Less running more speed

Don’t get too drawn in by the title of this post, I’m not saying it’s a good thing (today I am still suffering slightly as a consequence).

For the last few weeks I have struggled to get out to run during the week for various reasons (well, mainly work, or going out drinking after work), but it’s still racing season (although only just barely now). This has left me with a situation where I have only run once a week (although I did get one more short run in during the week on the 28th October).

Last weekend (the 9th) was another USATF NJ Club Championship race – Giralda Farms 10k – and given my lack of running I was really unsure how it would go. Yet again I got caught up in the moment and went out too fast, but it’s tough to avoid when the start is downhill. The problem was that I tried to keep that pace going. I looked at my watch as I passed the 3 mile point and realized that my first 5k was going to be as fast as, if not a bit faster than, my most recent 5k races. And I still had 5k to go.

I was expecting a dramatic drop off in the second half but pushed as hard as I could. I was pleasantly surprised when I finished in 41:44 (a month prior I had run a 42:23 10k on what was a less hilly course). Here are the profiles and split times for comparison:

EBRR 10k October 12

EBRR 10k October 12

Giralda Farms 10k - November 9

Giralda Farms 10k – November 9

The week after this was another with no running. I was planning to run on Saturday but I failed in that respect (partly due to an evening enjoying beer on Friday and partly because I volunteered at a race on Saturday morning). I finally forced myself out to run on Sunday afternoon and I think my body was trying to make up for my inactivity. Once again I was running fast. I had planned on about 7.5 miles (actually ended up at 8.2), so at mile 3 when I was running at a pace of 6:53/mile I was telling myself to slow down.

Apparently my legs wouldn’t listen, because as much as I tried to slow myself down, I really didn’t (at least not by much). It wasn’t until I got back to the park at 7.25 miles, and maybe only because I had to stop at the light to cross the road, that I slowed down.

I’m suffering for it now though (still…).