Summer Mile Time Reduction Challenge!

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Re: Summer Mile Time Reduction Challenge!

Postby Mighty Jalapeno » Sun Nov 20, 2011 4:47 pm UTC

Oh, I have a treadmill and will use it a lot to keep training, but there is no 'local gym' that works even vaguely with my schedule. In the Spring I'll see how much I've improved my time without actually jogging my usual route.
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Re: Summer Mile Time Reduction Challenge!

Postby Samik » Sun Nov 20, 2011 4:54 pm UTC

Mighty Jalapeno wrote:As soon as the snow melts, I'll get back into this. So... April.


Take it from someone who doesn't practice what he preaches (I'm notorious for the 6-months-on 6-months-off school of physical fitness) - it's a lot better to do a low level of exercise that you can keep up over the long haul, than to kill yourself in short spurts, give it up for a while, and repeat. The latter is the fastest way to hate exercise (since you get all the pain of working hard, but still feel so out of shape so much of the time). If you're having a real hard time staying motivated, shoot for a level of activity that is modest enough that you feel guilty when you don't do it.


Treadmill running is good because it's easier on the knees/shins, and if you're paying for a gym membership and not using it, that needles at you in and of itself. Combine that with the principle of modest intensity, and you'll downright hate yourself whenever you don't go.




(EDIT: Hm, I should probably point out that I'm not advocating "taking it easy" as a solution for everybody (certainly not the principle I adhere to when working out - as I implied, I'm a hypocrite). Was just trying to suggest that it might be something to consider for those folks who lose the motivation battle vastly more often than they win it.)
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Re: Summer Mile Time Reduction Challenge!

Postby Mighty Jalapeno » Sun Nov 20, 2011 5:10 pm UTC

I had a gym membership, and I didn't use it, and I guilt-ate. Not trying that route again.
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Re: Summer Mile Time Reduction Challenge!

Postby Samik » Sun Nov 20, 2011 7:14 pm UTC

Mighty Jalapeno wrote:I had a gym membership, and I didn't use it, and I guilt-ate. Not trying that route again.

Well there goes that theory.

In any case, I had read your post as saying you were going to wait until April to start working out again. If you're churning away on the treadmill at home, that'll do, no?
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Re: Summer Mile Time Reduction Challenge!

Postby Izawwlgood » Sun Nov 20, 2011 7:38 pm UTC

Set smaller goals MJ. If getting out and running routinely is a challenge, don't focus on reducing your mile time, focus on getting out and doing something active instead.

I'm running a 10k over Thanksgiving with the family, and have set 7m mile times as my goal.
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Re: Summer Mile Time Reduction Challenge!

Postby gaurwraith » Sun Nov 20, 2011 8:48 pm UTC

After getting to 6:10 or 6:07 I'm now back to 6:20.

Yes i'm smoking. too much smoking. nasty thing is nasty, but how I love to have a coffee and expel smoke under the kind autumn sun, when everything is cold around, in that spot just outside the faculty main doors, and then spit a bit, inhale, close eyes, dissapear- phaseout this universe, and come back titilating by effect of the sun rays

But anyway, today I was running 400m at fast pace (for me ofc) mean around 1:20, I wonder if this would help the mile time or the way to train is to run one mile runs as fast as I can?
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Re: Summer Mile Time Reduction Challenge!

Postby Izawwlgood » Sun Nov 20, 2011 9:46 pm UTC

My mile training routine was (after 1mile gentle warm up) 200, 200, 400, 200, 800, 400, 400, 200, 400, 200, 200. 200 pace was ~35s, 400 was 1:20, and 800 was 2:50. There was a bit of slop near the end. If you're going to do track workouts, I suggest breaking it up a bit, instead of just doing 10x400 or something.
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Re: Summer Mile Time Reduction Challenge!

Postby Samik » Sun Nov 20, 2011 10:04 pm UTC

Interesting.

My mile training has always included distances longer than a mile, rather than sprinting/middle distance. I've been operating under the assumption that pushing myself to better and better 2 mile and 1.5 mile times will translate into faster miles.

I'll work in sprints, sometimes, but really only in the middle of a longer run, so I'm moving at a good clip both before the sprint and after it is done.


Is the conventional wisdom that shorter runs are better for this?
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Re: Summer Mile Time Reduction Challenge!

Postby gaurwraith » Sun Nov 20, 2011 10:35 pm UTC

The more I try to go under 6 minutes the more I look at a mile as not an actual endurance distance.

I don't know what's better. I suppose that you can`t go wrong with just running one mile runs, but I think there's something interesting at doing lesser distances, and that is that you get an actual feeling of the pace you need to run at.

Let's say my best mile is 7 minutes
that's (more or less)
3:30 in 800m
1:45 in 400m
0:52 in 200m
0:26 in 100m

If I want it to be six minutes I need to run at least
a 3:00 800
a 1:30 400
a :45 200
a :22 100

So, I need to get used to the pace of 1:30 per 400m and push it up a bit the last 400. Maybe doing 800 at 3:00 pace will help too. i don't know, I actually don't train too much and I stay long time doing nothing, BUt now I just have to get under six minutes.
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Re: Summer Mile Time Reduction Challenge!

Postby Izawwlgood » Sun Nov 20, 2011 11:44 pm UTC

The reasoning behind doing shorter distance sprint work as training is to gain familiarity with the pace required for faster times. Distance work is also clutch for building stamina. If you're trying to run x mile time, you need to be comfortable running better than 1/4th x on a 400m. Now I'm just doing 2-3 mile treadmill jogs as a workout warm up, because I hate running in the cold.
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Re: Summer Mile Time Reduction Challenge!

Postby Samik » Mon Nov 21, 2011 1:08 am UTC

Hum. Interesting.

I know what a 6 minute pace feels like, because I've been there. And I generally keep very good time in my head anyway (I'm one of those people who always wakes up a few seconds before the clock ticks over to the minute when my alarm was set. I can count seconds in my head and be off by less than one second for every two minutes. I can usually predict within a minute the time that I will roll up to my destination on any drive or walk of under a half hour.)


But 6 minute miles have always been about my plateau - it takes me months to work up to six minutes, and both of my sub-six minute runs have been extremely, extremely unpleasant affairs.


Perhaps working in more sprinting will help me break that plateau. It's certainly worth a shot...


I'll report back in six months or so!
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Re: Summer Mile Time Reduction Challenge!

Postby Izawwlgood » Mon Nov 21, 2011 1:31 am UTC

Yeah I was pretty awful at pacing myself. Which is part of why we trained the way we did. It's also important to figure out how you're going to run your goal distance. I can kick pretty good at the end regardless of my exhaustion level, but am horrid at maintaining pace in the middle as I get worn out. So, having a watch, and being familiar with pacing is helpful for getting your times.
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Re: Summer Mile Time Reduction Challenge!

Postby Samik » Mon Nov 21, 2011 1:42 am UTC

Izawwlgood wrote:I can kick pretty good at the end regardless of my exhaustion level


If there's one thing I have going for me, it's this. Whatever distance I'm running, I basically count it as about 0.2 miles less than it actually is, because there's nothing on earth that's going to keep me from accelerating hard through that last bit, and sprinting out the finish. If I can get near the end on pace for a personal record, that record is falling, and falling hard.

It's the other 95% that gets tricky :/



I guess for me, I just have such a hard time with distance (as I mentioned before, I've never run more than 5 miles in one go in my life) that I've geared myself much more towards distance running in recent years. A 5 minute mile would be awesome, but I'd rather be able to do a half marathon, if I had to choose between the two. A mile is just about the shortest distance I ever bother to go out and run.

Of course, there's nothing saying that being able to run a 5 min mile rules out being able to run 10+ miles as well, or vice versa. I guess... I'm just too intimidated to try for both at the same time. I never stay in my workout phases long enough, probably. Grr... this one is going to be different. Somehow.
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Re: Summer Mile Time Reduction Challenge!

Postby Mighty Jalapeno » Mon Nov 21, 2011 2:10 am UTC

I am pathetic pretty much homogenously when it comes to running any great distance. I've always thought myself as, underneath all the flab, in pretty good shape, but just starting this Mile Challenge has really convinced me otherwise. That and the shadowboxing with weights while watching MMA, boxing and Ellismania on the projector, and realizing that I gas out WAY earlier than I thought I would. I can still do a pretty good review of my martial arts training, but actually DOING SOMETHING WITH MY BODY, such as running, was almost unattainably difficult.

The resurrection of this thread has brought back my verve. Gonna up my treadmilling tomorrow morning.
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Re: Summer Mile Time Reduction Challenge!

Postby Samik » Mon Nov 21, 2011 2:18 am UTC

Mighty Jalapeno wrote:projector

If, by that, you mean one of those high def projectors and 120 inch screens, then I understand why you're out of shape. My cousin has such a setup, with comparably epic surround sound, in his basement. I'd never leave if I lived there.

Which suggests the perfect solution almost too easily - rig up a system where the projector will only turn on when you're running on the treadmill.



....



All kidding aside, good luck. I'm rather serious about this physical fitness fit myself (although I say that every time). I'll be watching this thread with great interest for updates (hopefully not just you and me).
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It's too fucking cold to do anything, but we'll stay in shap

Postby Izawwlgood » Mon Nov 21, 2011 2:51 am UTC

Title change. Tomorrow, I have a shit ton to do, but I want to run and do some core. I will run 2 miles in 14m, and do a core set.
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Re: Summer Mile Time Reduction Challenge!

Postby Mighty Jalapeno » Mon Nov 21, 2011 4:58 am UTC

Samik wrote:
Mighty Jalapeno wrote:projector

If, by that, you mean one of those high def projectors and 120 inch screens, then I understand why you're out of shape.

I've only had one for four months, and that's INCREASED my rate of exercise since I do feel lame sitting there watching a GIANT SCREEN when I have all this room. That and my kids dominate it 24/7, I only get to use it to myself between 5:30 and 6:30am.

But I know where you're coming from. :) I'll stop hogging this thread, I have my own well-used thread elsewhere in Fit Club.
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Re: Summer Mile Time Reduction Challenge!

Postby gaurwraith » Mon Nov 21, 2011 1:08 pm UTC

Samik, I used to run 3:38 -3:44 kilometer when I was in high school. I just ran fast from the beggining, but 10 years after, my "running fast from the beggining" is slower... taht's why I need to figure out the pace. I mean, the "I've been there" part doesn't count a lot... it's about now. For me.
Still have the ability to sprint the last 200 m or so, but since i have to look for my watch to stop the clock I might be wasting a couple of precious seconds :P
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Re: Summer Mile Time Reduction Challenge!

Postby Samik » Tue Nov 22, 2011 10:46 pm UTC

gaurwraith wrote:"I've been there" part doesn't count a lot... it's about now. For me.

I guess it helps that my body stopped developing when I was 15. I mean, I've changed some to look at me, but my height, weight, single rep maxes, and personal best run times have remained pretty consistent over the years.

I've only officially gone under 6 minutes twice, but I've bumped right up against the 6 minute barrier at least a half dozen times in my life, spread out over a decade. That really has seemed to be my plateau, and I pretty much know exactly what it feels like by now :/


Anyway, I missed the first day of my new regimen today. I had a dental appointment this morning, and Thanksgiving is Thursday, and my routine required me to run both days, so I figured I'd just bump my schedule back one day and run tomorrow instead. But now I have another appointment for tomorrow morning, and an appointment for Friday to get a sizeable hole drilled in my head (I had a trauma related tooth loss earlier this year, and am about to get a post drilled in for the prosthetic).

I'm definitely going to run tomorrow, but I'm going to have to play it by ear after that for a bit...
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Re: Summer Mile Time Reduction Challenge!

Postby Samik » Sun Nov 27, 2011 4:40 pm UTC

Did my ~1.9 mile route this morning in 14:44, improving on my last time of 14:55.

On the one hand, looks like the gains are going to start slowing now.

On the other hand, that was after taking 5 days off for consumption of mass quantities, and getting a metal spike drilled into my jawbone. So any gain is a good gain, I suppose.




Edit: Well, as of tomorrow, I'm bumping my route up to 2.5 miles. As I expect that number to eventually go higher (and I don't have convenient access to a treadmill/track with which to get really accurate mile times anyway), my posts are likely going to gradually become less and less (technically) on-topic. So I think I'm going to say goodbye to this thread for the meantime, and take my business over to the "Run 10,000 miles" thread.
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Re: Summer Mile Time Reduction Challenge!

Postby gaurwraith » Wed Dec 28, 2011 1:54 pm UTC

yoohoooo

mile under six!

5:54

:D
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Re: Summer Mile Time Reduction Challenge!

Postby Izawwlgood » Wed Dec 28, 2011 1:55 pm UTC

Grats!
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Re: Summer Mile Time Reduction Challenge!

Postby Mighty Jalapeno » Wed Dec 28, 2011 5:34 pm UTC

I find myself winded while combing my hair...

I might have undone some of my gains from this summer. Congratulations, though! :D
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Re: Summer Mile Time Reduction Challenge!

Postby Samik » Wed Dec 28, 2011 6:00 pm UTC

While visiting family for the holidays, I have access to a gym. I made my first attempt at a mile in ages the other day.

I set the treadmill at 10.1 mph, and told myself I'd be happy if I made 0.5 miles. I called it quits at 0.75. Of course, I was in a bad way at the time, but after the fact, if I'm answering honestly, I think I could have made it the last 0.25, if I'd really been in the right frame of mind.


I've only got a few more days here, and I wrecked the hell out of my back and quads doing deadlift for the first time in forever. (Didn't pull anything - just good old fashioned muscle fatigue to the point where I couldn't stand up without help the first two days. I really thought I was taking it easy too - felt good and stable and I didn't feel I was pushing myself at all. Must be getting old.) But I'm back to about 90% now, so I figure I can fit in two more mile attempts before I leave.

First one, maybe tomorrow, will be another 10.1 attempt, just to get below 6min.

If that one succeeds, I'll shoot for a personal best (<5:53) on the next, and last, one.
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Re: Summer Mile Time Reduction Challenge!

Postby gaurwraith » Wed Dec 28, 2011 10:30 pm UTC

Thanks!
It's been strange because I have eaten like an orc and gotten drunk and smoked and gone to bed early in the mornings some of these days, but I guess the rest has helped my legs.. also at some point in the run, there were some kids waving at me and whistling and cheering, more like a joke I guess, but I have taken it the mystical way, "they're telling me I can do it" so I`ve pushed... 8)
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Re: Summer Mile Time Reduction Challenge!

Postby gaurwraith » Wed Mar 07, 2012 9:39 pm UTC

19 feb run a 5:37 and today a 5:21 !

I feel I can go under 5 mins yeeeesss!!!

and well, it's being a long summer this :D
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Re: Summer Mile Time Reduction Challenge!

Postby Mighty Jalapeno » Wed Mar 07, 2012 9:50 pm UTC

Hey, that's right!

I went for a run on Monday, and was 10 seconds FASTER than my last November time. Despite not working out and eating terrible food. I hope to get down below 9 minutes (I know, I know, a terrible time, but I'm in terrible shape, so this is still progress.)
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Re: Summer Mile Time Reduction Challenge!

Postby Izawwlgood » Wed Mar 07, 2012 10:08 pm UTC

Well done MJ. See if you can do it again!
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Re: Summer Mile Time Reduction Challenge!

Postby Samik » Mon Mar 19, 2012 5:52 pm UTC

Took myself indoors today to do a run on a treadmill. Sacrilege, I know, with it being nearly 75 degrees (24 C) outside, but my outdoors route is only approximately measured, using google maps, and may have quite a lot of margin for error (as much as +/- 10 seconds per mile, depending on how generous I'm being about google's accuracy). So, even with the relative ease of treadmill running, I figure my treadmill times will probably still have more relelvance than my outdoor times. (Wish I had access to a track, but no such luck.)





Anyway, my previous best time on my outdoor "1.9" mile loop was 13:41, from this Friday just passed. Which works out to a pace of 7:12/mile. With generous assumptions about google's margin of error (+/- 50 meters), this could have really been anywhere between 7:20 and 7:05 / mile.


So indoors I went, and set the treadmill at 8.5mph, with the intent to go for 2 miles. This would be 7:03.5 / mile, ignoring the run up to full speed the treadmill has to do in the beginning. The idea was to just try to keep it together for the first 1.5 miles or so, and if things were feeling OK at that point, raise the speed a bit at the end and see how close to 7:00/mile flat I could get.


Long story short, the run was a breeze. I got to 1.4 miles feeling great, and started to tick it up to 9mph. When I reached 1.75 miles, I went to 10mph, and finished off that way. I didn't really know how it was going to go, and didn't want to die early and abort, but in hindsight I could have pushed it even harder. Oh well. Now I know. Next time.


Final mark was 13:51 for 2 miles, or 6:55.5 / mile.
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Re: Summer Mile Time Reduction Challenge!

Postby Izawwlgood » Mon Mar 19, 2012 8:51 pm UTC

Well, it got warm again, so, time to get back into training for this!

Last summer, I got down to 5:25 or so, so, this summer, in the interest of setting a realistic goal for my abilities, I'm going to go for breaking a 5m mile.
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Re: Summer Mile Time Reduction Challenge!

Postby Samik » Wed Mar 21, 2012 6:31 pm UTC

2 miles in 13:30 flat today, down from 13:51 on Monday (as I said at the time, I knew I had a lot more in me than that run - it was my first go on a treadmill in this fitness fit, and I didn't quite know how hard I could get away with pushing it).


I know treadmills are cheating, but even making the most pessimistic possible assumptions about the margin of error for my outdoor routes, this still represents at the very least a 20 second per mile improvement in my last few runs (and potentially a lot more if the margin of error was in the other direction). The treadmill can't possibly be the sole reason for that, can it?


If I can get below 13:00, I'll be entering territory I haven't been in in several years, and getting within striking distance of some personal bests. (Really NOT looking forward to reaching the point where I'll be able to try to set a new mile PB. That is never a good experience for me.)




Besides, in defense of treadmills, I LOVE just being able to zone out, defocus my vision, focus on breathing, and have everything else taken care of for me. The last quarter mile on a track, or last leg of my street runs, is always miserable, but on a treadmill, that last 0.25 just flies by. No matter how bad you're feeling, you just look up for a few seconds, look down, and you're already through 20% of it. Look up and down again, and you only have 0.15 to go. Seeing it that way just works for me, somehow, so much better than visually seeing your target in the distance. I never feel like I'm getting closer fast enough in those cases.
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Re: Summer Mile Time Reduction Challenge!

Postby Izawwlgood » Wed Mar 21, 2012 6:51 pm UTC

Treadmills are probably fine for training, but I wouldn't rely on their accuracy. I especially wouldn't rely on their ability to train you to pace yourself for a run, which is a huge part of being able to make a time.

I would strongly suggest getting a watch and spending some time on a track if you can, or at the very least, getting a watch and mapping out distances on a local run.
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Re: Summer Mile Time Reduction Challenge!

Postby Samik » Wed Mar 21, 2012 9:34 pm UTC

Yes. The more I thought about it, the more I'm realizing there's room for a lot of error here. No wind. No hills. Combine that with getting a few seconds back from the forgiving springiness of the machine itself. Could add up to a lot more than I was assuming.

Sadly, I have no realistic access to a track, at the moment. The one anywhere near me is not open to the general public.

Visible progress keeps me motivated, but I'm not exactly pushing the envelope of competitive times or anything, so all that really matters to me at the moment is improvement, and I can get that on a treadmill, and with my roughly measured local loops.
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Re: Summer Mile Time Reduction Challenge!

Postby Mighty Jalapeno » Thu May 17, 2012 4:24 am UTC

9 minutes even.
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Re: Summer Mile Time Reduction Challenge!

Postby freakish777 » Fri May 25, 2012 2:20 pm UTC

My suggestion for all you milers that are serious about mile times (as opposed to just working out for the sake of working out) and have a track to work on:

Do 8 sets of 400m. Also, pyramid/triangle the effort for each one (effort for your 400m time, not your mile time).

First set at 50% effort, second set at 65% effort (this should be below your mile pace?), third set at 80% effort (this should be just a little above your mile pace?), 4th at 95%, 5th at 95%, 6th at 80%, 7th at 65%, last at 50% again, with 60 second breaks in between each set. Make sure to stretch well before hand, do a 1~2 mile cool down jog/walk afterwards, and stretch well after the cool down. If you do this right, you should hating life around the 4th, 5th set, and 6th set, but the pay off is good (if you find this to be too hard, you can adjust the rest period in between each set).

You can also do 8 sets of 800m in a similar fashion (with 800m efforts of 50%, 60%, 70%, 80%, 80%, 70%, 60%, 50%) but they're better for people training for 2 mile runs.
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Re: Summer Mile Time Reduction Challenge!

Postby freakish777 » Fri May 25, 2012 4:21 pm UTC

Mighty Jalapeno wrote:9 minutes even.


Also, keep up the good work.
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Re: Summer Mile Time Reduction Challenge!

Postby BRNMan » Mon May 28, 2012 8:23 pm UTC

I think my mile is around 6:13. By the end of the summer, I want to break 6:00. Guess it's time to stop procrastinating.
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Re: Summer Mile Time Reduction Challenge!

Postby Izawwlgood » Tue May 29, 2012 12:56 pm UTC

I think it's better to pyramid distances and keep your pace consistent. That way you train yourself to run at a certain rate. Pyramiding your effort doesn't train you to run consistently.

But either way.
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Re: Summer Mile Time Reduction Challenge!

Postby freakish777 » Tue May 29, 2012 1:26 pm UTC

Izawwlgood wrote:I think it's better to pyramid distances and keep your pace consistent. That way you train yourself to run at a certain rate. Pyramiding your effort doesn't train you to run consistently.

But either way.


Well, when our track team did this (many years ago for me), it was the hardest workout day (Wednesday) before Saturday meets. Other days focused on more consistent paces, and even then, only the Distance team really focused on it. Obviously the Sprint team doesn't care whatsoever about keeping a consistent pace, since half or more of their race was accelerating anyways.

This workout was supposed to get your body accustomed to what it feels like to be utterly exhausted (after the second 95% effort) and knowing you have to keep going anyway (because you're in a race, it was meant to build up as much lactic acid as possible so you'd build a tolerance for it, and know how to run despite of it). Like I said, not something for the people that are running a mile just to work out and using their mile time as a "progress bar", but rather for those that are serious about getting the best mile time they can (and are already somewhat in shape).
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Re: Summer Mile Time Reduction Challenge!

Postby Izawwlgood » Tue May 29, 2012 3:20 pm UTC

freakish777 wrote: Like I said, not something for the people that are running a mile just to work out and using their mile time as a "progress bar", but rather for those that are serious about getting the best mile time they can (and are already somewhat in shape).

This is where there are competing schools of thought; I'm under the impression that to run the fastest mile possible, you want to train your body for a particular pace. You don't do that by running 4x400 at a 10m pace, and then 2x400 at a 3m pace, you do that by running 2x100, 2x200, 2x400, 4x200, 2x800, 2x200, 2x100, all at your designated pace. Your 'up the effort' comes by dropping rest between sets, but it's important to maintain your pace.
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