Pacing Question(s) (Read 861 times)

    I have been running off and on for a year now. Trying to get back into it after a winter off. I have a question regarding pacing. So far, I've only raced 5k's. My 5k pace currently is around 7:15. When I do a typical training run of the various types, where should my training pace be? Currently, I tend to run my tempo runs about 7:30-7:40 pace, and all my other runs tend to be 7:45-8:00 pace. Do I need to slow down on my other runs? It seems like I should maybe run slower, but for some reason running slower seems harder to me, i.e. if I try to run my 3 miles at a 8:45 pace, I'll have a harder time finishing it than if I run at a 7:45 pace. Anyone else feel this way? Is my form just bad when I'm slow, or what? Anyway, insights welcome.

    Imminent Catastrophe

      You might try heart rate training. There are lots of books out there describing the training zones you should aim for. The heart rate monitor is an excellent tool to maintain the correct effort during your runs. You don't have to wear the monitor all the time, once you get a good feel for your effort level during running. BTW if you 5k at 7:15 then, yes, 7:45-8:00 is probably too fast for long runs, which should be aerobic. For comparison, I run my long runs about 2 min/mile slower than my 5k time. It's frustrating at times to go that slow but that optimizes my aerobic training. Heres a starter: http://www.rrca.org/resources/articles/slowdown.html I don't necessarily buy into his theory that NO speed or tempo training should be done, but the aerobic training is quite effective.

      "Able to function despite imminent catastrophe"

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        You ran a 5K at 6:39 pace last summer. I don't think you need to slow down on your easy days, I just think you need to run more.

        Runners run.

        I've got a fever...

          Plugging your most recent 5k (which is your best indicator of current fitness) into the McMillan Running Calculator, we get these paces: Endurnace Workouts Pace/Mile Recovery Jogs 9:53 to 10:23 Long Runs 8:53 to 9:53 Easy Runs 8:53 to 9:23 Stamina Workouts Pace/Mile Steady-State Runs 7:57 to 8:11 Tempo Runs 7:37 to 7:57 Tempo Intervals 7:31 to 7:47 It also lists paces for interval workouts, if that's something you're planning on doing. I do agree with mikeymike that you need to build up your mileage a little bit -- this will increase your aerobic base.

          On your deathbed, you won't wish that you'd spent more time at the office.  But you will wish that you'd spent more time running.  Because if you had, you wouldn't be on your deathbed.

            Thanks for the feedback guys! That McMillan site was pretty helpful. I think the bottom line is, I run all my runs like they are stamina runs, and pretty much don't do any at endurance pace, to use his terms. Later in the season, I add some speedwork, but still don't do much in the way of endurance workouts. Since I only run 5K's, I can probably get by doing that, but from everything you guys have referenced, it sounds like if I do include slower runs, and in particular slow down my long runs, I might actually end up improving faster. And I will be upping my mileage gradually. Last year when I was fully into the season, I was running about 18 miles a week. This year I'm going to shoot for 25-30, and hope to see a marked improvement in my times. I'm just getting started now, hence my weak mileage at this point. I am chronically plagued by shin splints, so I try to build my mileage very slowly. Thanks again!

            I've got a fever...

              Just remember to increase your weekly mileage by only 10% at a time. This helps get your body acclimated to the change and helps prevent injury. Ignore the fact that my last 2 weekly increases were 56% and 25%; i.e. do as I say, not as I do! Big grin

              On your deathbed, you won't wish that you'd spent more time at the office.  But you will wish that you'd spent more time running.  Because if you had, you wouldn't be on your deathbed.

                Listen to Mikey, he knows what he's talking about. Especially since you're running in the flatlands Smile (I grew up west of Toledo, so I know how hard it is to find a hill around there)

                  Spencer (no, I'm not a stalker)... If you want to get together with some local runners, check out this board...friendly local crew around here. http://www.davesrunning.com/forums/showthread.php?t=978 There's usually a thread like this every week that schedules out where people are meeting. Good luck getting back down to your PR range.
                    I second that from Mishka. Check out that site and join us on a couple of runs. It will do a world of good. plus you can talk to quite a few experienced runners/racers. Plus, there is a user group from Toledo on this site if you want to get in touch. db
                    Runners around the state are getting better today ...are you one of them? TRAIN HARD
                      I have shin problems too. I found that when I slowed down, I can run farther and more often. Also, ice is my new best friend.