So I attempted an interval run last night. The plan was to run 4 sets of 800 m at 10K pace (4:54) with 400 m rests.
My run got off to an ugly start when I inadvertently plunged into a mud put in my still-under-construction-neighbourhood and found myself 2 inches deep in gunk. I was SO close to turning around and heading home, but I toughened up, kicked off as much mud as I could (which of course ended up all over my legs) and continued.
I had planned a 2K warm-up which would lead me to the only one-kilometre stretch of level ground in my entire town (I am only slightly exaggerating) where I could start my intervals. Unfortunately, I way under-estimated the distance and the warm-up turned out to be closer to 3K. This wouldn’t necessarily be a bad thing except it was one of those runs that I just wanted to be done with. It was late, it was humid, and my shoes were covered in mud.
Anyway, I was finally ready to start my sets and took off.
Problem 1: I can’t figure out how to use the interval program properly on my Garmin (I can set up the intervals so it beeps every X metres, but it won’t show my my pace on the screen) so I had to keep a constant eye on my distance and keep track of the intervals. This is harder than you might think.
Problem 2: It was late and therefor dark. I couldn’t see the tiny numbers on my Garmin without hitting the light button (is there a way to make it stay on?) so not only was I constantly checking my watch, but I had to turn on the light every time. May seem minor, but it was a pretty serious inconvenience last night, when I was already frustrated by the issues above.
Problem 3: I apparently have a very difficult time maintaining a steady pace. I’d be running along pretty close to goal pace, only to glance back at my watch 30 seconds later and discover that I was running at 4:30! I’d slow it down a bit, look down at my watch and the next thing I know I’m running at 5:15. I found it virtually impossible to hold my target pace.
So there you have it: my list of excuses why my first interval run essentially sucked. Taking the above factors into account, I did the best I could under the circumstances. In the end, I ran 5K with two sets of (almost) 800 m. I think I’ll try the treadmill next time.
Quick run-down of this week:
Tuesday: 5K w/ modified intervals :p
Friday: 8K tempo (6K at 5:11-5:20)