So I want to go pro, so I did the logical thing and hired a running coach.
Ok, so I would love to go pro but know it's never going to happen and I simply cannot afford the individual love and attention of a running coach so I did the next best thing in these parts. I joined the local training group for the Virginia 10 Miler, which I plan on running here in about eleven weeks.
It wasn't cheap as free and it isn't a large group (probably because it isn't cheap as free) but tonight's first meeting has me stoked and believing that I might just be able to run the 10 miler in 90 minutes.
Last year I ran the 4 miler portion of the race. I had just had a baby not quite 5 weeks earlier but I ran the race in 45 minutes, despite the feeling that I was about to collapse it was an amazing experience. And even though we have two half marathons on the calendar before the 10 Miler I feel a true desire to do well at that race as it is my anniversary.
That's right, I ran my first mile at the VA 4 miler last year, my first mile since high school that is, and have been running miles ever since. But I'm big on anniversaries and I want to make a statement about the last year. For me, a 90 minute 10 miler would do it.
For my first group training (there are five other people) we did 4x800 and hill repeats. I've never done this sort of speed training, or hill repeats. For the amount of pain involved you would have thought I was at Disneyland. I ran with a guy who runs the trails with us on Wednesdays and who paces quite well with me on the trails. Being the ultra competitor that I am I decided to run his paceat the Lynchburg College track this evening (funny thing, both me and my running partner went to Lynchburg College, neither of us had been on the track before tonight). It was work and it was hard but I LOVED it. My times weren't half bad either: 4:06, 3:55, 3:40 and 3:23. My coach thinks I can run a sub 25 minute 5k right now. Unfortunately, we don't have another 5k on the calendar until October.
My coach is going to send me a weekly training schedule, I am to follow it and follow up with him weekly. I can run in addition to his workouts but he will formulate a plan for me that should help me attain my new goals.
The last two weeks I have run over 20 miles a week. To ultra runners that may not seem like much, but to me who hasn't run that much since pre-knee injury it feels awesome. My knee is still giving me a little trouble and I usually take Ibuprofen before runs but it is nowhere near as bad as it was in May. I need to do better however at doing my stretches before and after runs.
This weekend we have a 5 mile race. Everyone I know who has run it tells me that it's the only 'flat and fast' course to run in Lynchburg. I am nervous. I think I prefer hills to be honest. I want to see sub 42 minutes but I don't know if it's in me. I have done three five mile trails and the fastest was 48 minutes. Can I really shave off six minutes on race day?
From now until Saturday morning I am going to lay off the running and focusing on hydrating and fueling for the big day. And maybe peruse the many race calendars and schedules on line.
I would love to find a 5k to test my coach's theory out before October.