Thursday, September 1, 2011

NYC Marathon Training week: #9 Yassos

The first thing I did this morning upon waking up was to check my resting HR. I was a 'lil worried that I may have done more harm than good by dodging the slow run yesterday and opting for speed work. Thinking about this has got me all worked up. Rats! My watch was downstairs and I had to get up to get it, on top of that I had to pee real bad. Bad planning on my part not to keep my watch within reach.That meant I was already getting stressed and my HR was probably spiking, so I thought.  I was surprised that it was down to 54 bpm. That's the lowest I've measured it. Whoa! What's going on? Could it be that I am gaining fitness? 
That meant tonight might be a good night for Yassos.

I got to the track to warm up for a mile at a very slow pace of 10:28 and my HR was 136 bpm at 77% of my max HR. I did some form drills with the group and then I was off for the 800s on my own. My goal was 3:47. I ran 6 sets of 800s with 3:47 rest in between each set. The rest equated to 100 meter walks and 300 meters  of recovery jog. At the end of my 800, I ran one 400 for good measure. I was happy about that one. After the reps, I cooled down for a 3 laps at 10:30 pace. My splits are as follows:

800 @ 3:45 (7:31) 152
800 @ 3:40 (7:20) 166
800 @ 3:46 (7:33) 166
800 @ 3:51 (7:43) 162
800 @ 3:56 (7:53) 163
800 @ 3:59 (8:00) 162
800 totals 42:04 4.57 mi 9:13 pace
400 @  1:42 (6:42) 157 bpm

What happened in the last 3 reps of the 800s? I can explain! The mind is an incredible machine. The body does what the brain tells it. After the third set, I started thinking, maybe I shouldn't go too fast because I have the 5k on Saturday to prepare for. Maybe 3 Solid Yassos at 3:47 will do the trick. As I was lost in the thought, my pacing fell off, as you can see from the top. I felt like I was still keeping the pace. I didn't feel like I was even slowing down. But now we know because the Garmin tells another story. I didn't will my feet to slow down, but the mind took over. I don't know if I am making any sense here, but the lesson learned here was: if you want to do well in a race, you have to think positive and say to yourself "You can do it!" There is no time for maybe's or what ifs. This is what I'll repeat to myself come Saturday for that 5K, or any other time I reach a bad patch in any marathon.

Tonight was a great night for Yassos. As a treat, I decided to go easy tomorrow. I need to be smart and not tempt myself to run fast. That means not running with the divas. :-( I need a slow 4 miler since I've done back to back quality workouts. If I run with the ladies, the temptation would be too strong to keep up with them. I get to sleep in. 

Happy running!


  1. Nice job Aileen! Is your Garmin giving you the average HR for the 800 or are those numbers the Max at the end of each?
    Your training is working! Nice!!!

  2. Those are the max at the end of each yasso. At the end of the recovery jogs, my max HR is about 145 bpm. What does that mean? Not really that great at analyzing max HR yet.

  3. I think your 162-166 range Max's indicate that you were running within yourself for the most part. I'm guessing that your max is around 175???? I think you can see why you slowed though. If your were only getting down to 145 on the recovery, you probably were not recovering enough to get faster on each one. Just a guess....
    Good job!

  4. Yes, 176 is my max. That makes sense, my recovery is still high, because I would do fast jogs instead of a slow jogs. Maybe next time I will slow it down some. Thanks for the input, Rich.
    Btw, I changed my Garmin to do the avg HR for each lap instead of the simple HR.

  5. I wouldn't necessarily change it to average. I like to know where I'm maxing for each rep as opposed to what my average is. It's a better indicator of how hard I'm working.

  6. Oh that's absolutely true. I didn't think about that. I'm switching it back. Thanks again!