a blog about running fast with style
Wednesday Night Speed: 7 x 800m
Missing: My Lungs
Last seen: Roosevelt High School somewhere around the 5th rep
If found, please return.
Let the records show that Wednesday December 28 2011 was a stormy, stormy day. Sitting at my office computer gazing out the window all I could see was a dark gray haze. The view wasn’t what was bad, I’ve seen enough gray days here, rather it was the sound of the rain on the roof, a much better indicator of just how hard the rain was falling.
Now just to clarify I don’t mind running in the rain at all, in fact I rather enjoy it, but I’m not sure one could call this rain. Several of my co-workers stopped by my office most were leaving early and all of them thought I was insane to stick around to go to a “running workout”.
I faithfully informed them that I couldn’t remember a Wednesday night workout where the rain didn’t cease for a few hours, but deep down I had my doubts (enough doubt that I was trying to figure out how to do the workout on Thursday morning).
The rain was still coming down when I made the drive over to the track. It came down as I started my warm-up, but by the time I reached the track it stopped and the sky cleared up thanks to a crazy wind storm; clearly this will be a fun night.
I made my way over the workout notebook ready to see some sort-of temp workout when to my surprise I read the following: 7 x 800m 2 minute recovery. What? What happened to “easy (ier)” 20 minute tempo runs? 800’s?
Normally I would have loved this workout but I hadn’t done speed since October and clearly I was expecting a tempo run. Not to mention I was a bit ambitious with my new Pilates routine and should have skipped the Tuesday workout. Luckily before I panicked I looked at the times; group 4’s pace 3:06 and 3:03. Usually group 4 would be faster; I figured Tom was easing us into speed. This workout might not be so bad.
Announcements, strides and warm-up quarter done we were ready to line-up in groups: the only problem? No one was running in group 4. The group of high school girls I’d been running with for the past 2 weeks were bumped to 3A. I don’t think I’ve ever run with 3A but I know I’d run this workout before faster than group 4 pace it just usually much later during the season. I didn’t want to run 800s alone so I settled in with 3A.
The plan was to run a “slow” 800 followed by a “fast” one: our pace 2:59 and 2:56 with 2 minutes recovery in between. We ran 3:01 (we went out fast and slowed down too much on the second lap), 2:57, 2:59, 2:54, 2:58, 2:51 and 2:55.
It was fast for sure but not pretty. Have you seen the episode of Friends where Phoebe runs in the park? That’s what I looked like. (Here’s the link if you haven’t seen it: http://youtu.be/E_0Ta_DIWuU) The wind certainly didn’t help, it felt like it was circulating around the track, I actually watched one of the little high school girls in my group get blown off the track.
My legs were most definitely tired. The first 3 or 4 reps were a blur (when did 2 laps get so short?), by the 5th I was tired and just held on for the last reps. Surprisingly I was able to still finish strong (without collapsing) though I usually feel a lot better. I think I lost my lungs around rep 5 (one of the slow ones) by the end of the workout my chest physically hurt like it’d been torn in two. Am I getting too old for this?
With all that being said, it was amazing :). It’s nice to get some quick shorter reps in and it was nice to see I still had some speed in my legs. My cool down felt better than the last 2 weeks but I realized no more Pilates the day before a workout. I could really feel it in my hip, silly ambition, just need to make smarter choices.
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