Jul 13

The Chase

You’ve all been there.  I’m sure of it.  You’re out on a run when you notice a sound behind you. Quiet at first. 

Thump, thump. 

Then louder. 

Thump, thump, thump. 

Soon, the thumping is accompanied by heavy breathing.

Thump, huff, thump, puff, thump, huff.

And this point there are only two options. 

#1:  Yield to sounds and allow yourself to be passed.

#2  Run faster.

Today, I chose to run faster.

I was in the middle of a tempo run (44 minutes total with 24 minute tempo).  I had done my warm up and settled in to a 7:08 pace when out of no where two runners were behind me.  The chase was on.  They were not going to pass me.  I kicked it into high gear and hit the next mile at 6:52.  I could still hear the steps behind me.  A bit fainter, but they were still there.  I pushed harder, the burning in my lungs increasing with every breath, my legs absorbing the pain with each step.  As I approached “The Hill”, I feared that my legs and lungs would fail me.  I charged to the top.  My watch beeped the next mile.  Another 6:52!  Still 3 more minutes at tempo pace to go.  I checked over my shoulder and my competition had disappeared.  I still don’t know where they went. They must have turned around because there weren’t any side streets for them to turn on.  I finished the final 3 minutes at a 7:27 pace before settling back down to an 8:15 pace for the warm down. 

How do you handle The Chase?

Tomorrow, I am meeting up with a blog buddy (Rob) for an open water swim and bike ride.  Stay tuned for details!

Permanent link to this article: http://www.ironmanbythirty.com/2010/07/13/the-chase


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  1. regina

    What chase? Oh! you mean those people who run pass me like I am standing still? Running and talking while I am busting my ass to get a breath? That is how I handle it. ha!

  2. Aimee (I Tri To Be Me)

    It’s funny, because sometimes when I hear other runners coming up behind me I’ll pick up the pace without even knowing it, but other times I’m completely content to just let them pass. Nice job on your run!

  3. Jon

    Awesome! Nice run splits!

    Sadly, I just get chased by dogs who want to take a chunk of out me. Consider yourself lucky! Unless you just outran two zombies.

  4. Lisa

    the other day, I found myself being the chaser. While walking my dogs (at a fairly good clip) up a hill, I started gaining on a runner. He did the same thing…when he realized I was catching up, he sped up and started pulling ahead. But it was good for both of us, I think. When I started gaining on him, it kept my pace up that hill at a reasonable level. And when he realized that I was catching him, he picked up his pace and hauled it up that hill. 🙂

  5. Bret

    You know… there really wasn’t anyone behind you. It was the Tempo gods that were getting you to push harder. You now have a new tempo pace to run at when training!

  6. jon gilchrist

    I do the same thing when I’m out running at THP here in houston. And I take absolute pride in NOT letting anyone pass me…

    fight the good fight!

  7. Viper

    Sometimes when I pick up my pace to avoid the pass from behind, I realize those footsteps I heard were my own. Another reason to focus on running quieter. Cheers!

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