Until last night, I hadn’t done a proper track workout in years, probably since I trained for my first half marathon and stuck to Hal Higdon’s plan to a T. Sure, I’ll throw in the casual pickup or run my tempo pace for a few miles, but there’s something about a track workout, with those nasty 100s, 200s, and 400s, performed on an actual track that makes the workout so much harder and more effective.
I joined Jesse for Golden Gate Triathlon Club’s weekly track workout at Kezar Stadium. I’ve mentioned previously that I absolutely despise exercising after work, when all I want to do is eat and relax (and stretch and foam roll!). However, I do believe that the only workout I’m capable of enjoying (maybe that’s the wrong word) post-work is something difficult and brief. And that’s exactly what last night was.
After a few laps to warm up, we did some dynamic stretching exercises. Then we learned what our workout would be: two 200s, four 400s, two 200s, four 400s, and then we’d finish with four 100s. Our rest period would be half of the time you took to run the actual distance. So, if it took you one minute to run 200 meters, you’d rest for 30 seconds.
For reference, 200 meters is half of a lap around the track. A 400 is the whole distance around the track, which is one-quarter of a mile.
I thought I was going to die during this workout and contemplated skipping a lap or cutting out early, but I’m proud to say I finished. I ran faster than I ever have before, yet still finished last or almost last among the dozen or so (very fast) people who attended last night session. With the mile total of warming up and cooling down, I ran 4.4 miles in 30:54, for an average pace of 7:04 minutes/mile.
I will definitely be attending track night again – I think it’s a surefire proof of improving speed and endurance.