Need for Speed

Today marked the first time I have done a specific speed work session in months. In fact the last time I did a specific speed session was when I hurt my foot back in late September 2011 therefore I was a little apprehensive about it but over the past 5 weeks of building my base mileage up again the time was right to freshen up my training especially with a half marathon race just over 3 weeks away.

Although I have a 42 mile FatAss run the week after so I don't intend to rip the half marathon course up because I want to be reasonably fresh for this but I don't really have any excuses not to do some speed work to increase leg turnover, get fitter and run harder for longer!

So I headed out at lunch time and found a long stretch of pavement near the River Thames relatively free of people (quite unusual but found a good stretch). It was mostly flat except for a section at the near Vauxhall Bridge which I hoped to avoid but wasn't able to as you will see below. The session played out like so:

2 mile warm up (16:24)

1000m at 4:01
2 min jog recovery
1000m at 4:03 (into the wind)
2 min jog recovery
1000m at 4:00
2 min recovery
1000m at 4:18 (into the wind and over a slightly uphill section over the bridge)
2 min recovery
1000m at 4:08
2 min recovery

2.1 mile cool down (18:56) jogged back on way back.

8.25 miles in total - 1:05:52

I have to say apart from the 4th rep I am very pleased with how things went. I didn't strain to breaking point during each of the reps but did feel tired around the last 100m but managed to hold things together especially my running form so overall I would say it was a very solid first speed work session.

Comparing this session to my last attempt back I felt far more in control of what I was doing and knew exactly what I wanted to achieve from it. Hard workout sessions like this are not meant to be 100% all out sprinting as you will only get injured doing so. The main thing to remember is to have a a target pace that is probably on or just above the cusp of your current racing speed and attempt to run it at for the duration of the interval.

Definitely going to be doing more of the same next week. Think the legs won't be thanking me tomorrow but I have my Compressport R2 Recovery sleeves on so hopefully they won't be to sore :0)

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