Hit by a Pitch

A Note About Running

without comments

Don’t worry, I’m not going to talk about running all the time, because it’s not very interesting to hear about other people’s workouts.

For as long as I can remember, I’ve been working out for 60 minutes, 5 times a week. Two of my five weekly workouts are weights and the other three are cardio. The cardio workouts used to consist of a combination of running, walking, the elliptical, and very sporadic use of a stepmill. Eventually, I decided it would be a good idea to run for the whole 60 minutes more often than not, so I slowly built up my running time from 40 minutes or so to 60. I increased my time slowly because traditionally, I’ve had a lot of tummy/digestive issues after running and these were bound to surface if I increased my time or speed too quickly. (The good news is now I run all the time and this rarely happens any more.)

Thanks to Daily Mile, I can tell you that the first time I ran for 60 minutes was on September 9, 2011. That day, I ran 6.04 miles, which puts me at a 9:56 minute mile pace.

today's run

today’s run

I still did the occasional elliptical workout until I quit the gym last May. Since then, I’ve been running for 60 minutes, 3 times a week. I’m not really interested in running for longer than that (once in a great while, I’ll do a longer run — so far my longest is 10 miles) because I have other things to do, so now I’ve been working on increasing my speed.

For a while, increasing my speed was pretty easy. I’d shave a second or two off my time pretty much every run. It was great, but I realized that eventually, I wouldn’t be able to keep doing that. I mean seriously, I’m not going to be running 4-minute miles, ever. So at some point, I’m not going to be able to get any faster. But when does that happen?

The fastest 60-minute run I’ve done was 8:02 minute miles for a distance of 7.46 miles. That run actually felt really good, but lately my 8-oh-something (8:05, 8:07) minute mile runs have been feeling pretty rough. I tried slowing down a little and found that an 8-one-something (8:13, 8:15) minute mile pace feels better. So I guess I’m going to stick at that pace for now and then see what happens.

This feels really lame, though, and I don’t really know why. I’m just running to get a workout, and in theory shouldn’t care about how fast I’m running, but for some reason I do. At 8-whatever minute miles, I’m running (by far) the fastest I’ve ever run in my life. (Thanks to Google I can tell you that 15 years ago, I ran a 5k in 36:26, which is 11:34 minute miles.) Should my current pace be good enough and should I just try to enjoy it (I don’t always, especially when I feel like I’m running too fast)? Do I need to forever push myself to get faster until I really can’t anymore? Is this the point where I really can’t any more? Is this the point where I should have more variety in my runs and do more long, slow runs? Is there a point to that when you’re not training for races? When you’re the kind of slacker runner who has been wearing the same running shoes for almost two years? Am I nuts?

Next time I feel compelled to tell you about my boring workout routine, I’ll talk about weight lifting. I love weighs. Heavy ones! Yeah!

Written by Tracy

February 19th, 2013 at 7:20 pm

Posted in and life,Working out

Tagged with ,