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NEWS | Oct. 21, 2011

344th TRS instructor bests 10K competition

By Jose T. Garza III 502nd Air Base Wing OL-A Public Affairs

A GPS watch came in handy for 344th Training Squadron's Michael Lyle Saturday when he won the 36-person, 10K Gateway Classic Run in 44 minutes, 56 seconds.

The Garmin 405 watch assisted the materiel management instructor by telling him how fast he was running each mile so he could monitor himself to slow down or speed up accordingly.

"Today, I was able to look down on my watch and monitor my first two miles, which were at this certain pace, so I'm doing okay so I don't have to speed up or slow down," he said. "I just have to maintain my speed, so it flashes and shows me the averages of how fast I'm running."

The Gateway Classic was the first 10K run he'd competed in after previously competing in and winning other marathons.

"It feels pretty good. This is pretty nice," Lyle said after winning the event. "I just thought I'd try something different."

He usually prefers to run half marathons or whole marathons, so the 10K classic was a competition out of his element.

Lyle said the difference between preparing for a 10K marathon versus other runs, besides preparing for varying distances. is running faster than normal.

"Say, for example, on a 400-meter track, you might do five or six miles at a fast pace on a Tuesday, a lot faster than what you would normally run. That lets your body get used to going at a faster pace by breathing heavier and exerting yourself more than you normally would," he said.

"It's just a matter of pushing the tempo a little bit," he added.

The 20-year Air Force veteran, now a civilian government employee, trains up to four days a week. He wakes up at 4:30 a.m. to run before going to work at 6:30 a.m., and runs anywhere between seven and 22 miles.

"I'll do one speed day on a track, say on Tuesday, maybe run a regular run at a normal pace on Thursday, and do both on weekends," Lyle said.

For someone who began running 12 years ago and has run various marathons for five of those years, Lyle has stayed injury free and hopes the day doesn't come where quitting the sport becomes optional.

"As long as the Lord is willing, I'll keep running," he said. "I don't plan on stopping anytime soon."