As a summer of racing gets closer and closer, sessions start to get a little bit faster. I’m not one to have a very high level of natural speed, so these sessions can come as a bit of a shock to the system, but I’m learning to love them more and more. Here are my three favourite speedier sessions. To prepare yourself even more for races, you may want to pull the spikes on. They can all be adapted to make them a little bit longer if you still want to get the volume in.
3 x 1200,400 + bonus 400.
I used to hate speedier sessions, but I’m learning to love them, because ultimately, what’s not to like about making your weaknesses stronger? As soon as I see something less than 5k in volume in my training plan, I know it’s going to be fast. This is one of my faves. I tend to have 1 minute recovery between the 1200 and 400, and 4 minutes between sets. This gives you plenty of time to recover, but also the minutes between the reps really start to bite by the final set. I always try to focus on my form to distract me from my legs feeling tired. Get those legs turning over as quickly as you can and keep driving forward.
This session is great for getting your legs quickly changing from fast to slow, so you can deal with surges in races. I usually have 100m float as the recovery, so your legs constantly turn over and flow into the next rep. To start with the float feels nice, but trust me, by rep 12 you will start to feel it. 100m float goes very very quickly. If you want to up the volume, I sometimes add a tempo mile at the start and finish. The final mile also gets you used to running on tired legs as the fast 200’s will get that lactic flowing.
2k tempo + 2x400,300,200 (200 jog)
This session is great to get the legs turning ahead of a race. The tempo allows you to warm your legs up before you spin them that bit faster. Also, not having too many reps, means you can go fast without worrying about tiring the legs massively ahead of racing. If you want to do this session outside of race week, you could do 3 sets just for slightly more volume and really hit them hard.
Whether you love speed work or you hate it, it is a must, especially ahead of a summer of track racing. If you're unsure where to start, try one of these sessions and let me know how you get on!
I love to run and I love to write, so I write about running!