The Need for Speed

Biking well doesn’t automatically mean that you’ll run well too. We all have a sense of this. We use many of the same muscle groups to bike and run, but we use them in different ways. What parts of the muscle are used and to what degree we depend on them is different for biking and running.  Even the pace we achieve and maintain depends on different firing patterns within the muscles.  If we are endurance runners training hard to maintain a faster race pace, we need to run faster for shorter distances some of the time to train the firing patterns needed to get to the finish line faster.

Here’s a simple and exhilarating workout to help improve your running race pace.

Flys are done on the track (or you can break these into 100meters fast-100 meters recover - which is what happens on a track) and will build speed without beating you up structurally or physiologically. The easiest approach is to build to “sprint” on the track “STRAIGHT-A-WAYS” and jog to recover on the curves. On the “STRAIGHT-A-WAYS”, while developing the speed aspects of your training, run as fast as you can without struggling. Take only what your legs give you. If it feels tight, back off the pace just until it no longer feels tight. Let it flow. Don’t start out with a sprinting effort. Build into each 100 meters. The pace you achieve will be quite a bit faster than race pace. You’ll therefore need to be well warmed up for these workouts. The curves are active rest efforts that will give you a chance to almost catch your breath. Your muscles will learn to more efficiently process the lactic acid produced on the straights. Work with yourself not against yourself.

I recommend starting with 2 miles of FLYS. You can progress weekly by 0.5 miles.
Run faster-have fun!