Does a P.R. Count During Training?

Today I ran alone outside, which I don’t do often. When I do, I like to take advantage of the fact that I don’t need extra oxygen to talk, and I push the pace a little. Talking with friends is my #1 favorite thing to do while running, but it does slow me down about a minute a mile. I don’t mind at ALL–talking with friends makes a run awesome. The most awesome of all runs. I will ALWAYS choose a run with friends over a solo run if my schedule allows it. But today, Evan had a swim meet this morning when my normal buds ran, so I went alone in the late afternoon.

When I left, I planned to run 6 miles, and shortly into the run, I decided to go for my 10k PR. I’ve never really raced a 10k. I mean I’ve run 10k’s, at least three of them that I remember. But I don’t think I’ve ever really pushed myself during one. My fastest before today was 59 minutes, and that was just over a year ago. Today, I ran 6.2 miles in 54:38!

It was a nice run. It was 50 degrees. FIFTY! This felt like a heat wave after some runs in the windy teens this week. There was a strong head wind for one of the miles (I think maybe mile 4?), and another mile was mostly uphill (mile 3). But overall, the conditions were ideal and I’m pumped about this P.R. My 59 minute 10k from last year was on a very flat course, too.

However, let’s get to the big question. IS this a P.R. since I wasn’t in a race? I am torn, and I am leaning towards no. I know I could run even faster in a race, because, well, racing. But I don’t have a 10k on the horizon. They just aren’t that common around here. It might be 6-8 months before I run one and who knows where I’ll be, fitness-wise, then. Can I call this a P.R.?

Let’s take a poll:

Checking Off My To-Do List

One thing that helps me feel better when I am really busy is to-do lists. Sometimes I even write down really dumb things like, “Feed the dog,” as if that’s something big to do. It just makes me feel better to cross things off.

Grading “papers” has changed for me in the last few years. Now, most of what my students do is on Google docs. I teach English, so most of their assignments are writing-related and Google docs makes the most sense. The nice thing about this is my desk stays clean and I don’t have actual paper to lug back and forth from work to home and back. I’ve written before about how I keep my queue of files to grade organized. Often, before I start grading, I count how many docs total I have to grade in all of my folders. Last night, it was 225. That number did freak me out a little. However, by bedtime, I had it down to 84. That was after about 3 solid hours of grading. Because teachers only work 8-3 and have summers off, you know. Here’s one class’s “inbox” of things to grade:

32! Not too bad. And three of my other classes have two or less. I’m feeling a little better going into today even if I did stay up until 11.

Do you find yourself writing to-do lists and checking things off? Do you write silly things on there just to check off more stuff?

Winter is Here!

Saturday night, it snowed. Not even an inch, but enough to turn everything white. Plus, it happened during our running group party so I actually had to dig out my window scraper and use it. Geez.

With the exception of a random cold day here and there, our fall actually wasn’t horrible. This past weekend’s snow was the first to accumulate. However, it’s 10 degrees right now and it’s supposed to be chilly the rest of the week. Today’s forecast is cold with 25 mph winds. I know 25 isn’t horrid, but it’s bad enough when it’s cold!

Still, I’d rather run 100 miles in this weather than 10 in the heat and humidity. At least now I’m saying that…ask me again in February!

Do you prefer the cold or the heat? What’s your weather today?