Summer Series 5k

Last Wednesday my hubs and I jogged/walked the 2 1/2 miles to Prospect Park in Brooklyn to participate in the first race of the Al Goldstein Summer Speed Series. Every other Wednesday night during the summer, the Prospect Park Track Club and NYC Runs host timed 5k races. This was actually the first year we learned of the series and since I am off work for a few weeks and able to get somewhere at 7pm on a Wednesday night, we gave it a go.

I think my favorite part of the whole thing was being in the park with all my neighbors on a warm summer-like evening. There were kids playing, dogs chasing each other, couples taking after dinner strolls. It gave me that feeling that I had all the time as a kid but can’t capture quite as often now. It was an “all we have is tonight and tonight is slow and beautiful” feeling. After the race we decided to walk all the way home instead of hopping in a taxi or jumping on the subway. It was still almost 80 degrees. The sun went down slowly, taking it’s time, knowing how all of us loved when it lingered. Restaurants and bars were filled with chatter and laughter. Traffic was moving effortlessly; no one appeared to be in a rush. New shops and cafes had popped up, we made mental notes of the ones we wanted to visit. We even ran into a friend on the street. We caught up with her and had about a million laughs as we walked the 3-4 blocks to drop her at the subway. It was magic.

The race itself…not so much.

Well alright, it wasn’t that bad. I think it’s definitely true that once you have a bit of space from an experience you are able to look at it from a different perspective. All throughout the race and after I crossed the finish line I felt terrible. It was so hard. I didn’t necessarily have a specific goal for the race, it was more about finding out where I was at. I’ve mentioned here that I’ve got a 10k coming up in a couple weeks where I’d like to average an 8:55 mile. With that in mind, I basically set out to run as fast as I could and test my fitness.

My watch was acting finicky and wouldn’t pick up the GPS, so I had no idea what my time or pace was when I crossed the finish line. All I knew was that the run didn’t feel good. The whole race was difficult but the last mile was agony. Mentally that bummed me out because I try to always keep something in the tank in order to finish strong. Instead I felt like I was barely hanging on; at more than one point I was tempted to say fuck it and not finish.

When we got home I checked our times. My hubs had finished in 26:47 (8:38 pace), and I had finished 5 seconds later at 26:52 (8:40 pace). I’m not sure how much faster per mile your 5k pace is supposed to be than your 10k pace (Listen to me, “supposed to be” ugh–I annoy myself sometimes!)–but according to the numbers, I didn’t do nearly as bad as I thought I did. After almost a week since the race, here are my takeaways:

  • I have very little experience “racing”. I’ve participated in a lot of runs and I’ve had rough time goals for them, but I think this is the first time I’ve had such a focus on getting faster and on measuring the results of the work I’ve put in. We thought the race started at 7:15, but it seemed to start a bit earlier. As we (and others) approached the starting line the majority of runners had already left and the volunteers let us know “race starts when you cross that line!” It was a bit jarring. I didn’t feel totally prepared. I never realized the push that starting in that big group gives you. Because we started late and participants were at all different paces, we never really felt like we were in a race with other people until the very end. I think getting in a racing mindset takes a bit of practice? Perhaps you more experienced runners can weigh in on this. Anyway, just another skill I look forward to honing as I move forward in this sport.
  • Night racing is a bit different! I may have to play around with how much activity I have in a day and what I eat. I did a 90 minute Bikram class the morning of the race to get stretched out. While I was diligent about replacing my electrolytes and getting enough fluids, it was more of a challenge to recuperate and prepare to run in 80 degree weather. I think our warm-up run to the park was good–enough to get loose but not so much that it took anything out of me.
  • I didn’t run how I run. My workouts have been so specific lately–tempo, mile repeats, intervals, hill repeats–everything has a focus. I think somewhere I lost sight of the fact that although these runs are making me a more dynamic runner, I still have to approach races with some intuition. The most natural type of run for me is a progression run, where I start slower and gradually build my speed. Whether my pace is slower or not, I know this is something I do well. I don’t ever go out too fast, I never spend my energy quickly and end with nothing to give. But this race, that’s exactly what I did. I was so preoccupied with time that I thought I had to get to my goal pace right away. I thought with the warm-up that would be fine, that I would just treat it like a 3 mile tempo. I think I’ve learned that that’s just not how I perform best. It makes me feel like I’m running in fear, instead of trusting my training. Even in a short race like a 5k, I’ve got to learn to build my speed in order to have that strong finish that’s so important to me.
  • I need podcasts or music. More power to the silent runners–I’m just not there yet and am not sure I ever will be. Without something else to focus on, I get in my head in a way that’s really detrimental. I went sans headphones this time because I was with my hubs. This would have been fine if we were running more casually, but since I had decided I was racing, we didn’t do that much talking. Funnily enough, the craziness that dominated my brain for almost the entire 5k was about my husband. He hasn’t been running as much lately as he’s been busy writing papers and finishing up his Master’s Degree. This fact bewildered me as he ran strong and seemingly effortlessly and basically kicked my butt the entire race. The whole time I ran I was comparing myself to him and telling myself that all my work was for shit-that my fitness was crap. Obviously these shitty thoughts were what was crap. Music or a podcast would have helped me drown them out and focus on myself. I will remember that next time! (Oh, and also, super proud of my hubs and what a strong runner he is!)
  • Nothing went wrong. I’m so dramatic. I did fine! All of this is just experimentation anyway so it was really good to see where I’m at. I’m not sure what that 8:40 pace means yet, I am now even more curious to see how the 10k goes. Because I felt so exhausted and this run felt so hard, I started to have a bit of apprehension about trying to race double the distance. I began to have doubts about my workouts. My mile repeats have all been inside on the treadmill where I’ve been able to set the pace at 8:49 and control all the variables. I started to fear I wouldn’t be able to replicate that pace for that same mileage out on the road. BUT–instead of letting that fear eat away at me, on Sunday, I got my butt out on the streets for the same workout. These were the results:

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That first mile was a warm-up, then I did 6 mile repeats after that (and then walked for a mile, which is not shown here). I don’t know, I think I kinda kicked ass–especially in that last mile.

For all you sticklers out there, I know this is probably not a perfect mile repeat workout–I progressively got faster instead of sticking to my goal pace. But I have to say, this run not only felt fantastic physically, but was also a huge breakthrough mentally. I ended it knowing that my training was not shit–that I actually am improving and becoming a stronger runner. Nowadays, that’s an indication I’m becoming a stronger person as well–and that’s pretty damn exciting.

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What’s the way you race? Do you keep a consistent pace throughout? Build as you go? Start out fast and then try and hang on till the end? What works for you?

Whether it’s a Parkrun or a charity 5k, do you feel like you are “racing” or running? Do you feel like there’s a difference? Talk to me about that!

What makes you doubt your training? What makes you believe in it? Is it only results–the numbers? Or are there other indications that you are improving that keep you going? 

Who runs with headphones? What do they do for you? Who runs without them? What does that do for you?

 

pics: mike bradley ❤

 

55 thoughts on “Summer Series 5k

  1. 8:40 is a great pace!! I use a runkeeper app to track my pace and I honestly would never know what my pace was if the didn’t give me my pace every 5 minutes. I recently was listening to a TED talk podcast (while running) about our (the world’s) addiction to our phones and the distraction that comes alone with it. It talked about the benefits to being bored sometimes and how are creativity can come alive during these periods. I know what running without music or a podcast can do to one’s head if we are in a bad place. But sometimes running bored helps me work through my problems. By the end of the run I felt like I did a 12th step call on myself. (not recommended for newcomers) ( :

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    1. Thanks so much Tim! Yeah I used to use runkeeper as well. Now that i have my watch and can just glance at it on my wrist, that’s really my favorite (mostly cause I got annoyed with that voice interrupting my podcasts to tell me my distance/speed!).
      I know you are probably right about the running without the music or podcast. It’s something I could work on for sure. For me though I just feel like i work through a lot with the sound as well. I am a very auditory person. I work ALL day with sound in my ear, it actually helps me focus. So often I feel like if there is something i am trying to work through, the sound i put in my ear helps me drown out the rest of the world, so I can listen to myself. If that makes any sense!
      A 12 step call on yourself–that’s a pretty good way to look at it ;).
      Thanks for stopping by Tim–really enjoyed your thoughts, please come back!

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  2. Well done to both you and hubby! I love the photos you have put up too, especially the last one! LOL! When I first started racing, I always went out too fast – I think I would let the crowd get to me and be embarrassed to be a bit behind. But the more I got out there (or the more I got used to being behind, lol) I realised I am much more comfortable starting out slow and then building up.

    Sadly, I am still all about the numbers when I run and that’s something I want to shift away from – I would love to be able to run on “feel” and also have other parameters for measuring my improvement or strength as a runner!

    PS: You are going to smash that 10k!

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    1. I definitely understand that desire to have other parameters for measuring your improvement– i think that can be important. I also say that we can have both! I hear a lot of people make big declarations about running watch free and based on feel, etc. That’s great, but I think you can do both. I think you can have more intense periods where you are training for something, and that can be hard and challenging and also really fun and a time for great growth. And then we can have those other periods where we just enjoy running and run for the love of it and throw distance and time out the window. AND we can do both of these within each other too! Sometimes in the middle of training you need a timeout where you just run to enjoy–not for what’s on the schedule! I think we can really have it all–whatever that is. Running is generous ;).

      Thanks for all your encouragement as well lady, it’s the best! x

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  3. charliesbird

    You had an awesome run! It may have felt bad, but the stats say otherwise.
    I am always stressed at a run; even training ones in a group I find stressful, so I guess I am always in ‘racing’ mode. I am always aware of where I am, who is faster than me (almost everyone!) and that makes it hard for me!
    In South Africa, our Athletics organisation has banned earphones during races, so I never run with music, except on the treadmill, which occurs rarely. I know if I was in the habit of training with music, then not allowed to use during a race, it would be way harder.
    Remember tough runs are character building!

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    1. Thanks lady. I think you are right–may just need to come to grips with the fact that racing is not always going to feel good! Runners are kind of hilarious when you think about it. We train all hard to get to go do these hard things–and both the training and the end goal are painful and grueling. We get it but sometimes it’s hard to explain to someone who doesn’t run why we do it, right? lol
      Have you ever done Bikram yoga? I only ask because in it you have a mirror in front of you and you really learn to only focus on yourself–like in a pretty deep and profound way. It’s helped me so much in my running as well because for the most part now I find that i am competing with myself–that what everyone else is doing is not really that relevant to me. Your comment about being aware of who is faster than you just made me think of this!

      And yes–I will try to remember that tough runs are character building. I know you are right! It’s not the easy runs that got me through tough spots in 1/2 marathons or the full–it’s been the tough ones!

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  4. That’s an amazing pace! And it was hot and at the end of the day which is not a time you normally race, so I think you did amazingly!

    Big races like that are like parkrun, a real bundle and no real sense of where you are or how you’re doing. But as you do it again, you will hopefully find more of a consistency.

    Re what pace “should” be, there’s a run calculator on the Runner’s World website where you put in your PB for x distance and translates that into your other distances, you can then work out the per mile thing. Might be useful but I’m not pushing that.

    Re running vs racing, I’m notorious for not pushing myself so can’t help there really! Re beating yourself up, I’m v good at that one. I had three bad runs in a row recently – each time it was hot, I went out too fast (first one, i was panicking about finding my friend on her route so bombed it down the route and went too fast and so too far, then was worn out, the other two I went out too fast and blew up – to the point on Thursday of sitting by a park in tears. ugh) and I had myself GIVING UP of all things. But I had a nice relaxed no pressure run with friends today and had a great time and did not exhaust myself. So remember there are those kinds of runs, too, I suppose.

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    1. Thank you lady! I am sure you are right–racing with a bit more consistency, whether it’s at night or otherwise, will get me more used to it all. That’s why we need Parkrun here so desperately! I wish I had the energy to put into pushing to get it here–I just don’t have the time, I need someone else to take the lead ;).
      I think I will check out that runners world calculator you speak of–less to “should” myself, and more for curiosity! thank you!

      So sounds like both of us bomb when we go out too fast! I’ll stop doing it if you will ;). It’s actually not something I usually fall into but the 5k is just over and done so quickly!
      Glad you had such a great run with friends–those are the best! x

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  5. First – dang, girl – an 8:40 pace?! That’s awesome!!!!! 🙂 🙂 🙂 And then to meet and exceed that pace in your speedwork too?! Even more awesome! 5Ks are difficult! It’s definitely a different type of running from than what you do in a half or a full.

    I agree that night races tend to mess with you. I have never had a successful night race (granted there have only been 2 or 3) but every single time they’ve seemed WAY difficult and my stomach has rebelled. No matter how careful I was with what I ate before/during/after. I’m signed up for a night race that’ll happen in October and I’m 100% committed to treating it as a “fun run” and not worrying about my time! Also bonus that it’s a trail race so I figure there’s plenty of places to step off into the woods to deal with tummy troubles unseen if need be!! haha!

    As for strategies that have worked for me during a race, here’s what I got:
    – Like you, I tend to favor run progression and tempo runs in training. I treat a race exactly the same: let the first mile be a settling in mile since it’s usually crowded and you need to get in a good spot, and then run the next half of the race as steady as possible. At the halfway mark I can usually tell if I have it in me to pick up the pace (thus turning it into a sort-of progression run) or if I need to stay steady. Either way I try to pick up the pace in the last mile or two mainly by playing the game of passing people one-by-one. I’ve used this strategy at every race that I’ve ever won an age group award.
    – I also need a good distraction. I usually try to download a good funny audiobook and save it for the race. For some reason the comedic memoirs distract me from the pain!
    – I can totally relate, too, to what you said about not feeling like you had a chance to get your head in the race before you started running. I always need that too! I have to be in the right mindset. Honestly, this goes for most hard workouts too!

    I also 100% get the frustration too when your husband runs as fast as you do with less training. It’s infuriating! I had a boyfriend once who I ran a 13K race with (a night time one, at that!). He had done, oh maybe, 4 or 5 easy runs in the weeks leading up to the race – like, bare minimum. Once we passed the start line and started going he totally shot off like a rocket! Like it was effortless! Easy peasy! And here I was: the one who had “trained” and I was on the strugglebus. I was so mad at him!! hahah!!

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    1. I am glad other people are concurring that 5ks are hard! There’s really no time to settle in and get into a rhythm–you’ve just got to GO! It’s definitely not my strongest distance, but I think it’s fun to try to get better at it too.
      I think you’ve got the right idea in treating that night race as a fun run–they are just really different and very unpredictable!

      I have to say I really love your picking off people one by one strategy ;). It’s easy to visualize and i feel like it would make the time go by nicely cause you’re creating short term goals for yourself.
      I am big into podcasts while running–but have yet to try an audiobook. When I listen to audiobooks on the train and stuff sometimes my mind wanders so I have to rewind and hear something they said–and i just feel like that would frustrate me while running, lol. I guess i feel that less with podcasts cause i figure i can miss some of what they say and still get the gist!

      I also agree with you about needing that mindset for the hard workouts as well as the races–it’s feels impossible to really lift hard and do tough speedwork if I don’t have that intention and focused energy.

      And yes–I am proud of my hubs but totally get frustrated and envious when I am on that strugglebus and he is easing through–SO annoying!!
      Loved and related to all your thoughts here girl, thanks! x

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  6. You had a great race and super fast training run! You got the 10k. No problem!!! Sounds like you and hubby had a perfect evening. I always feel better about a race AFTER the race than when I am running it. Racing HURTS! 🙂

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  7. Hey Cat- I run with Bluetooth headphones on. For me it does make a difference because my playlist isn’t dull for me. It is a good mix of rock, hip hop, and instrumental music. I would recommend setting a playlist that mentally takes up your energy- ie rock for 4 hrs straight is a bad idea lol. I’ve also started running late evenings in order to chill out and enjoy the night scene. Kinda hard for me though after putting in tons of work during the day only to run at night.

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    1. I am a bluetooth girl too Petey, they are the best! I do love how i feel after those night runs but I do find it is tougher to get out there at the end of a long day–running first thing in the morning is so much easier for me!

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  8. Running an evening race is different! Not sure what it is, but it’s definitely different. And way to go on those negative splits! I typically start off slow to just let my body and mind get in the groove…like yeah we’re doin’ this thing…. try to increase my speed once I feel warmed up. A 5k is harder ’cause I think it’s pedal down from the start and no time to relax.. just focused running. Don’t forget, really, have fun! and like I tell myself in races, the world won’t stop spinning based on my performance 😛

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    1. Thank you lady! I am not sure I appreciated those negative splits until I tried to run them again yesterday–wasn’t so easy!
      I am like you! Like to start out slow to get my body and my mind into it. But you’re right, in a 5k, there’s not really time for that! I think I need to find a way of tricking my mind/body into feeling like it’s getting that time, even if it’s only a couple of minutes! Or maybe the 5k distance is not for me?
      You’re right though–it’s all fun, it’s really not that serious! I think I just like nerding out on all these little details!

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      1. I guess because as a distance runner, 3 miles is a time I am usually settling in and getting comfy with what’s in front of me. I learned on my last 5k ( ironically my duathlon) if I spent some time actually doing some light jogging for awhile before hand I was much more prepared to engage in the race. I think a 5k is a good race to practice and work towards. It just makes you train harder 😉

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  9. It’s frustrating when you know you’ve been training hard but then you have a run or a race that makes it seem like you haven’t been doing anything! But I’ve found that those days are anomalies. My mind tends to focus on the 10% that isn’t going well rather than the 90% that is going well.

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    1. I think you’re right Rachael, it can be hard to focus on that 90%. I feel like I want to start training my mind to do that though–so much healthier than always focusing on the 10%! Although I guess some would argue that keeps you going after it, huh?

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  10. It took me quite a while to get used to the ‘racing’ mindset. The more I get used to running in events with lots of other people, the more normal it becomes so its easier to focus on the actual performance. Pre-race rituals and prep is really important to and you can lock down what works better as you do more events. Evening events are weird aren’t they! I’ve got quite a few coming up as its summer season – I’ve heard a lot of people say the body is in a more optimal state to perform later in the day, I’m not sure if that’s true or not but I struggle with keeping myself busy in the hours leading up to it. Morning races are just ‘get up and go’ without having to think too much.

    My mindset is to go out steady and finish stronger, but I’m starting to have a bit more flexibility in this approach. Particularly in the shorter distances, my fastest 5Ks recently have started with a fastest first mile and then slowed slightly in two/three. The course also makes a big difference – if the first half of the course has a lot of downhill, I’m likely to push harder going down as I’ve got gravity on my side and am going faster with less effort (which naturally would lead to a slower second half if the elevation is flat or uphill). And I’d definitely say there’s a different mindset between running and racing. I’m a bit more aware of the people around me in a racing setting.

    In terms of headphones, these days I’m almost always without. I really think there’s a big benefit in being more aware of your surroundings, both for safety and getting in a zone. It also tends to keep my heart rate a shade lower and you can tune in on pacing easier as you hear your own footfall a lot easier. That said, there is definitely a place for headphones. When I’m backlogged on podcasts I like to listen to them on a long run – helps me take in some interesting info and can be motivating during long runs in otherwhise challenging/demotivating conditions.

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    1. I am glad someone else can second my opinion on the evening events–they really are different! Although I think people are actually right when they say your body is in a more optimal state–you are definitely more warmed up and looser. If I ever do a yoga class in the afternoon or evening instead of the morning, I am SHOCKED at how much more flexible I am–all the juices have been moving through all day and I am much more limber. I am sure it works the same for running!
      I think I am going for your approach in my 10k–start out steady and finish stronger. I think you are a really strong and talented runner though so you can definitely afford to play around with different strategies (me, not so much!–starting out fast just leaves me gassed!)

      I’m all about the podcasts–love me a long run with some podcasts!

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  11. I have a somewhat competitive nature, and it’s often hard for me to remember I’m not actually racing against the people around me. I use the Nielson Challenge (a 2-mile run every month) as my yardstick, and I do actually care about my times for that race.

    I don’t run with head phones. A coworker who just finished running the Colfax Marathon uses music and headphones — I readily acknowledge to her (and you) that I’m not running the kinds of distances. That may be a factor.

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    1. It’s interesting, I am right there with you on being a competitive person–but for some reason I feel more competitive with myself than with people I am running around. I just know how many variables come into running so I don’t usually judge myself against other people. (Although I am not going to lie, once I start running, there is often one person i pick out that i want to beat, lol).
      All you guys running with more headphones! I think everyone’s a bit more spiritual than me!!

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    1. I feel like if you’re good without it, then that’s great. I actually run more with podcasts than with music–they let me get lost in my thoughts and pondering in a way that silence does it. Somehow silence is louder ;).

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  12. I’m still very much a running newbie with only one 5k under my belt, but I know for me, it’s just about running. I have a race in July coming up and I don’t want to try and beat a time. I just want to run without stopping to walk and finish the course. I really want a finishers medal too because I didn’t get one at my first race. Also, I run with music. I think I could run silently, in fact my first 5k I did because my phone messed up and wouldn’t play after the first few songs. I’ve come to associate my particular ‘running mix’ with running. So I hear these songs that I listen to over and over and I get motivated to keep going. In fact, I try not to listen to these songs when I’m not running. By the way, what app do you use to track your miles? I didn’t quite recognize that screenshot you posted.

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    1. I think “just running” is one of the most beautiful ways to run Cathy. It’s gonna be an amazing feeling when you get across that finish line and get that medal!
      I also totally get associating certain songs with running, I do that too–and I think I also like to “save” them for running ;).
      And that screenshot comes from the Garmin app that is associated with my watch!

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  13. I’m currently not running, but figured I’d chime in on the music topic.
    I definitely prefer music but have also tried to run without and was thrilled to learn that it was actually possible.
    For one particular half marathon I ran most of it without music (9 miles I think) and then when I needed that extra push I popped in my headphones. In that instance, it was just what I needed.
    Sometimes music is really such a great way to amp yourself up.

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    1. Hey Jessica, glad to have you! I totally know what you mean about music amping you up–that’s what it does for me too. That’s actually why I can’t listen to it usually until the last mile or two of a run (or maybe a bit more if it’s a longer distance). I hear certain songs and they push me–it’s great, but not if I’ve got quite a bit to go! I actually use podcasts mostly, those just kind of help me get lost and keep steady. You talking about that half marathon you ran reminded me of my marathon. I listened to podcasts for some of that–and went with nothing for a lot of the time. But the last like hour–I had music on the whole time– i feel like I wouldn’t have made it without it!

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  14. my best races were when i tried to go moderately hard from the beginning, trying to gauge it so i didn’t slow down at the end, but also not having too much reserve left. i would typically go fast for the first third, slow just a little in the middle third until i was sure i wasn’t going to crash, then play the Killers song “I’ve got soul but I’m not a soldier” in my head and push, push, push to the end. i still do that, but i’m not as fast as i used to be.

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    1. I think this is a good plan Joseph. I have run a 5k before where it was over so quickly and I realized I had never really put my foot on the gas. That was as bad of a feeling as going out too fast and being spent too early.
      My goal is to find that moderately hard pace and be able to stick with that fora bit before pushing it. Perhaps that’s what those tempo runs are all about, eh?
      Also, love The Killers ❤

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  15. i always used to run and race with headphones until recently. now i do long no pressure runs with them and race without them. I really find that the silence helps me listen to my breathing and keep that steady to power me on xxxx

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    1. Yeah it seems like a lot of people like the no headphones to concentrate on their breathing. I totally see how that makes sense! It’s funny cause I don’t feel like I am a person who needs to be “distracted” in other parts of my life–but for some reason it really helps me in running!
      Thanks for chiming in ;).

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  16. I think you did fantastic! And you learned a lot, even more important. I don’t need music in a race, but if I do have it I tend to run faster so maybe I should use it. I prefer podcasts in distance training. I usually go out too fast in short races and then slow down and then try to pick it up at the finish.

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    1. Thank you lady <3. And you are right, I did learn a ton–I think that if anything is one of the biggest takeaways–that there is a lot to learn from racing, and I like that!
      I listen to podcasts when I run as well–even with shorter runs I often don't listen to music till the last mile or so. Music gets me so amped up, it's hard to run that way all the time or for any sort of distance! Podcasts I can just sort of get lost in–all the sudden a few miles have flown by and I've barely noticed. I love that!

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  17. Since you asked, I always listen to music. My old iPhone the left speaker didn’t work so I only used right earbud. I got a new phone but continue this practice. I probably look a little insane but this way I can still hear what is going on in my surroundings. I run alongside an old highway so even though it’s not an interstate it can be busy. I always listen to Christian music stuff like Chris Tomlin. It’s my worship time in my head.
    I always start slow and finish fast. My last marathon my average pace was 13:42 but my last mile was 12:00. I never felt as good as I did that race. I tend to be in full on panic mode for two miles that I’m too slow and going to be left behind. So irrational but I just can’t make it stop. I think I prefer distance running for this reason. It takes almost three miles for me to get out of my head calm down and enjoy what I’m doing. A 5k is over at this point. Ha.

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    1. I totally get just having the music in one ear. I love the wireless headphones cause you can tap the on and off so quickly!
      Also, definitely connect with running being a spiritual time for you–it is for me too. Physical activity really heightens that for me I think.
      So you and I are both start slow and finish fast girls huh? I like it! I really need to focus on getting back to that in my next race!

      Like

    1. LOL, omg, I have so many friends that HATE talking while running. I get it, lol. It actually surprises me that I don’t mind it. I think i am all about being distracted when I run, so that’s part of it.
      And thanks lady–I feel strong. Body image stuff is going pretty well right now (with some work) thankfully <3.

      Liked by 1 person

  18. Just can’t run ‘naked’ I’ve tried it and it doesn’t work for me one bit. Give me a tune or two and I can lose myself in the music and not stress about my breathing, speed, aches and pains etc.

    When I did all of my only 2 Park runs it felt like a race to me and it felt rubbish because I couldn’t help but compare myself with them, even though I was older, less experienced etc.etc. So for me now I prefer my running – which is me, my cans and an occasional tune from His Purple Highness

    I’ve tried fartlek and intervals too as a training mechanism, in truth I’m a slow steady kind of gal. But my pace remains reasonably consistent whether its 5/10 or 15k. My ‘happy place’ is somewhere between 8 and 12kms, and that’s what I consider to be my ‘run’. Racing is for F1 drivers, not for a middle aged snail woman…. 🙂

    Liked by 3 people

    1. ❤ ❤ <3. You always manage to make me giggle! I too don't imagine running totally naked would be all that comfortable (the ladies bouncing is never fun, lol).
      I know you have your tunes running, always love your playlists!
      That's interesting what you say about parkruns–everyone has their own way right? I like a bit of competition cause i think it pushes me a bit, but i never feel like i compare myself too much ( I compare myself to others for other things but not as much in running for some reason!)
      Amazing that you have found your happy place in running ❤

      Like

  19. Dustin Lovell

    For long runs, I wear headphones unless I’m running somewhere new. I need something to keep me going when it gets monotonous. For short to medium distance runs and speed workouts I don’t wear headphones because I need to concentrate on my breathing.

    From that screenshot, it looks like your training is working. Great read!

    Liked by 2 people

    1. That makes sense Dustin, it can definitely be harder to concentrate on your breathing with something in your ears. That’s what my hubs likes to do as well. I am fine with concentrating on breathing during yoga, but for some reason it drives me crazy while running!
      Thanks for the encouragement–yes, I think training is going alright ;).

      Liked by 1 person

  20. It sounds like you did well. My 5k times have dropped since fall due to a lack of consistent training on my part. I’m now hitting it hard with a minimum of three runs a week to try to get my times back to sub-9 minute miles. As for music: I ran in Dublin and Inverness over the past two weeks without music, and those runs were so much harder because of it. When I got home, I ran with music and VOILA! I took 1:30 off each mile. Just because of music! Go figure.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. I am glad I am not the only one! Having something going on in my ears makes such a difference for some reason (i guess blocks out the garbage that tells me how hard what I am doing is!).
      I will hopefully be running in Dublin soon <3.

      Liked by 2 people

      1. Running by the river there is amazing! There are nice long stretches to run. There’s also some very nice, large parks worth running in as well. The one by the main hospital there is simply breathtaking.

        Liked by 2 people

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