Tuesday, August 16, 2011

Yasso 800s

Today the 30th follower joined my blog!

I love round numbers and feel this is a great opportunity to thank all of you who read this regularly, whether it's through Google or Facebook. Some days, I know, this is deadly dull material, I'm a lousy photographer, the journey is long, and I don't have sponsors or cool giveaways. But you're nonetheless sticking it out with me. It's made and is making a big difference in my commitment to the goal and my belief in my ability to achieve it. THANK YOU!

The other great thing about my day was my morning track workout. My McMillan plan calls for two Yasso 800s workouts (for more on how to do these and the philosophy behind them click here). The first such workout was the week after my kidney infection. I kept it to the low end of the range (he said do six to eight 800s; I did six) and ran them slower than I would have liked. But at the time it was all I had in me.

This workout, which called for eight to ten (ten being the classic pre-marathon Yasso test), was different. And it was awesome! I knocked all ten out and though I was definitely D-O-N-E after the 10th one, I never had any desire or need to quit. My average pace for them was 3 minutes 38 seconds, nicely under the 3:45 that indicates readiness to run my BQ marathon pace. At one point in the last one, I looked down at the Garmin and saw that my pace was below 6 minutes/mile. Is this me? I asked myself as Adam Ant's "Goody Two Shoes" pushed me along. Running a pace with a 5 in front of it? It's a good sign, especially coming off of the weekend's 20 miler.

That said, I'm trying not to read too much into it. Greg McMillan, who wrote my plan, says on his Web site that in his experience, the Yasso pace is about 7 minutes fast. That would indicate I can run a 3:45 marathon, not a 3:38. And it stands to reason that a long tempo run or a half-marathon would be a better predictor of marathon performance than a speed workout of any kind.

This weekend I have my second Fast Finish long run scheduled. Hopefully I can do better in this one than I did the last time I had one of these suckers. Stay tuned!