Custom Search

Wednesday, March 22, 2017

Track struggles

I'm loving track workouts with the Powermilers, but I'm not going to lie, I'm struggling. I just can't flip the switch to speed! Last night our workout called for 2x2 miles to start the workout off. I hit the first 2 milers easily, right on target, but the second rep was immediately hard. It was 82 degrees, the sun was beating down on me, and I suddenly felt terribly sluggish.
Why, New Orleans? 
One of the awesome things about working out with this group is that when some of the fast guys have races on the weekend, or are just taking it easy, they'll run with me or another girl to pace us (which is super easy pace for them). Jimmi, who writes the workouts, was with me for the second repeat, and at a mile and a half he told me, "Shut it down." I was breathing too hard and running too slow. "You're not gaining any benefit from this," he explained, "And you want to be able to do the rest of the workout." So I did what he said. I took my rest, then ran 6x400 at 5k pace (400 jog) followed by 4x200 hard (1 min rest). He was right - I hit all my paces for the rest of the workout, especially easier since the sun started to go down, and I was glad I'd done what he told me to do.

That's one of the benefits of working with a group - those who know more than you do can help you train smarter! I would NEVER have cut part of a workout short by myself. I would have pushed through it, and then all my subsequent paces would suffer.

I hope my track workouts eventually get me to a faster pace, but for now, they're just slogging. I can barely get a mile under 6:40 at this point. I'm not exactly sure why. Something about my training is boosting my endurance, but not speed, I think; it's like I've developed a small, narrow window of paces I can run. For example, 6:50 feels hard, but 7:50 feels easy. I easily hit 7:30's in regular easy runs and don't even feel like it's an exertion. But if I tried to run 6:30, I'd be dying.

Any suggestions to tweak my training? Ideas to improve my track performance? Do you ever modify track workouts? 


  1. Yeah, we had our first day in the low 90s this week. Summer's comin'! May be tough to see many improvements in times while we're acclimating to summer temps and humidity.

  2. I modify track workouts all the time, since my coach is there. A lot of times, I don't know how many reps I will be doing - I just do them until he and I agree (or disagree) that I've done enough.

    Do you ever do drills and strides? I do them pretty much every day I run, and I feel they help me retain my speed as I age.

    And, if you're trying to develop that faster gear, I think doing them up and down a slight incline can help - the up direction encourages you to push off forcefully and correctly, while the down direction helps with turnover, and also lets you develop the feel of "fast while relaxed."

    I dunno - just my semi-solicited brain droppings :)

    1. Great recs as always! Love your training tips - thanks.

  3. That is a super hot workout. I think doing short Fartleks of 1 minutes and 2 minutes can really help get the legs moving and make the mile repeat pace not seem as hard.

  4. Gosh, I am of no help since I'm not fast and couldn't run your easy pace for mile! ;) That's great that you can get feedback from others when doing these workouts. Helps to have someone say - this isn't helping.

    Send some of that heat up the Mississippi to me!! It's so cold here! I'm still wearing my winter coat!!

  5. If you have a minute, I’d really appreciate it if you took a look at Emily’s Virtual Rocket. This is a serious newsblog which has been taken from e-newspapers and e-magazines from around the world, with an emphasis on transgender issues. Also, with his election, I look for articles which critique Donald Trump.

    I hope you enjoy this. Please paste the following:

    If you like it, please consider putting it among your favorite blogs. I would greatly appreciate it.