I have a love/hate relationship with speed workouts during marathon training. Partly I love them as they’re over relatively quickly, you don’t have to run that far, and I also hate them as they make me feel a little sick (I did actually vom during Yasso 800s last summer- and carried on!) Here are all the tricks I use to get through my marathon training speed workouts, some of them may work for you too!
· Rope friends in to join you. A track session is suitable for all abilities and speeds. You can either do a similar workout, adjusting speed and distance, or do completely different workouts on the same track.
· Trick yourself that you only have to do one more rep. Then one more. Then one more…until you’re done.
· Listen to music OR sing to yourself. I’m not supposed to listen to music whilst doing my speed work (because my ‘coach’ is a meanie) so I usually sing Taylor Swift or Blink 182 over and over in my head.
· Find a track and feel like a badass runner (until the more professional runners turn up!)
· Treat yourself after your workout, whether it’s a yummy coffee, a delicious lunch or afternoon snack, or your favourite dinner, food is always a great incentive to run.
· Think of a mantra to keep you going. My favourite is ‘One day you won’t be able to do this. Today is not that day.’
· Focus on your form and breathing, it might help take your mind off how much your lungs and legs are burning!
· Bring a piece of paper and write out each rep you need to do- cross them off and add your time as you do them. You’ll love this if you love a to-do list!
· Do it on your treadmill if you need although you may need to adjust your speeds for this.
· Know how good it will feel when you’re done with it for another week!
· Remember, the more you sweat in training, the less you bleed in war. Think about how much these workouts will help when you are feeling crappy at the end of your marathon or half marathon.
And if you don’t live near a track, have a look at my post on how to do speed work without a track – no excuses!