November 16, 2012 by IowaTriBob
The past few days in Iowa have been absolutely gorgeous. After a solid day of rain over the weekend followed by a day’s cold front pushing through, the rest of the week has been low to mid 50’s and nothing but sunshine.
It’s been great to see everyone flock back outside to take advantage of every nice day Mother Nature decides to give to us before the freeze sets in – and we all know it’s coming. I’ve been no exception. This week I took advantage of the weather by running outside in my summer run attire and did my first ever real interval run.
The workout called for a 10 minute warm up run followed by a main set of 3 x 6 minute tempo runs with 2 minutes of recovery in between each interval. The tempo run pace was set by judging a comfortable perceived level of effort below race pace with my heart rate in my zone 3 to low zone 4 – no max effort.
I have to admit that I was very excited to give this workout a try as most all my runs have been drills, long and slow endurance sessions, or race pace. This was the first one where I could see if there was something in between slow and race pace and experience what that would feel like as well as how my mind and body would react.
I found that I absolutely loved every minute of it. It was a very challenging workout to say the least but knowing that I could still go just a little bit faster was a great feeling. The recovery periods, although they seemed short, gave me just enough rest to feel refreshed and eager to tackle the next interval.
After a good cool down I was able to download the data from my Garmin Forerunner 310XT and was pleasantly surprised and very proud of my workout report. You can see the workout splits below:
All three of my 6 minute intervals were at a pace below 8:30 min/mile. That’s well below my last 5K time trial personal best of 8:49 min/mile. What’s even greater is that I feel like I was holding back from an all-out effort and sprint.
As I’ve come to learn, it’s these little moments of success and accomplishment that make the world of difference and make me look forward to my next workout. Sometimes progress can’t be seen daily, or even weekly, but as I continue to look at where I was the month prior it continues to convince me that our bodies can accomplish so much more than we think is possible. Sometime we just need to get out of the way and let it happen.