Tuesday, March 12, 2013

Run Spice

With my 10K training plan now underway for Calgary Marathon - today the calendar beeped at me and told me that it was a speed day.   I was hesitant to head out for a run after the great chest infection of 2012, but I am feeling pretty good this week (aside from a nasty-ass cough) so decided to hit the road running.

I was just sad I forgot my Fitbit in my laundry hamper this morning (forgot to take it off yesterdays pants)...because this would have really racked up the steps. I love watching how lunch hour workouts do that!  I am going to say I am over 8000 steps for the day so far.  I'm probably not far off that.

But what should I do for a speed workout?   Being sick tends to make me forget I need to think about these things.   So at noon, I was scrambling...until I remembered something my friend Katie (she's the friend I ran Corporate Challenge with last fall) had emailed me a few weeks ago.  A little something she titled "Run Spice"

From Katie:
  • Warm up (10-15 minutes or 2km)
  • 8 - 15 second bursts of speed with 8 - 15 seconds recovery in the middle (total time = 4 minutes) I go as hard as I can for 15 seconds and then walk for 15. 
  • Then I have been doing a 2km steady state (or as long as you need to get back to your starting point. 
Seemed like a nice, gentle way to get the ball rolling with speedwork.  I need the speedwork to meet my time-goals and, in the same breath,, I loathe the speedwork because I find it really hard to push my limits.  

Because I don't use my Garmin for my lunch hour runs (actually, it's been a while since I used it at all..Wonder where I put it...I'd better track it down before the race on Sunday...) - I wouldn't have a convenient way to time it.  And then I remembered the Gymboss app!  It took me a few minutes to program in the intervals for this workout, but now they are in there and ready to be used again soon!

Good news, people - it was officially warm enough for capris in Calgary today!!!  Made me so happy!

and I hit the road.   I ran my usual Southwood loop so the first 10 mins took me up the hill to Elbow Drive and then south (and past the worst of the ice left by nincompoops who refuse to shovel all winter).  And before long, I heard the beeping from my iPhone telling me to boot it.

I think I accidentally ran through my first walk break because the volume on my phone couldn't compete with the traffic noise.  But, by the end of the second run interval - I knew what I was listening for and alternated like a pro.  That 15 secs passes super fast and, before I knew it, 4 minutes was over and I was on to the steady state.   

I ended up running around 4.56k in just over 30 mins.  The steady state felt really good and, like Katie had told me it would - it felt easier and faster than the warmup portion had.  I think that bodes well for my race this weekend since I haven't really been doing much speedwork leading up to it.  Just a couple of hill sessions.

Capris were the perfect pants for today, but I was far too warm in my usual winter 3/4 zip.   Of course, I had an idiot moment and failed to realize that that was probably because those capris come up to my boobs. HA!  I was more heavily layered today in the upper body than I have been for most of the winter!

Such a sweaty mess
Pardon my crazy eyes - it's been a while since I had a run.
and MAAAAAAAAN, that stretch at the end felt wonderful.  I think I spent 10 mins on the stairs stretching a knot out of my calves that took hold a week ago.  So good.

I hate to say it, peeps, but this workout may change my mind about speedwork...it just might.


  1. yay for some great weather today for running! Feels so good to bare some skin after keeping covered up all winter doesn't it! Love the sparkly headband.

  2. I LOVE SPEEDWORK!! It's all about finding what works best for you and what you enjoy. For example, I LOVE 800m repeats at the track, but can't stand sprints on the treadmill for longer than 60 seconds.

    Play around with it, find some workouts that you enjoy and you'll find yourself doing more speed work for sure!


Thank you for commenting. Please note that any comments that are offensive will be removed without notice.