I don't always do speed-work, but when I do, I prefer to suffer.
Suffering on the track is - in my opinion - done best with a group of guys faster than yourself. So with that in mind I got myself invited to a track workout session organized by a group of Lockheed Martin guys training for the Penn Relay's corporate race. Prior to the workout my new friend Jon was making references to "Daniels" and "R pace" and "F pace" and other such things I don't have much experience with because.....well.....I'm a trail runner.
Which is of course EXACTLY why I need to be doing some track workouts. I love trail running but this year I really want to improve my road speed and do well in the USATF-Pacific Association Road Racing Grand Prix races. For me this means doing at least half my distance runs on roads at a good zone 2/3 effort. To help with my top end speed I'm also planning to hit the track 2 to 4 times a month in addition to less structured pace and fartlek workouts on the roads.
Today: my first track workout of 2012. Frankly, I don't know exactly how fast we were going but my goal was to stick with the group for the entire workout. After a 1.5 mile warm-up we ran 600, 400, 400, 300, 300, 200, 200, 200, 200 meters with a full active rest between each interval. Our speed was between 65 and 70 second 400 meter pace. I managed to stay with the group for all except the final two 200 meter intervals. Was it painful? Yes. Did such things seem easier 20 years ago? Oh yeah!
Overall I'm happy with the outcome. After a 3 mile run home from the track I finished with 8 miles. I also ran on the trails at Rancho San Antonio Open Space Preserve this morning for 8 miles giving me a total of 16 for the day. Beer me.