Last night I did my first workout on a track — ever. I am participating in the GRTC spring track clinic. It is coached by Michael Reif and Carolyn Smith-Hanna. It’s an 8 week program to help runners of all abilities improve. I think I’m going to learn a lot through this experience.
Last night had a lot of talking, some stretching, some warmups, some drills, and then some tempo paced repeats. It may seem like I know what I’m talking about but I know nothing of this stuff. “Tempo pace” is running comfortably fast. It’s running fast enough that it’s difficult to talk. You should be able to hold this pace for 40-50 minutes. “Repeats” just mean that you run a certain distance, rest for a certain time period, and then repeat! I chose to run 1600 meter repeats. One lap around the track is 400 meters. 4 laps is (drumroll) 1600 meters and pretty much 1 mile. I should have targetted a 7:00 to 7:10 minute per mile pace but I ended up averaging 6:45 instead. Ooops. It felt good though! I really like the surface of the track. I didn’t expect to run this fast after having run 5 miles earlier in the day.
After the repeats we did some “strides.” Strides, I learned, are form drills. For the strides I’d run reasonably fast, on grass, for about 75 yards and focus on running upright or picking up my knees. They were a little boring because it was so short.
I’m going to keep a very open mind and try to do what the coaches tell me to do. No matter what this is going to be fun. I’m already looking forward to the more difficult workouts!