One of my new year’s resolutions this year was to run 10 km under 50 mins, with a secondary conciliatory goal being to hit a new PB. So far, I’ve mostly just been putting in the miles with the odd run being interspersed with some short strides. I’ve also been participating in the local parkruns nearly every week since January which I’ve been using to incorporate some speed work/ lactate threshold speedplay into my week. The parkruns, however, are 5km, so as regards trying to become faster over the 10km distance, the time has come to break out of that comfort zone and push the boundaries out a little further. Enter the fun!
I love running magazines. They are my dirty little secret to what porn is to men. I feel guilty paying ludicrous amounts of money for them, nearly run home with them in my bag braced with excitement and then find the quietest room in the house where I can pour over every last detail uninterrupted and with nothing but love 😉 No but seriously – flashy pages, shoe reviews, profile pieces, new running drills and stretches… I love it all. I’ve actually been quite disciplined though recently and haven’t bought a new magazine for a while but in the most recent one that I read there was a piece on how to improve your 10 km time. One of the sessions they recommended into your running week in countdown to a 10km race is a 6 mile speed workout. It goes a bit like this:
– 8 weeks out from race day, you do 6 x 1 mile at race pace, with recoveries in between each mile.
– 6 weeks out, you do 1 x 2 mile and 4 x 1 mile at race pace, with recoveries in between.
– 4 weeks out, you do 2 x 2 mile and 2 x 1 mile at race pace, with recoveries in between
– 2 weeks out, you do 3 x 2 mile, with recoveries in between
Then you go for the full 6 altogether on race day!
I have done a bit of tempo training previously, especially last year when I was determined to improve on my 10km time. Admittedly, I had no idea what I was doing and more or less just reckoned if I trained myself to run faster and then week by week gradually increase the distance, that should work. On reflection, this was probably a bit much and I was probably pushing too hard in these sessions, as well as increasing the distance of these runs too fast. This could have been one of the factors that lead to me picking up feet/ ankle injuries last year as a result of over-training. So I thought I’d give this new speed plan a go and see if I can hang in there. The first session was this evening. Beautiful summery evening, even though it’s still April and think I’ve just found a new favourite time of day to run! Looking forward to more long summer evenings and stunning sunsets.
The session went pretty well overall, better than I thought as I really expected to struggle with the latter 3 mile repeats. I actually found the last 2 repeats easier than the rest, which is weird but great all the same! So far, so good. My goal pace, if I am to run 50 mins or under is 8:03 per mile. My pace was a bit up and down as you can see from below but I tend not to be very good at consistency… something else I need to work on! I was also slightly faster than my goal pace, which I don’t think is a good thing or something I’m supposed to be doing but I need to find out more about that (queue further magazine buying…) The run went something like this:
– 7:40 ; 8:00 ; 7:54 ; 7:26 ; 7:54 ; 8:02 (half mile recoveries between each mile)
-1 mile cool down