When I was thinking about switching to a different type of training plan for Grandma’s and I saw the Advanced Training Plan that was prepared by Dick Beardsley, it struck me that something was missing. Marathon pace runs. It was higher in mileage than I had previously done, and it had more quality workouts each week (hills or intervals AND a tempo each week). But I didn’t see any marathon pace runs on the schedule, which gave me pause. In previous training plans the MP runs were a confidence building workout (or the opposite, a reality check!). Either way, they were a workout that I thought was necessary for success. I mean, if I’m going to run a marathon at a certain pace, shouldn’t I practice that pace? Nonetheless, I figured that OBVIOUSLY Dick Beardsley must know what he is doing for Grandma’s training, so I’d give it a go. Plus, the previous plans that I’d done didn’t get me quite to where I wanted to be on race day, so what did I have to lose?
Well, when I was nearing the end of my 10 mile “medium effort” run that was on the schedule and I hit the stop button on garmin and saw 10 miles at 8:28 pace, it occurred to me that without even thinking about it or specifically aiming for it, I had just done 10 miles at marathon pace (though, truth be told, the MP I want and think I’m capable of is faster than that). And the pace didn’t feel like MP – it truly just felt like a medium effort.
So is it the extra mileage, the extra speed/quality workouts, or both, that are bringing down my paces and making things seem so much easier and make me feel so much more fit? Whatever it is, I’ll take it!
Tomorrow’s long run will bring me to the end of my fourth week in a row of 60+ miles. I get a break in the mileage next week, with next weekend only having a 4 miler and a 10k race-effort (I can’t find a 10k race that fits in my schedule. Grrrr.) It will be very weird to not have a long run next weekend. I feel like I’ll be tempted to do something longer, but I’ll force myself to trust the schedule!
So, since I can’t find a 10k race, my options are:
- 4 miles easy Saturday and then just do my own one-person 10k “race” Sunday (run at race pace by myself)
- 5k race on Saturday and 10k easy run on Sunday (I am going to the 5k on Saturday with the kids, either way; so I’ll either run it easy or race it).
What say you?