Wednesday, March 18, 2015

First Track Workout

Well, I bit the bullet and joined Runners Connect. So far, I am loving it! They have forums to discuss running issues, races, shoes, nutrition, etc. There's also a daily feed where everyone can post their workouts or questions, and other members can "like" the posts and comment on them. It really has a community feel. I've only been on for about a week now, but I'm really digging this site.

The best thing is that they have already loaded a workout schedule for me, even though I am technically still in my free two-week trial. I love the way they map out your running schedule, too. You tell them what race you're aiming for, previous PR's, any injuries or issues, what days you like to run, etc., and they build a personalized plan for you. Each day is mapped out with your run, cross-training or strength-training activities, or just plain old rest.

Yesterday was my first official workout that had something other than "easy run" in it. My runner's group was meeting at our local track for the first time this year, so I thought it would be perfect to meet up with them and run this workout. RC had me do this:

1 mile warm-up, 5 x 3 min 8:00-8:10 pace with 3 min recovery jogs, 1 mile cool down. Basically a fartlek run.

Our group was doing something very similar (makes sense since the "host" is also on RC and has similar workouts geared towards his own training/pacing). We all warmed up together out on the road first, then hit the track for the work out. Everyone can do their own thing, follow a workout, or just hang out and watch. It's really not very strict.

I had some trouble figuring out how the lap feature worked on my Garmin Forerunner, but by the second set I had figured it out. I also figured out that I was running my fartleks too fast.

Can you see that? Sorry it's so small. My fartleks were anywhere between 7:28 min/mile and 8:03. So not horribly off, but too fast. Now that I have it figured out though, I can work better on being consistent. My recovery jogs were all between 9:01-9:03, so I'd say that part was pretty darn consistent! 

I had no idea how long or far the fartlek part of my workout would take. I figured maybe 2 miles for a nice 4 mile run. Remember how math is not my strong suit? 5 x 3 = 15 minutes of running. 4 recovery jogs at 3 min each = 12 min of running, for a total of 27 minutes. That's a 5k for me, basically. Shave some time off for the faster running, but add back the warm-up/cool-down miles and yea, 5+ miles for me at the track. Definitely took a little longer than I had planned! Good thing I started dinner before I left...

That's a boring map, but you get the point. Round and round we went! Good thing there were some other people to help keep me entertained. Either way, I'm proud of myself for doing the workout, and that it was relatively easy. I can't wait to see what else they have on tap for me! 

Do you run track workouts? Do you know what a fartlek is, or do you think I'm just making up rude words? 


  1. Thanks for the post Alison, I am the community manager at Runners Connect, and I love to come across these kinds of posts. I am so glad you are enjoying the community feel, as it is one of the best parts about it; everyone is so supportive of one another. I hope you continue to train with us, I am sure you will have a huge breakthrough, and we will be excited to see what comes from you in the future! Thanks for sharing!

  2. Awesome! I think you're doing great. I've only done a few "track" workouts (and really they weren't on a track) before I got pregnant and stopped, but I definitely think they help you improve! You'll have to keep up posted :)

    1. I definitely will! I ran too fast again this morning. It's hard to slow down!