I forced myself out of bed this morning and headed to the Castle View High School track to do some speed work. As I ran the first lap I thought, "I'm just not into this." But as my workout progressed my body and mind warmed up to the idea.
I ran my first mile at a consistent pace of around 8:45. I did my second mile at a progressive pace -- running each lap faster than the previous lap -- finishing around 8:30. For my third mile I ran at an easy pace for the first half of each lap and sprinted the last half. This type of workout -- called fartlek -- is supposed to help develop aerobic and anaerobic capacity. For me, it seems to help me push beyond "jogging" at a 9-10 min/mile pace to actually running!
I plan to do track work at least once a week between now and the Chicago Half Marathon on September 9. I hope it will help me build the speed and endurance I need to reach my goal of finishing under two hours -- or about a 9 min/mile pace.
Tomorrow evening I am planning to do a Snug Run with some colleagues who are also training for the Chicago Half. My goal is to runa sub-25-minute 5K (8 min/mile) for the first time since moving to the Denver area a year ago.