09 May Linda’s Interval Run: Insights & Ideas
Insights: The early morning gifted us with good weather. Interval workout here I come! By stressing our capacity we can start to maximize our aerobic power. Hello intervals. Quite straightforward too: push the pace and briefly recover in between. I was on for six 600m repeats with a 2-minute RI (recovery interval). It would be unusual if a runner told you that approaching an interval workout did not come with a few thoughts of ‘Am I up to the challenge today?’.
First the Warmup: Always intrigued by how quickly the Warmup activates my body and mind. Sunday was no exception. That gradual rise of the heart rate works magic. Best good morning wakeup call on the market. I set off for my easy 2K.
Then Dynamic Drills and Strides: Makes sense to do these doesn’t it? Dynamics get our joints moving in a variety of beneficial directions. Makes me feel looser, more mobile. (I’ll take that feeling whenever I can get it.) Pickups? Strides? Another no-brainer.
Before attempting quick-paced repeats, the strides re-introduce our brain to the expectation: ‘Grey matter meet fast feet’. I was starting to feel better already.
Next the Handy Gadget–My Garmin: I’m a firm believer that my best running comes by feel and not from gadgets. Proved that in a few of my races. Nevertheless when running intervals and not having a ‘body’ on the sidelines manning a stop watch, my Garmin is handy-dandy. Before heading out I had programmed my ‘I-mean-business-interval-workout’.
The Intervals: A beep announced the start of Interval 1. 600m later a second beep alerted me I had done the distance. Yeah. Breathe. Recover. The 2-minute RI passed quickly. The countdown of 6 beeps alerted me it was almost time, and ‘beep’ another 600m was underway. Repeat, repeat, and so on. There’s also the feature of setting a target pace. With a pace range my Garmin alerts me to three things: on pace, speed up, or slow down. I have a tendency to vary my pace too much. The Garmin keeps me honest. It helps me zone into a steady, even pace. Because I don’t look at the watch, I know it helps me program my body and brain to feel different paces in relation to my perceived effort. (Training on a treadmill does much the same to develop a sense of pace, although except in nasty weather, my preference is running outside.)
Intervals done. Did an easy 2K cooldown run. Happy to report the workout went well today. Time to stretch, shower, eat, and get on with the rest of the day. All good fun.
Ideas: You can apply the concept of interval training to your own runs or even other workouts. You don’t need a Garmin. (I just happen to like my technology and enjoy the data it provides.) Run a set distance. Use your watch to see how long it takes. Repeat the same distance aiming for the same time. Remember to rest (slow jog or walk) in between. Or…run for a short interval of time and repeat the same time/distance for a few repeats. 2 weeks later you might challenge yourself to go a bit further, or do the same distance a bit faster.
Workouts like this won’t always feel like fun at the time but they are rewarding. Give it a go and tap into your potential.
Thanks to my Coach Rick Mannen.
…and thanks for reading, Cheerios, ~Linda