Tuesday, December 18, 2012

Boston Marathon Track Workout #2

I had to move up my weekly Boston Marathon track workout to today, as I am unable to do a track workout on Thursday. I wasn't sure how my legs would react to running fast so soon after my race on Saturday. Anyway, this was my first real Hansons Brooks "speed" workout where the goal is to do a total of three miles of 10k paced intervals with no single interval more than 1600 meters. Today, I decided to do the minimum number of intervals to get to the three miles, which was:
 3 x 1600 @ 6:20/mile pace (with 400m recoveries).

Mid workout at the track
So with that goal in mind, I hit the track and did this:

2 mile warm-up
1600m @ 6:22/mile pace (400m recovery)
1600m @ 6:12/mile pace (400m recovery)
1600m @ 6:08/mile pace
2 mile cool-down

Track workouts seem like an uphill climb for the first few laps...

you start chugging along, fighting to get your speed up...

and as they progress, you get faster...

 then they don't seem so bad as you start to fly around the track...

and soon enough they're over, and you're on your way home!
Analysis: Mission accomplished. My legs responded admirably at the track despite having run a 10k on Saturday. My goal was to run all three intervals at 6:20/mile and I actually averaged 6:14/mile. I felt like I could run another mile or two at the end when normally I am pretty fatigued. Maybe I'm getting stronger? Maybe a Tuesday track session suits me better than a Thursday session? Maybe I had a breakthrough at the 10k on Saturday? In any case, I'll see if I can keep this fitness level up. I will run at least a couple of miles tonight in order stretch out my legs and get some extra mileage.

9 comments:

  1. I love the train analogy and pictures to help illustrate how you felt during the speedwork!!! Way to go on a great workout!!!

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    1. I'm glad you liked my pics! Thanks!

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  2. Speed work confuses me but I hear it really helps runners out in terms of making them faster. I love the train analogy. What is your goal pace for Boston?

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    1. Yes, it can be a little confusing, but not bad if you keep things simple. Thanks. Boston goal pace is 6:52/mile = 2:59 hour marathon!

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  3. I didn't know the Hansons Brooks Project posted free training plans! That's neat. Maybe I'll try their half plan for my spring half.

    I noticed your plan doesn't go up to 20 miles ... I think I remember reading an article about the Hansons Brooks training and how they don't do the super long runs (was it in Runners World? Running Times?) Will this be your first marathon without doing a 20-miler?

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    1. Yes, my max long run is 16 miles. The reason the Hansons don't advise going past that distance is that they believe that it takes too long to recover from distances greater than 16 miles. Their plan calls for "cumulative fatigue" with minimal rest days for your legs. On your long runs, your legs will feel like they are running the final 16 miles of the marathon, not the first 20. This is my 3rd marathon using this plan. I was inspired by the Runners World article you were probably thinking of called "Way of the Renegades." http://tinyurl.com/bnbbq3e

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  4. Sounds like a good start for Boston - and now you don't have to worry about the thundersnow tomorrow!

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    1. It's hard to run at the track when there is several inches of snow on it. They don't plow it, so it gets icy really fast! Plus, you can't see the lanes!

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  5. WHOO HOO! Another good speed workout. Glad your legs cooperated and you felt good at the end of the session. Nice photos of the EL too :)

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