Your pace or mine..

In my mind I am running 9 minute and 55 second miles.  I am the model of consistency, mile after mile the same pace the same form.  In my mind “Personal Jesus” by Depeche Mode is probably the best song from the 90’s and is keeping me right on track to finish the 8th and final mile at exactly 9 minutes and 55 seconds just like all the other miles that came before……….

My body has a different idea.  After two weeks of taking it relatively easy it is primed for action.  The cool weather and low humidity make for perfect conditions to go fast.  “Personal Jesus” by Depeche Mode is a great song to knock out sub 9 minutes miles (the Johnny Cash version is also fantastic, but maybe not for running), and my mind was an absentee landlord on what is shaping up to be a gorgeous fall day in Minnesota.

So once again my body won the battle.  As my mind wandered off, it picked up the pace.  I would think about the places I need to eat this week on my work trip to Seattle (Cedar River BBQ, Teriyaki Box and perhaps Little Chinooks top the list) my legs would kick it up a notch.  When I pondered what Tight End to start on my Fantasy football team my body seized the opportunity to open it up.  When my watch alerted me that I had finished each mile and my mind came back to focus on running, it always the same, I was going faster than I thought.  The model of consistency was more like a weighed down Ford Focus going through the mountains.  Slowwwwww uphil (my mind willing my body to slow down) and then much faster downhill (as my mind contemplated whether Chocolate Raspberry or Vanilla Bean Gu is my favorite – I decided Vanilla Bean).

On an 8 mile run that is fine, a year and a half of running has my body in a condition that it can handle an 8 – 12 mile run on its own without much need for mental intervention.  Unfortunately on a 26.2 mile run I am going to need my mind to take over at some point and will my body to keep going.  If that is at mile 20- 22, we should be good.  If that is at mile 13-15, well then we are in for a long day.  There is a great line in ‘Top Gun’ that captures this situation perfectly “Son, your ego is writing checks your body can’t cash.” In my case my body is running a pace my mind can’t keep.  Check out the awesome trailer for ‘Top Gun’ here: http://popwatch.ew.com/2008/12/17/top-gun/.  At the 2:08 mark you even get to the quote I just used above.

This should be an easy problem to overcome, I just need to run slower.  I figured it out for the half marathon this June and ran a textbook negative split.  So there is hope for me yet!  Only a week to go (two more runs! two more runs!) until Twin Cities Marathon.  You can follow along with me via text message here: http://athletetracker.cloudapp.net/.  I am the only “Tristen” out of 15,000+ runners, so I am easy to find (“en” not “an”).

Anybody want to dispute the “Personal Jesus” is the best song of the 90’s?  I am open to other suggestions.

“Your pace or mine” was an awesome team name that I noticed during the Ragnar that I did this summer and probably comes from other awesome sources as well.  I am glad I was able to work it in as a blog title but didn’t want anybody to think it was my original content :).  If you are wondering, I prefer my pace.  Nothing personal, I just feel more comfortable there.

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