Thursday, January 27, 2011

January Recap and Pacing


Seems like only last week we were celebrating Christmas and New Year's... and suddenly it's the end of January! It might partly have something to do with being sick (second time in two months!!), this time with sinus/chest cold-- it really knocked me out for a good week, with lingering after effects for another week and a half. But feeling much better now.

So what have I been up to, you ask? Went snowboarding twice in very, very cold weather on the first and the third-- fun times. Have been doing a lot of hot yoga, and running. Haven't been spinning, because the spin trainer was seizing up on me, so I took it in for warranty, and it wasn't resolved until yesterday (more in another post...) Went swimming once, then again today (finally!). And I was asked to take over as one of the pacers for my running group-- which I agreed to do, but it's changed my runs.

Don't get me wrong, I love to help people. But we don't really have a solid "pace group" really established, as there are two clinics that have overlapped-- one is doing the Hypo Half on February 12, the other the Big Run in April. So my old pace group is sort of the "veterans", most have done more than once clinic, or have been running forever. Our long runs have been 18km the last two weekends, and we're scheduled to do 20km this weekend. On the other hand, the new group is doing 9km long run on Sunday. It will sort itself out in a week or two, I'm just more concerned with how spread out everyone is-- there are three or four of the people in the new clinic that could probably form a bit more of a pacegroup, but they all seem to run just slightly different speeds on different days...

Why am I worried about this?

Because to me, the best things about these clinics is the group. Let's face it, although we have talks once a week about gear, or physiology, or technique, or race strategy, or goal setting... it's not like you're running with a coach. You don't really get any direct feedback on your stride, or technique, you get a workout plan, and people to help you get through the workouts. I want to make sure that everybody in the clinic has someone to run with, no matter their pace!

On the other hand, maybe some people in the group like to run alone... but then, why would they sign up for a group?

What do you think? Are you a solo runner? Do you run in a group? If you run with a group, do you like to chat, or prefer to just run, or listen to your music?

This week's training:
1 hr Hot Yoga on Monday
4.5 km Tempo run on Tuesday (26:40)
4.5 km Steady run on Wednesday (26:30) (I know, steady is supposed to be slower than tempo... )
1500m in the pool this morning - 5x100 w/u, 500m main set, 5x100m cooldown

Tuesday, January 4, 2011

Resolution Run Race Report

Busy weekend, haven't gotten around to posting this! You may have already read Deb's post about the race, or perhaps the one by Nicole... they both posted very detailed versions, so I'll keep mine short.

My goal going in was 22:30, but I knew it was a "stretch goal"-- I'm sure that my fitness level is there, but just looking at the course and the weather, I knew it wouldn't be easy. It turns out the weather wasn't as much a factor as the crowds! Like Deb, we were a little confused as to the actual start line, so we ended up starting near the back of the pack.

The first km, I was dodging people, and warming up. I got well behind my goal pace, and didn't manage to put in a sub 5:00 minute pace until the second km or so. Like Nicole wrote, it's awesome when you pass a bunch of people, even if it means that you started too far back, and it makes it tough to hit your goal. I finished in 23:33-- which would have been good, if the course hadn't been short.

A few thoughts about the race:
  1. Fun-runs aren't a good place to target a PR. 
  2. The race was put on by the local run store, the Running Room. Their goal seems to be to get people running, not to put on a serious competitive race
  3. The fact the course was a little short was very disappointing, especially since they sell Garmins.
  4. I liked the crazy orange sweaters they gave out!
  5. Didn't care for the "post-run meal"... hot chocolate (yay) and cinnamon buns (meh)... someone said there'd be chili?

Still, we had a lot of fun, and I'd do it again.

Afterwards, we went to a friend's house for NYE celebrations. A majority of people there are turning thirty in 2011, so the hostess made a cake and we sang happy birthday... perverse. But the cake was tasty.