Sunday, 6 May 2012

Speed it up

I haven't run barefoot for a week.  No reason, just haven't got round to it.  Yesterday, though, I had a limited amount of time to run, so I went out (in trainers) for a swift 3 miler.  After a mile or so, I decided to reset my lap timer and run all out for the next mile, just to see if I could get a sub 8 minute mile (something I've been toying with trying to do since October 2011).

When my mile lap peeped at me, I was amazed to see a time of 7 minutes 40 seconds.  Granted, it was a little downhill (about 50ft according to Garmin), but even so, I was very surprised.

Not quite trusting the Garmin, I went out again today with the sole intention of trying to repeat the fast mile, but on the flat.  I took a slightly different route, out for 1.6 miles and then set a new lap and pumped my legs.  It felt great to turn up the speed (well, apart from the splitting lungs and burning thighs!), but I really wanted to see if could hit another sub 8 on the flat.

My time came in at 7 mins 35 secs!  This is fab.  I haven't trained to go particularly fast - although I did do a series of short, fast runs over the Easter hols, but nothing at this pace.  In fact, I've rarely hit less 8 mins 30, so this difference seems quite amazing.

Could my barefoot 'drills' be the cause?  Has my technique improved as a result and given me the edge I've lacked ever since I started running?  Maybe, or maybe not, but the evidence definitely shows that my speed has improved.

For the last 400 metres or so on warming down, I took off my trainers and ran barefoot.  My feet felt great, the ground felt great, and I didn't even mind the two lads on their bikes laughing at me!  I love running :D

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