This normally busy week culminated in probably one of the busiest weekends I’ve had in a long time. While I feel like I could collapse and that I need a fully body massage, it was all so much fun and I wouldn’t trade it for anything.
Exciting New Gear
I got some exciting new gear this week – my very first pair of racing flats. My “coach” suggested that I consider getting some racing flats for 5k road races. While there is definitely a performance benefit to these feather-light kicks, there is also the psychological benefit of feeling and looking fast. I typically get one of the most intense stability shoes so it’s also a leap of faith to go with a barely-there shoe. I ended up falling in love with the Saucony Type A5 shoes:
First of all, they are so sexy but that’s really not the primary reason I picked this pair. Scout’s honor. They felt great and much better than any of the other racing flats I tried on. Because they offer a bit more cushion than the Nike shoe that was the runner up, they could be used even beyond the 5k distance. For me this probably means 10ks although they are potentially doable for the half distance as well.
I was hoping to use the for the first time during my race coming up next weekend but since some (maybe all?) of the roads in the race will be dirt roads, they’re probably not going to be the best choice just to be safe. Oh well, a good incentive to add another 5k to my plans very soon. I plan to try them out during my track work this week and I can’t wait! I will be sure to share my thoughts with you once I’ve had a good opportunity to try them out.
Week in Review
I was all in the green again this week which means I didn’t miss even a single mile…
Monday – I started the morning with a nice easy 3 miles with an average pace of 9:56. Now that I’ve really ratcheted up the intensity of my hard-working days, I am must less disturbed by being slower on my easy days. The purpose of these easy days has finally clicked. If you don’t let your body recover, than how the heck are you supposed to work hard on the hard days?! It’s amazing when the theory and practice come together in a way that makes a ton of sense. I finished out the day with my Kazaxe cardio hip hop dance class.
Tuesday – I got in another great speed work session after work at the track. I am really starting to get better/enjoy pulling out my 8 x 400’s. For the first time ever, it went by sort of quickly. Who would have thought that was possible? My splits were as follows (goal was 1:56) – 1:39 (oops, finding my pace), 1:34, 1:33, 1:36, 1:34, 1:35, 1:36, 1:36. I may try to bring down my goal just a little bit since I seem to be able to achieve it even when preceded by several splits that are faster than my goal. We’ll see what my speedy shoes allow me to do.
Wednesday – After hard work last night, it was fabulous to just run for run again. 3 easy miles before work with an average pace of 9:10. I ended the day with Kazaxe again. I feel like my fitness is really increasing with my training plan because Kazaxe is feeling easier than it used to. I hope it wasn’t just a fluke this week!
Thursday – We had a couple more days of rough weather and I was afraid that it was going to storm terribly during our Thursday group run. As it turns out, I think the weather ended up being fine but I opted to do my 5 easy miles on the treadmill instead. Better safe than sorry, right? I ended up staying at 6.6 or 6.7 mph pretty much the whole time so that equated to about an average pace of 9:10.
Friday – I had a haircut scheduled for after work so I knew I had to knock out my tempo run in the morning. Well, the 100% chance of forecasted rain was a bit of a bummer. Again, I don’t actually think it ended up raining but I had committed to the idea of the treadmill at that point and didn’t want to get caught in the rain. I FINALLY muscled through that nagging feeling that normally makes me wimp out on the treadmill and was able to execute my tempo run perfectly. I did a .5 mile warm up, ran 4 miles at 7.7 mph (7:50 pace; 1:57 1/4 mile splits) and wrapped it up with a .5 mile cool down. I was so proud of myself. You can make your body stronger with exercise but making your mind stronger. That’s really harder I think.
Saturday – This turned out to be a fitness-filled day! My friend Nan and I bought a Groupon for a local Yoga studio and tried it out for the first time. An 8:30 am Hot Yoga class seems like a great way to kick off the weekend. It was a great class but was really hard! I though I was fairly decent at Yoga but this class clearly demonstrated that I have a long way to go…and how awesome some of the Yogis were at the poses. I would love to be like that one day! I rehydrated, ran my shoe-buying errand and then capped off the day with a really fun run. I just purely enjoyed it and ended up picking up my speed since I was having so much darn fun – ended up with an average pace of 8:57. There are a lot of runs that you have to drag yourself out the door but this was definitely not one of them. I did have a huge but delicious meal at 4 Rivers (an incredible Orlando-area restaurant) – see below – so I felt super heavy and gross but that didn’t stop me from having a blast.
Sunday – My friends Mike and Marci were headed to Typhoon Lagoon today to celebrate Marci’s birthday (which I have been so excited about all week) but there was no getting out of my long run this morning. I was so stiff and sore when I woke up! That yoga yesterday beat me up more than I though! I tried to stretch out enough to make my long run tolerable and dragged myself out the door around 8 am. My run ended up being pretty nice and reasonably energetic with an average pace of 9:39. I rehydrated and we quickly readied ourselves for a day of water park fun! It was a blast and I can’t wait to go back again soon. I also got a few nice little sun burn spots as a souvenir (unfortunately). I swear, I lotioned up!
I am going to sleep soundly tonight! After all, It’s time to start it all over again tomorrow with a nice early run to start off the day. I hope you all had a great week too!
Do you own racing flats? What kind? What went into your buying process?