Home of the Conquerors.
That’s what it said on the side of the high school where I ran my track repeats today. Pretty fitting.
I used to run at a local high school track when I lived in a different city many years ago. I ran at that track just so I could know how far I was running…back in the day before Garmins and MapMyRun.com. Back before I was married. Before we had a kid. Before we had a dog!
I had no idea where to run a track around here. I knew Zoe (Run, Zoe, Run) had been to a local track. I knew they existed! I had to get over the fear of the unknown and just do it. Repeats were just the catalyst I needed. Last week, I did them on the treadmill, and I did not enjoy that.
I called the high school in my school district — they do not allow the public to use their track. Okay, fine. I called the one closest to T Junior’s day care. Score! Home of the Conquerors. Awesome! And, since we had that storm last week, the district is closed so I didn’t have to wait till after the kids got out of school. Sweet! (Well, not so sweet for the parents whose kids have been home now for the second week.)
The other thing I needed to conquer: my Garmin’s workout settings. But that was super easy! I just looked up the user guide online and it told me exactly what to do. It was simple to set up.
I dropped T Junior off and headed to the track. On the way from my car to the track, I passed a woman going from the track to her car. We laugh-smiled-waved.
The first part of my workout was a 10-minute warmup (which includes strides, butt-kicks and skipping). I hit start on my workout and the countdown to track repeats was on! I was nervous. After about a mile, a 3-2-1 beep counted me down to my first 1,000. I took off.
The watch beeped and flashed “Slow down!” I searched the screen for a pace, but it didn’t show one. Slow down? Slow down? Really?
I slowed a little. The screen said “NO ZONE.” When I set my pace zones before the workout, I’d set 8-Run to 7:44-7:48, so I could keep it in there. But when I slowed down it went to “Slow jog” (later I looked and slow jog was like a 7:00-9:00 pace; I hadn’t changed it from the default setting). I couldn’t figure out how to get into the correct zone. It was driving me nuts!
After .46, I hit stop and ended the workout. I was at a track, so I just decided to do the “work” myself. At the end of my repeats, I added on a .15 interval (I couldn’t remember exactly how far I’d gone on the first one before I’d hit “stop”).
Interval 1: .46 in 3:21 and .15 in gives me .61 in 4:21 (just a teeny bit short), which is a 7:29 pace. OOPS. (.25 rest interval)
Interval 2: .62 in 4:48 – 7:44 pace. Another oops: I thought I was right on pace, but I was supposed to be at a 7:46. Dude! (.25 rest interval). Dying! Kept closing my eyes, which I’m notorious for doing when I’m running really hard.
Interval 3: .62 in 4:48 (.25 rest interval) Dying more!
Interval 4: .62 in 4:48 I felt like I was moving my legs really fast, but my average pace kept showing 7:50. I really, really had to push and concentrate on propelling myself with my glutes to get the pace down.
(Walked a few feet then did my .15 make-up interval I was talking about above. There’s no way I couldn’t completed another complete interval.)
10-minute cooldown. Soooo happy to be done. But I felt surprisingly good and superproud of myself for conquering my repeats at the track.
I love having a training plan. It really makes me feel like my running has purpose, you know? Sometimes, just running to run is okay, but I enjoy knowing what I’m going to be doing ahead of time. Do you like having a plan? Or would you rather whenever, wherever?
(Tomorrow, I will write more about the pacing and how it comes out “exact.”)