I have been running for a little over three years. I ran my first race in July of 2009. It was a 5K and I finished in 30:06…and swore I would never run again. Since then, I have run approximately 35 races. I’ve taken about 3 and a half minutes off my 5K time, more than 4 minutes off my 10K time, more than 9 minutes off my half marathon time and ??? off my marathon time (TBD October 7th!)
My first ever race. I’m wearing a cotton tank top!
I’ve only been doing speed work since about February of this year. I bring this up because I am starting to wonder what I’m capable of. Today, I did a training run of 4×800 meter intervals with 400 meters of recovery in between. My recovery pace has increased by about 30 seconds/mile. My interval pace has increased by about 1:00/mile. During my run today, I noticed that my time at the 5K mark would have been a new PR for me! During a training run!
My most recent race (10K PR).
It makes me want to run a 5K and see what I can do. I wonder what would happen if I ran a balls-to-the-wall, all-out, run-til-I-puke 5K. I know I could beat my 26:46 time from last fall. (I wasn’t even doing speed work then.) But, what could happen? Could I run a sub-26? Could I run a sub-25?
The problem is that I don’t know when I will get a chance to test this. I am currently only signed up for one 5K this year. It is the Packers 5K on July 28th. I don’t plan on pushing for a PR that day because it will be my second race of the day. The Packers race starts at 6:30 pm. I am doing the Hub Cities Duathlon in the morning that day. So, as you can see, I won’t exactly be ready for a PR attempt. (Who does two races in one day?)
There are other 5Ks in the area in August and September, but I am focused on my marathon training, and I don’t want to just run a 5K when I have a 20 miler on the schedule. I know that I could add the remaining miles after the race, but knowing that I have to do that might keep me from gunning for the PR. And, in reality, the marathon is really important to me, so I want to respect the training.
There are a couple 5Ks that I usually run in November, so depending on how my marathon recovery goes, I could try for a PR at one of those events. One of them is the Noodleini, where I set my current PR last year. It is a good course for a PR…nice and flat. Or, there is the Turkey Trot on Thanksgiving. That would be a nice holiday treat.
I guess, I’ll just continue the speed work throughout my marathon training. I’ll gauge how I feel in the weeks after the marathon (Tim’s first half marathon is tentatively scheduled for 2 weeks after my marathon…and I plan on running that race with him). If nothing else, I’ll just ramp up the speed work again next year and shoot for a PR then. I just hope I don’t lose my motivation. Quick, say something motivating!!