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Sunday, February 17, 2008

Running at a Specific Pace... Mission Impossible?

With one week to go before my 1/2 marathon, I wanted to be sure I could maintain my target pace of 5:24/km over a longer distance. Like most, I run my long distances sllloooooowwwwlly.... so it's a check of where I'm at.

I decided to do my 14K run at 1/2 marathon pace.

The good news is that I did it, quite easily in fact. I finished it 2 minutes quicker than intended, with a pace around 5:15/km.

What concerned me was that I had a very hard time finding 5:24 and sticking to it.

I was all over the place:

5:08
5:20
4:48
4:43
5:52
5:01
4:53
4:58
5:53
4:49
6:12
5:20
4:45
5:37

I always felt like I was going too slow, and when I'd try to back off I really would go to slow! Some of it is attributable to downhills and uphills, but mostly it was an inability to find the right pace.

I'm not quite so worried for the event, I'm sure there will be people in groups settling in to pretty consistent paces that I can hang with. If I find myself passing people suddenly or being passed, then I'll assume that I'm not being steady.

5 comments:

M said...

Hey bud...there must be some kind of kit you can get to help you monitor pace.
Since I'm not a running geek (just an ipod geek) the only one I'm aware of is the ipod kit...but I'm sure there must be one that would work with a watch instead of an ipod.

http://www.apple.com/ipod/nike/

jonovision_man said...

I've heard mixed things about the Nike iPod thing, some people love them but others say it's not accurate enough.

The best is a GPS, like a Garmin. They can be set up to beep if you're faster or slower than a pace you enter. I might spring for it, would be useful for cycling too.

ladysmithtrigal said...

Hi, My Hubby has been chatting with you and he figures I should give you some tips so here it goes...

First you need to teach your body how to run the pace you want it to and a good way to do that is to do 1k repeats. Start with a set pace and run each k at that pace. Have recovery each time you do a k, usally equal time.

Then once your body feels what it's like to run that pace go out for a tempo run, so start at a slower pace for 2-3k then hit your pace for 4-5k then back down to recovery pace and do it again for may be another 3k then cool down and done.

I am not a coach but have had one and this was a geat way for me to learn my pace. You just have to hit every 1k repeat right on the nose so your body can feel it and then it becomes second nature for it.

I hope this helps! It looks like you will do very well in your marathon.. Good luck! and we look forward to hearing all about the outcome.

Ladysmithtrigal

jonovision_man said...

Thanks for the advice... appreciated

jonovision_man said...

During the 1/2 marathon I was much more successful...

5:41
4:56
5:18
5:20
10:43 (2k - missed sign)
5:21
5:20
5:38
4:53
5:17
4:55
5:41
5:14
5:15
5:24
5:29
5:48
5:46
5:49

First 1/2 I was with always around this one group of women that were incredibly even paced.

Second 1/2 I was with a pace bunny for a bit, but he was actually going faster than advertised... then I had my bonk and my times dropped off. I found consistency quite my accident, I was pushing as hard as I could given my body's state!