Today I set a personal record at #NPSF PR-Wednesday.
33:55 — 2:07 faster.
I don’t remember feeling this miserable during a PR-Wednesday workout in a long time.
But first the times:
* 2:07 faster than my previous PR-Wednesday record 36:02 (2015-02-25)
* 1:30 faster than my course record 35:25 (2015-01-13, before the course became our PR-Wednesday workout)
The previous two months I did both the 5:30 & 6:30 PR-Wednesday workouts as well as the “tweeners” in-between workout. Those times:
Feb: 36:02 & 36:15
Mar: 38:32 & 37:04
Since February of this year, the NPSF Alta Plaza PR-Wednesday workout has consisted of:
1. start at the bottom of the steps on Pierce.
2. run a clockwise lap around the park
3. run up steps to the flat area between the playground & tennis courts
4. 10 burpees
5. run back down the steps
6. repeat 2-5 two more times
7. repeat 2-3.
For a total of 4 laps, 30 burpees, ??? steps, as fast as you can.
Things I did differently beforehand for this morning:
* Last night: iced my knees — no pain, just a little swollen from Tuesday track (ttk.me/t4at1)
* 5:49 put on my newer racing ASICs instead of old training pair or Nike Structure 18s.
* 5:50 rungang (warmup run ~2 miles) to 6:30 @Nov_Project_SF instead of driving to doubling-up 5:30 & 6:30.
* ~6:15 downed a Starbucks single espresso on the run to Alta Plaza (having had nothing to eat at home but a couple of chewable vitamin Cs).
During the PR workout this morning, there were three things that I distinctly remember doing differently, and feeling more mentally and physically miserable about.
1. Ran (no walking) up the entire West side hill (first time) on lap 1, legs shaking at the top, thinking, I'm not even half a lap in yet.
2. Second time up the steps, I raced them hard two at a time to the top (thanks to a serendipitous music boost), and then almost felt like throwing up while doing burpees after. Actually felt that during all subsequent burpees.
3. Third lap, on the North side downhill, sprinted to the point of losing my breath (was inspired to pass Gil and Jorge on the downhill, each on their fourth lap, who then passed me back on the East side downhill when I had trouble breathing & running at the same time).
4. Not what I did, but what a friend did for me: Fourth lap, my friend Matt Schaar ran with me (he’d finished his workout already), verbally encouraging me and anyone else nearby the whole way.
I’ve said it before (ttk.me/b/4Yy2) and I’ll say it again (ttk.me/b/4_n1), this is an incredibly positive, inspiring, and supportive group to run and workout with.
However, the entire workout I felt like I was going either slower or no faster than before. I felt like I was having an off day. A miserable off day. But stubbornly I wasn’t going to give up. Instead, I pushed harder to just get it over with. And ended up going faster.
I should emphasize, none of this involved any kind of pain threshold (as far as I remember). No knee pain nor ankle pain. (Well maybe a bit of suppressing a lingering sidecramp from my Sunday 7 mile trail run).
Apparently it was all about pushing myself further into both psychological and physical discomfort than I had before on a PR day.
It’s going to be interesting facing that next month, when I know that that’s what it’s going to take to both go that fast, and to have even a chance of PRing again.
Fortunately I have a different race focus before then:
Just 18 days til Bay to Breakers (2015-05-17) - where I’ll have a different mental challenge.
Last year I cut over 16 minutes (ttk.me/t4W81) from my B2B time (thanks to six months of NovemberProject). This year I've had twelve more months of NP and I honestly have no idea what is a reasonable expectation.
I’ve had some thoughts, like cut five minutes, get a sub-1:10 but I’m trying hard to focus and concentrate on just beating last year’s time and giving it all I’ve got, finishing with the knowledge of having done so.