Wednesday, April 13, 2011

McMullen Workout

4 mile w/u + strides
Target: mile (5:40), 1200 (4:10), 800 (2:44), 400, (80), 400, 800, 1200, mile all w/2 mins. jog
Actual: 5:42, 4:08, 2:44, 75, 76, 2:40, 4:07, 5:38
1.5 mile c/d
Total: 11.5 miles

For the second Wednesday in a row, I had the best possible weather scenario for my mid-day workout: sunny, 70 degrees, breezy and low humidity. We may only get a few weeks of springlike weather in Charlotte, but it's amazing while it lasts. For the second time this week I ran skins (plus sports bra), so I fully expect my runner's tan to be in full awkward bloom by the weekend.

Looking for a change of pace, Jordan suggested we venture down to McMullen greenway for this workout. I was pleasantly surprised--to be honest, I sort of forget that this venue exists, though it's located a mere ten minutes' drive from our front door--and was definitely excited about the prospect of running somewhere other than the Booty Loop or McAlpine. The few workouts I've done at McMullen have gone really well, so I felt optimistic that today would continue that trend. It also helped that Jordan designed (read: come up with 20 minutes before we left the house) a ladder workout with splits that should be relatively easy to hit, albeit with a short rest. My longer tempo workout will come this weekend in the form of the Race Fest 10k, so today would serve as an opportunity to hit some faster-paced, shorter intervals instead. After a longer than normal warmup (coach's orders) and a few strides, I was ready to begin.

From the first few steps of the initial interval, I could tell the pace felt easy. Turns out it was a bit too easy, as Jordan took me through the 800 in a pedestrian 2:53. We worked a bit harder the second half to make up the deficit, but in the end decided to let the gently rolling and winding terrain dictate the pace. If a few intervals were a second or two slow and others were a second or two fast, I wasn't going to stress about it. In the end this wouldn't matter as the leadoff mile was the only "slow" section. In fact, the middle 400's were quite a bit faster than the prescribed pace (5:00 vs. 5:20) due to the fact that Jordan made me lead these and apparently I decided it was time to sprint. Oh well. To be honest I'm surprised I can even run sub-80 pace right now so I'm definitely not complaining. Once he took over again for the final ascent up the ladder we maintained a controlled tempo, if slightly quicker than on the way down. I felt relaxed on every interval except for the final mile, when the dirt terrain and the uphill finish had me laboring quite a bit the final 400 meters.

Since I know you're all wondering, I'm happy to report that my knee/ITB was a non-issue during the workout itself. Predictably, it tightened up immediately upon finishing, but after stretching and walking around for several minutes I was able to cobble together a relatively comfortable cooldown. This is a marked improvement from last week and hopefully an indicator that this injury is headed in the right direction. In addition to a regular dose of ART and acupuncture with Dr. Greenapple, I have also begun seeing Caitlin's massage therapist Byran Bullock. Tomorrow he will be bringing the hurt with a 60-minute lower body massage designed to flush out my legs and break up all this pesky scar tissue around my knee and ITB. This ain't your grandma's massage, but it's absolutely what I need right now to rejuvenate my legs and bring me back to good health.


Stephen Spada said...

We need to get together for a workout soon...see ya Saturday!