I ran an easy mile (which, in case you are wondering, is 4 times around the track) before I started my workout: 8 x 400 (which is 1 lap). I did this set 3 weeks ago, and I know it was nowhere near as hot or humid when I did it for the first time. Here is the comparison in times (column 1 is from June 17; column 2 was tonight):
My first time doing the set, I just wanted to get under 2:00 on each repeat. I really wasn't sure what I was capable of, as it was my first-ever track workout. This time, based on my new 5K PR from July 4th, I knew what I needed to hold--between 1:45-1:50 for each repeat. And I *almost* did it! Just that first repeat was a bit slow. Considering the awful weather (most of the repeats were done in the rain, and the humidity and dewpoint were both excessive), I am pretty darn proud of this workout! I finished up with an easy half-mile cool down, for a total of 3.5 miles tonight.
So, why did I title this post "a night of firsts"? Well, here are the firsts:
- First time I truly "left it all out there". I mean, I feel like I do that every race, but this time, I could barely drive home. It hurt to even push the accelerator and brake for my car. My legs just didn't feel like they could even move.
- First time pacing someone. Around halfway through my repeats, a husband and wife showed up with their two children (the kids were probably around 5 and 11-12 years old). The 11-12 year old girl jogged a bit to warm-up, and then started to race. Her parents were timing her. During one of my 2-minute rest breaks, I asked what she was doing, and they said she was trying to run a 7-minute mile. What a coincidence; that is the pace (almost!) of my 400's! I was getting ready to run my 8th and final 400, and she was starting her third lap, so I jumped next to her and told her to stick with me. 1:43 is a 6:52 pace, and she did indeed stick with me. I enjoyed encouraging her during the lap. She ended up going a 7:20 (her first two laps were a 3:45, so it would've been very hard for her to go 3:15 for the final two), which is still pretty impressive.
- First time taking an ice bath. I tried to do this after my half-marathon and couldn't handle the cold. I used a different strategy this time--started out with the tap on lukewarm and slowly turned it until it was on cold, then added in the ice. I will say, it was heavenly for my legs! Definitely going to do this after my long runs... hopefully I won't need it for the speed workouts, at least not frequently! Oh, and please excuse my white legs... I am an SPF-50 girl, so that is their color year-round.
After the ice bath and a hot shower, I iced my calves for a good 20 minutes and pulled on my compression socks (and took some ibuprofen). Legs feel pretty good right now... hoping they stay that way!
Oh, I also did the "exhaustion test" for the 100 push-up challenge that I am currently doing. I was able to do 60 consecutive push-ups, which is 12 more than the last test that I did. Not too bad! I have three workouts left before the final test, and while I will be very surprised if I actually get anywhere near 100, I am pleased with the progress I have made. I did 21 push-ups for my initial test, which was only 4 weeks ago. So that is an increase of 39 push-ups, plus I am definitely seeing some true muscle definition in my arms again. I highly recommend this challenge! There is a free app for it as well.
Tomorrow's planned workout is Jillian Michaels' 30-Day Shred, but I am considering just making it an arms-and-abs day. Jillian does a lot of jumping around, and I think I want to baby my legs a bit after how they felt tonight. I have a hard tempo run planned for Wednesday morning that I want to be sure that I am ready for!