Friday, October 21, 2011

8k/5 Mile Faux Race Report

Often times, things that are "faux" are even better than the original.

Mowhawks?  Yes.

Fur?  Yes.

Well, and fashion faux pas stand by themselves:

This morning I ran a mock 5 mile race as part of my training plan.  I treated it 100% like I would have a race – warm up, cool down, and 100% all out running for the specified race distance.  No people cheering, no t-shirt, and certainly no high-fives along the course.  Just me, lots of grunting, and maybe like 2 swears under my breath.

I’m actually a huge fan of Faux or Mock races as a training tool.  They are a great substitute for speed work, they are a pretty good (95%?) predictor of top end fitness, and they are free!  I like to throw these into the training plans I draft during the off-cycle periods of summer and winter.  They are a nice goal to strive for without all of the mental prep of an actual race.  However, I was rather surprised when I found that my current training plan had one planned for my first week of taper!

My goal for this run/race was to run somewhere around 6:10 pace.  I didn't want to have to slow down for cars or stoplights so I decided to run it on the track.  20 painful laps around the track.

I managed a 31:35 for an overall average of 6:18 pace.  So, not too horribly bad, but I certainly took a few important takeaways:

  • Double knot race day shoes.  I lost 20 seconds retying one of my shoelaces when it came untied at mile 1.1
  • Make sure your grunts and grimaces are quiet when soccer practice starts in the infield or else you'll get lots of strange looks
  • I'm in marathon shape - not 5K shape.  While this will sound arrogant, I probably could have ran another mile or two at the pace that I was going but I could NOT make my legs speed up.  Need to work on that for sure.
  • Finally, my current training plan is working.  I was a full 2+ min faster than my last 8K (5 mi) race or 25 seconds / mile faster.  So, while I might not have the top end speed that my lungs can support, I certainly have the endurance.

Does anyone else do mock races as part of training?  What about faux hawks?



RunningLaur said...

that outfit. wow. hombre gone wrong.

It's interesting to note that you're in marathon shape and not 5k shape. I'd be interested to see what you could do like a month out from the marathon in a 5k, you know, just for funzies. (for the record, 5k's terrify me right now.) Also, FYTO5k is gonna happen again, right?!!??!

Pam said...

FYTO5k BETTER happen again... just sayin. Don't eff with a good thing.

Fauxhawks are HOT.

Jamie said...

Unfortunately not rocking a fauxhawk (Although David Beckham wears it WELL). And I don't usually do a mock race because I like to save the excitement of the distance for race day. Sounds weird, I know, but works for me. :)
Is that leather that woman is wearing? Ugh!

Beth (i run like a girl) said...

No faux-hawks here!

And I don't think your comment about being in marathon shape (not in 5k shape) is arrogant at all.

I've definitely noticed a change in my own pace -- a fall half marathon is my goal race this year, whereas last year I was all about the 5ks. I find it's easier to run longer distances, but harder to get a burst of speed at the end (relative to where I was last year).

Beth @ RUNNING around my kitchen said...

Great idea! I've never done faux race! Good analysis on being in marathon shape versus in shape for a shorter race. Great time!

Jill said...

Your discipline is super inspiring!

Randomly: I just noticed that you have 4 blog posts from 1981. What the hell?

Cynthia O'H said...

I hear you with the marathon versue 5K shape. I'm still struggling to get some speed back into my legs; time off this summer didn't help either.
My running mate wants me to plan a faux race this fall - around a track! I'm really hoping to find a real 5K first. Faux races sound so much more mentally tough.

XLMIC said...

I think that a 2+ min improvement over 5 miles... 25 seconds per mile... is pretty freakin awesome and sounds like your training plan is working. Good job, man :)

Jamoosh said...

Faux or Mock Woman = bad. Very bad...

daphne {flip flops and pearls} said...

The time your cutting off is awesome!

I'll be in Savannah in 2 weeks also. Unfortunately I am still injured (3 steps forward, 2 steps back) but will be doing my best in the 1/2!


Jen said...

I do mock race once in a while but not often enough or with proper goals.

Hmmm, you've given me something to consider… I might be able to rock a faux hawk.

pensive said...

I love the mock race, and plan on one this week actually. I'm trying to decide if I should check the weather forecast before scheduling with myself, or if the drama of bad weather is part of my training plan.

Decisions, decisions...

Runners Fuel said...

I usually tryu to do a fake 5k once a week. I know, just a 5k. But, I'm determined to set a new pr when my next 5k "real" race comes up.

Lesley @ said...

Uh, no, because my coach is super nice. Oh wait, not true. I think perhaps u race too much already. 7 of 8 weeks in a row right now. ;-)