Webb: There are planned workouts and there are workouts. We all hope they are mostly the same. Last night, they were not. The following workout was recommended by a reader to the blog. It is the first in a series designed to make us faster over longer periods. Sold! We modified it, because that is what we do.
THE PLANNED WORKOUT
60:00 on the treadmill at 3% grade
1st 20 minutes: 6.8 mph
2nd 20 minutes: 7.0 mph
3rd 20 minutes: 7.2 mph
Elle: I was nervous about this workout, I'll be honest. But it's time to start putting in some hard running efforts, so I was all in.
During the first 20 minutes I knew I would not be able, or at least was seriously doubting my ability, to finish the workout as prescribed. So I altered it on the fly. Instead of going up 0.2mph every 20 minutes, I opted for 0.1mph. Now that might not seem like a lot, but in the beginning of the season, as one of the first hard TM efforts in awhile, I thought that would be best.
It was difficult, but I put in a good, hard effort. I had to reach back into my suitcase of pain a little bit, and was glad when it was all over.
Webb: FAIL! I launched into the workout believing it would be mostly mental. I started out well enough. My legs felt good, if not a little tired. After about 10:00, I started shifting my focus between the Notre Dame-Tennessee game and my music. Already sweating profusely, I just tried to forget I was running. At the 20:00 mark I kicked it up to 7.0mph and ... felt better? I don't know if it was a second wind or a more natural pace for me at that grade. It doesn't matter because it didn't last. I pressed on. At this point I had given up on the game, not because I was a fan of either team, but because the tiny treadmill screen was bouncing around. All of my attention was then on music. Music. Music. What is that pain in my side? Music. Music. Music. OUCH! Music. Go. Away. Music. Music. Inthenameofallthatisgoodandcleanonthisearthwhydoesmysidehurtsomuch? Music. Breeeeaaaaathe. Music. Stop.
Last night I had my second or third side cramp in 20 years. I had to stop the workout at 33:00 to breathe through the cramp and pray for its release. After a few minutes, I resumed the workout: 3% grade, 7.0mph. One minute in my heart rate had resumed its lofty reading. Two minutes in there was the slightest hint of the cramp. Five minutes in, I knew I was done mentally. I was too distracted with the cramp threatening to return. Once I hit the 40:00 mark I decided to step of the treadmill and call it a night. I'm not sure what caused the cramp. Exertion? Running form? Poor hydration? It could be any or all of these. I'll try not to overthink it. I had a good hard workout and I'll hit again next time.
Elle: Here's a workout from a Runner's World article that would have been a lot more fun, however, not as effective for Half Ironman training:
The "Run Like a Dog" Workout (Including Warmup and Cooldown)
Walk 8 seconds.
Trot 4 seconds.
Sprint 7 seconds.
Walk 5 seconds in any direction but forward.
Stare 9 seconds.
Lunge at rabbit.
Double back, walk 3 seconds.
Repeat six times.
Collapse on rug.