Tempo Run Gut Check (literally)

It’s the workout we all love to hate. It’s the workout that you like because it seems short, but you hate because it FEELS long. We essentially treat this 4 mile tempo run like a race. After our slow two mile warmup (22 min) and drills, we lined up at Mile Marker 0. I found myself towards the front of the pack in unfamiliar territory. I was out of my comfort zone at the start. My usual training partners, Amy and Ann, are on Spring Break this week so neither were there. I lined up with Jason and Thon, both of whom are incredibly fast, but neither were really trying to set a PR for this tempo run. I decided that I would pace with them as long as I could. My previous PR time was a 28:04 and I really had no intention of contending that effort today. However, as it always happens, when Gilbert says “GO,” I kick into race mode. The first thing I noticed was that it was actually light out this morning making it easier to see the trail. We didn’t have to be as cautious as usual. My first Mile felt slightly easier than it normally does. I adjusted into my breathing pattern faster. That’s a good sign.
Mile 1: 7:05 Jason shouted out a 7:14, but I knew he was wrong…Or was I wrong? I tried to just block it out and keep going.
Mile 2: 6:39 Holy crap–too fast, too fast. I was still with Thon and Jason although Jason was ready to pull away. Thon was about 5 yards ahead at the turnaround. I made a concerted effort to slow down ever so slightly.
Mile 3: 6:49 Still fast, but it looks like I’m going to beat my previous PR unless I just tank on the Final Mile. Jason was way ahead at this point and Thon kept looking back to make sure I was there. I knew he wanted to pick it up, but I sensed he was holding back for me. This was a tough mile for me, but I kept hanging on.
Mile 4: 6:58 It’s a good thing we didn’t have another Mile as I was definitely slowing down. I just kept trying to hover around the 7:00 mark. I didn’t hear anyone catching me on my heels so I made an attempt to catch Thon who was 10-15 yards ahead.
Mile .04 : 16 seconds
TOTAL 4.04 Miles: 27 min 49 sec (6:53 average pace)
It was an unheard of and unthinkable goal for me a year ago. I’m very happy. I, however, did not have the performance of the morning. That award goes to Thon for finishing his tempo (he got me by about 8 seconds), turning around to congratulate me and then walking to the side of the trail to puke. Ahhh…..the beauty of a tempo run. It really is a Gut Check.
5am 1/2 whole wheat tortilla with organic PB and sugar free jelly, small cup of coffee
7:45 am 1/2 cup leftover quinoa (so that I could empty the container and start the dishwasher)
9:45am cup of KASHI/Uncle Sam’s mixed with yogurt and blueberries, coffee and water.
1:00pm Pei Wei Chicken Lettuce wraps and some tofu and veggies with brown rice, fortune cookie
6pm-7:30pm Fabulous Thank You Dinner from the Freescale Austin Marathon (thanks John and Stacey Conley!) 1 small piece of bread, garden salad with vinagerette and blue cheese, salmon(with butter already on it), veggies, and 1/2 cup mash taters–only ate a bit…Dessert was half of a piece of raspberry chocolate torte.

4 thoughts on “Tempo Run Gut Check (literally)

  1. holy crap, you are running sub 7 minute miles. not bad for a former fattie. you are so cool i can barely stand it. i get chills every time i read your impressive workouts. oh to be like you. j

  2. Man, that’s some small text up there! And a G for a hotel room? Ouch. Then again, that’s less than NYC was… who ever said that fitness was cheap?

  3. BTW, a 21 minute 5K is pretty damn cool. And… I know its in your standard format, but having the Nutrition section right after Thon’s denutrition seemed a little weird 🙂 Seriously though, you are rockin’ these days. I don’t know that I’ll ever catch you!

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