Apparently, cross training really DOES help with long distance running! Though my past few months were woefully lacking actual run training, I've been consistently teaching multiple group exercise classes (both strength and cardio) and have been slowly building a weight training schedule as well. Now that I'm finally taking the time to start dedicated race training, I'm noticing that my splits on long runs and short runs alike are getting WAY faster than my benchmarks from last year!
One of my favorite little timing tests is what I call the "puppy block" - a lap around the inner portion of my street, which is about 1.25 miles, on which I usually take Kaalia when she's getting overly antsy. It's a long, slow uphill first, then a long, slow downhill heading back home. And it used to take 15 minutes or more. The other day we clocked our one-mile at 9:27, a PR for me and the puppy!
This past weekend, I took a long run through one of the local Metroparks. My average split was a 10:15 mile, tying my half marathon PR pace from last year on an easy training run! I looked a little more closely and found that my 10k split was my new PR by over two minutes! And both of these times include the massive, angry hill I accidentally encountered when I took a wrong turn. I slogged it up and down that hill and STILL posted times that made my eyes bulge.
All this said, there's still a long way to go. I have some big challenges coming up, including three half marathons in the next two and a half months, and of course that little full marathon thing on the schedule in October... I have my work cut out for me, and I'll need to learn a lot more about how to properly train for the distance and keep a healthy balance with the rest of my life, but I know I am up to this challenge. Watching those times keep improving over the course of the next few months will be as amazing as seeing my early-season times as low as they are!
Tuesdays on the Run is hosted by Marcia, Patti, and Erica! Check out what other runners have chosen as their word for this week's linkup, and stay tuned for more Tuesdays on the Run every week!
So, what word describes YOUR running lately?