The end of the week

It’s now the end of week… let there be praise!

But OH NO! the domain name on my family website has expired… yie-yie-yie. So I had to go around to see who has my domain name and renew it… at least it shouldn’t be too much of a headache!

So, today was not as nice (i.e. warm) as the past two days but the 50F weather sure beats the cold days that we have been having the past few weeks! Tomorrow looks even better with the “6” starting the temperature forecast.

Today was still a good day to get out and run. I had, in fact, toyed around with the idea that I would take a long lunch and run for about 6 miles or so and enjoy the weather. But it was only a one-act show. I thought that I should just stick with my normal routine and worry about the rest of the miles at a later date.

So, I opted for 5 miles on my James White Greenway route. A very basic, almost all, greenway out and back course. One that I am well familiar and know what to expect. What I didn’t expect was to turn the run today into a tempo run. And a good one to boot!

It all started with the first mile being a 7:38 minute mile. Now, before you get all excited about this, a good section (about 0.3) of a mile is all downhill. Likewise, the same 0.3 is all uphill on the way back. At any rate, if you start fast, you’ll finish fast. If you ever want a PR time in a shorter distance (say a 5k or 8k) start faster than your planned pace, because you’ll ( more than likely) slow down closer to your goal pace than if you start out at the pace or a little slower and build to a faster pace. This methodology is NOT how to get a marathon PR… oh no…

Mile 2 was in 8:02, and that was more like it. The pace felt good, the nice thing was that because I ran a 1/2 marathon (13.1 miles) the previous Saturday, I had some residual conditioning from that race. So, the first couple miles felt really easy. Easy enough in fact that my Mile 3 was finished in 8:01, something that I usually don’t do very often – consistent pacing! So consistent that I ran a 8:01 for Mile 4 as well.

During my 3, apart form consistent pacing, something else happened that usually does not happen… I was passed. And by a… get this… a girl! I KNOW! She had joined the greenway at one of the entry points and was kicking a nice 7:15ish or so pace.

You know, there’s a nice thing about pacing behind someone… two words and the second word ends in Maximus. So, I decided to pick up the pace a little bit and try to match strides with her… I was almost going into race mode, where in the last mile, I start to pick out runners as targets to beat them at the finish line. But I couldn’t match the faster pace. In fact, even though I ran a 8:01, I had to stop and walk a few short spells to get a breather. So even with the walking, I averaged an 8 minute mile… that’s how fast she was going.

So the last mile was here and I had to attack the Lake Loudon Avenue Hill… I was pleased with this too… getting up to the top, I was definitely winded, but still about to eek out a slow running pace. Once I caught my breath, I brought it home for a 9:00 minute Mile 5. A good Easy gone Tempo run and with good timing as well…

…uh, not as well I thought. Looking at my race schedule, the Spring Sprint which is historically in March has been moved to mid April. Hmmm… so now I have to think about what I want to do. I had wanted to run the Spring Sprint in March because of the slick marketing of the Ruby Tuesday’s triple crown of running in March, but now that’s in April. I really don’t want to do 6 weeks of speed training, I was hoping for like… 3 or so.

I think (which is why this is dangerous) that I could be in decent 5k shape for a March 17th race. But there are two problems: 1)Childcare and 2) there are two races on the schedule. Childcare is not too big of a problem, but which race to choose?

9:00 a.m. Catch the Leprechaun 5K; To Benefit Safe Haven Crisis & Recovery Center for Sexual Assault
10:00 a.m. CASA Leprechaun 5K; All proceeds and donations for this race will go to support CASA of the Tennessee Heartland Roane County Program.

Well, the charity aspect part of it doesn’t help… sex crime victims or foster kids… both very good causes to support. But the Catch the Leprechaun has something going for it that the CASA Leprechaun doesn’t, the chance for free beer. Yeah, leave it to race who supports sexual assault victims to have alcohol (I know that not all sex crimes involve alcohol).

The deal is that one runner is designated as the Leprechaun and you have to chase their lucky charms and if you finish before they do, you get a free beer. A beer is mighty tasty after a 5k at 9:30 in the morning. One year, the leprechaun was our runner-friendly mayor.

yeah, maybe I will do that and will give me something speedy to focus on. Since I had to abandon my spring marathon goal this year, I might look at trying to take a stab at my 10k time in May…

About planet3rry

I'm a husband, father and runner in the Knoxville area. I love the way that running makes me feel and how it has changed my thinking. I am always looking for the new PR whether in the 5k or the marathon