This afternoon was the first time in a few weeks that I’ve done any speed work. I wanted to do some quarter-mile intervals on a local track but apparently, none of the school tracks around here are open to the public. So instead, I set off in the neighborhood with a goal of: one easy warm-up mile, various speed intervals for about three miles, and then a cool-down mile.
This was actually pretty fun- but a tough run. The first mile was easy- as planned. Then I took off, not sprinting, but running hard. At a pace I assumed I would be able to keep up for a quarter mile. But… I had no idea how far that would be, so I just picked a street sign to run to. It turned out that what I picked was exactly 0.25 miles. Pace was 6:27 and average HR was 173. Great stuff, but kind of hard. I walked for a few seconds until my HR got back down into the 150s then jogged for another 1-2 minutes. Then took off again. All told I did six of these (some flat, some slightly uphill and some slightly down). Stats for these six intervals (#, miles, pace, HR):
1, 0.25, 6:26, 173
2, 0.22, 5:55, 175
3, 0.15, 5:31, 173
4, 0.13, 5:55, 164
5, 0.17, 6:28, 171
6, 0.15, 6:10, 168
Notes: I think a sub-6:00 minute pace is a little too fast for me right now as my last four intervals weren’t even close to a quarter mile. I probably could have kept up that pace for the next 15-25 seconds or so if I was running on a marked track, but it would have worn me out. This run was tough enough as it was.
Good news that my last mile was about a 10:00 pace with my heart rate fully recovered down in the 150s. No pain to speak of but I was fairly tired.
The next time I do a fartlek run, maybe I’ll try to run a couple of quarter miles at this fast pace, but try to mix in a couple of half miles at a 7:00 pace. Just keep it kind of random.