Sunday, December 3, 2017

One Fast Mile, 3 Days per Week

This past month I've tried a new running strategy. First, I run every day. Second, three days per week I run one mile fast on the treadmill. Those three days are my past rest days. Now they are "sorta rest" days. Sure, I run fast. But it's only one mile. And I warm up well on cross training machines--elliptical, glider, bike, stair climber, etc. I do about 15 minutes of medium-hard cross training, then pop on the treadmill for a fast mile. I'm currently running about 6:30 pace! Just three weeks ago it was 7:30. I plan to break 6:00 by the end of January.

The other four days of the week are "go as I feel" type runs. Sometimes very slow and easy with walk breaks. Other times more steady uptempo efforts. Soon I'll incorporate long runs. It's a nice variety of workouts. Running hard on a  treadmill, for one mile, is actually very fun. Outside on trails is my normal go-to type of run and I still enjoy those efforts. Right now, the diversity of runs is feeling pretty nice. And 3 runs/week on the treadmill, in the dark and cold of winter, seems pretty nice too.

I haven't really pushed the treadmill one-milers. I gently increase the pace and see how I feel. I'm never breathing hard and my heart rate progresses to about lactate threshold levels. Nothing too extreme. If I want to break 6:00 pace, I'll need to push harder. I can. For now it's one step at a time. I simply need to progress a little each week. It's fun seeing the pace and heart rate correlation on these very controlled treadmill runs. At some point the two will maximum pace, or heart rate, isn't too far away!

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