Week 15: workouts

The weather was absolutely beautiful this week.  Part of the reason I’m really enjoying my workouts is because they get me outdoors more than usual.  If the weather continues to be nice, I may have to start spending some time on my road bike instead of the recumbent bike at the gym.  We’ll see.

Monday, Wednesday, and Friday were my strength training days with time on the bike to help my legs recover.  I started with a 25 minute low-resistence, high-speed (90+ rpm) bike workout that broke a sweat and raised my heart rate to near 155 bpm at a few points (but closer to 140 bpm on average).  The purpose of this workout is twofold: (1) get some blood pumping to the muscles to help them recover from running the previous day and (2) warm them up so I can stretch properly afterwards.  I never stretch before a workout or without a proper warm up.  After the bike and stretching, it was time for the weight room.  I did three sets of twenty reps for my chest, back, shoulders, triceps, and biceps.  I did a different exercise for each muscle group over the three days:

Afterwards, I finished with a quick ab workout.

tue-trackTuesday and Thursday are still my running days.  This week – track workouts!  Each day, I began with a warm up: 3/4 mile jog around the track followed by drills:

  • 2 x 100m strides
  • Skips
  • Sideways running
  • Grapevine with high knees
  • High knees
  • Butt kicks
  • Walk on toes
  • Walk on heels
  • 4 x 100m strides

On Tuesday the track workout was 8 x 600m.  The last time I ran 600m intervals on the track was back in February, but that time I only did six of them.  Since those workouts in February, all my intervals have been done on a treadmill at the gym based on time rather than distance.  Needless to say, I didn’t know how I’d do.  Well, here’s how I managed:

  • 2:56  (7:52 min/mile pace)
  • 2:48  (7:31 min/mile pace)
  • 2:51  (7:39 min/mile pace)
  • 2:50  (7:36 min/mile pace)
  • 2:57  (7:55 min/mile pace)
  • 2:57  (7:55 min/mile pace)
  • 3:00  (8:03 min/mile pace)
  • 2:42  (7:14 min/mile pace)

The rest period was 90 seconds between each 600m.  I finished up with a couple barefoot laps around the track to cool down, followed by stretching.

That workout was exhausting.  Honestly, I felt like a zombie for the rest of the day.  Now I’m starting to understand how Adam feels after a particularly hard week: drained.

Thursday was back to the track for 4 x 1000m and 4 x 200m.  The total distance was the same as Tuesday, but it mixed up the distances and speeds.  February was the last time I did a similar workout at the track.  My muscles were still sore from Tuesday’s workout, but they loosened up a bit after the warm up.  For the 1000m:

  • 5:05  (8:11 min/mile pace)
  • 5:14  (8:25 min/mile pace)
  • 5:16  (8:28 min/mile pace)
  • 5:03  (8:08 min/mile pace)

The last time I did this workout, I only did three intervals and my fastest was 5:32!  Woo.  These workouts are paying off and it feels great.  After the four 1000m repeats, I did four 200m:

  • 0:45  (6:02 min/mile pace)
  • 0:44  (5:54 min/mile pace)
  • 0:44  (5:54 min/mile pace)
  • 0:43  (5:46 min/mile pace)

These were also faster than last time (0:50) and I felt strong.  Cool down was a barefoot jog and stretching as usual.  I was tired, but not drained all day like I was on Tuesday.  It was a hard week, but it felt good.

I took Saturday off, and only spent an hour and twenty minutes on an easy bike ride – I was a mobile water station for Adam during his 20k hard run.  In the morning we watched the Hopkins track meet which was great.  It’s fun to watch fast runners and there were a number of very exciting finishes.

Sunday was my long run day.  I like it because it’s an event.  Adam and I drove down to Boston Street Running early in the morning and dropped our stuff at the store.  The weather was beautiful – cool and sunny.  Together we ran 8 miles in 1:20:00, though Adam was having a little trouble keeping up after his 90k bike + 20k run the day before.  Now that was a new experience!  I’m not used to being the fast one.  The run wasn’t easy, but it wasn’t killer either.  Overall, a good long run.  And, of course, it was beautiful running around the harbor.

It was a great week, and I’m feeling strong!