Workout of the Week: 044 – Kick It Mile Reps

Finishing mile reps nice and fast is a super fun way to run intervals. And a great way to unleash your inner beast!

WHAT

Kick It Mile Reps

4x 1 Mile @ your 10k race pace
With each final 400m @ your 3k race pace
(2-3mins recovery jogs)

Terrain: Running track or a flat, measurable pathway.

Feels: Unleashing the beast.

Aim to be controlled for the first three quarters of each mile rep, hitting your splits bang on and learning good pacing. But then crank it with 400m to go and see what you can split for that final quarter mile. Let the beast off the leash!

WHY

This workout teaches you to control that early pace in each interval by not going too fast and testing your control for boosting the pace when you’re more fatigued at the end of each rep.

This simulates a race situation really nicely because, all most without fail, you want to pace the first half or two thirds of your race really well in order to have some kick left in your legs to really race the remainder.

HOW

I’d recommend finding a 400m running track to do this session as you can more accurately measure the pace of those final quarter miles of each rep than you could if you were just using GPS.

And if you need to know your paces for 10k and 3k race pace, check out the tempofit.org calculators. Remember, to convert min/km pace to min/km you need to times it by 1.6 (well, 1.609 to be precise, but 1.6 is close enough). And you’ll also want to know your two paces per 400m, so divide your min/mile paces by four.

Bit of maths, but once you get used to doing these conversions it’ll become second nature.

THOUGHT-FOR-THE-WEEK: CONFRONT THE BEAST

Every time you book yourself in for a race or plan a tough workout, you’re making a date with a beast that will shout at you to slow down and scream that you can’t do it. Part of the goal with running training is learning to confront this beast and tell it to shut up!

  1. Expect the Beast: Firstly, when doing a hard session, it’s important that you’re honest with yourself that it is going to get tough—this is part of the fun! We can deal with pain far easier if we are voluntarily confronting it than if it is forced on us, so remind yourself that this pain is something you’ve chosen to endure.
  2. Train the Beast: In training, we plan to meet the beast just at that stage where you’re almost finished the session. The light is at the end of the tunnel and you can push through that dark stage without massive stress. This pushing through in training conditions your mental toughness so you’re ready to tackle the beast much earlier in a race setting when you’ll still have a way to go before there’s a light at the end of the tunnel.
  3. Crush the Beast: “The beast” is an internal survival instinct that your body has to protect you from dangerous situations. In the wild these are important signals that we need to pay attention to, but in the controlled environment of a running race or training session, we usually have several warning alarms that can be pushed through safely. It’s kinda like the “20% Battery Left” message you get on your phone—you can keep using your phone safely, but not indefinitely. So, crushing the beast in a race and training situation is simply a matter of ignoring that warning message because we know from good training and good pacing that we’ll be finished the workout or race before that battery has hit zero.
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