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Thursday, August 9, 2012

getting through it - another track workout

Without fail, every week when I get to the track for my Wednesday morning workout I am staring it in the face and DREADING it.  I begin my warm up and as I run in circles lap after lap I question whether or not I will get through the WHOLE thing.  My mind tries to make little deals with me - maybe I don't have to do ALL the sets on my plan - but my heart chimes in and knows that I can do it, that I will feel so good when it's done and that it WILL be worth it.

Yesterday was no exception.  I warmed up for 1.5 miles (6 laps) and the humidity sunk into my skin and saturated my lungs.  It was going to be another tough one.  The workouts are getting longer and harder as my training cycle progresses.

Yesterday, the plan was 6x1200 with 2:00 rest between each.  A 1200 is 3 laps around the track, or 3/4 of a mile.  When all was said and done I would have completed 4.5 miles of WORK, plus my warm up and cool down for a total of 8.25 miles.

I am training at paces for a 3:20 marathon this cycle, and the McMillan calculator suggests that I try to nail my 1200s somewhere between 4:41-5:00.

1 - 4:58.
Just under the wire.  I'll take it.

2 - 4:57.
Feeling stronger.  I can do this.

3 - 4:56.
Seems there is a pattern here.  Consistency matters in a track workout.

4 - 4:54.
Over the hump.  Only two more to go.  Endorphins and determination are taking over and I'm happy I'm sticking it out.  There's no way I'm not getting this done.

5 - 4:53.
I've got this.  I'm getting faster if only by a few seconds.
This - being out here and getting it done - MATTERS TO ME.

6 - 4:52.
DONE.
I've earned my cool down.  I've earned my rest day.  I've earned the amazing feeling I have at this moment.  I'm proud and grateful to be done.


The cool down laps felt so effortless as I ran and chatted with my buddies.  We talked about how much we were dreading the workout when we got there, and how GOOD we felt now that it was done.  It's amazing what 4.5 miles of guts can do for your mood.  I left the track feeling happy -- and strong.  Ready to face whatever came my way throughout the day, and ready to face it with a smile and the knowledge that if I can get through that...I can probably get through just about anything.

Can you relate to that feeling of dread before a tough workout on the track or the trail?  What kinds of things do you tell yourself to help you get going and get through it?

13 comments:

Bravo, Jessica! Dang - you are so inspiring, especially with this insane humidity...NO EXCUSES!! :D

Way to nail it! I always dread the hardest workouts in my training plans but then nothing beats the feeling of coming out the other side of it.

I do get nervous as well. They are intimidating. One thing that helps me tackle BIG workouts is just trying to look at it as one interval at a time...be in the here and now. Then, if the full interval seems overwhelming, I break it down further to the actually lap...sometimes that even overwhelms me so I look at the next 150m. It's mind over matter, as you know. :)

Yes, every morning. Ha ha. I wake up at 5am every week day and I always think...ugh, do I really have to do this? I always know it will get better but there's a little part of me that wonders if it will -- if I can actually pull it out of me again. Of course, I always do and of course when I'm skipping home at 6:45am after a great workout, I'm so glad I did!

your speed boggles my mind a bit :) I tend to agree that track workouts are the hardest for me mentally, so I'm really trying very hard this time around to stick to them no matter what!

I have to say....I love reading about your awesome track workouts each week!!! They are so inspiring!! Ps...you need to time a timed mile ! You would crush your previous'PR!!!!

Awesome job lady! When I started running, I dreaded the track because it made me feel like a hamster in a wheel, but now that I'm getting better, I think I'm going to start doing speed work on the track.

I'm far slower than you are, but I know what's like to dread a workout. For me the dread is for my long runs. They take forever and a day!!

I used to dread the track until I started training with a group. I know you have a group, too. Do any of them run the workout at your pace with you? That can be a huge lift.

I definitely dread track workouts too, but I think that's what contributes to them being the most satisfying when you're done. Nice job nailing your paces!

Way to go! I've got this same workout on my schedule for tomorrow. I also dread it beforehand, but like all runs, I feel amazing afterwards on the pure fact that I got it done.

I wish I were doing my track workouts on an actual track! That sounds so fun. Great times! I love that you got faster with every round. You rocked it!

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