Athlete: “Master Murph”
Prescribed Workout: 3 mile threshold + 4×200
Result: 3 miles in 17:29 (5:46, 5:51, 5:52) 4 x 200 (37.2, 36.7, 35.8, 36.9)
I didn’t give Murphy a prescribed pace. We at best have a general idea of his fitness as he hasn’t race in a while. However, Murphy ran 4 x mile at 6:00 a week prior, with only 30 seconds of rest and looked really comfortable. I asked Murphy to run at a pace in-which he felt like he could hold for around an hour, if he had to. Pretty simply. Nothing revolutionary about this workout. Many Ultimook athletes did something similar this week. Generally when we run 200’s after a threshold, it’s something short around 1500 effort. Like the threshold though, it’s important to feel smooth. I’d be just as happy (scratch that, more happy) if Murphy took his watch off for these and just ran them quick and smooth, but in order to get Murphy to take his watch off, you’d probably need to cut his arm off.
The first rep, Murphy was pretty quick on the first lap, hence the faster split. Luckily he settled down nicely, in the windy conditions and also had a friend to help switch off every 800. Murphy did this same workout two weeks ago, this time he ran faster and said it felt easier. Murphy made a similar comment regarding the 200’s. You don’t always have to force progression. Sometimes as coaches I think we get caught up in adding repetitions or asking for an athlete to run quicker than the previous week. Yes, Murphy ran quicker today, but I don’t want that to take away from the fact that there is a lot to say about an athlete doing a similar workout a few weeks later, having the progression made not by an extra rep, or a quicker average, but my the athlete saying, “hey, this was easier than it was before”. Progress is progress, and you sometimes feedback from an athlete is the bet way of “measuring”.