Pace Frustration

by Stephanie on July 27, 2011 · 4 comments

in Running

I’m half way through Week 2 of half marathon training and I’m frustrated.  I’ve never been a fast runner but I’ve been been as slow as I have been lately.  I get the job done and get in my miles but I just feel… off.  As best as I can tell there are two things contributing to my slower pace lately, assuming the truth is not just that I’m getting slower.

My first thought is that my body is just taking a while to get back in to training.  I took the majority of a month off after my first half marathon and before that I was injured.  My body does not have the endurance it had before the injury which means to complete the mileage I have to go a little slower.  This makes a little sense but at the same time my pace was fairly consistent from the time I started running.  Hence the basis of my frustration.

The heat has to be playing a role in this.  I don’t do well in extreme heat and lately it’s been hot, hot, hot and humid.  The heat index has been near or well over 100 every day since I starting training again.  This might be normal for some areas but here in the Midwest we are not accustomed to this kind of heat.  Texans and other southerners, I admire you.  I don’t know how you do it.  No matter what time of day I go it feels like I’m swimming, the air is so thick.  After my runs I feel dizzy and slightly nauseous even if I take water stops.  I’m sure my body will acclimate to the heat if it keeps up and it can’t stay this hot forever.  It is still frustrating though.

I know I shouldn’t let myself get too frustrated about pace.  Endurance is more important for me when it comes to a half marathon.  Sometimes it is just hard to feel like I am not improving, or maybe even moving backwards.

Does the heat affect your running?  How do you feel with frustration about your running/pace?

{ 4 comments… read them below or add one }

Samantha July 27, 2011 at 11:49 AM

I get super upset sometimes when I run slower than I’m “supposed to”. The heat is intense, which is why I try to run when the sun isn’t out. But of course, the heat definitely is a downer. I prefer cool, downcast days for runs. I find that I run my best and feel better aftewards. How do you record your pace? Do you just use a normal watch or a heart rate monitor? I use a watch and sometimes get my husband to ride his bike with me and then calculate my speed after. My next running gift to myself will be a heartrate monitor. Hang in there!

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Rambling Heather July 27, 2011 at 2:49 PM

I can’t stand the heat!! I run much slower and feel more dehydrated. In order to run I have to get up at 4:45am and head out the door by 5:00am. I can’t do it after, its too miserable!

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Wonder Woman July 31, 2011 at 7:17 AM

I am traning for a half marathon as well. This morning, was my first time running outside all summer. I started my run at 6:00. My goal was to run 8 miles, but because of the heat I was lucky to get almost 3 in. I had no idea what I was in for. The hills looked steeper and my legs felt heavier. I set up watering stations along my route, so I could stop for water breaks along the way. It was a great plan if I had kept on going. I felt like I had failed myself. I run at a great pace on the treadmill, so you can only imagine my let down after this morning’s run. I am not going to let this 1 run stop me though. I am going to continue to push through the heat. My pace is a little slower like yours, but that’s ok for now. Breaking up runs will also get that confidence back. For example if you are to run 6 miles tomorrow. Run 3 that morning and then 3 more at night. I read on Runner’s World that it has the same effect as if you were running all 6 at one time. Hopefully, by marathon day, both of our bodies and our endurance will be ready for the heat!:) Best of luck!

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Stephanie July 31, 2011 at 2:24 PM

I like the idea of breaking up a run since you can get the same benefits but mentally I feel like I need to be sure I can complete the distances all at once like I will need to do in a race. It’s a great idea though!

Great attitude though for not letting a bad run or a slower pace get you off track with your training. What half marathon are you running?

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