First off, I’d like to thank the landscaping guys who were working the area next to the track for blasting Waka Flocka Flame when I arrived for my speed session today. Because my intervals are totally fueled by f-bombs. How did they know?
I jogged up to the Big University Which Shall Not Be Named (because, you know, that whole trespassing thing) with 800s on my mind today. Six of them. At 5K pace.
Or rather: goal 5K pace. Lately, I’ve been hanging out right around 7:00 when racing 5Ks. Which is a little ridiculous considering that I’m cruising through longer tempo runs at 7:10-7:20 no problem. Those 5K splits need to go on a little diet.
So I set my sights on 3:20-3:25 per 800M. 6:40 to 6:50 mile pace. Very attainable, and about what I was doing at my peak last summer. 200M recovery, mostly because that would encourage continuous looping of the track while allowing me to alternate starting points.
First 800: 3:19. Hmm. That felt easy. I picked off two more: 3:16, 3:16. And suddenly I was halfway done.
And then, I started taking some liberties with that jog-between.
For me, enforcing recovery times is probably the single hardest thing about solo speedwork. I’m pretty good about jumping right in to my recovery shuffle as soon as I finish, but as I approach the line for the next one, I start making feeble excuses.
- My shoelace is too loose/tight. Must retie.
- My boob is chafing. Must adjust.
- My keys feel like they’re falling out of my pocket. Must secure.
- My…my…uh, I just want a few more seconds.
Seriously, I’m like a stubborn baby bird that has to be pushed out of the comfy recovery nest every single time around.
(Which is why I miss my good old team workouts so much. Because there was no time to think about how short and crappy that recovery felt. The group was leaving, and you just jumped in and went for it.)
Anyway. I got through it tonight. It’s only three minutes, I told myself. You can withstand discomfort for three effing minutes. Just effing go.
Last three repeats: 3:16, 3:14, 3:12. Well. That’s faster than 6:40 pace.
Hard. In da M-EFFING paint.
Running back home, I reflected on the workout and was really quite pleased. It was a tough workout with short recovery and I ran it faster than I’d intended to. And was only a little bit wiped out at the end. And that was mentally, more than physically.
It usually pays to give yourself that nudge out of the nest. Even if it means using some unsavory language as you tumble down.
Today’s EAT: A rematch of sorts.
Last time around, it beat me. But this time, I brought frying oil.
I don’t know what it is about this stuff, but I’m determined to master it. Maybe because it’s such a cheap source of protein and I really do enjoy it – more than, say, a boring chicken breast – when it’s cooked well?
With rice, edamame and teriyaki sauce, this was pretty tasty. Standard batter of whipped egg whites and corn starch. Pan fried to golden brown in a tablespoon or so of Canola oil before baking it (elevated on a rack, to keep the soggies away) to finish it off.
Fluffy, fried batter for the tofu win.
Today’s DRINK: In the big-girl bottle: Rogue Juniper Pale Ale.
It was alright! Maybe I’m getting a little too accustomed to high-ABV IPAs, because this pale came across rather mellow tonight. It had a light and delicate honey flavor – not at all what I expected when I saw “juniper.” Much smoother and sweeter than some other notable pale ales, like Sierra. I liked it, overall…it just wasn’t what I’d expected.
Today’s RUN: Total, with warm up and cool down, 8.3 miles.
Today’s QUESTION: Do you ever feel like you have to nudge yourself out of the nest? Even though I love running and racing, I have to admit that it can sometimes be a battle to lace up my shoes and put myself out there when I embark on a hard workout or race. There’s always something to fear: pain, lack of speed, failure to finish as planned. It’s always a bit of a head game!