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Need help with paces (Read 443 times)

     

    I had trouble figuring out my "easy pace" for a long time, until I learned that it really should be considered "easy effort", that's a big difference. Now I consider easy as: conversational, able to sing a few words at a time, mind can wander around and not pay attention to breathing or my legs, watch Netflix and follow the subtitles without falling off the TM ... etc

     

    This is money.  Depending on the course, weather, how much sleep I had, the day or work, footing, ice, snow, the speed of an unladen swallow, etc, my easy pace varies wildly--but the effort does not.

    "When a person trains once, nothing happens. When a person forces himself to do a thing a hundred or a thousand times, then he certainly has developed in more ways than physical. Is it raining? That doesn't matter. Am I tired? That doesn't matter, either. Then willpower will be no problem." 
    Emil Zatopek


    Not dead. Yet.

       

      I had trouble figuring out my "easy pace" for a long time, until I learned that it really should be considered "easy effort", that's a big difference. Now I consider easy as: conversational, able to sing a few words at a time, mind can wander around and not pay attention to breathing or my legs, watch Netflix and follow the subtitles without falling off the TM ... etc

       

      Why?

      How can we know our limits if we don't test them?

      meaghansketch


        I don't mean to hijack the thread, but I have been wondering about this "easy" pace recently as well.  Been thinking about starting a thread, but I'll just latch on here instead.  If I run "easy" according to McMillan based on predicted 5k race time, it is not conversational.  It's not hard either, but it's not totally comfortable.  I kind of like running at that pace though; it feels good, and after 4 or 5 miles it feels challenging.  I say "predicted" because my fitness has improved since my last race/time trial.

         

        I feel like I'm making too big a deal out of this, because I bring it up every time McMillan gets mentioned, but he's not the only game in town for 'correct'/recommended paces, and in the past year he sped up his recommended easy paces quite a bit, especially for slower runners.

         

        I don't have a good reference for his old paces, but they used to be much closer to the Jack Daniels VDOT paces.  My 'easy' pace according to Daniels should be around 10:00-10:20/mile; according to McMillan it should be somewhere between 9:00-9:50.  (the fast end of that range is only slightly slower than my HM PR)

         

        So you might want to check what the Daniels recommended pace is (google VDOT calculator) or just go by what feels right.

        Up next: Front Runners New York LGBT Pride 5-mile  06/28 |  NYRR Team Championships: Women (5M) 08/02

        Goal race: NYCRUNS Haunted Island 10K 10/25

          So is Marathon pace supposed to be super easy?

           

          No. That's why I asked above what your easy pace is. For me, marathon pace is not at all easy--even if I went out right now and ran 1 or 2 miles at that pace, it would be a somewhat uncomfortable pace for me, and it's about 90 seconds per mile faster than my normal easy run pace.

           

          Marathon training plans generally assume your marathon race pace is faster than your easy run pace, and so doing workouts at this pace is harder than easy runs.

           

          If you are a total beginner and your projected marathon pace is actually slower than your easy run pace, then I would just do everything at your easy pace for now (9:30-10:00).

          Runners run.

            Because, especially for beginners, the pace is a constantly moving target.  The effort level is not a moving target (or at least resists movement to a far greater degree).  The effort level is what makes the workout accomplish its purpose.

             

             

            Why?

            "When a person trains once, nothing happens. When a person forces himself to do a thing a hundred or a thousand times, then he certainly has developed in more ways than physical. Is it raining? That doesn't matter. Am I tired? That doesn't matter, either. Then willpower will be no problem." 
            Emil Zatopek

              As for the side conversation that has spun up regarding easy pace--easy pace is the one area of training where the calculators are the LEAST useful. Just run easy based on effort, don't try to hit a certain pace on your easy days.

              Runners run.


              HobbyJogger & HobbyRacer

                 

                I feel like I'm making too big a deal out of this, because I bring it up every time McMillan gets mentioned, but he's not the only game in town for 'correct'/recommended paces, and in the past year he sped up his recommended easy paces quite a bit, especially for slower runners.

                 

                I don't have a good reference for his old paces, but they used to be much closer to the Jack Daniels VDOT paces.  My 'easy' pace according to Daniels should be around 10:00-10:20/mile; according to McMillan it should be somewhere between 9:00-9:50.  (the fast end of that range is only slightly slower than my HM PR)

                 

                So you might want to check what the Daniels recommended pace is (google VDOT calculator) or just go by what feels right.

                 

                That's interesting. I just tried mine, and indeed, McMillan's E range says 6:49-7:48, and Daniels calculator E number says 7:48. McMillan's is substantially faster.

                 

                For the record, my easy runs tend to be slower than that - substantially slower when done in group runs (which I enjoy).

                It's a 5k. It hurt like hell...then I tried to pick it up. The end.

                xor


                   

                  Why?

                   

                  Because it gets to the point of what "easy" is supposed to mean in this context.  It has to do with how a particular run feels.  And a run at pace x some days feels easier than other days.  Maybe because of the hard workout I did yesterday.  Maybe because I didn't eat well.  Or I worked late yesterday.  Or because I'm sick (and, ahhhh, may have not consciously realized it yet).  Or because the martians attacked.

                   

                  Point being, if a run at pace x is supposed to be an easy run, but you are laboring to do it, then it is not, technically, an easy run.  Easy is about perception of effort (aka, feel), not your watch.

                   

                  The semantics of "easy" can be tricky though.  Easy is not always "slow" for me.  It is just never "hard".  Some days my easier runs are a bit faster than other days.  Some days, slower.  I don't sweat it.

                   

                  (which gets to the idea that some people split up "easy" into finer gradations than I do.  Which is cool.)

                   

                    sdizazzo.  Looking at your log I would say that you are running your easy runs too fast.  Your ran a 5K race at 8:23 pace and a few days later ran 2 miles that you logged as easy at a 8:33 pace.  Either you didn't even come close to racing that 5K or your easy run was WAY faster than easy.

                     

                    I'm a newbie as well, but my understanding is that running at a truly easy effort for most of your runs will actually help you get faster quicker than if you are running them all at a more moderate effort.  If you are running most days for sure.  If you are only running 2 or 3 times a week, maybe running most of your runs at a moderate effort may allow you to get faster quicker, but I'm not sure.

                     

                    My 5K PR pace is over a minute faster than yours, but my easy run pace is 30 to 60 seconds slower than yours.  Everyone is unique, but it sure seems like you are running your easy runs too fast to me.

                    Age: 46 Weight: 208 Height: 6'2" (Goal weight 195)

                    Current PR's:  Mara 3:48:09; HM 1:43:26; 10K 44:51; 5K 21:27


                    Not dead. Yet.

                      Point being, if a run at pace x is supposed to be an easy run, but you are laboring to do it, then it is not, technically, an easy run.  Easy is about perception of effort (aka, feel), not your watch.

                       

                      I get what an easy effort run should be, but I am more wondering why most runs should be done at that effort.  "Easier" is, well... easier for me to understand than "easy", but if you can hold a faster than conversational pace most days without affecting your other runs, why not?


                      I feel like if I had been running at conversational pace for the last six months my times wouldn't have improved as much as they have.  I am open to the idea that I am totally wrong though.

                      How can we know our limits if we don't test them?

                         

                        I get what an easy effort run should be, but I am more wondering why most runs should be done at that effort.  "Easier" is, well... easier for me to understand than "easy", but if you can hold a faster than conversational pace most days without affecting your other runs, why not?


                        I feel like if I had been running at conversational pace for the last six months my times wouldn't have improved as much as they have.  I am open to the idea that I am totally wrong though.

                         

                        If you aren't doing any workouts then running faster than a conversational pace is fine, but you're also limiting how much you can improve that way. Generally, in order to make your hard days harder you have to keep your easy days easier.

                        Runners run.

                           I get what an easy effort run should be, but I am more wondering why most runs should be done at that effort.  "Easier" is, well... easier for me to understand than "easy", but if you can hold a faster than conversational pace most days without affecting your other runs, why not?


                          I feel like if I had been running at conversational pace for the last six months my times wouldn't have improved as much as they have.  I am open to the idea that I am totally wrong though.

                           

                          This is not an answer but is what worked for me. Running easy allowed me to run more days a week, and I think running more slower was more beneficial to me than running less faster when I started running.


                          HobbyJogger & HobbyRacer

                            I tried googling, and here's an article arguing that slower running has the advantage of being "gentle stress" and kind of like "active recovery":

                             

                            http://www.active.com/running/Articles/The-Benefits-of-Running-Slow

                             

                            (Not that I claim to be an expert enough to know if that is true.)

                            It's a 5k. It hurt like hell...then I tried to pick it up. The end.

                            irunsf85


                               

                              No. That's why I asked above what your easy pace is. For me, marathon pace is not at all easy--even if I went out right now and ran 1 or 2 miles at that pace, it would be a somewhat uncomfortable pace for me, and it's about 90 seconds per mile faster than my normal easy run pace.

                               

                              Marathon training plans generally assume your marathon race pace is faster than your easy run pace, and so doing workouts at this pace is harder than easy runs.

                               

                              If you are a total beginner and your projected marathon pace is actually slower than your easy run pace, then I would just do everything at your easy pace for now (9:30-10:00).

                               

                              So, just to be clear... Should I be running my scheduled "Pace" runs at 9:30-10:00 or my projected marathon pace ~10:20?  And I'm assuming my LR should be in the 11:00 zone?


                              Not dead. Yet.

                                Thanks for the link.  I'm betting that with time I will understand.  Like Wing has said it might allow me to run more miles per week.  It hasn't really caught up with me yet, but I'm not running that much either.  Maybe once I'm at 40 mpw I will be forced to be run easier.

                                How can we know our limits if we don't test them?

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