Tuesday night and I’d arranged to run with Alan and Cris from work. Cris is a bit of a speed demon and Alan is experimenting with increasing his distances and pace…so tonight might be a bit more of a challenge than I was used to.
As they too are entered for the Great Scottish Run half marathon, I’d offered to show them most of the route with a 12.75 mile run over most of it. I’d planned for maybe 8 minute miles, nice and easy pace with maybe a kick finish towards the end?
I was a little apprehensive that they might run too fast for me (both of them just got excellent 5k PBs at the weekend there), but once we settled into a comfortable pace, I felt ok, good in fact. I was maybe letting them do most of the chatting, which maybe helped a little, but all in all I felt very comfortable at 7:45 ish pace at the start.
The first 6 or so miles were a nice steady 7.7 mph (7:45s), then from mile 8 onwards (downhill slightly to the Clyde) the pace picked up to around 8.1mph (7:23s). We decided once we were over the ‘finish line’ of the half marathon we’d slow the pace a little, but I knew we weren’t slowing all that much – I could feel we were running faster than 8 minute miles (7:44 for mile 11).
About a mile and a half from the finish when we turned onto Seaward Street (my usual quarter mile home straight) and I decided I’d push the pace a little and picked it up a little… fast down Seaward Street and around the corner. I know the route more than Alan and Cris and I ran most of the rest in front. They followed and we did the last mile in 6:40 🙂 (I stopped at 12.75 miles as I’d decided it was enough… whilst they pushed on and did the full 13).
(I also had a bit of a mind bender having to run past my flat and run the stretch I would normally walk to work….arg!!!!)
Now, I know I probably pushed it more than I would normally on a training run on my own, but this run just shows exactly what I’m capable of. A very strong negative split with a fast kick finish. It’s great to know I can run at that pace for so long and get the kick at the end to finish strongly.
And I could have held on for the last 0.35 miles if I’d forced myself to, but 12.75 was the number I had in my head and I stuck with it (plus Cris and Alan were speeding away from me 😉 and there was no way I was catching them after leading the pace for about half a mile).
My calves felt a bit tight on the run from about 9 miles in, and are tight now, but hopefully the milkshake I’ve just had will help me recover. 😀
Run: 12.75M, 1:36:50, Pace: 7:35, 7.9mph, Calories: 1274.
Ave HR: 159 (84%), Max HR: 179 (95%)
Comparison to this time last year…..
When I got home I had a look at my Garmin stats and was able to compare my run to an almost exactly similar run I did this time last year. It was a 13.1 mile run (Wk33 – 13.1M half marathon prep) I did over the same course, the same week last year.
Sure I was running with other people on this run, but I really feel like the marathons earlier in the year and running longer distances has really helped me to have enough left in the tank to beast the last parts of long runs and improve my times all round.
Here’s the differences between to very similar runs (distance and route wise):
Weight: I was 135lbs then, and now I’m 11lbs lighter (and faster it seems).
Time: I did 13.1 miles in 1:47:11 last year, now I (would have done it in) 1:39:18
(A pb beating my last half race time – in March by 7 seconds, and my last years GSR run time by 6 minutes! :-P)
Pace: Last year on the training run, my ave pace was 8:10, tonight it was 35 seconds faster per mile: 7:35.
Splits: Last year the run was a positive split: (1st 7 miles: 8:00, 2nd 7 miles: 8:24) this year it was a negative split: (1st 7 miles: 7:45, 2nd 7 miles 7:20) – am I getting better at this running malarkey??
Ave HR: 168 (88%) last year, this year it was (159) 9 beats (or 4%) lower.
(I’m 11lbs lighter so presumably my body is having to work less hard to carry my body around the same distance/route)
Max HR: My Max HR was more or less the same (179/180 / 95% – both at the end)
I wonder what the Great Scottish Run half marathon will hold for me (especially after running the 10k before it!)?
Who knows! Taper time for me anyway. 😀