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Saturday, August 22, 2015

A better tempo

Or, perhaps my first tempo ever.
Last week I crashed and burned trying to finish a long run with a tempo. I think a few things went wrong:
1. It was in the mid-90's and, since I started rather late, the sun was strong.
2. I was wearing my heaviest shoes, which makes a surprising difference.
3. The fast portion was tacked onto an hour of easy running.
4. I vastly overestimated my speed and fitness.

So for a 40 minute tempo run later in the week, I made some changes. Luckily, that morning was not nearly as warm - yes, the humidity was still over 90%, but it was low 80's. I wore my Kinvaras, and followed the prescribed workout thus:
- Ten minutes easy
- Twenty minutes tempo, building up to 10k pace at the fastest, then slowing
- Ten minutes easy.
Of course, with less time on my feet and less time running a tempo portion, it was automatically better; what made it work (and allowed me to finish) was choosing a reasonable pace goal.
I didn't think to lap my Garmin when the tempo portion started, so mile one included about 2 minutes of "easy pace" running, but anyway, the three miles that included at least part of the tempo were 7:12, 7:06, and 6:58. The 6:58 mile included both speeding up to 10k pace for a few minutes and slowing back down.
Overall, I was much happier with this tempo, and I didn't feel completely beat and miserable afterward.
I think that's actually the first tempo run I've ever done! Hopefully I can build up to longer tempos as a way to get some speed back with minimal stress to my hips.


  1. I see what you did there - analysed why the first tempo run had crashed and burned and then did everything humanly possible fix each of the issues. Smart running!

  2. I told you so ... I told you so ... I told you so ... I told ...

  3. I am glad that this tempo run went better for you! I think you were wise to take it down in terms of distance and time and I am glad that the weather was *slightly* better (although still soooo humid!!).