So Friday morning I had a service appointment because my poor baby camry got recalled. Apparently the passenger window clicker things can catch fire. I’m pretty sure that only happens .00001% of the time, and I’m pretty sure I use the passenger window clickers even less than that, but regardless I made an appointment and took it in.
The point of telling you that was that I had to get up and workout first thing instead of having breakfast and going a little later on. I was bummed about this. I kind of liked being able to get up and leisurely get some email checked over breakfast, THEN workout with my newly digested oatmeal energy.
I tried something new to give myself a little pep – a Celestial Seasonings Green Tea Enerji Shot. I’m working with them on their “31 Days of TeaLC” this month, remember? (You can still enter the giveaway!) This little shot came with my box of tea. I was skeptical…not really into energy shots…but the ingredients were natural. 30 calories mostly from evaporated cane juice to make it sweet. And I wanted to get through my workout without falling off the treadmill, so I downed it.
It was good! I am super caffeine sensitive so I definitely felt a little pick me up. Nothing crazy, but I wish I had more to take on mornings I feel sluggish before the gym.
SOOO back to the point of this post.
I went to the gym intending to get in a mid-length run and Best Body Bootcamp strength workout C. I had already done a bunch of interval stuff this week in my spin classes, and steady state runs on the treadmill are pretty boring. Then I thought to myself “Hey Clare, remember how you really want to PR in a half marathon this spring? And remember how when you run on treadmills you tend to run much slower than you run outside? Maybe you should try to run faster.”
So I committed to a tempo run.
Tempo Run. Noun. A faster paced run that increases your metabolic fitness by increasing your lactate-threshold, or the point at which you get tired running at a certain pace. It does this with a whole bunch of science-y things you can google, but basically by spending more time at a faster pace, your body gets used to it. Pretty common sense. If you push yourself to run faster, you’ll be able to run faster.
Here’s how they generally work:
A warm up, then at least twenty minutes at your tempo pace, then a cool down. Tempo pace technically is your lactate-threshold pace, which again you can google if you want to get it just right, but I usually go with a pace that is just pushing uncomfortable. You’re not sprinting, but you likely wouldn’t be able to hold that pace for the entire run.
I did tempo runs on Wednesdays when I was marathon training a few years ago (was it really almost two years ago??) but my faster speed was usually 7.0, which is an 8:34 pace. That’s actually pretty standard for me now, so I decided to push it up to 7.5, or an 8:00 pace. I average just above 8 minute miles outside on a good day, and that pace would be great for a half marathon PR, so I figured I should get used to running it. Hopefully I’ll be able to make my tempo runs even faster in the next couple of months.
I also set the treadmill to a .5% incline. That’s not much, and I’ll increase it to 1% in a few weeks, but adding a little bit of an incline makes treadmill running more like running outside.
So my run was:
- 1 mile at 6.7mph
- 3 miles at 7.5mph
- 1 mile at 6.7mph
I finished the five miles in just under 42 minutes.
Saved by the Bell style time out to discuss working out first thing in the morning: I forgot how awesome it is! I used to run around 7am back when I worked in St. Louis (that timing didn’t work out in Dallas), and The Today Show is the best entertainment while running. It helps that it’s pretty much my favorite TV show and I am in love with Willie Geist. But I hope I can get back into that routine – it leaves the rest of the day wide open for productivity too.
After my run I stretched for 10 minutes (BBB goal for week two!) and then completed the strength workout for the day. I upped my weights on my deadlift and my dumbbell rows. WOO!
Then I went home, showered, ate oatmeal, and got my car fixed. All in a day’s work.
Talk to me:
- Do you do tempo runs?
- What’s your best tip for getting faster?
I’ll pick it up later.