What is it about the track?

I did a tempo run on the Bronxville track this morning. Sort of. Due to residual tiredness from Sunday’s hard run plus the usual (and by now quite tiresome) factors of heat, humidity and wind, it ended up turning into another marathon pace run, since I couldn’t run fast enough to hit the tempo paces.

I realized today that I hate running on the track. I hate it. Yes, “hate” is a strong word. It’s the word I want: Hate. I hate the track.

Why is it that I can run +/- 7:00 minutes per mile in a race or during a longer run on the road, with hills even, but I have so much trouble managing that pace on a nice, flat track? I think it must be mental. Going round and round, knowing exactly how fast (or, in my case, how slow) you’re going, orange and white, orange and white, orange and white. Gack.

I wonder if it’s possible to become a very fast marathon runner without ever setting foot on a track.

3 Responses

  1. A track is not so easy and you makes long days on work and same rest makes you strong!.
    And no pic off your hair cutt??.
    Groet Rinus.
    http://rinusrunning.punt.nl/

  2. It might be mentally challenging, but the advantage of a track is that you can (try to) run at an even pace, because a lap has a predefined distance (compare this to GPS, footpods or whatever you have). Try to focus on one lap at a time and if you don’t hit the pace (or don’t get within the pace range) just try to hit it in the next lap. Don’t compensate for running too slow in the previous laps.

    Looking at your paces, we are comparable runners and I had to do some sort of ladder workout, doing 14 laps, 11 laps, 8 laps and 3 laps all at 7:00 pace. When you are doing the 14 laps, you can look forward that this is the biggest chunk of work, after that it is just going to be easier.

    So think of it as part mental training.
    And I also don’t love this type of workouts.

    Btw, you’re doing a lot of miles!

    Ralph

  3. I’m with Rinus: hair cutt!

    Even when I ran track, we all hated the track.

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