Wednesday, April 2, 2008


If you want to get faster, you might as well get used to them. Last night at the running clinic Coach Dennis told us that from here on out we would pretty much be doing 400's at interval pace and extending those out to 800's and on. Last weeks 400's were hard. My legs were tight and sore from Sunday's 20 miler so I was a little apprehensive about doing more. Since I'm really not in the advanced group Annette and I kinda did the intermediate workout along with Kellie. The workout called for a 1.5 mile warm up plus strides and 2 high knees. Then 2-200's, 3-400's all at interval pace, plus 2 more 200's and then strides with about a 1 mile cool down.

We started our warm up and Annette and Kellie were flying! My legs were crying and I was trying to talk to Josh along the way and I could barely talk. We ended up with the first mile at a 9:35 pace. Way too fast for a warm up when 400's were on the schedule.

The 200's seemed relatively easy. Annette and Kellie were basically suppose to run the same time as me so we stayed together. However Kellie is very young and even as a new runner, she is fast. Well, go figure, her husband came in third place at the Spring Fling and is on the verge of becoming an elite runner so it runs in the family! Both 200's were too fast. :55 each. Pretty much the same as last week. I was suppose to be hitting about a 1:05.

400's are always interesting. I would feel really good at first. At about 300 meters the speed and distance would hit and I would be huffing and puffing wanting more air. First 400 was way too fast. A 1:53 when it should have been about a 2:10. I told Annette that we would try to slow down on the next one. I guess I was dreaming. Next 400 was 1:55. Still too fast. Poor Annette was feeling them too, especially after that fast warm up they did. Third 400 hit another 1:55. Ok, something is up here. I am running the same on everyone. By the time I was done I was breathing as hard as I could. This should have been where we were done. The advanced group was doing 6 400's. No 200's for them. Annette said lets do one more. I thought no way, but I was still alive even though my lungs were screaming at me. So we did. Last 400 I hit at 1:56. Dang, still too fast, which I thought was not good.

Since we did an extra 400 we didn't have to do those last 200's. Coach Dennis had been watching everyone really close and said we all looked really good. He did complement us about our breathing. Annette mentioned to him that she felt like she couldn't catch her breath at the end and he kinda laughed and said, thats what this workout was suppose to do. If you didn't feel like that you weren't running hard enough. I told him the times on mine and he said that was great. My breathing was right where it should have been so I guess it means I'm getting faster. I know last weeks 400's were not as good and I had fresher legs. Last week I ran all of them between 2:00 and 2:15. Dennis mentioned that there is a method to the madness and I am really starting to see what he is talking about.

We finished up with our strides and Dennis cautioned us to keep moving. The object of the strides at the end was to slowly lower our heart rate. He said just stopping and walking was not good as thats what kills some elite athletes at the end of races because your heart rate drops down too fast. He said its much better to come down slowly. Mmm, this is all starting to really make more sense.

The other cool thing we did before our workout was hear everyone's race stories from the weekend. The amazing thing is that everyone keeps getting better and faster. Thank you Dennis for being a great coach to all of us. Tuesday Night Flyer's Rock!

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