Saturday, April 14th Morning Recap: LAB Pace Run

Saturday, April 14th
6:00am Pace Run

I’ve heard about the LAB route, but I’ve never run it. It’s a 3.5 mile loop in North Central Austin that follows Great Northern, White Rock and Shoal Creek Road. While it seems relatively flat, there are definitely some subtle climbs that sneak up on your heart rate when you least expect it.

My “A” Race right now is the North Trails Half Marathon in Dallas on May 20th. It’s the primary focus of my speed work these days. I’d love to run this Half-Marathon in 1hr32 or 1hr33min. That’s a 7:00-7:10 min pace per mile. Brisk for me, but I believe achievable.

My first pace test was set for Saturday morning on the LAB loop. My goal was to run the first 3 miles as a warm up and run the last 7 miles between 7:00-7:15 pace. Amy and I met Erine and Thon at our “race start.” Even though it’s a training run, we were treating it like a race. We set out our own water stops and lined up Gatorade along our tailgates. Erine and Thon are training for Grandma’s Marathon and were actually doing a 21 mile run—yikes! They were running 6 LAB loops to my 3 loops.

So, we all started together for our warm up lap. The first three miles were used to just get comfortable. Of course, I accidentally deleted all of my splits from this run, but I believe they were like a 9:20, 8:40 and then 8:20 pace. Erine had taken off after 2 warm up miles. I decided I was going to go for it. Amy and Thon weren’t sure they wanted to push the pace that fast.

Mile 4: 7:10
Mile 5: 6:44
Mile 6: 6:58
Mile 7: 7:42 (water stop)
Mile 8: 6:49
Mile 9: 7:16
Mile 10: 7:10

After my watched beeped at 10 miles, I used the last half mile back to the car as a cool down. Needless to say, I was absolutely thrilled at the effort. While it definitely difficult, I felt strong even when we were fighting the head wind on this very breezy morning. I never felt like I had to stop or slow down. Plus, my legs were feeling strong the entire time. While I felt good, I don’t think I could’ve pulled another 3 miles out at that pace. Interesting that I feel that way because I’m going to attempt a 10 mile pace run in two weeks.

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