March 31, 2008

Back from the ski trip and back to killing my legs with long runs

I was exhausted when I got back from my ski trip, but had eaten like such a pig the past few days that there was no way I was going to skip a run. I really need to start getting the mileage up in time for the Brooklyn Half on May 3rd. Additionally, I have the Cooper River Bridge Run next Saturday, and even though it’s only a 10K, I’m a little worried about it: there is a pretty steep uphill (4% incline), and I’m not used to running in the heat anymore. So, I decided to go for a 10 mile today. Even though Boston is pretty flat, I figured a longer distance will help me with the shorter distance next weekend.

It was a gorgeous day, and there were a ton of runners out on the Esplanade. I headed across Dartmouth Street on my usual route, circled the Science Center, and then turned downriver. I passed the Mass Ave bridge (the turnoff of my first Esplanade run), and then eventually passed the BU bridge (turnoff of my last run). And I still kept going. I ran all the way to the JFK Bridge (not sure if the bridge is actually called that, but it’s at JFK Street on the Cambridge side), and then used that to cross back to the Boston side of the river. I discovered that the Doubletree where I’m staying on Thursday (couldn’t get a room at either the Westin or the Marriott) is right on the Esplanade, so I should be able to go for a nice run on Friday morning before my flight to Charleston.

As I was running back on the Boston side, I saw two runners ahead who had on Boston Marathon training gear. I managed to pass them and was thrilled – it gave me a sense of accomplishment, even though I know they could beat me at basically any distance if they were trying 🙂 Around that time, I came across a runner who was doing fartleks (where you run fast for a short distance, and then ease up for a bit, then repeat). I stayed at a steady pace, and found that even though he would sprint ahead, I usually passed him pretty quickly once he slowed down. Silly to compare myself, I know, but I’m competitive so I like to do that. Also, no one actually passed me the entire run (not counting fartlek guy, because I ended up ahead of him in the end).

I listened to Carrie Underwood albums while I ran, and near the end, “Lessons Learned” came on. It had a prety fast beat at 97 bpm, and I managed to run in rhythm to the beat for the whole song! It was definitely a good final push, and made me feel like I was making progress, since last time I ran I was struggling to keep up with Taylor Swift’s 89 bpm “Our Song.” I think I’m going to start picking one quick song to try to match the pace of on every run from now on.

Speaking of pace, I did really well – 9.9 miles in 86:51, which is an 8:46 pace! Looks like I’m starting to translate my speedwork into being a bit faster at longer distances, so hopefully I’ll be able to shave some time off my half-marathon next month.

And finally, the best part of running in Boston: the hotel hot tub to jump into as soon as I’m done running!

Hope everyone else had a great weekend 🙂 Congratulations to Christine, who ran her first marathon today! We did our first half marathons around the same time, and seem to run at a similar pace, so I tend to compare myself to her and am VERY impressed that she did a marathon while I’m still sitting on my butt messing around with 10 mile training runs 🙂 I’m eagerly awaiting her race report, and if you don’t already read her blog, you should check it out.


6 thoughts on “Back from the ski trip and back to killing my legs with long runs”

  1. Nice times!

    I’ve been wondering if there’s a way to figure out bpms of various songs, and it looks like you’ve done it. Mind sharing that info?

  2. I use the software program “BeaTunes,” which analyzes everything in your iTunes library and gives each song not only the bpm, but also the “color” of the song. Hard to explain what that means without trying it, but it makes it easy to make playlists that all kind of go together (kind of like Pandora). Hope that helps!

  3. So what are your thoughts on the whole mythical “your legs will retain more lactic acid” legend if you get in the hot tub after a run?

    I’ve personally never had any issues with it as long as I cool down good and have a nice long stretch.

    Great job on the pace! Keep it up 🙂

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