The #ExperimentOfOne has now been underway for a month. How’s the progress so far? Encouraging!
An initial baseline was set on Thanksgiving with a 5K time of 18:08. Not bad, but it was a different atmosphere from the 16:25 lifetime PR that I’ll be targeting in the coming year as part of this experiment. However, it’s called a baseline for a reason. I hadn’t done any speedwork, and so while my endurance was solid from a couple years of focusing on triathlon, there simply wasn’t another gear. My first time out on the track that week showed comparable results:
- 400M in 1:17
- 800M in 2:38
- Mile in 5:32
So two primary steps taken:
- Started integrating Plyometrics into my training
- Back on the track for speedwork (although in the Colorado winters, this sometimes requires creativity with treadmill intervals, etc)
Over the ensuing weeks, those two steps (and an enhanced focus on run training in general) began to show some positive results
- On December 16th, another 5K produced a 17:40 time
- On December 23rd, while in AR to see family, the first of the 6 targets fell!! 10:47 on the track for the 2 mile, a full 14 seconds faster than the lifetime PR of 11:01. Whoooo hoooo!! Granted, this was the “softest” of the 6 targets and the one most likely within range, but it was still encouraging to see it happen in just a few weeks of focused training.
- On December 26th, a solo mile on the track garnered a 5:07. Still a loooong way off from the 4:53 target, but a massive jump from the 5:32 just 4 weeks prior.
- Then today, another 5K attempt resulted in a 17:25 (and was followed by some track intervals that included a 1:12 400M).
Yes – as my son likes to remind me, the initial improvement is low hanging fruit. The body is adjusting positively to dropping the cycling/swimming from the schedule and focusing specifically on run training and related cross-training. It will be significantly more difficult to move from 17:25 to 16:45 than it was to knock out the initial 40 seconds of improvement.
At the same time, it’s progress. Encouraging progress. Over the next month I’ll be focusing in on the shorter events (1 & 2 mile) to see what progress can be made at that end of the spectrum (and then hoping that the speed will be maintained as I move up in distance).
Much work to do but encouraging start out of the gate. Stay tuned!