Friday, January 04, 2008

Mixed Bag

This morning I returned to the track for another go-around with 1000 repeats on five minutes. I imagined knocking this workout out of the park after five days worth of easy running, which meant finishing all 10 repeats while working down from 3:20 to 3:15.

3:19, 3:19, 3:16, 3:17, 3:16, 3:17, 3:16, then a last 400 where I ground to a halt midway through the curve to start a second lap. Yeah, that's only 7.

What happened? I was simply done. The legs still felt good, but the lungs started working too hard, the system felt too stressed, and I just felt like I was falling off the knife edge when I started forcing myself through the second 400 of the 8th repeat. Up until that point I had been feeling fine and smooth, with a heart rate in the low 160's immediately after each rep which dipped down to 100-108 after a minute. Things just changed quickly and I bailed out. As I'm finally starting to understand, Lydiard's coordination phase is more about getting the legs and body feeling sharp, and as I was digging in on the eighth repeat I felt like I was crossing the line into putting the hurt on myself.

Am I training to quit? That's been nagging me a bit, but I have to put it out of my mind at this point. I've grinded out my share of runs, especially long runs and back to backs this build, and it's time to back off and hopefully reap the benefits rather than giving in to the temptation to keep punching through the last round. The days where I've pushed through the final repeats have found me generally dragging my way home on the cool down and feeling stiff an sore the next day. Today the legs came back quickly on the mile home, and it was difficult to not extend the cool-down a few miles. I thought better of this when I remembered Mystery Coach's meager mileage target for the week.

Training: 9 miles, 1h5m, 7x1000 on 5 minutes at 3:19, 3:19, 3:16, 3:17, 3:16, 3:17, 3:16


running faster with the ALIEN LIZARD said...

any fool can train hard ! it takes intelligence to know when to back off.your a smart guy mike so am sure you will get the training right.
i reckon its better to get to the start line fresh and sharp and maybe a little under trained than reaching the start of your marathon with empty tired muscles but a great couple of training weeks leading up to your race.

Chris Field said...

Keep trusting that the work is done. One or two more 1000 meter reps on a track means nothing 8 days from now. Getting to the start line fresh means everything.

Michael said...

Know that you made the correct decision and had any coach been at the track they would’ve told you the same. It’s easy to second guess yourself, thinking that you’re training to quit, but saving yourself now is paramount with the marathon next weekend. I can’t tell you anything you don’t already know; reading your blog it’s easy to see that you’re your own best counsel…. trust in that, rest up and good luck!

Thomas said...

Knowing when to quit is a sign of wisdom.

Especially so close to race day.

Mike said...

Thanks for the comments. I've been waiting for someone to call me weak for not doing all 10, but I guess most readers are too nice for that. =)

Thomas said...

Abadabajev is the only one who'd say that, but I think even he would acknowldege the fact that you were right to pull out, so soon to race day.

Eric said...

"I'd been waiting for someone to call me weak for not doing all ten..."

Really? Seriously? I've been reading your blog for a long time and I have yet to come across a commenter that would be that obnoxious. Abadabajev would never say such a thing. If anything, he would have asked why this workout even happened so close to the race.

Anyway, you did the right thing. Chris said it well. This workout--6,8,10 reps or whatever--means nothing in a week.