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The long run vs. the tempo run

Posted Nov 26 2009 10:03pm

Thanks to the Runner’s World magazine my dad brought me, which I read cover to cover many times, I’m starting to learn stuff about running. Like how you should schedule both a long run and a tempo run every week (well, if you are actually serious about training that is).

A tempo run, as I understand it, is a shorter run at “medium-hard” pace, intended to increase speed and resistance. I usually do one a week if the week is going well breathing-wise. I find these way hard! I know, I know, they’re supposed to be. As I’ve been experimenting with running different distances and at different paces, I’ve been surprised to discover that I can handle a “long” run quite well, as long as I keep my pace in check. I always thought that due to my lungs I’d never be an endurance chick. But nope, as long as I maintain a slow and steady pace and concentrate on breathing, I am able to run long.

The tempo runs are harder. These are the ones that have me on the floor after I stop. It takes me forever to recover from one, even though it’s such a short workout. I suppose it might be this way even for non-lungers (feel free to chime in, I wanna know!). When you push your pace, you’re putting a pretty high oxygen demand on your body, and it takes a whole lotta breath to meet that demand. I like them though, because they wake my muscles up and really make them work.

I’m not training to be an elite runner, I don’t really need to increase my speed,  I just want to run!  I don’t really need to include tempo runs in my regimen, which is why it’s hard to make myself do them when I know I’ll feel crappy afterward. But I guess it’s good for any runner to shake things up and develop different facets of their running. It’s bound to get easier if I stick to it! I’ll keep you posted.

Posted in Uncategorized Tagged: Asthma, Exercise, running, training
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