General Discussion Triathlon Talk » Running on indoor track...Why am I way faster or is it way short? Rss Feed  
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2013-11-22 4:44 PM


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Arden, North Carolina
Subject: Running on indoor track...Why am I way faster or is it way short?
I occasionally run on the indoor track at my local YMCA. It says it's 16 laps to a mile. I always try to run the outermost edge of the lane just to make sure I'm going as long as possible per lap. I'm not slightly faster, I'm ridiculously faster, nearly 1.5 min/mile faster. For example, when I run my aerobic pace outdoors, nice weather, flat terrain, I'm usually in the 10:15-10:30 min/mile range and even then I'm usually pushing an HR of 165 by the end.
Today I ran the track. I did 4 miles, I averaged 9:15 min/mile, and that was only because I really slowed down during the final mile because my HR started creeping to the mid 150's. Overall I averaged a 145. I probably could've been in the mid 8's if I let my HR get up to the mid 160's.
It's hard to gauge the feel of my speed indoors because it always feels faster in when you're in close proximity.

Any thoughts on this?


2013-11-22 4:57 PM
in reply to: TriDadinAsheville

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Subject: RE: Running on indoor track...Why am I way faster or is it way short?

If your outdoor course is reasonably flat, I would say the track is off.

I would be tempted to pace it off and check if you really want to know.  But really, 30 minutes of running is 30 minutes of running (at a certain HR) no matter what the actual distance is.

2013-11-22 5:39 PM
in reply to: Kido

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Subject: RE: Running on indoor track...Why am I way faster or is it way short?
That's a really small track- 100m around. Most indoor tracks at universities or other athletic centers are 200m, or 8 laps to a mile. Since it's a non-standard distance, I would bet that it's just measured approximately. There's no way you can be that much faster without feeling it to be much harder.

Incidentally, short tracks like that with such tight turns could be tough on your body for extended distances. Is there a treadmill you could use instead?
2013-11-22 8:24 PM
in reply to: TriDadinAsheville

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Subject: RE: Running on indoor track...Why am I way faster or is it way short?
GPS and find out.
2013-11-22 8:43 PM
in reply to: jennifer_runs

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Subject: RE: Running on indoor track...Why am I way faster or is it way short?
I have an uncle who's knees can attest to those little tracks being bad on them. He used to run 8 miles a day on them. Two surgeries, so far. The constant turning is bad for many reasons.

Our local Y has an indoor track above the BBall court. 20 laps = a mile. I'd rather use the treadmill than that torture device!

You could get a measuring wheel and check it to be sure, but as said above, 30 minutes = 30 minutes. Keep your RPE the same, and you'll be in the ballpark.
2013-11-23 12:49 AM
in reply to: Coach Gil

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Subject: RE: Running on indoor track...Why am I way faster or is it way short?
Originally posted by Coach Gil

GPS and find out.


GPS doesn't work indoors!


2013-11-23 2:19 AM
in reply to: DannyII

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Subject: RE: Running on indoor track...Why am I way faster or is it way short?
Originally posted by DannyII

I have an uncle who's knees can attest to those little tracks being bad on them. He used to run 8 miles a day on them. Two surgeries, so far. The constant turning is bad for many reasons.

Our local Y has an indoor track above the BBall court. 20 laps = a mile. I'd rather use the treadmill than that torture device!

You could get a measuring wheel and check it to be sure, but as said above, 30 minutes = 30 minutes. Keep your RPE the same, and you'll be in the ballpark.


I agree. I stay away from tracks now. A few years ago when I started running and signed up for my first marathon and I had to start with 3 miles. Well week 1 was during a cruise and they had a mini "track" at the top of the ship. Since this was my first race, I didn't want to half anything and I decided to run during my vacation. The "track" was 33 laps = 1 mile. Wow...let me tell you how exciting running and counting 99 laps for 3 miles was. It's very exciting....

Anyway though, I've ran up to 18 miles on a indoor track that was 2.5 laps = mile. At every turn I could feel my knees hurting. Now, I would stick to the treadmill over a track. Also, as other have said. If you're going with HR and time, then as long as your HR is in your target zone, ignore how far you think you may be going.
2013-11-23 5:30 AM
in reply to: Blastman

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Subject: RE: Running on indoor track...Why am I way faster or is it way short?
Our Y has an indoor track that]s 14 laps per mile. I always use the treadmill instead (but outside trumps inside always, tho).

My guess is that w/ small tracks, even a small under/over estimate of the length is compounded when you start putting on tons of laps, resulting in some really wonky distances. In those cases, go for time (like Kido said). Watch your knees, though. I hate the thought of all those turns.
2013-11-23 6:51 AM
in reply to: danimal123

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Subject: RE: Running on indoor track...Why am I way faster or is it way short?
Our track is around 9 laps for a mile. I only resort to the track when it is extremely cold/icy outside. And then I do no more than 4 miles before switching to the deadmill because I found that my inside leg hurts from the ankle to the knee from the tight turns. So watch yourself. As for the distance, I am not sure any of these indoor tracks at rec centers are accurate. As stated, running 30 minutes is running 30 minutes. Try to work on form if nothing else.
2013-11-23 9:07 AM
in reply to: TriDadinAsheville

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Subject: RE: Running on indoor track...Why am I way faster or is it way short?
There are two 5K courses I run at work in MCAS Miramar. For those familiar with this place they are the Mills Field half mile-ish track and the Miramar Way jogging path (pull up bar to pull up bar then back). I am a full minute faster on the track. This is probably because the effects of wind are less (since I turn more) and the flatter profile works to my advantage. Maybe your outdoor course has terrain or weather conditions that slow you down some.
2013-11-23 12:49 PM
in reply to: jennifer_runs


291
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Arden, North Carolina
Subject: RE: Running on indoor track...Why am I way faster or is it way short?
Originally posted by jennifer_runs

That's a really small track- 100m around. Most indoor tracks at universities or other athletic centers are 200m, or 8 laps to a mile. Since it's a non-standard distance, I would bet that it's just measured approximately. There's no way you can be that much faster without feeling it to be much harder.

Incidentally, short tracks like that with such tight turns could be tough on your body for extended distances. Is there a treadmill you could use instead?


It is very small. It's on the second level above the gym. So it basically goes around a regulation size basketball course. There are plenty of treadmills I just hate them so much. You're completely right about the turns being hard on me and I really felt it when I was finished. I'm just able to zone out easier on the track than the treadmill, I just can't stop starring at the distance and it feels like it takes forever.


2013-11-23 12:49 PM
in reply to: Coach Gil


291
100100252525
Arden, North Carolina
Subject: RE: Running on indoor track...Why am I way faster or is it way short?
Originally posted by Coach Gil

GPS and find out.


GPS doesn't work in there.
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