Sunday, July 06, 2008

The Plan

I read about Yasso 800s so I knew what they were. Idea is you take your goal marathon pace and substitute "minutes" for hours. You then take those minutes and run 800m intervals (with 400m jog in between). So for a 4 hour marathon, do 4 minute 800s. 3:30 marathon, 3:30 800s, and so on. You work up to 10 of those during your marathon training along with distance runs and such, and you're ready to do the marathon at your goal pace. Simple, really.

Sounds sort of easy but it's pretty brutal when you're on your last set of 800s, whether it's 3, 4, 5, or 10. If I do them right, my diaphragm hates me and it takes a little while to recover. Afterwards, I don't really want to puke but I can tell my abs are a bit overworked. That's what they feel like.

I'm toying with the idea of running the Santa Barbara Pier to Peak half-marathon (all up hill, about 4k feet elevation, end of August) so Brandon clued me in on hill workouts: run up a steep gradient hill hard for 2 minutes, jog back down for 3. I haven't scoped out the good hills around where I live so I go to the gym and set the treadmill for a 10% uphill gradient for the uphill bits and 0% gradient for the "downhill" bits.

For both the Yassos and the hills, I'm getting about four repetitions before I'm beat. I'm still getting used to it too so it takes a lot out of me and my long runs on the weekend suffer unless I rest for two days. All part of re-learning the process I guess. Big overall plan is to push up the hill repeats and alternate between Yassos and tempo runs. Once I get comfortably back in to the double digits (still at 8 miles for the long runs), I might do more hills and long weekend hills. I'll be pretty happy if I can finish the Pier to Peak without breaking my legs again. And then, I don't know, the Shanghai Marathon?

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