Good morning! I woke up a little earlier than usual so I could throw together a crock pot meal…. expect to see it for lunch! 🙂
For breakfast, I made this amazing English muffin egg sammie (by the way, Future Husband says American "English muffins" are nothing like what they have in England. Don’t you feel lied to now? I do!). The star ingredient:
Cabot’s Seriously Sharp Cheddar is SO good. Once, Future Husband and I went to a wine festival, and he somehow (i.e. his cute accent) managed to talk one of the girls serving cheese out of a free POUND of this cheese, which we lived off of for about a month!
I fried one egg and place it into between the broiled cheese and whole wheat English muffin.
On the side, I had a sliced banana….
And a cup of OJ! I don’t normally "drink calories" for breakfast, but OJ seemed like the perfect complement to a savory breakfast sammie.
All together now, from above (+ coffee, not shown):
It was a nice change from sweet oatmeal!
Last night, I briefly mentioned how speedwork is more about training my mind than training my legs. This article from Runner’s World also addresses the key connection between your head and your speed.
When you can’t maintain a pace while running, it’s not just your legs getting tired. "The brain reads what’s going on in your organs, tissues, and cells while you’re running, and then uses that information to get into the right rhythm at the start of a run and then fine-tune your pace as you go."
"The brain controls exercise performance to protect the body from reaching a failure point or a potentially harmful level." So, you’re brain ‘checks in’ with the rest of your body to make sure you have enough calories, water, and oxygen to sustain the pace you’re currently running at, and if you don’t, the brain will subconsciously force you to slow down.
In one study, "two groups of cyclists completed time trials in hot and cold temperatures. It wasn’t surprising that those exercising in the heat had slower times. However, those in the hot group dropped their pace without realizing it within five minutes of starting-well before their core body temperature rose to a high level. The fact that they slowed down so early suggests that the pacing decision is made by the brain well before any physiological factor forces the athlete to reduce his speed…. So you’re not slowing down because you’re hot; you’re slowing down in anticipation of becoming hot.’"
So, how can you prevent your brain from boinking your body too early?
- Experience! The more often your body experiences fatigue, the closer your brain becomes tuned with your true physical limits. Speedwork, as well as long-distance runs, help you gain mental and physical experience.
- Negative split training or tempo runs. A negative split or a tempo run begins with a slower pace and finishes faster.
Three cheers for fun running research! Do you have any success stories of improving your endurance or speed at ANY sport? My last 10K is a perfect example of how training can improve your speed!