800m warmup jog
3x(400m, 1:30 rest) in 1:15, 1:16, 1:18
3x(400m, 1:30 rest) in 1:19, 1:18, 1:16
400m jog, 400m walk
3x(1:00 run, 100m walk) for 300m, 330m, 315m
I drove to the high school track dreading this workout, and just as I was about to warm up I saw another guy getting ready to do his own workout. It happened to be Mike Porter, a Rutgers alum and coach of the Watchung team, so I asked what he was planning on doing. Apparently he ran a 50k race two weeks ago and was looking to do some 800s, but thought they'd suck and so he was willing to hop in on a few of my 400s. Despite assuring me that he was in no shape for "speed work", he didn't trail by much. He said he ran a sub-19 5k earlier this year, at 43 years old, something he hadn't done since he was 19 or something. He's crazy fast for a guy in his 40s and it was nice to have somebody breathing behind me to take my mind off how much I hate 400m repeats.
So he ran the first set with me, skipped the first two reps of the second but came back for the third. He also called out split times, which was helpful because I'd forgotten my watch. The times are actually approximate because they were his own, I was slightly faster on each one.
Instead of doing a third set of 3x400m, because I was heaving and ready to quit, he started to tell me about Jack Daniels (no, not that Jack Daniels) and running economy. It helps that Porter is also a cross country coach. Apparently a stride length that is too long means that you're wasting energy with inefficient movements. It's physics. Porter convinced me to test it out so we did another three 1:00 sprints and counted strides. I hit 170, 200, and 186 strides per minute for each of the respective sprints and saw a pretty significant increase in distance covered (though sustainability was an issue). I'm gonna keep playing around with stride rate to find out if a faster turnover is helpful on the Ultimate field.