A couple of weeks ago, I posted my gripe about our local track being buried in twenty feet of snow and a thirty inch layer of ice. (Okay, that may be a bit of an exageration, but still. Can't run on it.) I've used this as an excuse to skip the last four weeks of speedwork in my training plan.
Last night, I decided it was time to suck it up and actually do a speed workout. The schedule called for 3 by 1600. I ran a 4.5 mile loop from my office - one mile as an easy warm-up and then the 3 fast miles (with one minute rest intervals between miles), and the rest of the run was an easy cool down. It's a good thing I did this workout. It felt noticeably more difficult than the last 3 by 1600 I did about a month ago. Apparently when you don't do speedwork, you lose some of your ability to run faster. Huh. Who woulda thunk it?
The last fast mile? Yeah, almost killed me. I was VERY tempted to break it up into two 800's with a little rest interval in the middle. My internal dialogue was almost as bad as the domestic I observed in the dairy section at Walmart on Sunday. "Just stop and walk, you are too wimpy to do this workout." "Shut up. Stop being such a whiny baby!" And so on.
In the end, it ended up being a good workout, and all the speedy miles were faster than what the schedule called for. The difficulty was a motivator to make these weekly speed workouts a priority. Now that it's getting nicer out (above freezing today!), it's a little easier to think about running after work.
Twilight update: stayed up way past my bedtime finishing the first book Saturday night. Picked up the second book while grocery shopping at Walmart on Sunday and read the whole thing Sunday night. Maybe the Twilight-induced sleep deprivation had something to do with my perceived exertion during the speed workout? Damn vampires.