Official track workouts last from April 1 - September 30 for my running club, held every Tuesday night at 6:30 at a local high school. In the "off season," a small group of dedicated runners (read: obsessed) meet to continue to do speed work, but the time changes to 6 PM. Tonight was the first 6 PM practice and it felt so much earlier than 6:30. It also took me twice as long to drive there so I was late. However, I am late a lot of the time, so it didn't bother me too much.
I was surprised to see my track coach there, as usually the man that coaches the other runners runs the off-season workouts. Tonights workout: 400s with 200 recovery. I don't know the last time I ran a decent speed workout. May maybe? April? It had been a long time.
Due to not having much light, we were only running 8 400s, which sounded good to me. The less, the better. 400s are painful, a dead-out spring for a 1/4 of a mile. Usually we do a group of guys and a group of girls/slow guys, but tonight there were only 8 or so of us there to do the workout, so we all went together. The group was the majority of the speedy guys, me, a slower guy, and one other lady, P, who I've done multiple workouts with over the past 2 years.
The repeats started ok, and then I surprised myself and was able to get faster with each one. I kept thinking, "who is this new person, running a sub-6 pace like its nothing? I'm sure I'll burn-out soon." But the burn-out never came. Instead, the opposite thing happened: I gained more speed. My splits were:
#1 - 1:29
#2 - 1:27
#3 - 1:26
#4 - 1:26
#5 - 1:25
#6 - 1:24
#7 - 1:22
#8 - 1:20
I left the track with far more confidence than I started with. I still am amazed at how well all of my runs are going. It is like I've been fixed....or so I can at least hope.