My normal type of running is to run at the same pace, no matter what distance I’m doing. Therefore, since I took up running just over 3 years ago, I always ran around 08:45 minute miles whether I was doing 6 miles, 10 or 15. Indeed, I didn’t see the point of going out running if I did less than 6 miles, since I didn’t really get going until about 4.
A couple of weeks ago, I went out running for the first time in ages. Couldn’t do more than 2 miles. Felt pathetic. During that week, I increased up to 5, although it was a struggle each time. Then this week, instead of putting on more distance, I instead did a couple of different things – I did something vaguely resembling fartlek, which was for all of 3 miles, and I did a 2.75 mile “fast” run, although let’s be fair here, it was still only about 8:18 per mile. Not really that fast, but faster than normal. At the end of each session, I was well knackered.
Then, last night, I went out to try to do a 10km, at “normal” pace. And it was easy. No problems whatsoever, and it was a bit of a hilly course, although to be honest it’s next to impossible to do anything but go up and down hills in Edinburgh.
This led me to think, while I was out on this run, whether this was actually the point of doing the different types of training. I’d always assumed that putting distance in was the best thing to do, and the whole fartlek and sprint running wasn’t really going to help me when it came to distance running. After one week of trying it, I’m already doubting whether this previous method of training was a good idea.
So, I’m going to continue to do the faster runs and fartleks etc for the next while, and see how the training goes.