A Speed Workout + How I Scored a PR in 4 Weeks

Happy Wednesday!

I hope all of you are having a good week so far! I did a little speed work yesterday at the track and figured I would share my workout as part of Wild Workout Wednesday! As always, it’s hosted by Annmarie of The Fit Foodie Mama, Angelena Marie from  Angelena Marie: Happy, Healthy & Balanced , Sarah at Creating Better Tomorrow and Amber at Bold Fit Mom.

Beginner's Speed WorkoutI did my 800’s at around a 7:30 min/mile pace, and it was pretty intense! I want to try to keep fitting in speed work to see if I can maybe whittle down my 5k PR a little this summer. 🙂

Speaking of PR’s… The Cox Providence Half Marathon was about 3 weeks ago, so I promise I’ll stop talking about it soon, but I did want to discuss about how the heck my mom and I managed to BOTH PR on the race when our training period was only roughly 4 weeks long. And of those 4 weeks, I was only able to run about 4 days a week, because I was working full-time Tuesday-Thursday. In fact, I definitely recall posting that a PR would be “very unlikely” given our short training time. But clearly, I did some things right during this training period that helped me run fast on race day (Woo for accidental success!), so I want to talk about them. Mostly so that I can remember to keep doing those things for future races. 😉

1. First and foremost, I cross-trained more for this half marathon. My mom and I joined the gym right around the time that our training began, so we were both attending a dumbbell strength class semi-regularly. In that class, we did a lot of weighted squats, lunges, and upper-body work. I’ve been that runner in the past who hates to do any exercise besides running – and I know that contributed to me getting runner’s knee in January and other injuries. Now, I absolutely LOVE this class! Unfortunately, I don’t think I’m going to be able to continue attending it for a while (more on that later), but I’m going to do my best to keep doing the exercises I’ve learned from it.

2 Generations Running2. I finally got a GPS watch. Frankly, I have no idea why I waited so long on this one.

Wild Workout Wednesday Speed WorkoutDon’t get me wrong, I had been using Map My Run and I used to use Nike+, but my Garmin has been a total game changer. I love being able to look down at my wrist and seeing my pace in real time, rather than waiting to hear my mile split, like I used to do. I’ve been able to push myself to keep running at a faster pace now that I can see when I start to slow down. My mom actually just got the same GPS watch I have for Mother’s Day, and it’s been a big help to her in the same way.

6 Miles | 2 Generations Running3. I didn’t have to start from scratch. My mom and I had already been doing weekly long runs of around 8 miles before we signed up for the Cox Providence Half. Because of this, we were still able to gradually increase our long run up to 11/12 miles without putting too much strain on our legs.

4. I didn’t put pressure on myself. I knew that I felt great, and that I had trained well, so mentally, I felt ready to push myself. But I didn’t stress out about it. I stayed relaxed and honestly enjoyed the whole race (ok, maybe not the last 2 miles when I really kicked up the pace).

So now I just have to remember to keep doing these things. 🙂

Do you do speed work or cross-train regularly?

7 thoughts on “A Speed Workout + How I Scored a PR in 4 Weeks

  1. Cross training is key in PRing!! I always run better when I’m mixing it up with biking and swimming. I run 5-6 days per week, and I try to swim 2x per week, bike 2-3x per week, strength train 2x per week, and do a few minutes of core every single day. My biggest struggle is trying to fit in a yoga session or two because my muscles need the stretch – but that’s always the first thing I slack on when I get busy, tired, or lazy!


  2. Cross training- especially strength training- is something I have so little patience for! I think it’s just like when I started running and it was so hard and I felt like I didn’t know what I was doing… But this time there are weights involved. Keep up the good work!!!


  3. This is a great post! I just won my first local 5K pushing the twins in stroller too…with no training really…just a bit of hiit here and there but lots of Insanity MAX30 which got my whole body in shape and moving…cross training issooooo important!


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