Friday, April 27, 2012

Training vs. Working Out

My gym routine is always kindof the same: go to gym, hop on treadmill, insert headphones, run at set pace for 5 miles, watch TV, try not to look at how much time I have left, finish, stretch, shower.  It allows me to zone out, decompress, get a good run in and notch another work out.  I have always read articles "Ways to make your treadmill workout exciting!" and things like that and they all universally recommend interval training.  I have some experience with intervals on a treadmill when I was following the FIRST program for last marathon.  FIRST is the "Run Less, Run Faster" philosophy, but the runs are really, really hard. 

Last night I thought, eh,what the heck I will run some intervals.  My plan: 1 mile warmup, then half a mile fast, half slow.  In other words a 4x800.  I tried to program the workout into the treadmill, and gave up after 3 minutes of fiddling.  I would just do it manually.

Wow, it was a real kick in the pants.  Overall, I went the same distance in a pace about twenty seconds per mile faster (so really not that much difference; for treadmillites, that is a 0.3 mph difference, or the difference between running at 6.7 and 7.0).    I was completely spent, and even exhausted.  Went home and just about collapsed.  It also reminded me how hard the FIRST workouts really were.

Just goes to prove the old saying: don't just workout, train for something.


  1. Congrats on a difficult workout!

  2. hard workouts are awesome as long as you recover right. i love doing sessions on the treadmill because you can control things a bit better. Yesterday I did this 50 minute 3 on 3 off thing. On - really fast, off - jog. i was spent. You take care and good to read on this stuff.

  3. The first hard workout after some time off from them is always the hardest! Totally agree, though, it's smart to have a purpose for your runs and to be training, not just randomly working out.

  4. I think intervals are the only way to make indoor workouts bearable. Yes, they do kick your ass, but in a good way! Congrats!

  5. I totally agree with you. You need goals to motivate you to train. Otherwise you're more apt to just repeat the same workouts at a comfortable pace all the time! That having said, what are YOUR goals? :)


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