Tuesday, June 06, 2006

Fartlek Faster!

Wow. Amazing what a slight decrease in temperatures/sun will do for someone. Although we still had wind and humidity we had much better weather than last week for our 8 mile fartlek run.

I don't have time to highlight the lines tonight like I did last week.....but wow did we speed up. Because we had to add an extra mile to the run we added to the end. So this week we had a 2 mile warm up, 4 miles of fartleking (stop laughing!), then a 2 mile cooldown/finish up.

We did good for the warm up pacing 9:12 min/mile and then started in on the sprints followed by a recovery period. Last week our recovery periods were all in the 9 minute-9:30 min pace range. This week as you can see we were much faster, staying steady between 8-8:30 miles. We had to go drive a water bottle out to the course we were running because we knew that we would want some during the run. So there is one segment in there at 9:42 as this was the water bottle pick up and then the last segment was in 11:06 as we walked for about 0.1 miles drinking some water and catching our breath.

What's really excellent are our last 5 sprint segments. ALL under 7 minute mile pace! I know I know it's only for 0.07 miles BUT still, it's nice to see our speed get speedy as the run progressed. I am also really impressed with our recovery paces. I think this is more how these runs should be going.

We then had the two mile cool down and even though these were directly into the wind we did these at an 8:37 pace. Finishing the run at 8 miles in 1:09:33 = 8:41 pace which I believe is perfect if we are working towards an 8:15 pace on marathon day.

I am happy that tomorrow is an off day because I have tons of work to do, but luckily (!) I *think* I made some progress today which is always good news. Since I'm going to have to do a ton tomorrow I might try and get as much sleep as possible tonight and then work my ass off tomorrow. I do want to try one thing tonight and then it's off to bed. Then it's 10 miles Thursday, 5 Recovery on Saturday and 13 on Sunday....for those of you following along that's a 4 mile increase from last week. Woof.

We also tried the Lemon-Lime Sports Beans eating one every once in awhile and letting them somewhat dissolve in our mouths. Tasty...but I would like some more water to go along with them.


Bob said...

Great run guys!

Oh look we did similar workouts, imagine that....:) But now I am questioning myself. I better go back and read more about strides. The main difference is I am running the strides faster at a speed pace 5:15 - 5:50. I need to go back to Pfitz....am I doing this wrong??? I am also running the recoveries slower. 10-10:30 pace.
It was a great workout tonight, but I better read up.

BTW I entered it into my Garmin, as an advanced workout 60 minute 10 stride workout, 20 second strides with 2:00 recoveries. It was sweet but I wish the watch was a bit louder. My ears are not the best and it's a strain to hear it at times with wind in the ears or traffic.

That sucker (Garmin) is a little task master, there was no little voice tonight telling me to recover longer or cut a sprint short. Garminia was having none of that. :)

Anonymous said...

How awesome! Are you guys trying to qualify for Boston? If not you should.
So you tried the beans - they alwasy scared me. Are you going for them again?

LeahC said...

Hi Bob-

ooh...you know I don't know (nice nice way to FREAK me out :-) ).

I thought it was an 8mile General Aerobic w/ 10x10m. So I figured the entire run should fit into whatever you would define as a 'general aerobic' pace. I also recently saw on a message board at forums.runnersworld.com that you should be doing the strides at or a bit faster than your 5K pace and that should be fine. I think it's more important to concentrate on your form during them and thinking about the quick turnover.

But you know I don't know, maybe we should be doing them faster because I guess there is only a minute difference between our recovery and speed pace...hmm. I will do some research on them before we do that workout again in two weeks. Perhaps we are missing the point, although it's not super clear in the book or websites I just quickly looked for.

Isn't Garmin fun...doesn't let you quit.

Either way we felt WAY better than last week which is super good news because after that workout last week I was like whateva sucka...i'm just going back to running 30 miles a week :-)

nicole-the beans are good. very very similar to jelly bellys which in my opinion are delich :-) Boston is the idea...but we'll see apparently I am not doing speed work right :-) I kid.

Thomas said...

Looks like a good workout, and the sprint speed is impressive.

For what I know, if you're doing strides, you should do them as fast as you possibly can while still keeping a relaxed form. That means not all-out sprinting (cause then you're not relaxed), but still at a very good pace.

Bob said...

Thomas has it right at least from what I read in Pfitz after I posted. I want to say it was on page 29 or 30.

What it said was when doing a stride concentrate on smooth relaxed form, accelerate up to top speed over the first 70% of the stride and then float for the last 30%.
It goes on to say there is no need for quick recoveries here, since you are not working on Cardio. You are working on running economy and trying to get stronger and recruit a few fast twitch muscle fibers. Walk or run slow to recover. But concentrating on form is as important as speed.
I am sure you got great benefit out of last nights run, sorry for freaking you out, actually I was thinking I was the idiot. I know you know I am only trying to help. :)

LeahC said...

yeah i read that too...but what top speed? I'm going to be going out for a first place in the 100m dash. I do think I was doing them too slow though but I just don't feel great about running 10 fast increments and then 10 min miles for the rest of it....that's the devil on my shoulder though right :-)

Bob said...

Don't get me wrong I really don't even know if it makes a difference, I get hung up on the details to much sometimes.

But I think in essence top speed is as fast as you can go while maintaining good form. What felt right for me last night was a fairly flat foot strike. I tried to stay off the balls of my feet like you run when you sprint but I was not heel striking either. That was working for me.

I know what you mean, you want to continue to pound the aerobic side of things. But like Pfitz says this is not for your Aerobic system, it's leg, trunk and leg muscle strenth work. The two minuter recoveries were plenty.

Alright we have beaten that horse to death. Keep up the good work!

John said...

Leah - Good workout and nice discussion. Per your recommendation, I went out and purchased Advanced Marathoning by Pfitz. Starting to read it now and thinking of trying the up to 70 mile/18 week plan starting in August for a marathon at the beginning of December. We'll see how it goes.


Lana said...

Awesome run, either way you slice it.

I like the beans, too, but I also like to wash them down with a drink of water. If I don't have my fuel belt, then I usually just eat them before I start.

Joe said...

You recovered at 8-8:30 pace? Wowzers! I can't believe how fit you guys have been getting lately!

LeahC said...

john- hope you enjoy the book! I was thinkign that for your fitness level you should be doing the higher milage workouts! What marathon are you thinking of? I have hear that Houston (in Jan I think) is a really good/fast marathon.

lana-we don't have a fuel belt because we normally run in the city with all the water fountains....so it should be good when we are in the city and when running at the lab we'll have to find a solution.

joe-yes, but i think i need to speed up the other segments and then slow down the recoveries...that is the concensus anyways.

John said...

The book is pretty good so far. I'll need to focus more on recovery and mixing things up in terms of mileage (i.e. don't run 9 miles every day). Thanks for the recommendation.

The California International Marathon (CIM) is in early December in Sacramento, which is only 2 hours away from where I live. Pretty fast course but every few years the weather sucks so we'll see.