I was in Bath on Wednesday, looking after my nephew, so had to squeeze my interval session in between dropping him off at school (which involved a two mile walk, dragging him on his scooter up some nasty hills, then two miles back to my sister’s flat) and picking him back up again (another 4-mile round trip but at least mostly downhill this time).
I could have hit the Bath half loop, but decided to use the outdoor track at Bath University instead (involving another 4 mile round trip, up a nasty hill to get there and then back down again on return journey). I’d checked in advance when it would be available and arrived at 12:00 just after a club session had finished so that there was only me and one other lady using it.
Storm Doris may not have fully hit yet, but it was drizzly and very blustery as I looped round and round the track (recalculating whether I would have time to eat lunch before heading back out to the school and whether to shower at the track or back at home). I figured they wouldn’t allow headphone use so I just had maths to keep me company as I ticked off the intervals.
This was my longest set of threshold intervals to date (the previous longest being 10 minutes), but comparing this 3 reps of 12 minutes to 3 reps of 10 minutes with the same recovery period (90 seconds) actually came out favourably, despite the conditions. I averaged a faster pace in two of the three reps, and was faster on average overall even though the reps were longer. Not sure all the walking was a great idea on top of the session, but Thursday is a rest day after all.
It was positively balmy going out for my training session this morning, very nearly shorts weather after the recent close to and sub zero temperatures. A reminder that I should do a few long runs in my club crop top in case it turns out to be a warm day come the big race.
Today’s session was a threshold and marathon pace sandwich, with 10 minutes at threshold pace followed by 15 minutes at marathon pace, then another 10 minutes at threshold pace (with a warm up and cool down bookending it all).
I felt pretty good and managed to keep my marathon pace effort at the faster end of the spectrum while it still felt fairly comfortable. If I was to maintain that pace for an entire marathon it would bring me home in just over 3 hours 20, which would be nice. I ran my first threshold effort at exactly the same pace as I did last week, but both the marathon pace and second threshold efforts were faster (even though the marathon pace effort was five minutes longer). Hopefully this is a sign that all of the training is coming together.
It was back to CubaTone yesterday and then another attempt at threshold intervals sandwiched around marathon pace today, in a repeat of last Friday’s session.
I was a little bit worried after last week’s iffy race, and then this session feeling harder than expected on the Friday, but it went much better today. I felt stronger, even after the long run on Sunday and hard workout yesterday. The marathon pace felt easier (though imagining sustaining it for a full 3 hours 30 is still tricky at the moment) and was a smidge quicker, and the threshold intervals were faster and didn’t feel so hard.
Hopefully this is a sign that whatever caused the dip last week was temporary (maybe my body successfully fighting something off), and I even recorded a new VO2 max of 49 (which is totally made up by my Garmin, but is something to keep an eye on along with all of the other metrics). It felt good, so my accompanying photo today is my January virtual runner medal, a unicorn with rainbows (the rainbow attached to the head spins around).
Yesterday was CubaTone with over 500 calories burned in just under an hour (not really making up for the massive pizza I ate after juggling on Monday), but it’s back to pounding the railway path again today this time with a new pair of shoes. These are the shoes I was measured for a couple of weeks ago, finally arrived and ready to get moulded to my feet starting with some interval training.
The recovery time has been reduced in this interval session now. Where before I had 90 seconds between each 10 minute threshold rep, now I only have 60 (something that is going to be repeated in my hill reps later in the week). I can’t say I really noticed the reduction in recovery time, which is hopefully a good thing, though the reps were marginally slower than previously. I did have to slow down and pause my second interval to negotiate a JCB though (the path is traffic free but the verge was being mown) and it was a tad on the nippy side.
Yesterday saw a return to CubaTone as a strength and conditioning session. There were lots of push ups, crunches and a fair amount of leg work so it was no wonder that everything (especially my glutes) were a bit achey this morning.
Still, I had an interval session to do, so headed out after a quick stretch to loosen everything off. A nice 3×8 minutes at threshold along the railway path, with 60 seconds between efforts (which came out at around 8 minute miles). Looking forward to tomorrow’s rest day and may have to get the foam roller out later.