Tempo Run Triumph

There are few things in the running world that scare me more than my tempo runs. I can’t really explain why they freak me out so much, but they do. The night before a tempo run I go to bed feeling anxious. When my alarm rings the next morning I automatically feel my stomach fill with dread, certain that I’ll never be able to run as fast as I need to for as long as I’m supposed to. I try to talk myself out of talking myself out of going for a run, a dialogue that continues through my warm up mile. As I approach the mile marker that signals the beginning of the workout, I can’t help but wonder what I’m getting myself into.

Of course, the answer is almost always nothing bad. Sure, I have the occasional tempo run where my legs are heavy and I can’t meet my goal pace. But far more frequently I actually wind up surprising myself with how fast I can be.

Yesterday fell into that second category, and it was awesome.

My goal pace for tempo runs is about 8:25 minutes per mile. Instead, I ran 2 consecutive sub-8 minute miles. I’ve never done that before! I felt so amazingly accomplished when I looked down at my watch and saw “15:52” on its face (I forgot to press the split button between miles 3 and 4). For the rest of the day, I could do anything.

This is the great thing about tempo runs! Yes they’re hard and yes they’re scary, but they’re also a concrete achievement, a weekly measure of how far you’ve come. When these runs go well, I feel like I’m on top of the world. I feel accomplished. It’s an awesome experience, and I should embrace it, not spend the preceding 24 hours dreading it. I don’t really know how to do that, but I’m going to try.

Not much exciting has been happening in the non-running world. My life is filled to the brim with papers, finals, and newspaper production. I complain a lot about it (both here and in real life!) but I still love college. In spite of all the craziness and business, it’s an exciting place to be.

That’s all for now!



About sarahk48

I'm an aspiring journalist and an avid runner racing (and reading, and baking, and occasionally studying) her way through college. This blog is a record of my marathon training, cooking creations, and general thoughts on the state of the universe.

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