60′ Threshold – Horrifyingly bad workout

My plans for a second workout yesterday were destroyed by a meeting that was supposed to go from 4 to 5, but instead lasted until after 6PM.  Finding time for second sessions is going to be a continual challenge.

But on to this morning….

I had a bad feeling about this workout.  One of my steady state workouts is that they are busted up into nice digestible 20 minute chunks.  Pushing that to 30 minute or even 10K over 40 minutes is not so bad, but I have gotten out of the habit of doing long distances, either at steady state or at a more intense level.  So, I have lost some of the memory for pacing these efforts, understanding how hard to push, and, frankly, how to pass the time.

So, for today’s effort, I was unsure about the right pace.  I did a 30′ piece at 1:51.0 on Sunday, and that was less than all out.  In fact, I did a second 30′ at 1:52.4 after a 5 minute rest.  I guessed that I could probably hold a 1:50 pace for an all out 30 minute time trial.  By Paul’s Law, that would forecast a pace of 1:55 for a full hour.  This seems to hold up pretty well for me in general.

There was an argument for a more aggressive pace.  I was very close to my PB pace for my 6K, and not that far off for the 30′.  In that PB season, I also set a new best for my 60′, and that was a 1:53.1 pace.  And I did that without it being an all out effort.  Afterwards, I really thought I could have held 1:52.5 or better.  So, by that logic, it was possible that today I could push the pace to 1:53 or something.

So, I decided to start at 1:54 and see what happened.

What happened was ugly.

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I started with a nice 10 minute warmup.  5 minutes of slow steady state, then 3 – 20 stroke bursts at 1:54, with paddling between them.

Then into the main event.  I held 1:54 through the first 10 minutes, but from the HR and how I felt, I knew that was too hard.  At 10 minutes, I backed off to 1:55 for the next 10 minutes, which stabilized my HR, but it stabilized at a pretty uncomfortable level and by the time I hit 20 minutes, I was very unhappy, frustrated and I was unable to relax and get into a groove at a slower pace.

I HD’ed a couple of minutes after the 20 minute mark.  I paddle a few strokes and tried to regroup at a slower pace.  I tried to hold 1:58, which should have been a piece of cake.  It wasn’t, and when it started to pinch, I HD’ed again, in the first couple of minutes after I passed the halfway point.

After that interruption until I got to 40′, I basically rowed at my steady state pace of 2:03 and started to feel a bit less despondent.  I lowered my rate and tried to focus on taking good strokes.

When I hit 40′, the end was in sight and I pulled the pace down to 2:00, then continued to push it faster in the last 10′.

I’m gonna chalk this one up to a too ambitious starting pace and a shitty day.  I have to do more 60′ and HM sessions to get some mental toughness back.

Tomorrow:  4 x 20′ at 2:03