Scotland Run 10K

It’s more than a little ironic that my inexplicable improvement in running speed coincides with my plummeting interest in writing about it.

I got injured about a month ago after racing Coogan’s and the McCarren Park Track Classic back to back (and was already slightly injured going into both). Three days after that track race I did a track workout (15 x 300m at 67-71 per) and then the two days after that say “Injured.” For a few weeks I puttered along at around 9:15-9:45 pace on a hurting Achilles and hamstring (opposite legs). Then, last weekend, I got up on Sunday morning and felt pretty good, so I headed into Central Park thinking I’d run a 6 mile loop at around 8:30. Instead, I ran 10 miles at 7:46. No real pain to speak of. Well, alrighty then.

This morning I raced Scotland for the third year in a row. My 10K PRs are all on the roads and since I haven’t focused on that distance those are soft PRs. Still, I was happy to break 45:00 by one second last year. This year I ran 44:44, a 15 second PR. I didn’t look at my watch, save for the fourth mile, which is the one that hits the two huge hills at the top of the park. That was an abysmal 7:40. Between that and the very crowded and slow first mile, I figured I’d come in somewhere around 45:30. Needless to say, I was surprised and happy when I looked at my watch at the finish.

I have no idea what’s going on. I ran easy for three weeks at 31 mpw average. Then I did a hard 10 miler in the park, followed by a couple of moderate progression runs this week: a 6 miler ending with 2 miles at 8:10 on Tuesday followed by a 4 miler with one mile at 8:00 yesterday. I took Friday off. So some faster miles coupled with a mini taper of sorts. That seemed to work.

I will get back into “training” (whatever that means) after a week of recovery. I learned my lesson a month ago. The next race is the Mini 10K, which I’m not even sure I’m running since doing so means I will have to go to a three hour class immediately afterwards and inflict my rank self on a roomful of other humans. Baby Wipes will only get you so far.

5 Responses

  1. Maybe just more evidence that less is more when it comes to training and racing? I think that there’s an assumption among runners that effort is always positively correlated with performance; I’m learning that no, it’s not. And not only can you sabotage yourself by training too hard, you can also harm your race performance by trying too hard and caring too much.

  2. That’s nae a bad time fur a tin k Julie. Gude roon lassie!

    I’d say you probably had *some* training effect there from the pre injury races and the 300s. The long hard tempo 10 miler (excellent training those) after that. So a diet of ‘steady’ running and well spaced hard workouts might be a routine that serves you well.

  3. Why is wordpress making leaving comments such a pain?

    • Good insights on the training effect of my flaky training schedule. I will keep that in mind as I plan the next couple of months.

      The commenting issue may have to do with your having switched your handle, so my blog doesn’t know who you are. It should now, though. Let me know if you still have problems with it.

      Also, the phonetic Scottish was oot-stahn-den!

  4. I think it’s easier to write about things that are going badly than things that are going well. It makes for interesting reading too, often. But, glad to hear that your writing is getting more difficult at the expense of your running — nice work on the PR.

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