Four weeks ago I decided to enter the Peterborough Half Marathon and attempt to beat my PB, currently standing at….
Since then I have been following a training plan, tweaking it in places, running a few races in between, but pretty much sticking to exactly what I am supposed to be doing. It seems to be going ok, except that my target pace of 7.22 min/mile seems REALLY fast. Now I will say at this point that I knew this would be the case; I set my PB a few years ago when I was younger, running more and entering more races. I knew it would be difficult: it is a 'proper' challenge. But recently I'm beginning to think that it might be a bit of a struggle to actually beat the time.
Last weekend I ran the Grimsthorpe 10K, it was a warm morning, it's a tough course, multi terrain: concrete, grass, gravel, track, in fact at one stage, as we approached the lake, I was half expecting to have to run on water. I completed it in 46.12…
But the important stat is the average pace: 7.26 min/mile. Actually slower than the pace I need to run for the half-marathon, and this was only 6ish miles, and I was absolutely knackered at the finish. I have to run double that distance! Now, as I said earlier, it is a tough course, but all the same it's got me thinking. Is this challenge achievable?
So we eventaully get to the part why I called this post 'I move slow and steady'…..
It seems that whenever I go for a run I always seem to be chasing a target time or target pace. Club training sessions are really hard work, even 'steady' paced runs are done with the idea that I should be running pretty close to my target race pace. I haven't really had much chance to 'enjoy' the running. So you can imagine my delight when I looked at the training plan and had a couple of days running at an 'easy' pace. Now I'm not entirely sure what my 'easy' pace should be, I think I read somewhere that I can run them at a minute slower? So what I did was run them at a lovely 9 min/mile pace (probably far too slow) and really enjoyed them. It was great to just run. If I wanted to run fast downhill, I did! If I wanted to drop the pace for an uphill section, I did! If I wanted to jog slowly, I did! If I wanted to pick up the pace for a bit, I did! I just really enjoyed it. So from here on in I'll be running a few more 'easy' runs. I'm not giving up on achieving a PB in the half-marathon, just going to try to do it with a few more 'enjoyable' runs thrown in.