Track ‘speed’ work at middle age

I am training again for the Free Press Marathon, and this time I’m adding weekly track running workouts to the marathon training schedule. So far, middle-pack results — though probably not bad for an early 40s American male.

Tonight was my second try at an inconsistent bit of “speed” work. I’ve been running on the track at the local school, interspersing all-out runs the full distance with half or full distance recovery. Still working up to more grueling workouts. But, I did one I was proud of tonight: a 1:21:12 on the 400 meter. Don’t know if that’s good or bad for a person my age, but it’s the best I’ve done by about 6 seconds. I’ll take it.

When I put that time into a race predictor, it gets me just under 3:45 for the marathon. I put in a 3:53 at Bayshore in 2014. If I could improve on that, awesome. Realistically, though, the Free Press and Bayshore have a lot of differences. The chief ones affecting my time: The sheer number of people at the Freep is maybe four times as much, which slows things down for the first few miles, and the Freep isn’t flat as a pine board. It’s pretty flat, but not as flat as Bayshore’s course.

I haven’t really settled on a goal for the Freep. Finish, I guess. But there’s finishing, and there’s finishing. A 4:00 or less would be great. A 3:50 or 3:45 would rock. Hard.

Maybe this speed work will pay off. We’ll see. It’s still early in the process. It’s week 4 of training. Many runs between now and Oct. 18.

Leave a Reply