Last night I was beginning to worry that I hadn’t planned out my week well in preparation for a 10k. Without a break from running since Tuesday, I was going into the race with 36 miles on my legs from the week. Now, for some that may not seem like much, but for me, it was definitely something foreign. All of the runs this week were quality workouts (even Monday…oh Monday) and I do not feel that I packed miles in. The advice that I keep receiving from 99% of the people I talk to is to “Run some..then run some more” in order to improve. In doing so, I am also respecting the 10% rule and not jumping from 40 to 50 mile weeks. My training plan does not call for such high numbers, but I do believe that as you incorporate quality runs (quality = meaning, albeit sometimes I just go out to run…sigh, and its OK to resort to that at times) your body becomes physiologically efficient and can recover from your workouts faster.
Okay! Time for race report. I just went through that rant to get to the point that I had many miles behind me on the week and was a little worried this morning with running a race in that shape. The legs were tight this AM, but not to that point were there was any real pain. They just knew what they were in for today 🙂
The Embarcadero 10k started at Jefferson and Hyde at Aquatic Park and was organized with DSE. I am looking into further runs by them because the chill, mixed crowd and just the no bells or whistles aspect of the race made for a pretty pleasant experience. It set off along the Embarcadero to a bit before AT&T Park, then back. I set out great for the first 3 miles, averaging a 9:10 pace. I purposely did not put my iPod on in order to get a hold of a rhythm and breathing. The iPod was reserved for the critical moments (or the Power Songs). I was feeling great. I don’t believe I went out too fast and just got into a momentum that I could maintain. At the turn around point, mentally I was there. That is always the best moment when you know that it is “downhill” from there. However, I got in a funk between mile 4 and 5 and began to loose steam. The wind was coming at us and my legs were feeling the week’s worth of work on them. iPod on.
When mile 5 came, I knew that I had to pick it up because the previous mile was probably averaging a 9:25. Still, I knew that I would beat my 10k time if I could keep it up. After what I call “rockin’ it out” for the last mile (aka finding the Who and kicking it up), I passed mile 6 and was in the home stretch. I could see the timer and finish line slowly ticking away.
- 57:11, 6.2 miles – 9:11 pace
Um HELLO. 9:24 to 9:11 in a month. Granted it was a flat course. But I am stoked for multiple reasons. (1) My legs had a long week and still made it happen. (2) McMillan pace calculator is spitting out new goal numbers that are inching me closer to the realistic sub 2 hour and sub 4:30 marathon. I mean, sub 2 hour is a 9:10 pace. (NOT even thinking marathon at all…nope nope nope). It is making everything a tiny bit more realistic and knowing that I have a few months to really work at it, I am THAT much more excited. ((Mind drift: If you are wondering, I am thinking of San Jose RnR as the one I will train in the hopes of getting under 2 hours. I have done it before. It is a flat course and it is in October. )) (3) My garmin was being a little ughhhhh today and I cannot WAIT until my new one comes in the mail so I can see my overall average pace. It’ll be a new experience for me to see that, then the momentary real time pace where I think I am doing “good” but in reality, I just looked down at the right moment and it was a fluke 🙂
Now, I would not have been completely distraught if today did not go my way. I would have been stoked to just get out there and race. I knew my chances and I know of the race day unpredictables.
In two weeks, there is the Emerald Across the Bay 12k. I am going to run this with Maritza. She has already warned me that it is rolling hills, but I am just excited to (1) have a running buddy and (2) see some gorgeous views! This will be a good taper because I am 90% sure that I will participate in the Oakland Half Marathon March 28th. Woot.
THANKS to all the words of encouragement. I absolutely love the support I got and continue to get from you all. I am going to peace out now because I just looked up and saw the strawberries on my counter… 🙂 Although strawberries aren’t my “after race” food, what is yours? What totally makes your day food wise after a race? Mine would be a BIG SMOOTHIE (like mega) where those strawberries are going into. I’m out.