Thursday, January 10, 2013

Oh Man, Am I Slow

It seems that long layoffs from running will negatively impact your speed. The less you run, the slower you are.

Take it from me. Just a few years ago, my half marathon pace was under eight minutes per mile. That same year, 2010, my marathon pace was just over nine minutes per mile. Yesterday, during an easy three-mile run, my average pace was 11 and a half minutes per mile, and I took two walk breaks.

Not that I'm too worried about this decline. My race paces in 2010 were a high-water mark in my running life. As my time in the 30-34 age group winds to a close in the next year and a half, perhaps it's time to accept reality. The march of time speeds on, as my speed evaporates into the annals of history.

Oh, come on, now. Let's stop being dramatic. There's plenty of time to get fast (relatively) again.

But here's a real reality: I need to get fast slowly. My back-to-back runs last week put a serious hurtin' on me. I'm slow, out of shape and a heavier than I'd like. I can't change these things overnight. (No duh, said the Internet.)

Instead of making long-term goals for the year, my plan is to stick to more immediate aspirations. Like this: three runs per week, 30 minutes each. My goal is see if I can increase speed and distance within these short bursts and get my endurance back without injuring myself.

Who wants to take bets on how long it will take me to get below a 10-minute mile pace?


David said...

I know a guy who is 51.5 and runs a 20 minute 5K and a 1:35 half marathon. And he barely ran a step (excluding the chasing of children, educational goals, and career goals) between the ages of 30 and 45.

Go run. I bet sub-10:00 miles will be here in early March.

C said...

It doesn't matter how many times I see the word 'annals', I still always think it is 'anal'. So I read everything as going into the butt of history.

I have problems.

Sun Runner said...

I could have written this, right down to the 11:30/mile pace for a three-mile "run" (that was on Wednesday).

I know that as my current training plan moves forward, and I lose weight (also part of the plan) I will get faster. Maybe not 2009-levels of speed, but I'd like to run at least one half marathon this year in less than 2 hours.

I do have it worse than you in one regard: I'm less than a year away from becoming a "Master's" runner. :P

Carolina John said...

Speed comes and goes brother. It will also come back. Don't rush it. So you've put on the Married 15 huh? That happens too. everybody puts on weight the first few years after getting married. Drop the weight and your speed will come back. And if you throw in the pushups etc that you've been doing, your speed will come back with a vengance!

Anonymous said...

I think speed is directly proportional to the number of beers you drink. The more beers, the slower the pace.

Nitmos said...

Honestly, it won't take you long. It pains me to say it.

Ironman By Thirty said...

Did Nitmos just post an encouraging comment that wasn't sarcastic?

Are we sure the Mayans were wrong?

KW said...

@Xenia...HA! Yes. Everytime I see that word, I never think it's anyting other than anal and it does goe with the sentence.

At one point back in 2010 when streets were different and school kids had to walk backwards in the snow for 10 miles to school, I ran under 9 minute mile. I was so proud of myself, because that was the fastest I have ever ran a mile. It's long gone and I would be happy with an 11 minute mile right now.

You will be back to it in no time.

Linda said...

soonish :)