It’s the week of my 10K and I’m not having great expectations for a PR due to weather, but I AM hoping to run it smart and actually have a strategy this time. One month ago I ran this 10k and completely threw pacing out with the bathwater, which inspired me to stop being stupid and start racing with my brain; after all a lot of running and racing is both smart planning prior to and mental strategy during the event.
Here is how my week is going plus my weekend plans:
Monday: Mile repeats at the track. 6.54 miles total including 1.4 mile warmup and cooldown, 3 x 1 mile with 400 jogs. The splits were 7:12, 7:16, and 7:08. I had been going for 7:15 per mile, so I was happy with this. 7:15 is the pace I hope to keep during my 10k which is why I chose it. It’s worth noting that this run was done in the pouring rain, which is why I think I was able to keep faster paces considering the humid weather. I’ve been running my hard workouts in the rain, which is half coincidenc, if there is such a thing.
Tuesday: 6.34 miles at 8:54 avg pace. This was with a friend, otherwise it would have been about 10 sec/mile slower. I was wiped out after Monday.
Wednesday: 8 miles at 8:59 avg pace. I felt pretty good although my heartrate was higher than I would’ve expected for the pace, possibly a combination of not being recovered well and also the humidity. I would’ve expected a heart rate of about 135 avg and it was in the low 140’s. Subtle yet significant.
Thursday: 6.37 miles at 9:01 avg pace. It is thursday as I’m writing this and I am SO looking forward to my rest day tomorrow. I have only been doing one rest day per week and I think I should add in another due to just not feeling completely recovered.
Saturday: 10K. Woot woot! I’ll talk about my strategy below.
Sunday: Depending on how I feel I’m planning to do between 4 and 7 miles easy/recovery pace.
Here’s what I’m thinking about for this 10K.
First of all, because you know I like to complain as much as possible about the weather, I’ll just say it’s supposed to be sunny and maybe close to 70. Wah. Okay done crying.
My 10K PR is over a year and a half old (Oct 2012) and it was 44:42. During that period of time I ran another 10k at 44:48 so that was a typical time. One month ago and with no pacing strategy I ran 45:49 in similar weather to what Saturday will be. My loosely thought out goal is to break 45 minutes, and to do this I would have to average 7:14 pace, which is a bit of a stretch but a goal nonetheless. In order to do this, and to set myself up for a “fall back plan” in case I’m tired, I will run the first mile around 7:20 and stick with and then pick it up from there. So hopefully my splits would be between 7:10 and 7:20 throughout. If I have nothing left to give, there’s a good chance I’ll be able to hang on to a 7:20 without slowing down much at all. My last 10K involved the first 2 miles under 7 and then a lot of slow down as I went on. I am trying to avoid that this time!
Beyond time goals, I am happy to be racing this distance simply as a speed tuneup as I head into summer and also as a learning experience for pacing strategy. I used to be able to pace myself much more intuitively and I’ve found that since being injured it’s harder for me to pace intuitively, really just based on the psychological desire to get back to a faster pace that seems to take over in the beginning of a race. Having a solid plan is a way for me to pull back and race smarter.
Do you have a 10K race strategy? When did you run your PR for the 10K?