The weather was much better this morning, sub-80 degrees and plenty of cloud cover.
Today, is the Human Race. The race that Nike has dubbed the world's largest running event, with about 1 million runners all running on the same day in different race cities, in different countries. With nikeplus technology, people could run the race even if they're not in a race city and official race course. I did the 10 K around my neighborhood.
I checked the Nikeplus website this morning around 5:30 AM. Australia, Japan, China, Korea and Singapore had already run. The average pace of runners in Mt. Fuji was 1:01'. I decided to make that my goal.
After 2 K, I was feeling the pressure. If I were to beat Mt. Fuji, I would need to keep up this pace for the next 8 K. I decided to do something I've never thought of before. I've read that people dedicate a phase of their triathlon to a person or a cause. Today, I decided to dedicate two kilometers to a person. And while I'm running that kilometer, I think about that person and let those thoughts motivate me. Hopefully, the song on the ipod fits as well, if not, I press the skip button until it does.
I'm thinking "Come on. This mile is for 'so-and-so'. We can't stop and walk now. How would they feel if they found out your pace wasn't as fast as the 2 kilometers you dedicated to the other person. I bet this person would do the same for you."
In the end, I couldn't catch up to Mt. Fuji. They had me beat by 4 minutes and 3 seconds. During the last month, my pace had been 11:10 min/miles. My 10 K two weeks ago was 11:17 min/miles. Today, I ran at 10:29. So, even though I couldn't beat Mt. Fuji, I have to attribute my time improvement not just to the cooler temperature, but to my new motivation technique.
I'm in Vegas this weekend and am hoping this trip doesn't interfere with the training. Our hotel does have a fitness center, but I'm hoping it doesn't come down to that. I'm not big on treadmills. The last time I used one the inside of my ears were shocked by my headphones. I didn't know that was even possible. And in case you didn't think so either, let me just say, YES, it is possible. And YES, It does hurt.
Suddenly, you hear a loud zapping and feel pain in your ears. Then you rip off the headphones as fast as you can, like they're alien insects trying to slip into your brain. And, if you're lucky, they land on the treadmill console. Otherwise, they fall on the moving track and they're stomped to pieces, or you trip over the wires and embarrass yourself in front of everyone in the fitness center. Oh yeah, good times.
Too bad for me my foam covered headphones are at work. So, I can either, risk the shock, run the treadmill without music or run the streets of Las Vegas at 6 AM. None of the above are at all desirable.
I finally uploaded my "Tempo Run" to Nike Plus. According to Hal Higdon's training website, a Tempo run is "a continuous run with a buildup in the middle to near race pace. (Notice I said "near" race pace. You don't want to go faster than your 10-K race pace.) In this program, tempo runs are scheduled for every other Wednesday, alternating with interval training on the track. A tempo run of 30 to 40 minutes would begin with 10-15 minutes easy running, build to 10-20 minutes near the middle, then 5-10 minutes easy toward the end. The pace buildup should be gradual, not sudden, with peak speed coming about two-thirds into the workout and only for a few minutes. You can do tempo runs almost anywhere: on the road, on trails or even on a track."
The above run profile shows that at about 2/3 of the way into the run, I gradually build to 9.52 min miles. Then 3/4 of the way through my work out I start slowing down for the last 5 - 10 minutes. That's about how Hal would've wanted it.
I've been exhausted. Haven't trained in 2 days. My oldest started at the university so I've had to be up early to move him in and go to meetings the last couple of days. Not wanting to take more vacation days off, I still had to work when I got home late in the afternoon.
I should be getting a good nights rest tonight. So tomorrow I'll do 4 miles plus strength training.
That's the number on my Nike Human Race shirt. I checked the product site on Nike and it says "Each tee has a unique and individually printed bib number." How cool is that?
Very cool, if I may say so myself. Mystery solved. That's probably why the decal isn't silkscreened.
So, my training schedule calls for a 4 mile run plus strength tomorrow (Thursday) and then rest on Friday. I'll have to flip that around since tomorrow I will be VERY busy moving my son into the dorms at ASU. That's even cooler that a fancy t-shirt!
I just got my t-shirt! So, it's official. I am part of the Human Race. Woohoo!
It was 85 degrees this morning and I was just going to run with my sports bra because I was too lazy to dig through the clean laundry for a t-shirt at 5:50 AM. But as soon as I stepped out of the door there was a box on my doorstep. My t-shirt! Coincidence or kismet? You be the judge.
It is a nice shirt, kinda bright for my taste and the material is not as soft as my other running shirt. But it's still the stay-dry material. Comments about the shirt on the Nike site say the label is a little heavy, but to me, it's barely noticeable. Sure, a silkscreen would be better than an iron-on, but it's all right.
I like the fact that I can train with it and run with it on race day, and people who are also running their own course can identify each other as part of the Human Race.
After my morning run, my daughter was in the middle of asking me about some pony-tail holders when she stopped herself and said "Wow! That's the coolest shirt ever!"
One question though, what do the numbers on the shirt represent? It's not the date of the race (20080831), could it be my actual bib number? Would Nike go through the trouble of printing out t-shirts with specific bib numbers? These are the questions that I must ask, and I will find the answers. I will.