We all know that a good run hast he power to make even the most dismal day brighter. Exercise endorphins truly are the best medicine as far as I’m concerned and my most favorite way to tap into that runner’s high after a bad day at work is intervals.
Maybe this makes me crazy, but I LOVE speedwork.
Usually I do my repeats on a treadmill, but during the summer months Charm City Run hosts a Tuesday track night near my house. I was able to attend only once last year because I found out about it way too late, but this time I wasn’t going to let the whole summer roll past me without getting out there a few times. And after the day I had yesterday, I was ready to tape my toenail toenail down (I know…gross, but I’m about to lose the big one on my right foot again) and run as fast and hard as I could. Never mind the fact that it was 90 degrees and 70% humidity.
Actually I won’t lie. The heat almost kept me away, but shortly after I arrived and saw a couple familiar faces, including the super cool guy who was my partner for Yasso 800s last year, I knew I had made a good decision. I ran a mile warm up on my own (7:29 pace), a half mile with Yasso partner guy (untimed), and after we went through some dynamic stretches, another quarter mile (7:10 pace) before we got set up for the workout of the day:
A Reverse Ladder
I’ve done ladder workouts before, but never in reverse which basically meant that we were starting with the 1600 at race pace if we were in the process of training for something or close to max effort if we weren’t. Then the 1200, 800, and 400 increasing our effort each time, which was REALLY hard especially with the weather as hot as it was.
I had the hardest time with the 1200. My first lap felt okay, but then I started to feel seriously overheated and slowed down a lot. We were doing 1 lap rests in between each set and I felt much better after drinking a little water and was able to finish pretty strong.
After we finished the ladder the group leader told us to choose a distance for our cool down. I did another mile at 7:11 pace, which felt crazy easy after working so hard out there. Then I retreated to my car with the air conditioner on full blast in my face.
Did I mention it was hot outside? SO HOT OUTSIDE.
My Achilles has been feeling decent for the past few days, but I was a little worried that I was going to irritate it by pushing the pace so much. Luckily I felt awesome afterward (or as awesome as one can feel after intervals in those kind of weather conditions) and I am already ready to join the group again next week!
The day was rough for sure, but surrounding myself with like-minded people doing something that I love to do really did make everything all right.
What is your favorite kind of speedwork? Have you been to a track night before?
I hope everyone has a wonderful Wednesday and if your weather is anything like mine, STAY COOL!