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Downtown Temple,NH

Wednesday, July 8, 2009

How do you get faster?

I have no idea. Well, maybe I have an idea but I'm not sure. My running is ok but not great. I don't feel fast at the moment and it seems to take way more effort to hold a decent pace.

My point of reference is how I felt back in Feb/Mar of this year. Running fast felt easy back then. For whatever reason I was running very well, running a half marathon at a pace that I can barely hold in a 5k today.

So what's different? Good question, but I hope I can figure it out.

My theory: tempo runs.
Back in January, February and a bit of March I was doing a fair amount of snowshoe running. Anybody who has run in snowshoes knows that even an easy run in snowshoes is taxing on the body. In fact, I'd say it closely resembles the effort of a tempo run...comfortably hard. As I recall, I was doing nearly 30% of my mileage on snowshoes which would equate to a heck of a lot of tempo running. So if you want to run faster I guess at some point you need to train faster.

Which brings me to my training today. Except for track once a week, all my runs are generally easy runs. I really think my problem is a lack of tempo running and I aim to change that. I even ran a 5m trail race on Monday as a tempo run (oh the horrors!). Well I ran most of it as a tempo run. Chris B. decided to pick up the pace over the last 1 1/2 miles and I foolishly tried to stay with him, running a bit harder than planned near the end.

So a steady diet of tempo running is on the training menu from now on.