I soon realized I was so mentally prepared to run a 5k that could not physically take sitting around and doing nothing. Especially after having tapered yesterday.
Then SR had an idea: "I'll pace you to a 5k PR on the track". At first I was hesitant because I didn't know if I had it in me to run a PR without competition. Then again, my PR was so weak (19:46) compared to my recent interval times, that I almost felt I could run a PR in my sleep. Natti was willing to babysit for the hour or so that it might take with the warmup and everything, so we set out: 1 mile through the woods to the track.
At the track, SR had me doing all sorts of weird stuff: strides, run fast, run slow, shuffle, jump up and down and squat, hand springs, etc.. I honestly have no idea what these moves are called nor what their purpose is ... and trust me I was questioning why he was making me look like an idiot with all of this. Even he couldn't help laughing at my clumsiness. But I do agree with him that a long warm up for an old woman like me is essential! I knew I needed to do at least two miles at close to race pace just to get up to my potential fast speed. The plan was for him to run the 12 ½ laps at exactly 19.30 speed and then I would attempt to pull out ahead of him at the end for a PR.
After the first two laps, we could both tell the pace was too slow, so he very gradually just kept speeding up in front of me and I simply followed him. He would shout out the splits after every lap. My mile splits ended up being 6:03, 5:55 and 5:47. Plus the 0.1 miles of course adds up to 18:28!
I fell over apparently very dramatically at the finish - so happy I had done it. I had no idea I had it in me. I figured maybe a sub 19 - but a sub 18:30??? SR had shouted to me with two laps to go: "this is the fastest you will ever run a 5k in your life - so GO FOR IT!!!" I had asked him for no positive or negative feedback the whole run - just "empirical evidence" as I had said. But a little encouragement did help.
-the track is very shielded from wind
-the temperature was just around 50 F
- I "drafted" off of SR almost the whole way
- We didn't start out too fast
- I have been religiously doing interval training
- SR knows how to pace; he would speed up and slow down based simply on subtleties in my breathing pattern.
Thank you to my husband. I love you!
Ok. I'm glad I got that 5k out of my system. But does this explain why when I am lying in bed at night I feel like my heart stops - and I awake from a half sleep? Is it just a sign of being in good cardiovascular shape? Does this ever happen to you guys? My favorite chapter in "Once a Runner" is a sort of inner monologue with Quentin Cassidy where he is laying in bed and afraid of the way he heart is beating. "This is what it feels like to be in 4 minute mile shape" he thinks. Of course I'm far from that, but is this what is going on?
After an effort like that cleaning and playing soccer with the kids sure feels great! I love it that both Natti and Christian are so into soccer and both have teams the enjoy practicing with.
---- 2 marathons in 3 days----
Earlier this week, on Sunday and Tuesday, I ran a marathon with my friend Anette Fredskov Jensen and others. Anette lives right here in Næstved and has MS. She realized that running long distances seemed to make her symptoms disappear. She eventually decided to go for the world record in number of marathons run in a year: 366. She has now run 41 marathons in the last 41 days.
|Fredskov Marathon - Sunday Aug 19th. This one I ran in 3:44 with the company of Nicolas (light blue, upper left)|
|Fredskov Marathon - Tuesday Aug 21st. My time was 3:55. Annette is of course the one in red.|
The Fredskov Marathon is a nice route with a mixture of trails, roads, flats and hills. Here is Annette's website. What she is doing is incredible - and she says she has never felt better. Her times are getting faster, too. Yesterday she ran in 4:32. Thanks to her parents for opening up their house for these races! What a luxury to have a real toilet at the aid station!
---- "Clif" Bars ---
In other news, I getting closer to perfecting my imitation of the Clif Builder's Bar - chocolate flavor. We calculated that if I ordered them from Amazon.uk, they would cost over $5 a bar. Wuhoow. (okay, I just like the thought of you all trying to pronounce that). The only hard part was drying out tofu since they don't sell soy powder here. Any thoughts?