Wednesday, February 25, 2009

Interval workout - 9.5 miles total

Tough workout today.  Workout was 1600, 3 minutes rest, 1200, 3 minutes rest, 800, 3 minutes rest, 400.  I ran at lunch and it was overcast and about 75 degrees out.  My goal times based on the 5k I ran a few weeks back at the Rockets run were ~ 5:00, 3:40, 2:24, 1:07.  In hindsight, I probably should have backed it off a little bit since it was warmer today and my legs have been pretty tired the last couple of days.  My actual times were 5:01, 3:47, 2:32, 1:11

I did a 4 mile warmup and drills, stretching and strides and felt pretty good to begin the workout.  I was pretty worried about running the first mile because I often have trouble dialing in a good pace at the beginning of a workout.  I'm either usually too relaxed and too slow or I come out of the gate too fast.  Being 4 or 5 seconds off on the first 400 pretty much will ruin any chance I have of hitting the target time and with this being a relatively small number of intervals, I didn't want to blow off the mile.  I ran on an asphalt loop near my office that is relatively flat and has 1/4 mile markers every 1/4.  I started out and went through the first 1/4 right at 75 seconds which was perfectly on pace.  Then I started worrying a little bit about the next 1/4 since it is easy to relax and slow down and I didn't want to fall off pace, but I managed to hit the half mile right on pace at 2:30.  At this point I was locked into my pace and hit 3/4 right at 3:45 - 3:46.  I knew that I needed to run tough the last qtr since I had slipped 1/2 or 1 second on the 3rd qtr, but I always find the next to last one the toughest.  It seems like I can always gut out a hard last qtr when I know the end is sight.  I kept pushing and looked at my watch when I finished the mile and hit 5:01.  I think that is probably the fastest mile I have run since I was in college.  I haven't run any competitive races shorter than a 5k since then and i know I haven't run any sub 5:00 miles in my 5k's and I don't recall doing any interval workouts post college where I have gone sub 5:00.  Next time I'll just have to pick it up a tiny bit more.  When I hit my goal time on the first mile I thought, "this workout will be cake."  Little did I know the pain was just beginning.

The 3 minutes rest went by so quick I thought my watch must have been keeping double time because I definitely wasn't recovered.  I started my 1200 at what I thought was a quick pace, but I only hit the 1/4 in 76 seconds and I knew I was in bad shape.  I felt like I was going really hard, but I was going slower than the mile.  The 2nd 1/4 was really painful and I hit the 800 at 2:32.  I gutted out a 75 last qtr to finish my 1200 in 3:47, slower than my mile pace.  My body definitely isn't used to running this quickly but I relish having challenging workouts.  What doesn't kill you only makes you stronger.  Again the 3 minutes rest went by way too quickly and I was definitely not recovered for the 800.  I started out strong and hit the 1st qtr in 75 and I was dead at that point.  I managed to do 77 seconds for the 2nd qtr and hit a disappointing 2:32.  If I'd run a 5:10 on the first mile, maybe I would have been able to pick up the pace on the other intervals.

Fortunately I knew that I could crank out the last 1/4 mile pretty quickly even though I was tired.  I ran the last 1/4 in 71 seconds.  It was a little slower than the goal, but I was happy with finishing faster than the last couple of intervals.  I did about a 3 mile cooldown after the workout.

It was a tough workout and my body definitely isn't used to running at that pace.  Fortunately, I won't be having to run like that in the marathon or do a lot more workouts like this one for my marathon training.  My legs definitely felt better today than they had the last couple of days.  I could definitely feel my hamstring some during the cooldown but after stretching and using the foam roller for a while on it, it is feeling better now.  I'm going to try to get up early and get 10 or 11 miles in tomorrow morning.  I need to make up a few miles for cutting yesterday short.

1 comment:

  1. Great workout. I missed this workout, as I was way off in my first mile... just concrete legs I couldn't get moving. Way to go out there though.