…to improve my speed? A lot. But to get to get the optimal result in training, I prefer to use my Heart Rate. Staying ‘within’ your own limit will keep you away from injury. Going beyond what your body can take is sure way to get sidelined. As important as the work-out is the rest. Recovery is crucial and must not be ignored.
#1 I do Intervals. Been trying lately Rich Kenah’s mile intervals. So far, I’m satisfied with how I’m doing. That’s 3 or 4 mile repeats with 4 minutes (I tried 3, and I regret it) of jogging (no walking) in between each mile. That 4 minute is enough for me to cover the whole 400s. Pace for this run is the goal race pace. Of course, there a lot of other interval work-outs that just might do the trick. I’d stick to this one until I get the hang of it. I hope Rich would comment on this blog and tell me exactly how he actually do it.
#2 I do Tempo Runs. My fancy so far is that of Linda Somer-Smith’s 10 miler. I’ve tried it more than once and I just like the feeling of doing it again and again. It’s a set of 2 to 3 3-mile run. Continuous at marathon race pace. I think that I still have a lot to learn about it. So I’d be doing it again and again. Paging Linda, Paging Linda. Please advice this runner!
#3 I try Hill Repeats. Sad to say, there’s just no hills to where I am located. I have to go to McKinley, Pasig, Quezon City and some other place to get to a hill. I guess I need to focus here more. This is what I lack most.
#4 I do Fartleks. Incorporated in my long runs and easy runs, I have also tried a speed play of 20 seconds for every last 15 seconds of a minute for a whole 2 kilometers. It was tiring but I’m looking forward to doing it again and again.
#5 I lose weight. It will be a lot harder to run faster if you keep on gaining, right? It was said that weight loss can reduce your risk of injury and improve your biomechanics. I have no idea how is that. But, I will find out.
#6 I wear less. I get rid of things that might slow me down. Fuel belt, shirt around waist, heavy shoes, etc. You can add to this list and this can go on forever. The lighter, the better.
#7 I sleep more. At least I try. More sleep during training means better reaction time and speed. Even just a nap can help performance. Have you tried running fast without a good sleep the night before? Yeah, it’s a drag.
#8 I drink caffeine. It improves alertness and focus. And newer research suggests that it can improve pain tolerance and help you fatigue less quickly. I need to see the details of this one. It is suggested that we drink coffee (not a mocha frappuccino) 30 to 60 minutes before a race or a hard work-out. Mind you, caffeine is found in many things, not just coffee.
#9 I limit the junk. They’re just sugar that can cause sluggishness. Ever saw a sluggish speedster?
So, am I a speed-freak now? Nah. I’m still a work in progress. Soon, everything I’ve learned, and everything I’ve tried will be put to an ultimate test. Until then, I’d keep on working. For my speed.