Less Speed, More Distance

I set out today with a slightly different game plan to the Tour de Zwift runs. I wanted to do more running in terms of time (and ideally, distance), so went out at a pace I knew I could sustain for longer.

During the latter runs of the Tour de Zwift I had managed to bump up the treadmill to 11kph, and still reckon I could bump it quite a bit higher yet. At that speed I was able to get through the typical 5km run in around 28 minutes.

But for today’s run I wanted to run for 40 minutes, with a 5 minute ‘progressive’ warm up, and a 5 minute cool down.

I set the in-game goal for running for 50 minutes, but knew that was my session timer, not the actual run timer. It might be nice if the target thing could start / stop based on criteria. Like, OK, I want to run for 40 minutes, so any time my pace dips below, say, 8kph, stop the clock. But come on, this is Zwift, I don’t expect anything quite like that, even less so on the poor cousin / running element of the platform.

For today’s route I ran the 5K Loop in Watopia. This took me on paths I have seen on the mini-map, but never actually seen in game. So that was quite cool. Unsurprisingly, they were quiet. I don’t know how many runners actually use Zwift – way fewer than cyclists, but once I got out of Downtown Watopia and onto the beach and over sea paths, I didn’t see anybody at all.

However, later on as I circled back around and completed the 5km loop, I decided to try to run to May Field – the 400m circuit. I was able to do this by navigating as I ran along, and if I’m right, it’s about 1.5km from where I started to the track. As such when I got there I only had about 5 minutes of running left before I hit the 45 minute marker where I was ready to slow down and cool down.

What I did do when I got there was to bump it up to 12kph on the treadmill and give it 400m / 1 lap at that pace. I was already sweaty, what with not being able to find any clean headbands before my run, but after that lap I was dripping. Weirdly it didn’t feel that much faster, but my body certainly physically responded to the uptick in pace.

Anyway, an enjoyable session and good to push myself once more. I’m not entirely sure what I achieved today, but it felt like a solid session and I’m glad to have it in the books.

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