Sunday, August 16, 2009
Sweat & Dust
The Towpath felt like a desert today, and I a desert fox. I met a dozen GRCers at Old Anglers Inn at 8:30am and then drove north to Riley's Lock to begin a point-to-point workout along the Canal (4 x 2-mile at 1/2 marathon pace with 1 mile rest). In a couple of hours we'd be back at Old Anglers nursing Gatorade in the shade, but first we had to get there. We warmed up for a couple of miles and then toed the line at Mile Marker 23. It was warm, but at least here we were in the shade. We hit MM22 in 5:01. We were fast, but I knew that this was in fact .95 miles, so no need to worry. When I returned home I calculated all the true distances and times and I've pasted them below. I did this by taking the actual distance and the time I ran for that distance and then equated it to match a true 2 mile time. In reality each rep is only off by just a few hundredths of a mile, so we're talking 7 seconds at best. Until I returned home, we had to rely on the rough mile markers and feel. And feel I did. After the second rep we were all panting and soaked to the bone with sweat. The sun beat down fiercely and we huddled under whatever shade we could in between sets. Reps 2 & 3 were particularly tough/hot. I attempted to cut down each rep by running a very minimal neg split while running each rep faster than the last. I tried to go all in on the last rep but imploded with a 1/2 mile to go.
MM23-21 - 5:16/5:27 = 10:43
MM20-18 - 5:12/5:17 = 10:29
MM17-16-17 - 5:19/5:20 = 10:39
(this was a out-and-back rep which enabled us to refuel with water and Gatorade at Swains Lock)
MM16-14 - 5:18/5:16 = 10:34
Average - 10:36. Approx 7-8 SLOWER than I need to average for the half marathon. This is a bit troubling. I didn't feel "on" today, and although it was a scorcher, I should have been a bit faster. Drinking Gatorade (even though it was watered down) seemed to push the stomach to the brink today and I deliberately tried to take reps 2 and 3 a bit easier.
GRCers - THIS is the site you should use to get true and accurate distance between the mile markers, but in short our "two mile" distances were 1.97, 1.99, 2.0 & 2.03.
Solid group effort today as I found myself running with a number of different people throughout the workout. This is the type of workout where companionship is key.
Sweat and dust...sweat and dust.