't usually see an improvement from one repeat to the next, I am getting faster overall. I am now running my track workouts at a 8:30/mile average pace, which is down from a 10:00/mile pace last April, and my long run pace has dropped down to almost a 9:00/mile pace.
I've decided just to train as hard as I can and as smart as I can and hope for the best.
I'd really like to run Chicago in under four hours, and ideally would love to run a Boston qualifying time. I don't think that shaving 39 minutes off my last marathon finishing time is an unrealistic goal, but we'll just have to see how it works out.

1 comment:

Firefly's Running said...

The hot weather is really not good for speed training. Hang in there. You will do great! As for those "experienced" runners, ignore their comments and remind of the saying, "If you can not say anything nice, don't say anything at all."