Running Fast, Alone, At Night (not an excerpt from the police blotter)

We had 800s planned for this week’s Track Party Tuesday (which yes, I am very timely just now writing about).  Coach Faster Bunny couldn’t make it because of jet-setting duties, which was fine bc I figured it’d be good for me to try a speed workout on my own.  See if there’s a difference between running fast and chasing someone faster than you.

So I woke up in the stupidest mood.  STUPID.  You know when everything is SO life-threateningly annoying?  Like when the seam of your sock being a milimeter off can send you into a tailspin of murderous rage?  Dropping a bit of toothpaste on your shirt turns you into a sobby, blubbering, mascara river mess?  When I told Brian this story he thanked me for leaving the house early and coming home late.  MONSTER Sarah.

(NO, obviously this has nothing to do with a monthly hormonal imbalance or the fact that I have ovaries. nope. not at all.)

Anyways, I woke up late (norm), to a text from Rebecca with directions to a track closer to us.  Cool, maybe I’ll make it on time.  This is how the rest of the morning plays out :

Drive around lost for 25 minutes, eat entire Clif bar (rather than the normal 1/3rd) out of frustration, FINALLY find entrance and parking, and tell myself to chill out you’ve still got plenty of time.  Walk up to track, and…

‘WTF.  What is this sandy gravel dirt shit?  Ugh why do I feel it all over the backs of my legs when I walk??  HOW THE FUCK AM I SUPPOSE TO RUN ON THIS?!  AND FAST??!  Oh hell no.’

Rebecca had already started her workout, obvs since I was obnoxiously late.  I still had to find a place off the track to run my 2 mile warm up.  I didn’t want to take off my coat(s).  I stood there on the edge of the dirt/cinder/gravel, Garmin on, nuun in one hand and keys in the other, just staring at the track.  Pissed.  Scary pissed.

‘You did the hard part already, asshole – you’re out of bed, dressed, and here. Just run a few laps and you’ll shake out of it.  C’mon quit being a little girl.’

Still staring.  Still coated.  Still pissed.

Rebecca took off for her second set and I finally talked myself into getting moving.  I ditched one of my coats, fired up Garmin and my ipod, and ran a lap.

And then stopped.  Put my coat back on, told Rebecca sorry for being the worst runfriend, and went to work an hour early.  .25 miles, holler.

I stewed in my anger all day.  Angry at myself for letting a few small changes to the plan ruin my run.  I still wanted to knock out those damn 800s.  Not really because physically I wanted to, but because I wanted to mark them off my schedule and not worry about shuffling the rest of the week’s workouts.

Lazy, stubborn, or crazy.  You decide, but keep your answers to yourself.

So life things kept happening, which was annoying, and I didn’t get around to lacing my Kinvaras back up until way late.

But damnit, I was getting this workout in!  I headed out to the beachpath for some Twilight 800s with Garmin as my coach.  Did you know about Garmin’s workout function??  I didn’t.  You should have told me.  It wasn’t quite the same as Coach Margot telling me when and how fast and how far to run, but its little beeps and chirps were nice company anyways.

Here’s how if you want to play :

Confession : I almost turned around when I realized time/pace wasn’t on the display.  WTF!!!????  How am I supposed to know if I’m going fast enough??!  No Margot, no time, no pace… like you’re just supposed to know what “hard” feels like?  Without a number telling you if you’re right or not???!  Come on.


*** UPDATE : smart runner friends have informed me a simple tap of the bezel will switch the screen to include time/pace. Phew. Interval on, Wayne.

But so I did my 6 sets and hurried home to check out the splits.  No really, I spent the entire cool down counting the seconds until I could upload the workout.  The excitement!  Mystery!  Surprise!  Hopefully not severe ego-smashing disappointment!!

  • 3:43
  • 3:20
  • 3:18
  • 3:13
  • 3:18
  • 3:17

Honestly, 100% surprised with both the consistency and accuracy (goal was 3:25).  110% overjoyed (minus that 3:43) with my legs’ ability to turn around without the aid of a pacer or a number telling them when to speed up/slow down.

Who knew?

I won’t be giving up Track Party Tuesday for solo twilight speedwork, but it’s comforting knowing I’m not as much of an invalid as I thought.  And also, NO, I won’t be venturing out to any other new venues for TPT.

Kick ass to everyone racing and LR’ing this weekend!  I’ve got 17 on sched for tomorrow.  Bring on the carbs, baby.

Sarah OUaL


38 thoughts on “Running Fast, Alone, At Night (not an excerpt from the police blotter)

  1. Thanks for the tutorial! I think I would have a really hard time pacing myself without knowing how far I was aiming for. Did you have some landmarks that were roughly 800m apart, or did you just go for it until the beep?


    • The display counts the distance down – so you can see “.4” and “.25” and so on as you move. And as a few others have informed me, if you tap the bezel it will switch screens and show you time/pace. Yay!


  2. I’m still a little disappointed you never bragged about our repeat miles from last week. For the record, oual readers, Kara Goucher would have had trouble keeping up with us.

    Also glad you are not going to abandon me for twilight workouts. ;-)


  3. On mine if you hit the arrow that is used to scroll through the screens it changes the screen to your pace screen just FYI :) don’t know if its the same as that one though?

    NICE JOB getting them done. On your own. AFTER work.


  4. Nice job! I imagine you’re much faster than a criminal would be trying to chase you.
    On another note, speed running at night is the best Ragnar practice you could ever, ever do. Sometimes shit gets scary during those.


  5. Thanks for sharing that workout feature! I always connect to satelite and go run. Never even thought to play with the other features that come with the watch. I will try this one day. ooo I also am planning on doing 17 tomorrow…if it doesn’t slush snow like it is supposed to .


  6. You can set it to show your pace while you’re doing the workout; just tap the bezel (that’s a 405, right?) to switch to your other data pages (i.e. the data you normally see on a run).

    It’ll still beep and flash messages telling you what to do next, but you can watch your pace, heartrate, cadence or whatever else.


  7. Glad I am not a total idiot. I effed around with my 405 last Sunday for 15 minutes on a street corner wondering why I couldn’t see my pace. Then wondering why my mileage was all jacked. But it wasn’t. It was me. Sigh.

    Way to kick arse on your 800s! Seriously awesome speedy lady!!

    Have a great LR tomorrow!


  8. Sarah, this is a great post! Make sure it gets tagged and maybe consider editing it up and starting a new section. I’ve never played with the workout function and I’ve owned 3 garmins over the past 7 years. The doodles on your photos make this super cool.

    And, yes, dirt tracks take some getting used to. I used to be super grumpy about them, but since it’s 400m from my bed to the dirt track vs 10+ miles to the nearest all weather track, I do my intervals on the dirt. It will make you tougher, especially when it rains. But it’s not quite the same kind of “lock it in and rip the knob off” type of running that makes the all weather track so much fun. Upside is you’ll have stronger ankles. Downside is your times may be just slightly slower than they would otherwise.

    Nicely done with those intervals. Starting the first one a little easy is perfect, you don’t want to do the reverse. You seem geared towards this type of training. Maybe you can convince your pal to give them a try someday :)


  9. Loved this post! I loved that you admitted running a lap and then knowing it just wasn’t going to work out for you at that moment. I have totally been there! Also, I had NO IDEA I could use my Garmin as my workout coach like that. So awesome!! :-)


  10. You are still so fast! I am impressed you still did the workout after a crappy day, well done. And yes, I used the garmin workout function once and only because of that very reason , it doesn’t show pace!!! Wtf??!!


  11. Pingback: Double Pizza + Zevia! | Corrie Anne

  12. I’m a huge fan of the 405’s intervals feature. I don’t have a track to train on to give me nice predictable distances, so I do my speed work while winding through parks and neighborhoods and I need my watch to beep at me because if I was staring at my watch waiting for it to hit .25 so I can hit lap right at the exact moment, I’d trip on the sidewalk and fall on my face. The Run Less Run Faster training plan tells you how long your intervals should be — not pace — (i.e. 400 in 2:02) which was hard to get used to, but then I didn’t have to cycle through my screens to see what pace I was going. Great job getting your 800s in after work!


  13. Pingback: Weekly Workouts | Ari's Menu

  14. Pingback: More. All of it. | Once Upon a (L)ime

  15. Pingback: Lucky Number Sevens | | Eat: Watch: RunEat: Watch: Run

  16. Pingback: Wine & Candy = Track Greatness (fueling by OUaL) | Once Upon a (L)ime

  17. Pingback: How I Went from 3:57 to 3:37 | Once Upon a (L)ime

  18. Pingback: NYCM Training – Week 1 Recap | Running Bun

  19. Pingback: Hitting the Curb | Once Upon a (L)ime

  20. Pingback: Host Your Own Track Party! | Once Upon a (L)ime

  21. Pingback: Interval Love | amy (up north) runs

  22. Pingback: Interval Love | Amy (up north)

  23. Pingback: Introducing Speedwork (+ a Garmin Workout Tutorial) | Once Upon a (L)ime


Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s