Looking back, I lied a bit in my last post, saying that if Friday’s run went well I would do a workout on the Saturday. Friday’s run generally sucked. My troublesome right leg was feeling crappy and I just ran about 5 miles before calling it in and not finishing off with the strides I had intended. So of course I still went ahead with my plan to work out Saturday.
To be honest though I did have a good excuse- it was too good an opportunity to pass up as many of Charlotte’s finest were meeting to parade their talents and polish off some final preparations leading up to Boston. Plus my family were out of town in Blowing Rock- I would be joining them later in the day- so I could sleep in before the 8am start and not have to rush back afterwards.
Most of the guys (and girls) were planning 10-15 miles at MP on the notorious PDS loop which measures at just under 4 miles and contains some good solid rolling terrain. Knowing that the fastest 4 or 5 of the 20 or so people who turned up for the workout would be shooting for a sub 6 minute pace, I decided I would try and hop in for the first lap and complete 4 miles in under 24 minutes. That, along with a 5 mile warm up and down, would give me a solid morning’s work if I could pull it off.
After a 3 mile warm up all 20 of us shot off to start the first (my only) loop. I soon found myself alongside Brad and Charlie at the front of the peloton and I settled in to what felt like a solid pace that I could maintain for the duration of the loop. Didn’t look at my watch at all, just assumed it was under 6 minute pace as I found myself at the front of the group. 23 minutes and change later I had finished my workout and pulled off to the side, waving through my fitter friends for whom the workout had just begun. I was pleased I had been able to average a 5:50 pace for the whole loop without noticeably hurting myself or feeling any pain during the run. Now admittedly this felt much more like a ‘as much as I had’ effort than a ‘tempo’ effort, but at this stage of my ‘comeback’ I’ll take it.
After a 2.5 mile cool down shuffle I waited by my car and stretched and refueled handing out fluids and encouragement as everyone else completed their own workouts. Tempo success indeed