DT, sounds like a good session to me. The idea of splitting them up is to get more quality in without killing yourself, so the best question to ask is how different do you think you would have felt had you done 4 consecutive miles at the same pace? For me it can be the difference between taking 1-2 days to recover and taking 3-4 days to recover.
CB, well done. I agree you shouldn't write off the chance of PBs yet. You could very well see a massive improvement between that and your next race. Especially considering dodfy preparation and not feeling 100%.
Mr V, Moonsoon? It was lovely down here. Nice run. Mud and wind can make so much difference. I ran 18:50 a couple of months ago almost flat out in bad weather whereas the previous week I'd run 18:40 as a threshold run.
Kelly, I can't fathom it either. Surely they would learn after a couple of times.
I did an 800/1500 double today. The 800 was basically a time trial since 2nd place finished 12 seconds behind me. I went off a little bit fast and went through the first lap in 61 seconds! It didn't feel like that. Oh well. Started to tie up with 300 to go, which is not good news in an 800, but held it together somewhat for a shiny PB of 2:08.8 (previous 2:09.98). Not worried about the pacing too much since it was my first of the season and I'll sort that soon enough. Very happy with how easy the first 400 felt. I reckon all that gym work and hill work has paid off and my top speed has improved a fair bit.
I was pretty tired during the 1500 a couple of hours later, but managed a 4:30.00, which isn't great, but not too bad for the second race of the day.
Well done at the relay, Mr V. If you were feeling one-paced perhaps some speedy stuff is in order.
Bob, I've completed that session before, it was just a bad day and I sort of knew I was wimping out at the time. If it was a consistent problem I would go about reducing the intensity though.
Your session the other day is what I'd call VO2 max. It's generally agreed that vVO2 max the the pace you can maintain for about 8 minutes, and that training at this pace and paces down to 15-minute pace are what bring about the biggest improvements in VO2 max. Of course, training a touch slower will also provide some stimulus, but the important thing to bear in mind is that training at a faster pace will not bring any extra aerobic benefits - in fact it will bring fewer, since you will not be able to complete as many reps, or will have to take longer recoveries, thereby spending less overall time at the correct intensity. It will also take you longer to recover from the session and impact other training.
That's not to say you shouldn't ever run at faster than 8-minute pace, since there are other types of non-aerobic benefits to be had, but for your stage of development I would recommend against such sessions for the time being. You're still getting massive aerobic gains as is evident in your constant stream of PBs.
Based on your 5k time, I calculated the following 15- and 8- minute paces for you:
6:29/mile | 4:02/km
6:11/mile | 3:51/km
So when I was talking about faster interval sessions for you, I was thinking of something like 6 x 800 in 3:05 with 90" recovery. I.e. 8-minute pace
The two sessions you listed are what I'd call speed endurance. As I mentioned above I wouldn't tackle them yet if I were you, but to answer your question about recoveries for the second, 90sec/lap would be roughly 1500 pace for you, and I've found in the past that 10 x 400 with 1' recovery is a good 1500 predictor. A tough session though.
WJH, that sounds like a seriously tough session and I can certainly see how it would build confidence. I think occasionally it is good to really push yourself hard in training. For example, I'll probably do 2-3 sessions in June that I call "vomit inducers". I found last year that they really helped push me to my peak.
CB, what's the plan regarding pace on runs? Are you going to run by feel as standard now or is it a temporary thing?
Glad you enjoyed your interval session, Tom K. Decent pace there. But is your 5k PB of 21:24 recent? If so then I think you are running those a little too fast. I've calculated your 8- and 15-minute paces as being:
6:47/mile OR 4:06/km AND 6:37/mile OR 4:01/km
As a guide, ideally you'd use the slower pace for longer intervals (1000 - 1200) and the faster pace for shorter intervals (400-800). If you do this, then you'll find you can cut the recovery quite a bit. I try to make recovery 50-75% of the rep time for longer intervals, and 30-50% for shorter intervals.
The idea behind shorter recoveries is that you don't give yourself a chance to recover fully, therefore you work up to the key intensity a lot quicker during the next rep and spend more of you time gaining benefits from the session.
As for increasing the intensity - don't unless a recent race suggests you should. If you feel the need to make the session harder (and it's very rare that people running the correct pace and with the correct recoveries don't find them hard enough), then increase the number of reps or reduce the recovery time. You will receive no extra aerobic benefits from running them any harder than you need to.
Nice session from you too, Bob. Do you do any shorter interval sessions at slightly faster pace?
Speaking of intervals, I broke my New Season's Resolution of never giving up on a tough session by giving up on a tough session last night. I couldn't get to the track so tried to do 6 x 1k off 1 minute on the road, but after the fourth I was shot and fed up with the poxy weather so called it a night
Bob, I always find my easy pace has picked up the day after a race. I think it's just because I'm tuned in to a faster pace.
I like the look of the T7s, Duck. £35 on Amazon for the yellow ones or £47 for the blue ones and £85 for the red. I don't think back-to-back sessions are a problem occasionally, especially if they have a different focus. I look forward to seeing your 800 time off your recent training. I've got my first this Saturday since out August smackdown and seeing as I've done no LT work yet, but have improved endurance and speed I don't know what to expect.
TOM, I was at the Nonsuch 10k on Sunday (observing, not running) - I was too busy trying to photograph clubmates too see anybody else. Did you get caught up with those dogs at 1k? Well done on your result.
YD, it sounds like they've sorted out the schedules quite a bit.
Mr V, MP is going to be limited by lactate threshold, which in turn is going to be limited by VO2 max, so one of the ideas behind doing VO2 stuff first is to raise it so that your lactate threshold has more room to shift up. I'm not completely convinced by this argument. Rather than shifting up independently, I think VO2 pulls up other limits below it - as though you have an elastic band with various intensities marked on it lying next to a ruler with paces marked on it. Stretching the band at the VO2 mark causes all the intensities below to be stretched as well.
As an example, my LT has improved by about 6-7 seconds/mile in the last month of VO2 training - and I did no LT work during this time.
P&D seem to work on a progression of more intense work. However, my personal experience is that you'll get gains from VO2 max training regardless of when you do it, and the gains will not be limited by previous work. With that in mind, I'd prefer to get VO2 done and out the way before concentrating on intensities and sessions that that are more important for the marathon
Thanks for the shoe suggestion, Duck. They look very similar to the Kinvaras.
Tom K, you'll definitely feel tired the first time you tackle a new distance. It'll feel a lot easier next time though.