Last time I ran my local 5km road loop was back at the start of April! It’s been trails, orienteering and illness taking all my running time since then. After a month of long (for me) trails – 11km, 13km, 16km and 10km – it was time to see if I could still put in any pace on a road run.
So Friday morning I headed out before work for a quick 5km. The first thing I noticed was the wind – never notice that down in the trails since I mostly run along the river valley. I was getting along at what I thought was a reasonable pace, when I glanced at my watch – 7:30. What?! Surely I wasn’t running that slowly, so I picked up the pace a little. The second kilometre buzzed over and it was 5:38. Wow – that’s damn quick for me. Aaaah, I realise what happened, I was looking at the total run time, not my pace! Oh well, that had felt good, a hard effort but not gasping for breath at the end of it.
I had told myself I could take a walk break at 2km and just before 4km, but I was feeling good so kept on going, changing my plan to a single walk at 3km. Then promptly needed a 10 second break. Nope, going to keep moving, can’t stop yet. Took my walk break at 2.8km for 200m, then ended up needing another minute walking part way into the 4th kilometre as well. My legs were struggling, my breathing was hard but I pushed on, no more stopping now. The last kilometre and I picked up the pace just a little – damn it was getting tough. Around the last bend and pushed on harder, managing a sub-4min pace for the last section.
Finally I was done! Overall time was nowhere near my best and a little disappointing, I really need to work on those walk breaks. Then I looked at my stats:
Woah! Really happy with that 1k effort. The only time I’ve been faster was doing a 1km time trial nearly a year ago, this time it was after having already pushing through a hard 4km effort.
With no more trial runs coming up, I think it might be time to put in some effort over shorter distances and seeing if I can start sustaining my effort over the distance and not need those walk breaks. Added bonus, my asthma didn’t bother me in the slightest, in fact, it never even crossed my mind.