It's Saturday in April and that means Yassos but not until after an easy 6 miler. I really didn't want to get out of bed this morning and had to remind myself why I'm doing this. If I want that BQ, I have to put in the work. Fortunately the running gods were with me and it was still on the cool side by the time I got started around 9.
I know things are sounding repetitive on my runs; low HR warmup mile, X amount of good miles in the 133-136 bpm zone followed by a cool down mile but that's the consistency I'm looking for. Today's 6 was really no different and I was feeling pretty good although it was starting to heat up by the time I finished.
The plan was to meet up with Christine at the track so I could check her form before she started into any running. The girl has been bitten by the bug and wants to get going guns-a-blazin' but that is not happening on my watch. She's going to start of easy and work her way up. The only goal laid out is to train smart and stay injury free. But more on that later as she decided to walk the 3 miles from the house instead of drive and do all her miles on the track which was an even better plan.
After a recovery period, hydration, some ENERGYbits (==>) and a change from my Skora Fit to my Phase, I was ready for Yasso #1. I felt fast right off the bat, too fast but decided to go with it. I was shooting for around a 3:15 800 (6:30 mile) but was down into the 5:30s-5:40s for the first 400. The last 400 saw some dips into the six-teens but I still managed to finish up at 3:03. In hindsight this killed me more than I thought for the rest of the repeats and I need to remember my pacing. Still, I'm happy to have pulled that off and it was the most consistent of the lot.
When it was time for Yasso #2 I told myself I needed to slow down. There was no way I was going to get 6 Yassos done at 3:15 if I kept torching myself. My pacing was more sporadic on this one and I had to go hard at the end to hit my goal finishing in 3:12.
Yasso #3 was too fast again for the first 400 and I paid for it, having to pick it up at the end to finish with a 3:14. Things were also starting to heat up as was the humidity as the water on the field from the sprinklers began to evaporate.
By Yasso #4 I was pretty much toast and was struggling to stay in the mid-6 minute pace. I was now paying the price for the faster earlier intervals. Live and learn. The 3:24 time was respectable enough though.
Just before Yasso #5, Christine showed up and she continued her 4 mile walk. By now my legs were like rubber and I was taking my HR a fair amount of time to come down. Still these are the times that training really pays off; when you can push yourself through the suck. Better to deal with it in training than be unprepared in a race. Given how I felt, 3:23 was pretty damn good.
Finally it was time for Yasso #6 and I gave it what I had left which was not much at all. I did the best I could muster but couldn't keep my pacing at all as it fluctuated between the 6:20s and seven-teens. At least when it was coming to a close I dug deep to find a little something and even though it was in 3:29, I finished strong with a 5:30 pace.
Timing worked out nicely as Christine was just finishing up her walk and once I caught my breath I had her do a couple of jogs just so I could observe her form. I have to say that for someone who never ran, here form was pretty damn good; nice forefoot strike and not a lot of wasted upper-body movement. Granted she was a little too upright and had too much vertical knee lift but that is easy to correct.
After a brief explanation on leaning forward from the ankles we jogged around the track while I gave her some pointers. We went for a good 75 yards before she needed to walk. After a recovery period where she felt she was ready to go, we jogged for anther 50 yards or so before we called it a day. Poor kid was a bit sore later in the day but I'm so happy for her. Just have to make sure she doesn't over do it.
For me, tomorrow will be an early morning with 22 on the schedule and a warm late morning predicted. Just need to remember to take it easy and stay hydrated.
Week ending April 18th - 44.1 miles