Back to square one!

cadence, stride frequency, stride length,

Today was the day when I put my cadence to the test! With my Garmin Forerunner 310XT and a foot pod on, I was really anxious about measuring my most accurate cadence to date. Also, I was excited about putting on my new Asics Gel-Kayano 21 and the FootBalance insoles.

Having the 310XT detect the foot pod was flawless. As soon as I turned it on, it picked up the foot pod shortly after locating satellites and was ready to measure cadence. It was only a 4 mile run day, so I knew it would be easy to monitor it and analyze it. As I noted in the yesterday’s post, I wanted to reduce the tempo from 94 to 92 or 90 on MetroMeter if necessary to focus on stride length (SL), thinking that I got my cadence (stride frequency, or SF) under control at 188 SPM.

How could I be so wrong!!!!

cadence, stride frequency, stride length,

Timing wise, I believe that today’s run was my PR with an average pace of 6:55 minute per mile. But, that was not what I was aiming to achieve.

Screen Shot 2014-12-15 at 8.58.46 PM

The average cadence was 186 SPM, with the maximum cadence of 198 SPM. If one looks at it in a glance, it doesn’t look bad. Actually it looks darn good. And the average stride length was 1.25 M, which I will have to discuss later. So, what is the matter? As okay as it looks, these stats still do not show two shortcomings.

One, it does not show what my slowest cadence was. Funny thing is though when I set up the watch, I wanted it to alert me when my cadence dips below 184 and hovers above 190 SPM. When I actually ran, it kept beeping with alerts that my cadence dropped below 184 SPM almost every few minutes. I lost count as to how many times it did after a while and I ran far below 184 a few times.

However, as annoying as it was, I was more bothered by the fact that it was very challenging to keep up with the pace. I set the tempo at 90 when I started running. But soon realized that it was a tad bit slower than I would like, so increased it to 92. However, in hindsight, I wonder if I should’ve kept it at 90.

Two, having the watch alert me every time my cadence dipped below 184 was a great idea, and it really did push me to reach the average cadence of 186 SPM. But I kept thinking that maybe it was too soon to run at the pace. Honestly, it was quite overwhelming as my lungs were burning and my legs were getting tired a lot quicker than usual. So, it made me question myself if I could keep up with that pace for longer runs of, say, over 10 miles.

So, it was great to push myself to see what I could do, particularly with an average pace of 6:55 min/mi. And it really made me believe that I could qualify for Boson if I keep up. But, at this current cadence rate, I am not quite sure if I could run longer.

Hence, back to square one.

I will lower cadence to 182 or even 180 to see if I can run okay with that. Meantime, I will focus on increasing my SL to a bit longer than 1.25 M. I have never measured my own stride length before, so it is quite something new, and I have no idea as to how much of progress I can actually make. This is something that I will progressively increase within the next less than 7 weeks of time.

cadence, stride frequency, stride length,

All in all, I believe that it was a terrific chance to observe where I stand with help of those crucial stats. Like I briefly noted above, I believe that it was probably my PR, but at this moment, it doesn’t mean much. Especially when I looked at the splits, my pace suffered by the minute, and between 3rd and 4th mile marks, it got pretty bad. In other words, it isn’t promising.

So, back to square one. Cadence, cadence, cadence.

Screen Shot 2014-12-15 at 9.47.16 PM

By the way, I entered the lottery pool for the TCS NYC Marathon a couple of nights ago. And today, I got a thank you email from them with a heads-up that the lucky 60 winners will be notified by January 7, 2015. Let’s see if I win.

cadence, stride frequency, stride length,

I got to enjoy this view today as I was running on this street. I literally had to stop for two seconds to take a photo of this. A lone Liquid Amber bundled up in bright red, credited to a friend of mine who left a comment with the name of this tree, often seen throughout Southern California, on Facebook after I posted this photo, looked so beautifully juxtaposed against the blue skies. Yes, I do stop running to smell the roses.

How did you run go today? Was it a rest day? Did you work on strength training? 

Thanks for reading.



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About H Peter Ji Photography

I am a photographer. My photos have been sold on EyeEm, Adobe Stock and ShutterStock and also featured on ViewBug and G+ Landscape Photography Community, and via Death Valley National Park Instagram and Facebook. My work is the natural byproduct of my love for outdoors - backpacking, hiking and camping in nature.

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