Saturday, July 4, 2009

Crazy Fast 10K Training Run in the Heat - Self-Confidence Soars!

This morning, I met up with 3 friends to tackle a 10K (6.2 miles) training run at Chisholm Trail in Plano. We started at 6:30 am and it was already in the low to mid 80s with 60% humidity. Ugh!

One mile in we were already feeling how absolutely blazingly hot it was. We took a 1 minute walk break and did another mile. Another walk break. We never intended to go try to run a "fast pace" and just wanted to get the distance in with this heat. So the run a mile, walk a minute, do it again routine worked pretty well.

My Garmin was "broken" so I couldn't track pace or distance and had to rely on the others. Turns out that when your Garmin gets a ton of workouts on it, it says "batteries low" and can't record any new workouts. It looks like it's doing better now that I've wiped out some old workouts this morning and let it charge up some more. Good side note though for anyone else who didn't know this was something that could happen!

With the non-working Garmin, as we approached the halfway point, I yelled to the others (since I'd fallen slightly behind) to mark a lap on the Garmin when they finish but keep timing so that I'll know my time when I catch up to them at the end. They said there's no way I couldn't do this, that I could stay with it, I'd finish with them. I thought, no way, I just want to walk back at this point.

Mile 3.5 I take a Gu because I'm just tuckered out. Seems like it gave me the energy I needed on reflection after the run, so I'm glad I did that. Mile 4 my thighs and quads are starting to kill me - I've been working on not shuffling my feet when I get tired and the work of paying attention to pick up each foot is starting to show how weak my upper legs are because they are tired and sore. About Mile 4.5, Paula tells me there's no way she's letting me fall behind at this point and every 1/3 of a mile or so yells at me to catch up, and I do a quick 10 second sprint to get back even with her. It does the job of changing up my stride just enough to get me feeling a little fresher for that next segment of run.

We finish 6.2 miles in 1:12:13, an average pace of 11:39. I can't believe it. My PR for the 10K was set in January this year, only 32 seconds faster than today's run. That was an interesting 10K race because it was about 45 degrees outside (so ideal for running) and had an extremely fast runner come pace me in and push me the last two miles (thanks, Mark O!). So in 40-something degrees warmer and no Mark O. pushing me (sorry, Paula, but you're no Mark O., LOL), I managed to be only 32 seconds slower? Oh my gosh! I can't wait until it cools down this fall to see how fast I can be in good running weather!!! The goal of 11:30 avg pace to hit a 2 1/2 hr half marathon may be doable this year!

So, I just did the math, and if we averaged 11:39 pace and we walked a minute at the beginning of each mile that was included in that stated pace, then the pace we were actually running during all the running segments was an average pace of 11:13! Too awesome!

I know a lot of people who ran races this morning at 8 am. We finished at 8 am, and I'll tell you that I tip my hat to all those people. I kept thinking through the whole run that I could not have imagined starting the run at 8:00.

Happy Running!

Mile 1: 11:29
Mile 2: 11:40
Mile 3: 11:47
Mile 4: 11:56
Mile 5: 11:43
Mile 6: 11:34
Last 0.2: 2:04 (about 10:20 pace)


  1. GREAT job Libby!! I'm looking forward to cooler weather too! Want to get back in my stride. Oh, and I was one of those that started the race @ 8:00 this morning. It was already blazing hot. Good thing it was only a 5k!

  2. Oh I feel for you. I lived north of Austin 20 years ago and it was just miserable. It amazes me that you can get out there in the heat like that. I promise not to complain the rest of the summer here in Kentucky (not too much anyway). Great job on the run!