I decided to keep an open mind as to how hard to push my runs over this weekend as the Hardmoors 55 is only a week away and the Inverness Half Marathon less than a week ago!
So the plan was to run an easy 6 mile road run on Saturday and 11 miles on the Braes on Sunday.
Saturday – road run
I set off at 7.15am for my regular 6.46 mile loop around Paisley. I deliberately didn’t look at my watch at all deciding to run comfortably and see what my pace was at the end. I felt a lot better than I expected to and ran fairly comfortably holding myself back a few times to keep my breathing steady.
When I finished I was pleased to see that my average pace was 7:29 for the run. It is encouraging to feel that my cruising pace is getting lower and I’m hoping that this is going to have a knock on effect for Saturday’s first ultra of the year.
Sunday – off road run on the Gleniffer Braes
This morning I was out for my loop on the Gleniffer Braes at 7.30am. I was keen to use the run as a dress rehearsal for next Saturday’s Hardmoors 55. So I carried my full kit to get used to carrying the pack.
The other thing I was keen to do to practice running to heart rate. According to the spread sheet Robert Osfield kindly gave me I should be able to maintain a HR of 137 for a race lasting around 10hrs so that is my aim.
I kept a close watch on my HR and whenever it went over 137 and towards 140 I eased off until it came down again. Using this system I’m not worried too much about pace as it is all about effort and not expending too much too soon.
I do have a question for Robert (and anyone else who wants to chip in!!) ….. I find that on the flat I can keep a HR of 137 alright. On any uphill if I run it goes over 137 I need to walk to keep it on target but downhill running I find it hard to get my HR to 130 never mind 137.
So my question is …. is it okay to let my HR go above 140 for the uphills knowing that it will be lower than 130 for the downhills. So the average will end up around 137. On today’s runs the average was actually 129 because every time it got close to 140 I eased off.
So I’m all ready for next Saturday. I’m going to carry my splits from last year’s race as a guide but I plan to be very disciplined with my HR and hopefully be able to run strongly right from the start to the finish!
My yearly mileage is on track. I’m keeping ahead of the red line!