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Hi, I'm Whitney! I am a middle of the pack runner who discovered the fun of triathlons in 2009. Join me in my adventures in life and training. I run with the Rush Running team and enjoy the fun that comes with such a supportive group of friends who understand what running means to me. I'm newly discovering road biking and the fun that it entails.

Monday, May 16, 2011

Sometimes You Need a Little Bit of Help

It's Monday which means another fun session of Rush Hour speed work!!! Today our fearless coach Mike was out sick with strep throat so he sent his amazingly talented wife Ali to coach the workout.  Ali is a former Razorback runner who qualified for the Olympic Trials in the 10K.  She is a speed demon and makes it look effortless. 

The workout for tonight was a ladder up with a surprise ending. The prescribed rest interval was 30 seconds after each step of the ladder. 
200 at blazing speed
400 at faster than mile
600 at mile
800 at faster than 5k
1000 at 5k
1200 at faster than 10k
800 at fast effort (surprise this is really hard!!!)

I think my longer intervals were maybe a little slower than they should have been but for the most part I was happy with the bulk of the ladder.  My running partner is coming back from a week off due to illness so we were only running the first 200m of each ladder rung together.  I got to the final fast 800 and knew that I needed some help to get on pace.  I started the 800 from the 200m mark of the track and most of the crew was at the starting line.  As I ran up the straight away I motioned to Ali to run with me and then proceeded to ask her to help me hit an 8:00 pace for the last 600m of my repeat.  It was super hard but I had Ali next to me coaching me along. 

There was a woman running just ahead of me and Ali was coaching me to reel her in which we did for 400m and then she finished her workout.  We had the final 200m to do with no rabbit ahead to chase but somehow Ali kept me going.  I don't normally ask someone to help pace me but sometimes it really can make a huge difference in your workout.  I know I wouldn't have hit that pace by myself and it was really rewarding to hit that at the end of the workout.  The other thing was that I knew that my fast pace wouldn't be a challenge for Ali since an 8:00 pace is slower than her easy pace.  It pays to have friends at a wide range of paces for moments like these when you need a helping hand!

This workout was around a 5K in total...I don't have my exact splits by ladder rung but I think my time was around 28:23 or thereabouts which isn't too far off my 5K PR time.  Not bad since I haven't been feeling very confident about my fitness lately.  I owe Ali a huge Thank You for helping me finish fast and helping rebuild some of my confidence.  I won't lie though...I had to walk a lap after that fast 800m just to get back to normal breathing! Hope you have a great week!


  1. Great workout! I use that method in my races, instead of worrying about the big picture just try to reel one person in at a time and before you know it you're done.

  2. Sounds like a very tough workout.

  3. I think you should post about our hill repeats! :-) You don't really have to, but that was intense!