Speed workouts at the track!

Speed workouts at the track! I love and I crave the need for more speed but then my deep thoughts jump into the mix and I feel that my love then turns into fear with disbelief in my ability to succeed and get faster. Just the words speed & workouts scare me, then you add track into the mix, and I pretty much become a mess. My inner thoughts of doubt tell me that I can’t get any faster than what I am running now. What does one do to escape these feelings?? As you can see I am pretty messed up, I am now in this love/hate relationship with running and getting faster. The mind games that play out in my head before and during a run are true, as people enjoy saying “the struggle is real” and in my case the struggle is very real indeed. IMG_6988 Back when I was training for LA Marathon in the late winter, I stared playing around with my Garmin and I found that I could set my laps to tell me at 800 meters, even though I have in the weeks earlier and even going back a few years I would run laps around a track and not take much notice that I was always getting incorrect distances, I thought maybe I was running around people or running in lane 2 that made my distance further then what I was actually running. I truly never really paid much attention to the difference or really cared that I was running further then needed for the laps in distances of either 400 or 800 laps. But it wasn’t until I set my watch to lap at 800 meters did I fully realize how much time that extra 40 meters (on running 400 meters) and the extra 80 meters (while running 800 meters) was adding to my time. When running 800 meters or in my case at my track 880 meters or 2 full laps around the track, 80 meters doesn’t really seem like a lot in distance when on paper but when you are running around the track and your watch beeps with an alert that you reached 800 meters and you are 80 meters away from where you thought you had to stop, looking down the track lane to where you started is pretty far. I am a numbers kind of girl, I like knowing what I have run for each KM for each run, whether I am running 5km or 42.2 km I want to look at each km and study the time in which I ran that km. So with learning that our track is not measured correctly, I wanted to ask a few of my friends, all with running backgrounds as well as the knowledge of running laps at the track. I asked my friends what they were running and if their tracks were 400 meters around in lane 1. I wanted to find out what others were running especially because I am trying to believe in the famous Yasso 800’s and what the time of these laps may or may not predict in my running abilities. It seems the theory is and it has been proven by many, and when I say many, I really mean thousands and thousands of people have trained running the Yasso 800s at the track which will predict your marathon time based on the average of how many minutes it takes you to run the 800 meters or around the track twice with equal recovery time is the same as the hours and minutes of your marathon time. For example, if you can run 10 times 800 meters in 4 minutes and 20 seconds with 4 minutes and 20 seconds recovery, then this predicts that you can run four hours and 20 minutes for your marathon. Run 3:35 for the 800s and you can run 3:35 for the marathon. You can read more about the Yasso 800s at Runner’s World Magazine. http://www.runnersworld.com/race-training/yasso-800s   Here is my break down of the different speed sessions at the track over the last month or so: Track Workout 1                                           Track Workout 2 429m   2:00                                                  438m   2:08 435m   2:01                                                  867m   4:16 432m   2:06                                                  880m   4:13 444m   2:02                                                  440m   1:58 432m   1:58                                                  436m   1:57   Track Workout 3                                           Track Workout 4 800m   3:43                                                  440m 2:02 800m     3:45                                                440m   2:01 800m     3:44                                                430m   2:02 800m     3:51                                                430m   2:02 800m     3:55                                                440m   1:59  X 2       Track Workout 5 900m   4:17 880m   4:12 870m   4:10 850m   4:14 870m   4:18 880m   4:25 (tired maybe) By looking at my times for my laps based more than 800 meters my times say or predict that I should be able to run a marathon with a finish time of 4 hours 15 minutes. Where my time for running a true distance of 800 meters shows that I have the potential of running a marathon under 4 hours, it shows a predicted time of 3:45 WOW!! And to qualify for Boston at my current age is 3:55 and don’t forget to add that time buffer of 5-10 minutes. I could qualify for Boston, which from me really doesn’t do anything at least is what I tell myself as I know I will never reach those top speeds to meet those time goals while running a distance of 42.2 km. Which is alright with me, seriously it is A-Okay with me. IMG_7084 Which brings me back to the beginning, what do I do? Do I run the further distance of 880 meters or do I run the true distances of 800? As I mentioned earlier I had sought the wise wisdom of my running friends and the community that do not train or run on the same track as I do. I also sent my friend Bart the same question about the distance around the track. The general feedback is to run the true 800’s as 800 and no further. But then I asked friends and fitness trainers who train and or coach at the track in which I am running my track workouts, and everyone came back with go the further distance, most of us believe in that visual of ending at the same spot where you started your workout. Go the extra distance, as more distance isn’t going to hurt you, it will make you stronger!! I feel that by running the true 800 meter distance, it is giving me a false sense of hope that I can actually run a SUB 4 Marathon. Which would be amazing!! Truly it would be out of this world amazing, I would be over the moon thrilled at that possibility of seeing that time on my Garmin or anything under 3:59 In my heart I feel I could run a 4:15 marathon in the very near future, and I would be very happy and grateful for an awesome time of 4:15. Only time will tell what my body can run, with or without the mind games that play very actively in my head. I know that now I can run a sub 4:30 marathon, I truly believe in this, this is one thing that my heart and my mind can agree on, and that is a 4:30 is in my future within the next few years as I really am not sure how many more marathons I can run. Do you struggle along the same lines with the self-doubt? And if so what do you do to get beyond those feelings of struggle within? Do you add speed work into your training? And if so what is your favourite speed workout? I would love to hear from you? IMG_7218

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