I think I could have gone harder

I think all runners have this thought/fear at some point or another.

I had it last night, laying in bed. I had done a good tempo run earlier in the day:
2 WU, 8×5 minutes at tempo (6:10 pace), 30 secs rest, 3 CD.

I was pretty happy with the workout. I can tell I’m starting to recover quicker (30 seconds was actually perfect, just enough time to catch my breath and start again), and even though my legs didn’t feel great, they were able to hit the middle of my time range.

But as I was reflecting on my training at night, I wondered: should I have gone 8×6 minutes instead? Daniels had given the range 5-6 minutes, and I had chosen to be conservative, so I could make sure to do all 8 with the limited amount of rest between each. Is 8×5 minutes even a hard workout? I can’t tell what’s actually hard — either for me, or for other women around my ability. What did Laura (the woman who won Lumberjack in 17:43, who I know is looking forward to kicking my butt at Alumni :)) do today??

Another facet: TCM is just 7.5 weeks away, Chicago 8.5. I still haven’t chosen which marathon I’m going to run… but either way, I’m not feeling super prepared at this point. You can do a bit in 2 months, but I still feel like I’ll be building/getting stronger at that point! Wish they were a month later (know of any good late October or November marathons?)!

My husband patiently listend and responded, “Today’s workout was just a stepping stone so you’re able to go harder/longer next time”. He reminded me how early in the building process I am, and that now I’m really focusing on the long term progression (prior to Jerry, my training was a wreck and there really wasn’t long builds or a long term view on workouts or mileage) — so as long as I was able to get in a good strong workout today and look ahead to a stronger workout tomorrow, I shouldn’t worry about it. Just keep plugging away, and good things will eventually happen.

Good way to look at it. Do what I can do in the next two months. Stay healthy, keep getting stronger. Don’t freak out. Good things will happen.

To circle back, I really should decide which marathon I’m going to target this year. I’m terrible at deciding things (especially when both options are good options and I can’t decide based on a simple financial view alone (i.e. what I do at my job everyday)). Thoughts?

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