It isn't the intervals!
I try to run 5 or 6 times a week, because I love running.
Friday is usually my rest day as I try to have fresher legs for my local parkrun at the outstandingly beautiful Fountains Abbey parkrun.
It has taken me a while to learn that running slow is the key.
I think I now understand the importance of the long run - to build endurance and avoid 'jelly legs' on the Saturday.
If parkrun is one of my speed sessions I then try to add one other 'workout' session, alternating between hills and intervals.
As a result, my average week looks something like this:
Saturday: Parkrun (not a capital 'P') - and gym; Sunday: - Easy; Monday: - Long run; Tuesday: - Easy (and gym); Wednesday: - Hills or intervals; Thursday:: - Easy; Friday - Rest
My biggest challenge?
When I parkrun, I am all in! Going to the pub on a Friday night - as I did this Friday, costs me 20 seconds and 5/6 places. It is annoying but I 'get it'.
The long run? Assuming I have enough 'time' and my Apple watch does not suddenly switch off for no apparent reason, I am happy. Depeche Mode normally the music to accompany me.
The hills? Sapping and a 200 heart rate. This must make me fitter.
Intervals? I may be sick. These will make me fitter.
I know that is how I am going to feel and I am ready. I think I almost enjoy it.
For me the hardest runs are the easy ones? Why?
I. RUN. TOO. FAST.
On goes the music and off I go. I love running. I am happy. I love this song. I get faster.
I have to make a real conscious effort to slow down. It feels like I am cheating. I am not even sweating. Do I look like I am 'jogging'?
What I am learning day by day, is that it is these easy runs that build the aerobic base, and delay lactate acid when I parkrun.
It is these that allow me to feel strong at the end of parkrun.
Time for my sllllooooowwwwww run.
Happy running all.
by Mark Reed