Personal worst, but running better :)

It's kind of an achievement to have got this slow time today, as I've finally got everything working now so that I don't feel too out of breath and can constantly run again without stopping or suffering too much. In fact I'd go as far as saying it started to feel enjoyable again today :)

So, sticking to my 3.5k route I've been doing the past few weeks, I started slow, went past a solitary fisherman on the towpath, and ran my first km in 8.59. Pleased with this (I was mentally bracing myself for 9 somthing) I maintained my slow speed and resisted any temptation to speed up. I felt proud to maintain solid jogging pace as I ran past the Olympic Park high viz crew. My second km came in at 8.53. I was pleased with this, as classically my 2nd km is often slower, a sign that I started too fast. I knew that my 3.5k time, which typically ranges anything from 26 to 29 mins, was not going to be especially fast today. But having come so far without stopping, and breathing well still, I stuck at the same pace. The 3rd km was 8.46. I then ran past some cute baby geese (gooselings? goslings?) swimming along with their parents and/or guardians, back past the fisherman, and then I could see the bridge back to the Bow Roundabout coming up, my end point. I picked up speed and did a 'sprint', really feeling my legs going strong, lungs fully expanded, and feeling generally excellent. I checked endomondo and it said I'd done 3.55km in 30.35 mins. My average pace was 8.36min/k.

So I'm thinking what's worked to get me such a slow (but steady) time?! I hammered the inhaler before I went out, and concentrated on my breathing during my 5 min warm up, and my breathing was definitely better. I listened to advice on here, to just go slow, and trusted it, despite wanting to go faster. I've regained my fitness a bit through doing my 'intuitive intervals' style runs, and running 3 times a week again, and more cycling too, and I've generally got renewed resolve at the moment to shift some weight and get things together properly. Also my recently purchased sports bra was in the wash today, so I was just in a normal one - does anyone think that sports bras perhaps constrict your breathing a bit? I'm wondering, just because my slow patch has also coincided with starting to wear that sports bra...

25 Replies

  • Slowing down is brilliant for getting out of a slump. I used to eschew the 'stamina' podcast because I couldn't seem to manage the slow bpm which Laura insisted on, but when I forced myself to do it it really helped, and now I can run decent distances/times. I still go loopy and do some speedy shorter stuff every now and then (speedy might not be the correct word, but work with me here) but for consistent and 'healthy' longer running, I love it slow!

    Well done for getting back out there, and it defo sounds like you need to ditch the bra. If your chesticles are comfortable in the normal one, I'd stick with that.

  • Thanks useit! Hey congrats on your 10k runniversary. Are you still full of beans? You sound very upbeat and positive :) I'm just so pleased that slower did work! I think I'll still try running with the sports bra, maybe for alternate runs, to see if that really is part of the issue. It's so reassuring to simply know that other people on here get bad patches too. I struggled with the bpm music style of stepping stone, I think I've got bad rhythm, I just couldn't match my running to the beat. Also my running headphones are out of action at the mo. It's just me, the canal birds, and endomondo shouting out laptimes every km from my phone, and feeling like I'm really in the world. Looking forward to my next run :)

  • I do feel pretty upbeat, even after a night's sleep. No major aches and pains, and it's such a lovely day I'd get out there and do another few ks if I didn't know better!

  • Haha chesticles :)

  • Nice one, Ruth, sounds like you enjoyed that. Which Bow roundabout was that? My parents live not far from Tredegar Road (and that's where I grew up).

  • I think we might have made that connection before? The big Bow Roundabout where Bow Road meets the Blackwall Tunnel Northern Approach. I live right there and can just nip onto the Lee Navigation really easily, get away from the traffic in just a few mins.

  • You're right, we did. A very busy and smelly roundabout, that one!

  • Yeah it's yuck. There's a permanent police presence there now because of all the accidents. It's quite an industrial area here still really, lots of building work going on too, so we have all the tipper trucks, cement mixers etc spraying their dust around, not to mention fumes. The Tredegar area is quite a contrast really! I'm not from round here originally (from further west, near Harrow originally), but been hereabouts over 10 yrs now, seen a lot of changes.

  • The area is barely recognisable as the place I grew up in. I find it sad.

  • Well done Ruth!

    Agree on the sports bra bit!


  • Okay - maybe it's not just me then? Thanks Tryrun!

  • I think I need to get properly fitted for one, as some days it feels like a corset!

  • Sounds good Ruth, well done.

  • Thanks Dunder! Your Homer pic still makes me laugh. However bad my runs feel, at least they don't ever get quite that bad!

  • He he, it is a cracking picture. In truth, I probably haven't felt/look that bad myself since week 6.

  • Sounds like you're getting your mojo back. Those canals are gorgeous, I've just ridden from Liverpool to Leeds over the weekend and I saw loads of people running them - they are absolutely gorgeous! I do think the running bras can be very tight, maybe it needs adjusting/ loosening off?? X

  • Okay I'll play around with the adjustments... maybe it's not that at all, but it just occurred to me that it might be... will experiment! Congrats on cycling Liverpool to Leeds by the way - sounds epic! Me and my bf are planning a long bike trip round Dungeness, Rye and Folkestone soon - just want to get back to wide horizons and fresh air asap

  • I couldn't run without my sports bra. I'd end up with bruised knees. Lol Lol!!

    I did similar in terms of slowing down. I've been so focussed on picking up the pace that I was struggling to do a whole run without walking bits. went out on Monday, slowed it way down & did my longest run to date (just shy of 7km) & ran the whole thing. It really helps with the confidence levels don't you think?

  • Ha ha, you do make me laugh Noaky! Ta

    I was on the canal path this morning reccying a run! Flat as a pancake. Result!

    I ran Stamina yesterday on my recovery run and really enjoyed it. I was trying to run very slowly and I found it a great help.

    I hope you'll be back up to full speed and firing on all cylinders soon Ruth!

  • I am really pleased the slower paced run worked for you, it's very consistent with the pace I am comfortable with. I push it faster on my interval days, but always end up with a slower overall time due to run/walk.

    Personally I wouldn't ever run without a sports bra as I hardly notice the bra once it's on (putting it on is another matter), but find it essential to keeping me comfortable ( I have a 36H problem to contain). I have tried many types of sports bra and find the good old shockabsorber to be the best for me, the tighter the better.

  • Well done!! Defo with you on slow n steady and its a good way to build up more distance, same pace and lose more weight. I wish I'd heeded my own advise and stayed slow...the only time I tried to speed up and do a shorter run resulted in me having is damn hip injury....3 weeks on the IC will definitely keep me slow and slower in future. Doh!! You keep going and enjoy :) :)

  • Sounds like we've had a very similar experience, NS. I'm off the IC now, just, but much more cautious about increasing speed and distance. Slow and steady all the way now! Well done to you Ruth. Sounds like you have the right idea there. PS I hate proper sports bras, can't breathe!

  • So frustrating isn't it? I stare longingly at runners when I see them wishing it was me! Glad you're back on it, makes me more positive. Patience is not my thing!!

  • I was very fed up about it too! Had to have about a month off and I'm so glad I can run again now, but I'm doing very little. Hope you recover soon x

  • Injury does cross my mind too, as a motive to stay slow, although I always feel overwhelmingly it's my lungs that hold me back more than anything else. Maybe my lungs are a blessing in a way, saving me from injury... Hope you're both properly back running soon

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