I’ve been able to keep up my winter running so far this year. I’m hovering around 20 miles per week, and not forcing myself to go out if it just feels like to much. I try to do one speed workout per week, but it’s often not that long (e.g. 4×400, or 5×200).
At the local January Track meet, I ran a surprising 11:33.6 for the 2-mile. My goal had been to run under 12 minutes, and 11:33 was an awesome surprise. Afterwards a 5:30 mile seemed within my grasp and I started mentally prepping for that.
Yesterday was the February track meet, and I ran the mile. I had been trying to run my speed workouts at 5:20 pace to prepare for this race, but they were really hard. Even 200m at that pace felt like I was going all-out. So when I registered for the meet and entered my ‘predicted time’, I thought that my prediction of 5:25 was probably pushing it.
But somehow I did it. During the race I just focused on the huge digital clock at the start line, and made sure that every lap put me under 5:20 pace. Then with 2 laps to go I let all the rest of my gas burn and came through in 5:13!
This puts me in an interesting place going forward. I haven’t run 5:13 since high school, and my first time running that fast was probably my sophomore year (10+ years ago) . It feels like this could be the beginning of some really great racing for me. Or, it could be the beginning of a big downhill slump. In any case, 5:13 puts some new post-high school PRs in range… Eleven minute 2-miles and eighteen minute 5Ks suddenly seem possible again. That would be… That would be incredible.
I’m not too worried about the future though. I’m just going to focus on training frequency like before. I think if I can maintain a consistent schedule until it gets warm again I’m going to have a great running summer.