Trampled under foot
Tuesday Feb 5th Track Workout
On Tuesday I went to the track to jump into a session with a big group of locals. I was told the group was going to be about 35 guys who range from 2:06 to 2:15 in the marathon. That sounded perfect for me, I would find some guys to run with. The session was 7 x 2km with 2.5 minutes rest. Gilbert Kirwa (2:06:14) told the group the workout and the intended pace, 5:55. I knew 5:55 was too rich for me, but the group, surely, must stretch out.
On the first couple of intervals I ran on the back of the pack and passed guys who fell off the pace. My splits were a little quicker (6:03, 6:02) than I thought I’d run but it felt fine. On the third one the leaders went a little faster (hitting the intended 5:55 pace) and I lost contact. The guys who I was running the first two intervals with had also picked up their pace except very few of them actually ran the full 5 laps. These dudes would just go with the leaders and drop out after a few laps instead of doing 2000m at their own pace. I pretty much ran intervals 3-6 by myself, off the back, going around the same stragglers at the same points each interval. On the sixth 2km I had to push hard to hit 6:12 and decided to call it. I hit the average pace I wanted to except for instead of working down I regressed.
I know I’ve written about this phenomenon before but it still blows my mind that Kenyans stay with the leaders as long as they can only to drop out. I witnessed it during the Discovery XC race, tons of DNF’s and tons of guys coming back to me at a very slow pace. On Thursday I took Eric, Dan and Lee to watch the famous Iten Fartlek workout and we stood at a corner where many guys call it quits. We watched as 200+ runners came through and I bet at least 1/3 of them quit the workout after 5-6 intervals of 3 minutes instead of completing the prescribed 15 x 3 minutes.
The mentality is to stay with the lead group as long as possible and hope that next week they can stay up there longer. As opposed to completing the full workout and hopefully later on they can complete it faster.
Here’s a pic from a session I did with Scott Overall. Check out his latest blog
Here are some runners dropping out 6km into the fartlek workout
The front of the fartlek workout. The runners streamed past us for about 10 minutes!