On Sunday my coach had me do a run that was supposed to be diagnostic of my ability to run at my half marathon race pace. It was rough.
For my half marathon in Phoenix at the Arizona marathon event, he had picked the finishing time of 1:35, which works out to a race pace target of roughly 7:15. Fair enough, a target finish time of 1:35 is something I think I might possibly be able to hit (sooner or later).
The workout: First four miles race pace plus 5, second race pace, third race pace minus 2 to 5 sec.
I’m thinking, “Whoa, whoa. I’ve only started running again in the last few weeks, and you want me to knock out a 12 mile run at race pace? Let’s build some fitness first!” That was problem #1; I didn’t think I could do the workout (a legitimate thought, I think).
Problem #2 came in the shape of playing indoor soccer the night before. After a few games my legs were mega sore, and was still quite sore when it came time to do the run. Running for soccer ≠ running for fitness.
Problem #3 was that I had eaten too big of a lunch on Sunday before my run leading to general uncomfortableness.
These three things led to me feeling very blech when I started the run. I ran two miles at a 7:18 pace on the treadmill, and then called it quits. It’s a bit unfortunate because my legs weren’t a limiting factor (besides being sore), and I wasn’t suffering aerobically. I could have gone on for a few more miles on another day (though not 12).
Anyhow, I did two miles and called it a day. Not every workout can be a victory.