Tuesday, 27 March 2012

Over The Hill?

I knew during the first mile of my 5 mile constant heart rate (140 bpm) evaluation run at the track this evening that I was well behind on my previous evaluation 4 weeks ago. Still I persevered with the 5 miles which I covered in 35:23 (7:05 pace) down from the 34:40 (6:56 pace) I recorded on 28th February. I wasn't too concerned given that the temperature this evening was about 5C higher than for all my previous evaluation runs, although I doubt that it accounts for the full drop in pace. Perhaps there were other things at play (maybe an off-day) as I doubt that I have lost that much of my aerobic base. Also the fact that the fastest mile was mile 3 suggests that the HR monitor may have been acting up.


Anyway, nothing I can do about it now - the real test of my endurance base is coming up on Sunday. Last year I averaged 6:53 pace for my pre-Connemara Maff test  but didn't get the chance to test my aerobic fitness as it was my muscular skeletal system that was the limiting factor. This year should be different.

My training couldn't have been more different than last year. My mileage for the last 10 weeks amounted to 560 miles (56 avg and 81 max) compared to 718 last year (71.8 avg and 114 max). Time to see if a lower mileage diet works just as well. On the plus side my average pace for the 560 miles was 7:37 compared to 8:01 for the 718 miles last year.

My primary goal remains a sub-5:15 finish, but if the body and conditions on the morning are both good i'll set a more ambitious pace and see what happens. I have a couple of pre-race ideas, but will be largely running by feel as opposed to being a slave to the watch. If the temperature remains high (it's forecast to drop) i'll certainly be heading out a bit more cautiously. As for fuelling, i'm less prepared (and less concerned) than last year. All I have taken during training is a few gels for my 30 mile long run, so I don't think I will need to pack like a mule horse - although I will make use of the drop bag system to stash the obligatory bottle of coke and perhaps a botle or 2 of perpeteum, left over from last year.


  1. I tend to agree that an 'off day' could account for the difference from the 28 Feb test.

    Yes, very different preparations. I'll be interested to see how you go. I haven't worked it out, but on a smaller scale I've been doing a similar thing (less mileage but faster average pace).

  2. Well done on Mallow last week Grellan I don`t know how you run PBs on the shorter stuff when youre concentrating on the long mileage ...If you had more time to concentrate on speed work i imagine youd see many more PBs.
    As for Connemara I can`t wait to see how you go. Im thinking the difference in mileage won`t be as much a factor as where you are mentally that long stuff must really mess with your head.
    Keep in mind some tips for pain management along the way for me (: best of Luck Lad.

  3. Off day I reckon Grellan. The five degrees will certainly have played a role, even if a fairly modest one. I had a similar expeirence swith my own progress test last night. It'll be interesting to see what results the lower mileage plan brings younat Connemara.