Sundays Are For Long Runs

Published May 1, 2011 by Jasmine

So today was my second nine mile run.  Until I woke up this morning I thought I would be running it outside.  However, it was a little too windy and cold for my liking.  With my luck it would have started snowing or raining, so I decided to head to the gym. I know a lot of people don’t like running on the treadmill, but I really don’t mind it. Sometimes I read while I am running, and other times I watch a show on my phone while I am running.  I can’t do these things when I run outside! However, I also realize that I can’t do all my running on the treadmill, or I will never make it through a marathon. If spring would ever get here, I could actually run outside. I am seriously considering moving to Florida. So if anyone out there reading this has a job for me, or knows of a job please let me know.

So my run on the treadmill was actually six seconds per mile slower than when I ran nine miles outside. Amazingly, this is actually okay with me.  As I have noted previously I am reading as much as I can get my hands on about running. One consistent theme I have come across is that your long runs should be two to three minutes per mile slower than your intended race pace. So I actually should be going even slower than I am going. I am sure many of you are thinking that doesn’t make any sense. Long runs are not about speed. Long runs are about building endurance, and teaching your body to conserve energy. They help increase your ability to burn fat and conserve glycogen, so you can run farther before fatigue sets in. Long runs deplete your muscle’s supply of carbs (glycogen).  This depletion signals your body to stock even more glycogen, so you have more fuel to draw on in the future. Long runs also improve your ability to transport oxygen and nutrients to your working muscles.

So the good news in all of this is that I get to run really slow during my long runs. The bad news is that means it is going to take me even longer to run. I don’t really enjoy the thought of knowing I am going to be running for two hours, but I need to get used to it because the marathon will most likely take me five to six hours.

I get to rest now until Tuesday.  Tuesday is the weigh in day for the 90 day weight loss challenge. Check back Tuesday to see if my experiment worked.

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