Thursday, July 27, 2006

Need to add a warmup

There is something about my shorter runs during the week that I do not like. Maybe I can get some comments on this from Steeve or some of you experienced runners. My easy runs during the week have been around 2 miles. The splits have been:


The first thing that jumps out is that the mile 1/mile 2 splits are always fast/much slower. I think one main reason for this is that I am starting out pretty quickly to try to get my HR up above 150. It takes me about .25 miles to get there. For that first .25, I'm estimating a ~13:15/13:20 pace. Then I "settle in" at around 155-157 bpm. The first mile, after getting out fast (for me) ends up around 14:00 pace. Then, keeping my hr under 160, I start to slow down. I feel like my last 1.25 miles are at pretty consistent pace maybe a little slower at the end. Probably around 14:50-15:00.

Here's where I need some advice. IMHO, it is good to maintain a consistent effort throughout a run. By that I mean consistent the goal of the workout. So, for easy runs, I would maintain a conversational effort throughout the entire run, breathing easy and not gasping for air. When a runner runs by pace, a runner ends up running at an increased effort towards the end of a run compared to the beginning. My easy run would start out conversational, but to keep a consistent pace, by the end of the run, I would be gasping for air and probably be running above AT. So, if this is my philosophy of training, to maintain a consistent effort, then I should not even "start my workout" until I reach that level of effort, right? For example, if today I am doing an easy, 30-minute run at 150-160 bpm, I should not even start the clock until I reach 150 bpm. I guess what I am saying is that I think I need a warmup. I need to get myself in the proximity of my target HR so that when I "start" my workout, the fires are stoked, I'm lose and I'm ready to "settle in" to my target effort. I think if I do this, my splits will be more consistent. Now I'm not going to see that "fast" mile 1 but I should see a mile 1 pace that is more indicative of where I am in my running.

Today's run felt great. Here are the stats: Venue: Memorial Park
Total time: 30 minutes
Total distance: 2.09 miles
Avg pace: 14:22
Avg. HR - 155 bpm
Mile 1 - 13:48
Mile 2 - 14:59
da change (0.9) - 1:13
Caloried burned (according to polar) - 517

God bless!


Anonymous said...


If you took the first 1/2 mile or so of a run as your warmup I'm sure your miles splits would even out and you'd be achieving a negative split on your training runs while maintaining constant effort. I wouldn't be in any rush to get your heart rate up to where to want to work out at. Let it flow, dude.

What you might consider is taking or sitting on on a spinning class to see how nice and gently they take you up at the beginning and bring you down at the end.

Years ago Owen Anderson came to town and reported on findings during his extended stay at a Kenyan training camp. Something that stuck with me is they always do the first bits of their runs at about 8:30 pace. Woo Hoo, me too, I'm a Kenyan! Sort of.

Lastly, I note in a marathon or a 20+ mile run it usually takes a good 5 miles to get really, really warmed up.

Them's my thoughts. Keep in mind that free advice is usually worth what you pay.


Barbara said...

I break my warm-up into two 5-minute segments. The first 5 minutes is just to wake me up (because it's early in the morning) and the second 5 minutes is to get me ready for the rest of the workout.

Mondays are my easy run days, so the overall pace will "generally" be pretty consistent overall. Tuesdays are currently hills but this will change to speedwork later in the season. Definitely going for overall negative splits, but that's really not even my goal. My goal is to do 30x30's as fast as I can, etc. but by their very nature, that means I should be getting faster as I go along (at least that's the case for me).

Thursdays are tempo days, so my warm-up is slower, then there's the section in the middle at the tempo I really want to be at, and then the cool-down pace at the end (5 minutes or so) is at only slightly faster than what I did the warmup at.

And Saturdays are all about distance, not pace. Does that make sense? But yes, the same idea that I will warm up (although seeing the crowd cheer us on at the finish line never gives me much of a cool-down pace!).

There you have it from someone who obviously doesn't run fast (but has been running for 25 years - w/o injury...)

TX Runner Girl said...

Good post. I am still learning all this stuff too, so I am learning quite a bit just reading your post and the responses.