Yesterday we happened to wander into Dicks and found that they had a Garmin Forerunner 405 with heart rate strap on sale for $50 off. We had talked about getting one for awhile so finally we caved and got it. It took me the better part of the afternoon to figure out all the programming aspects, and I took it for its first run today.
No wonder I have pacing issues!
My plan was to do an easy (12 min/mile) 4 miles. I started out between 11:15-11:30 min/mile and tried to slow down. I figured I was at about 12 min/mile and I checked the garmin - 10:45 min/mile. I tried continuously to slow down to 12 min/mile but I am just too used to an 11-11:30 pace. After about 2 miles I thought I was speeding up, and I was down to 11:50 min/mile. I had no idea how fast I was going at any point.
I was disappointed to find out that the golf course trail I am so found of is actually not quite 3 miles. Each mile is really about .98 miles. So by the time I finished 4 miles, it only registered as 3.91 miles on the Garmin. I ran around the parking lot until I hit 4 miles. So technically it's the longest I've ever run, but still only 4 miles.
It's also no wonder I have more difficulty in races when I think I should be fine. Previously I thought I was training at 11 min/mile, but really it was more like 11:15 min/mile due to the miles being shorter. So I thought I should be finishing 5ks faster since the golf course trail fooled me into thinking I was running faster than I was. But at least I know better now.