I figured it was time to write a post about my running progress and how I’m feeling. I mean, I rarely write about my feelings. It’s almost like I’m an emotionless robot. I know how tired you all must get of me droning on in my flat line, emotionless state. Also, if you don’t understand my sarcasm at this point, we may never be friends in real life. I know you are horrified at that thought. (Sarcasm again, duh.)
Anyway, when I first started working with Coach Jon back at the end of October I was slogging along at a less than optimal pace. (I mean to say less than optimal pace for my goals. I try not to think of paces as “slow” because it’s all relative and I think every pace is fast to someone somewhere.) As I continued working with Jon and using Training Peaks (TP) my threshold pace (T-P) continued to improve. The threshold pace in Training Peaks is the “maximal running pace an individual can sustain for an effort of approximately 45 – 60 min in duration.”

There’s a big long science formula on how TP figures out this number and I feel it’s fairly accurate with good race conditions and proper training. Training Peaks typically does an auto update based on it’s own calibrations, but Coach Jon incorporates his own method because TP requires a run of at least 20 minutes for an update. (Coaches all use TP a bit differently so don’t start going off on me if you’re a coach. Ha.)

After a few weeks of tempo work and longer runs my T-P bumped to 8:40. This made me happy and yet I knew I could go faster. A month later, after my Turkey Trot 5K, it bumped to 8:12, now we were talking. I really started to enjoy seeing these jumps, even if it did mean all of my training paces would increase.
I think the T-P further decreased after the Best Damn Race 10K and that got me down to an 8:04. I’ve been sitting at that one since February. Until yesterday…
Last week I noticed on my plan that I had a two mile time trial scheduled for Thursday. I went around and around trying to decide where to run these two miles. I didn’t want to run on a track because I knew I’d start paying to much attention to each lap and psyching myself out. (Again, so emotionless.) I got a lot of good advice from my morning running buds and Jon and finally decided to just use my regular route and do a mile out and back, avoiding as much incline as possible. I didn’t care about the 180 degree turn. I wanted to run on home turf where I know every single crack in the sidewalk.
Yesterday morning I was nervous. To me, two miles all out is a bit nerve wracking. I met up with three of my AM running buds and let them know my plan as they were all doing something different. I jogged my warm up mile, took a little break for water, and off I went. I was hoping for 7’s but since it was fairly warm out, I knew it would be closer to 7:15-7:30 average. I clicked off mile one at a 7:15 and hung on for dear life on the second mile. I hit that one at a 7:22. I’m pleased with this, but again, I know I have faster in me.
I immediately shot Jon a text to see if I got an increase, er decrease, or whatever. I SO look forward to these because it’s tangible progress in my book. And after Jon did his magical calculations I’m now down to a 7:56 threshold pace. And I quote Coach Jon, “That 7 in front is BIG!!!” I whole heartedly concur.
Seeing this progress only fuels the fire to keep at it and work hard. As they always say, goals have to be measurable and every day I get a step closer to mine. Lobster Brooks I am coming for you…
Have a great weekend!