October 23, 2012 by IowaTriBob
This week’s workout plan called for a 5K time trial to be conducted this morning. The past 2 months have been focused on endurance base training and technique drills. The pace has been slow but methodical and the drills seemed odd at first but the comfort and execution has improved week over week.
To say the least, I was excited and a little nervous about today’s plan. It felt a lot like waking up for a scheduled race event with butterflies and all.
The morning in Iowa couldn’t have been better. The past two days have been unseasonably warm and this morning was no exception. As I woke up it was in the low 60’s, mild humidity, and overcast skies – a perfect late October morning for a run.
I put on the gear, had my pre-race drink, and did some warm-up to loosen the joints and get some blood flowing in the legs.
I decided to do a familiar 5K route since I have some previous times recorded and know the course pretty well. It’s what I would consider an average route with some good hills, both gradual as well as a few mild inclines. After all, I didn’t want my first time trial to be too easy and wanted it to represent a more typical 5K road race.
I clicked the Garmin and off I went. It felt really good to pick up the pace as compared to my past several zone 2 slow bag runs. My feet felt light and I even had enough discipline to focus on some of my drills such as running with a higher cadence (my normal is 75-80 turnovers per minute but goal is 85-90). It felt good to not have to slow down as my heart rate steadily moved through zone 1 and zone 2.
There was a short period toward between mile 1 and mile 2 where my mind starting complaining about the pace and wanted to slow down to my zone 2 slower speed but my legs felt great and after a few choice swear words with myself, the thought was gone and I was back in the run. There were only a few of the inclines where I could feel a burn in the legs but as I would reach the top the burn would disappear and the legs return a solid feel.
As I saw the end of the route coming I knew I was in the home stretch and even had enough left to push the pace even harder as I finished. Looking back I think I might have even been able to start the push a little earlier in the run but overall I was very happy to have anything left in the tank at this point.
The end result was a new personal 5K record of 27:17 with overall average pace of 8:49 min/mile. For many runners this is still a fairly slow pace but for me it beat my previous race event personal best by 32 seconds. It’s extremely motivating to achieve this personal record and I have no doubt that had I pushed just a little harder, a little sooner, or if I had been running with others I could have easily broken the 27 minute mark. It also makes my 2013 5K goal of breaking 24 minutes seem just a little bit closer.
I look forward to getting back to some endurance and drill training to prepare for my next 5K time trial and hopefully another personal best.