Tuesday 31 January 2012

Speedwork - unpleasant but worth it

I hate speedwork.  It hurts.  Sometimes, it has hurt a lot.  During parts of my CTS 7x Challenge last year, my calves were held together by pretty blue tape, so I was actively avoiding getting onto my toes if I wasn't racing.  It's ironic, really.  Most Wednesday evenings, I take members of my local club out and take them through their paces.  But, I hate speedwork.

In the middle of the Summer, I finally had the base mileage to get back into the speed sessions as a participant as well as a cheerleader as I prepared for a PB attempt at Abingdon.  That didn't go so well, but it got me back  into moving at pace.  I didn't come through injury-free, but I survived intact enough to get back into the speed sessions and then the fun part:  replacing or augmenting the reps with short races.

So, twenty or so sessions later, what's the payback?  Unexpected good results at Fladbury, the county XC championships started the year off right.  Then, I ran a 12K at Stratford at an average pace better than my 10K PB, knocking 1:26 off my previous course best.  But the real payback came this week with a 2 second PB on the club's 2.1K handicap course in the freezing cold while trying not to drown in my own phlegm.  A few minutes like that give months worth of motivation to do it all again!

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