I still can’t believe I ran 10:15 minutes miles on Friday. This is a minute and a half faster than what I was running the week before. And no, I’m not juicing!
I’m going to back up a little… as I mentioned, my calf has been really bugging me. It has been super tight and definitely causing pain when I run. During my run last Saturday, it was hurting so much I shifted my form to compensate. Of course, this turned out to be a blessing in disguise!
I have no idea when or how it happened but I haven’t been picking up my feet when I run – at all. I’ve heavily depended on my calves for all of my running power. It’s like I’ve just been shuffling. Lately, when my training plan called for speed work, I just couldn’t imagine how I was going to get faster when my feet/legs couldn’t GO faster. Then I (physically) realized the concept of turning my feet over faster and was amazed.
This realization along with actually using my quads/hamstrings to run culminated into some speed. On Tuesday, I went for a run and I could tell I went faster than I had in FOR-E-VER. Lately, my pace has been hovering around an average of 11:50, maybe 11:30 if I felt good. Friday, I accidentally found a setting on my garmin where I can set the pace I want to hit and then it tells me when I am on pace or ahead/behind. What a great feature!
I set it for 11:15 since this was going to be my first run with my garmin and using this form. I knew I was running faster, my garmin told me so, but it didn’t say how much faster. There were times when it said on pace and on one hill it said behind pace. My first mile was 11:07 and I was surprised! Two long hills dominate the first part of my route, so I was happy. I did four miles total and my splits were 11:07, 10:15, 10:17 and 10:22.
I’m still in shock. My legs were fatigued yesterday in that “whoa, I put in a good work out” kind of way. My plan was to run a few miles but an upset tummy restricted any bouncy behavior. But as I tweeted, my spirit is renewed! I wasn’t sure I would see these speeds again, despite my running coach telling me it was possible. It’s weird because I figured I could do it but I didn’t know how. Nor did I really believe it. Now I have hope and evidence!
There is a month to my 25k and a month and a half until my next half marathon. One of the reasons my legs are as tired is because my quads are not as strong as they need to be – why would they? I’ve barely been using them! I don’t know what to expect from these next two races. I have some goals naturally but I’m going to keep them at bay and focus on training. OH! And no calf pain on Friday’s run!
“It may not be fast and it may not be pretty but it’s going in the right direction” – Eric Simonson