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Training for a faster 10K – Garmin Coach, speed workouts and a virtual race

It’s week 4 of my training plan towards a faster 10K with Garmin Coach and it’s been an interesting week. Besides the workouts selected for me by my virtual Coach Greg, I will also be running my first virtual race. All races for the coming weeks have been cancelled and it’s unclear at the moment when we’ll be able to race again, so why not do a virtual one?

Easy run

Just a short easy run today. I got up too late to enjoy the sunrise and I’ll likely be back just in time for breakfast and my first Skype call of the day. The shower might have to wait a bit.


I ran 4,5K at an average pace of 8:10 min/km.

Goal pace repeats

After a 15 minute warming up, I’m doing four repeats of five minutes followed by a three minute recovery and a 15 minute cooling down.

Today’s repeats
1. 6:54 min/km
2. 6:47 min/km
3. 6:50 min/km
4. 6:36 min/km

Pretty happy with these times. My goal pace is 7:00 min/km and all of them were faster and I even had enough left for a strong finish.

As I was doing my slow run/cooling down I passed by the open spot in the woods I often stop at. The sun was shining bright on part of it, I walk in and stop for a minute. There are two geese that seem to have decided the small pond that appeared after recent rainfall is now there home. The geese don’t like me. They are yelling at me. I want to tell them this was my spot first, but I realize that probably won’t do me any good. Alright, I’m leaving!

Easy run

It’s Friday morning and I don’t feel like going for a run. First I stayed in bed way too long, then I convinced myself I’d go for a lunch run. Then I didn’t. Finally I remembered I had a good reason not to go running today. I signed up for a virtual 5K race to replace the one I was supposed to at the end of March and I’m running that on Saturday morning. I am writing a separate post on that, my first virtual race. Stay tuned, I’m shooting for a PR! Read my full experience on this virtual run here.

Progression run

Another change in the schedule. While Coach Greg has messed up the schedule already and planned a short progression run for today and a long run for next Thursday, I figured another rest day would be nice after yesterday’s hard effort. Since Monday will be an extra day off for me, I rescheduled this run to Monday morning.

The plan: a 5 minute warming up, 30 minute easy run, 10 minutes at goal pace and a 5 minute cooling down. I took one of my usual routes in the woods, but reversed it a little to adapt for the progression part of this run. It’s a lot colder as it has been for the last few weeks and that suits me very well today.

I run the easy part on the trails and only had to jump out of the path for mountainbikers twice, which seem to be appreciated. I take a detour towards the cycling lane that will take me back home for the fast part of the run. 

I ran the easy part at an average pace of 8:15 min/km and the goal pace part at 6:45 min/km. The last part was a little too fast and I felt a bit annoyed that I could run at this pace fairly easy today while I struggled so much on my virtual race just two days ago. Must be the clouds covering the sun today.

Summary

That is another week of training finished. I’m still not convinced I’ll manage my 1:10 goal for the 10K, especially without a race to run. Coach Greg seems to share my concerns as I’ve never seen the confidence level this low. It’s still in the green, but I don’t think it’ll take long before it sinks into orange. Still 8 weeks to go! 

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