Saturday, August 21, 2010

Definitely Manageable

Thursday’s Run (8/19/10)

I was so excited to find the new issue of EatingWell in my mailbox on Thursday!  It joined me for a treadmill run—at least until I had to toss it aside to focus on my speedwork for the day.  I’m not sure how other people can run and read at the same time, but I definitely cannot.  Walk and read, yes, but with running, there’s a little too much bouncing up and down for me to see words on a page.  But it was nice to have some reading material during my walking warm-up and cool-down, especially because there was nothing good on tv at the gym that night.

I wanted a solid, not-too-long running work-out, and I was feeling motivated to do some speedwork, so I used one of my favorite types of running work-out.  I’m not sure what the name of it is, but the idea is that your speed becomes faster, step by step, and then you slow it down using the same steps.  Perhaps this is a ladder-style work-out?  I’m not sure.  At any rate, here was my plan:

* Warm up by running for 5 min. at 9:31 pace (a very easy pace for me now!)

* Begin the speedwork: 1 min. at 8:00 pace

* Step up: 1 min. at 7:30 pace

* Fastest pace: 1 min. at 7:00

* Step down: 1 min. at 7:30

* Final speed step: 1 min. at 8:00

* Finish the run: 5 min. at 9:31 pace.

You can see that it’s a total of 5 minutes of speedwork, which is definitely manageable for a not-so-speedy runner.  It’s also not kick-your-ass hard because the steps are short, both in time and speed increase.  If you try this work-out outside and you are pacing yourself, you have to be careful not to go too hard in the first few steps—the idea is to train your body to run faster over a sustained period of time.

I finished the work-out drenched with sweat, and I felt amazing.  Sometimes I think that running gives back to me way more than I put into it.  This was one of those times.

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