I have been thinking about goals lately. I do not normally discuss goals too much because I do not normally set goals for myself. I just like to see what happens and then maybe try to set a goal. However, I do have 2 goals for this spring/summer to work on.
I want to consistently run a sub-50 minute 10K on tempo runs. More specifically, I want to run 6+ miles at a sub-8 min/mile pace. This will take a bit of work, BUT I think it is a very doable goal. On most of my tempo(ish) runs lately, my 10K time is just over 51 minutes. So I am going to work a couple days a week on speed to be able to run longer at a 7:45-7:55 pace. Looking back at my fastest days, it looks like I have only run 3 sub-8 min/miles in a row. So I just need to up the pace and be able to hold it longer. I think this is absolutely a challenge I can meet over the next few months.
I want to consistently run 16-18 mile long runs and not feel like death afterwords. I had a couple really rewarding long runs in my last marathon training cycle and that was great, but many of the runs left me just feeling bad. I will work better on my fueling and hope that nice, long, slow runs can start to feel great again. If I am not training for something, but just doing long runs for 'fun,' I hope I can do this. Then when I do train for my next marathon, I can work on adding a bit of speed to long runs and not trying to do everything all at once (speed, distance, and fueling).
For all of you Garmin-wearers out there, I need advice. For years, I have been adamantly against getting a Garmin because: 1) I do not want to obsess about my pace while I am running, 2) I hate having things around my wrist, and 3) do I really need to spend all that money? I trained for my first marathon without ever knowing how far my long runs were. I trained entirely based on time and I finished in about the time I had predicted (4:23, about 10 min/miles). I love running free and not caring about time/pace/distance.
Now I run with my phone and usually only look at it AFTER the run is over to give me an idea of what I did. I do wonder how accurate my phone is, though. I am sure the elevation is not accurate; it is always all over the place and never matches up when I do an out and back route. Plus, after my 20K race (which should have been 12.4 miles), my phone said I did 12.75 miles. I did not hug all of the corners, but I think the extra .35 miles is a bit high.
Perhaps the time will come soon where I think maybe a Garmin might help. So here are some questions for all you Garmin-users:
I just learned that Garmins have a function where you can make the screen go blank so you do not have to look at it. Is this true? What other cool functions do they have that might help win me over?
Also, do they make non-watch Garmins that you could put in a pocket or do you have to have it on your wrist the whole time?
Finally, if you were advising someone on getting their first Garmin (or GPS watch in general), which model would you suggest for being able to track routes and easily track tempo runs?