The title of this post should probably be “Speedwork?!?!” considering how much of it I incorporate into my training. Ever since I started running, I’ve shied away from running fast. Partly because I’m, well, not fast. Partly because I’ve always equated running fast with increased injury risk. And I also realized that I just don’t like to run fast. Give me a chill eight hour “run” over a lung busting 5K any day of the week. I didn’t begin to like running until I figured out how to finish a run and not immediately collapse onto the driveway.
And so I can count on one hand the number of speed workouts that I’ve done over the years and still have a couple fingers left. Back in early 2016 I got motivated to try speedwork and knocked out two sessions of mile repeats (three reps each). That was so enjoyable it was four plus years until I tried again (10×800). And while I don’t remember that being too bad, it’s taken me almost three years to attempt another session on the track so it obviously wasn’t that awesome an experience.
I’ve been toying with adding speedwork for a while now. During my last training block, I decided to give it another go once I recovered from NJ Devil. I put 4×800 into my training log as a placeholder for this week. 800 is a relatively easy workout as you only have to count two laps of a track. I waffled a bit as to what pace I should target and eventually came up with 3:30 per 800. As the week crept closer, the idea of hitting the track for some fast running still appealed to me so off I went. Driving over I decided to up the reps to six with 1.5 mile warmup and cooldown afterwards. Here’s what I ended up doing:
- Lap 1 – 3:31
- Lap 2 – 3:28
- Lap 3 – 3:29
- Lap 4 – 3:27
- Lap 5 – 3:25
After the third lap, I decided to stop at 5 laps as I still felt good and wanted to walk away from the workout feeling like I could have done more. And I could have done more. But doing more may have left me feeling like three years is an appropriate amount of time between speedwork. I’m motivated right now to add a harder workout into my weekly training so think that easing into things is better than the alternative. I’ll let you know if it was the right decision.