Wednesday, May 03, 2006

Racing with a Garmin Forerunner 205?

Due to a number of recurring achilles injuries over the years, I decided to change my training approach after recovering from my latest bout last summer.

First, I switched from clunky trainers to running solely in racing flats. I use to train in flats all the time in college back in the 80s, and the lower heel to forefoot ratio feels more stable, plus the light weight and responsiveness of flats makes me run more efficiently I believe. As a long time orthotics user, I'm also lucky that my 1/2 length plastic orthotics with no insole cover can fit in most racing flats as well.

The second change has been to build a solid distance base with more emphasis on developing strength and endurance via tempo runs and fartlek. I've been fighting my track/middle distance background by staying away from trackwork as much as possible. Now that racing season is upon us, it's once a week at the track at most, plus some straightaways or 200m strides thrown in at the end of a recovery run to keep some speed in the legs.

Knock on wood, but so far I've been injury free since these changes, and training has been pretty consistent. I've run over 1,000 miles in the first four months of the year with only 6 days off so far. And this Sunday, I intend to run my first race in over a year, the Devil Mountain 5K Run in Danville, CA., to gauge my fitness level.

I'm thinking of racing with my Garmin Forerunner 205 this weekend. I normally race with just a watch or none at all and try to run by feel, but since it has been a while I'm not sure I can trust my less than stellar pacing abilities. I think I'm in about 17:30 shape right now, and I hope by using the 205 I can manage my pacing better and stop myself from going out too fast at the beginning. Plus, it'll be really cool to upload the race data afterwards to SportTracks and analyze the myriad information to see what went right and wrong.

What's the point in training if you can't play with all the resulting data :-)

Technorati Tags: , , , , ,