The Run Less Run Faster 5K training plan calls for repeats, tempos and long runs to be done at a particular pace. A few people have asked how I can get my paces so exact when I run. The answer is…
It’s all about averages, which may sound tricky, but it’s not. Trust me, I’m no good at math. My watch/treadmill/computer do all the work for me. The most important thing, I found, is to have the “actual pace” and the “average pace” visible on my Garmin.
Yesterday, when I ran my 1,000-meter repeats at a 7:44-per-mile pace, that was the average time. Usually, I started too fast. A quick glance at the “actual pace” on my watch after 100 meters or so would show something like 7:20 or 7:30. I would slow a little. My “actual pace” would reflect that with, say, 8:00. Eventually, the change would reflect on “average pace.” I would keep an eye on that average pace, slowing down or speeding up as necessary.
The last 1,000-meter run was tough. My average pace wouldn’t go below 7:50. I really had to push myself, so I watched my “actual pace” to make sure it was going down. Eventually, I was able to go fast enough to bring my “average pace” down and end faster than I started. So it all averaged out in the end to reflect a 7:44 pace.
The treadmill is nice in that you can Ron Popeil-it (set it and forget it), but it’s not so easy when your treadmill doesn’t set to exact times (like mine). Besides, I had a lot more fun doing repeats on the track. I also think I need to feel what a 7:44 pace is really like. Everyone knows treadmill-running is different than pounding the pavement…er…track surface.
Do you have questions about repeats and meters and all that jazz? I’m just now figuring it all out, so let me know if I can answer anything for you! The nice thing about WordPress is that I can respond directly to you in the comments — and other people can learn from our convo, too.