Just RUN… Leave the Garmin at home.

Distance: 10.5mi

Miles to go: 1227


Image by mcmrbt via Flickr

So it looks like I am going to be somewhere around the 850 mile mark for the year.  Considering I didn’t start running again on a full schedule until about the end of June, I would consider that to be pretty good.  It is a much better result than I thought I was going to have round about February, that’s for sure!

Running this time of year is still hard for me when trying to dress for the weather.  This morning I got up, fully expecting to see temps in the 20s, but it was 37.  Almost shorts weather for me.  Then I walked out on the deck to get a feel for it and was really glad I did.  Winds of 10-20mph made it “feel” like about 20.  I sulked back inside and put on my tights.  I was fine through most of the run but did get a bit warm toward the end and had to take off my gloves to cool off, but I think I got it pretty much right.  I bought this wind jacket for my bike (think “don’t hit me” yellow) but have worn it more running than anything else so far.  The up side to it is it cuts the wind out.  The down side is that it doesn’t breathe so it collects sweat at the elbows.  Gross, I know…  sorry.  The only other alternatives are over $100 and I don’t have that kind of jingle to drop on my hobby right now… 😦  No matter.  I’ll make it work.

The crew I ran with this morning was smaller than usual.  Some were running a local 5K and others have already started training for the Boston Marathon so we won’t be seeing them much.  It was just me and two other people.  Talk centered mostly around pace, with one of them mentioning she wanted to run a bit faster than she usually does but just couldn’t nail her pace down.  I asked her what pace she wanted to run and she said about 8:45 (marathon pace), but she was either too fast or two slow.  The other girl that was with us had taken off at about an 8:20 pace and was saying that she couldn’t tell what she was running either.  I thought this was odd since both were wearing Garmin‘s with  all the bells and whistles (most of which were going off continually because they were breaking pace or heart rate limits they had set).  The were watching the Garmin’s closely, checking every 30 seconds to a minute.  I simply had my trusty Timex to rely on.

So I asked them if they had ever run just by feel.  They pretty much said “no” and that they relied on their tech to help them.  This got me to wondering if maybe they were relying on the Garmin too much…?  So I said, “Ok, for the last 4 miles, I’m going to run an 8:40 pace”.  I let them pull out and swing back, and pretty much pretended I was alone.  They would get out ahead of me and then drift back and ask if I was ok.  I said yes and that I was just running 8:40s.  They checked their Garmins and I was usually within 5 seconds of my goal pace.  Now I’m no pace master, but I know how it “feels” to run a certain pace and I just speed up or slow down until I hit that feeling.  I think this is a great exercise for anyone.  Run without a watch or Garmin and just see how you do.  Or run with a buddy and pick a pace, slower than you usually run, then try to hit it.  Have your buddy check it and let you know how you are doing.  It’s not as easy as it sounds!

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