Tuesday, August 11, 2009

When It Rains... We Still Train!

Actually, it has been raining a bit more lately in Austin giving us a welcome break from the seasonally early and hot weather.  I for one am quite thankful for this.  Rain doesn't really affect my training much.  I ride or run indoors and use the time for either more specificity in my workouts or get my testing done to actually "plan" my workouts.  A win, win really.  

 This week I got to the track to get some testing done so I could try to dial in my running a bit more.  For the most part all of my running so far this year has been unstructured.   Some of this was by design, some of it wasn't.  At any rate I went to the track.   The thing about going to the track was I thought I was getting faster.  How I felt in my last race pointed to this but courses and conditions can easily change.  The only way to really know how fast you are running in my opinion is to go to the track.  That's what they are made for.  And that's probably why I hadn't stepped on one in over a year.  But I digress.  

 The workout was simple.  Warm up with some plyometric work, then get things going with 8 400 meter intervals.  Next would be the 1 mile time trial that I would be basing my steady state work on for the next block of training.  This would be capped off with a 1.5 mile run to a flight of stairs.  At the stairs there would be 15 min solid of stair running followed by a 1.5 mile "jog" back to the track for a 1 mile barefoot cooldown.  The whole workout was slated for about an hour and 30 minutes.  I clocked in at about 1:27 (1 hour 27 min).  


The intervals went well and looked like this: 

 1:21 HR 156

1:21 HR 158

1:23 HR 160

1:23 HR 160

1:19 HR 162

1:19 HR 162

1:17 HR 164

1:16 HR 166

The mile TT was done in 6:22.9 with splits of:

1:35 HR 155

1:36 HR 160

1:36 HR 163

1:35 HR 163


For some reason (basically my endurance sucks) I've always found intervals much easier than steady state work.  But that's why we train weaknesses.  And why I’m going to work on this now.  But I also find this type of work gives me a more fine tuned sense of pace which helps when it comes to measuring out efforts for longer distances.  What I will do is take the time of 6:23 and add 1:15 to it and this will be my threshold for steady state track work for the next 3 weeks until my next test.  Each mile of the workout will be done at between 7:28 to 7:30 pace per mile.  This means each lap on the track will be done at about 1:52 per 403m.   My goal here isn’t to get “faster”.  It is to build endurance for longer events maintaining an even, efficient pace.  I’ll start out with 3miles and work up from there eventually getting up to 10 miles on the track or 40 laps.  I’ll know I’m doing what I’ve planned when each 400m lap is almost identical.  And that is both the beauty and the challenge in this type of work but over time my body should run this pace no matter what and for as long as necessary if properly fueled.

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