Wednesday, March 2, 2011

Speeding with Friends

As I mentioned in my last post, I have a new training plan that is helping me (hopefully) shave a few more minutes off my marathon time (3:45 currently).  This training plan includes once-a-week speed work, which is something I detest.  Still, I thought it is just once a week and when I saw the workouts, they were something I could wrap my mind around actually doing.

The first was this morning.  The workout consisted of a 1 mile warm up, 4 x 1600 at 7:45 pace with 800 jogs in between.  My friend, Julia, joined me and since neither one of us are fans of the track, she mapped out a nice little neighborhood route with as few hills as possible. 

The workout was a success!  It was great having a buddy to talk to during the half-mile rests, and since Julia is faster then me, she provided someone to hang on to during the miles so that I did not drop pace when it got uncomfortable.  At one point when she began to pull ahead, I glanced at my watch to see that we were running 7:13 pace.  I laughed and gave myself permission to slow a bit as Julia ran effortlessly (so it appeared) in front of me.

As we ran through the neighborhoods of our town, the sliver of moon was replaced by the sunrise and it was lovely to see.  As we pushed the pace from street to street, I thought, at least we have that to look at while we do this.  All in all, however, it was not that bad.  When we reached the end of our last cool down 800, I asked Julia if she was up for 1 more mile and she said yes.  Despite the faster pace, I was feeling pretty good when we were finished and I was not ready to stop.

Next week's speed work takes the form of a tempo run, and Julia said she would join me once again.  We will be running 1 warm-up mile and then 6 miles at 8:20 or less pace, with 1 cool down mile afterward.  That work out doesn't sound so bad either, and I find myself actually looking forward to it after today's mile repeat experience.

Running the Huntsville half marathon with Julia in 2009...back when
she thought she needed to hang on to ME.


  1. Sounds fun! Wish I could join you! And I really think Julia can run any pace out there and be fine. She's amazing! And so are you!!

  2. I wish you could come too! I miss running with you. Hopefully soon!

  3. That's awesome! So you did 5 mile repeats?? That is crazy. I always feel so proud when I just do 3. Haven't done any speed work since the half, so this is making me want to try some again. I decided to do my long run tomorrow while Leah is in preschool since my weekend time is filled. That will let me spread the longer runs out a little more. So a 16 miler for me tomorrow! Wish you could take off work ;)

  4. I'm FAMOUS. Maybe you should pace us next week. :)

  5. Shannon, we did 4 mile repeats. But we may add 5 before it is all said and done. I wish I could take off work too! I would do it!

    Julia - nope, you gotta pace. It is good for me if you do it. :)