Wednesday, March 21, 2012

Running/Track Questions for M2

Some questions came up during our run this past weekend which are great ones to answer for anyone wanting to take the steps to work on speed.

M2's Training Group had a great run through Golden Gate Park, with a mini track session built into it at mile 6 to help improve people's turnover.  Some in the group weren't familiar with how a track session should work so some basics had to be laid out.

Track Sessions:

- The common start is the corner of the track where nearly all events start.  It is best to start workout there because there is a specific start/stop point.  Many times athletes when given a vague start/stop will take a little leigh-way and not do the entire effort.  A specific point does wonders mentally to helping people complete tasks.  At Kezar, the common start is the South East Corner of the track.
- Stay out of lane 1 unless you are in an interval with good pace
- If you hear "Track", it is a polite way of saying, "Get out of my way!"
- 200 meters is a half a lap
- 400 meters is a full lap
- 800 meters is 2 laps
- Breathing is a very important part to take into consideration for track workouts since you are increasing effort.  If breathing is erratic, a side stitch can be created, and a crash in effort.  Making sure to take deep controlled breaths alleviates this.  One way to do this is by breathing in a 3:2 pattern (should be able to hold a conversation-Conversational Pace), 3 steps to breath in, 2 steps to breath out.  As the effort increases you would go to a 2:2, and even to a 2:1 breathing pattern, making sure to fully exhale.

I first stumbled onto this breathing pattern in High School during Cross Country training.  Reading about it, they also described that there is a large amount of extra force expended at the beginning of an exhale.  Consistently exhaling on the same leg over time would lead to an imbalance, but also injury to that side and the 3:2 breathing breaks that pattern.

Not that anyone did anything terribly annoying on Sunday, but here's a note on track etiquette for everyone.  I wrote it last year in a bit of a fit due to some oblivious folks, but I got over it. 

As the season progresses, don't ignore the value of increased run intensity along with distance.  Both are just as important.

Here are a few great resources if you want to jump into some track/speed work at Kezar:

SF Tri Club - Tuesdays at 6:45 - Lead by Tom McGlynn, former Olympic Trials Qualifier -
GGTC - Wednesdays at 6:45 - Lead by Dorette Franks, profession triathlon/track coach -
San Francisco Road Runners - Tuesday 6:30 - Lead by our very own Jenni Kirk -
Golden Gate Running Club - Wednesday 7:00 - 1 of multiple club coaches to lead -

Not sure of pricing, but all are about the same at around $160 for the season with discounts for members of each club. 

M2 has a plethora of speed workouts to utilize on your own, or on the High Speed Treadmill.  Even if you are injured, you can still jump on the Alter-G and get some faster turnover work in with these workouts.  Another great resource at M2!  Reserve Here

Sunday's Route - 9.6 Miles