The number one reason I have a running blog is I really don’t want to pester my friends with incessant talk about running. It’s somehow my motivation to keep it mostly to my self, and not try to make it part of my “public image”. I run because I like it. And then I can brag on my blog. Soon, when I have something to brag about.
So here goes: Today I ran 5 times 1k intervals at 3:45 pace. I felt pretty good, but I was not able to put in a sprint at the end like I usually do. Which tells me I chose a good tempo. I want to run a 5k in under 19 minutes, which means I need to get just under 3:50 km pace. Feels very straight forward when I split it in intervals, it’s a super comfy tempo. Until I have to actually run it. I saw an interview (in swedish) with a guy who ran 30 iron man races in 30 days. It made me want to never run farther than 5k ever.
I bought an ice cream maker. I haven’t gotten a perfect result yet, but I definitely sense that I will be able to make better ice cream than I can afford to buy. I made one with dates and vanilla pod yesterday, with no added sugar. Yum! Another taste I can recommend is honey and walnut (just blend it with the cream, and add some at the end before freezing). I try to avoid white sugar. Not religiously, but I just use as little as possible. If I use fruits instead, I get a more bitter/sour intense flavour. And cream is sweet already. Some sugar is necessary for a nice consistency though. My critic is pleased.
In Norway, 4×4 intervals have almost become a dogma. Scientists from NTNU claim that running four-minute intervals four times, with “active rest” in-between is the best way to increase endurance. By active rest they mean you keep moving, but at a lower pace.
It’s definitely a good exercise to include, and easy to remember.
Another one I like is from the book Running With The Kenyans, and is just as simple: set your watch to beep every 1 minute, and switch between fast and slow pace everytime it beeps. The great thing about setting an alarm is that you don’t have to look at your GPS watch, just turn off your brain and run. Also, at least with my Garmin 305, intervals by time instead of distance means you don’t get any statistics on each single lap. Basically the watch does not control you or tell you how you did. I like that. It’s more exciting to do a benchmark test every once in a while, and not over-monitor the regular runs.
The beep method works just as well with 4 minutes of course, and that’s what I did today. It was fun, and I’m getting over she shyness of running fast. Just let people think what they want.
Legs were nice and rested after two days off. The higher pace was about 4:10/km – 4:30/km, which is fast for me, and It was surprisingly easy. I look forward to crushing my 1km record of 4 minutes, and am curious to see how my 5k time is coming along.
Kastellet is a star-shaped fortress in Copenhagen, close to the famous statue of the little mermaid. There’s no actual fortress besides the earth walls and the moat, but strolling along those walls can be a nice break from urban life. And it’s a nice place to run, if you don’t mind running on gravel.
And speaking of variation, trying to run 5k as fast as you can two times a week is a recipe for getting bored. So today I decided to do some sprints. I’m not a fast sprinter, but I define sprinting more in terms of mode than speed. I always feel very light and fast when sprinting, and it’s not at all painful like running a 5k. I feel a bit like a madman running past people like that, but I try not to be so self conscious. Accelerating can feel a bit heavy, but as soon as I’m up there I feel like a boat planing, at least for a short while.
I am a bit curious as to how fast I’m actually running, because the GPS is not accurate enough to capture a 100-150m sprint. While the sprinting was mostly just fun, what I was happy about today is that I managed to keep an OK pace between the intervals.
I sprinted the straight sides, and jogged the “starfish arms”. I’ll definitely do this again, maybe alternated with slightly longer intervals, like 400m. For some reason I almost never do any anaerobic training. Maybe my legs will remind me why tomorrow. I’m resting till Monday anyway. There’s no group training, so I’ll probably try to do a long run, 14k or so.
Great trip today. First I ran 5 km’s along Søerne, then I joined up with the group from the shop ‘Marathon Sport’ for some intervals. Twice a week you can meet up in front of the shop and go for a run. It was astonishing how much faster I can run with a group.
or a total of 16 minutes I could easily maintain a 04:15 pace, which is a lot faster than my regular interval pace. Will definitely go again, and I’m thinking about joining the running club Sparta. But first I’ll do the free training for a while.
Finished with a couple of km to top up this somewhat irregular long run, 12 km in all.
1 km laps, active rest. Goal was 04:30. Felt like it wasn’t hard enough, but when I look at the times, I think I set the right tempo. Might move it to 04:35 if I can’t keep the speed on the last two laps.
It’s definitely more fun to run faster than I usually do. And I’m glad I’ve started to take rest days seriously. It means I can run a bit faster without worrying.
Sometimes it’s great to have a running blog. Yesterday I read my old posts, and saw one post where I happily stated I could take an easy run every day, and one post asking why I wasn’t getting any better? Then I googled around a bit, and found this video:
The title says it all. Of course I learned again what I’ve always known and never really practised: There is a perfect time to go for the next run. And now I have a catchy graph to picture in my mind, while I’m making a training schedule. I always get so fired up every time I run, that I inevitably go for a run the next day. And the next. And the next. And then I rest for a week or more. What would coach Jay Johnson say? No, no! So I read up a bit on training schedules and I’ve made my own, which is like this.
Tempo Tuesday. (Comfortable distance, MUST be run at race tempo.)
Tough Thursday. Intervals. Four times 1km, at 90% of max pulse, active rest.
Satisfying Saturday. The longer the better.
And the rest is rest. Hopefully this will get me in shape. I think this concludes my endeavours to adapt to minimal shoes. From now on it’s a little bit more about progress and results.
I started today with a big success. My race tempo is 05:00/km and after 5km averaged at 05:01! The trick is to learn to know and love this tempo as “my” tempo.
Comments on how to build a better training schedule are welcome!
Runkeeper congratulates me with a new record! 1 km in 4 seconds! The real record however, was “farthest distance ran before the GPS finds its location.” Unfortunately.
The good news is I can now go for a (short) run every day without injuring myself. It’s taken me over a year to get here. Until now I’ve always taken a full day’s restitution between runs, or paid the price in sore legs. This makes things easier. And I feel more and more secure in the minimal shoes. I am a little sorry that I didn’t run barefoot more this summer when I had the chance.
Also I’ve started playing with intervals again. My system is to jog along at a comfortable pace. Whenever I feel like it, i run fast for about 30 seconds. And then back to the slow tempo. My slow tempo is at about 5:30/km and the fast is at about 3:00/km. This is a lot faster than I can run a km, but still feels comfortable, and more important: Fun.
I am going to alternate with some longer intervals, ideally a km at about 4:00 min/km. But I’m not there yet. Anyway my ideal half marathon race pace is at about 5:00 at this point.
Ran a bit of free interval today, also known as ‘fartlek’, which is Swedish for speed-game (or -play). Sprinting a bit makes me slower overall, but it feels bad in a good way.
Also this is the first time I’ve used my Runkeeper on my phone. It seems to perform OK. One advantage over my GPS watch is that it’s connected to the internet, so I can post immediately.
I’m going to make a post about bread baking soon.
Since my last post I’ve become father of a beautiful daughter who enjoys milk a lot. She hasn’t got a name yet, but we call her “Lanugo” after the little baby-hairs on her shoulders. She makes life a lot more enjoyable and that includes my interval running. Also, a few days without running makes running more enjoyable.
Interval work: Second km 4:15, fourth 04:13.
(Short term-goal: 3 1km laps under 4:10. This earns me new shoes.)