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The Mile Repeat.

I used to think mile repeats were the devil.

One of the many running related things I did scared. Depending on the distance you are training for, in the world of repeats, mile repeats are long and you have to run them fast in order for them to work…. like they should feel hard after about .25 miles.

I always said three repeats was a decent workout, but four was what made it legit. Recently, I decided to step up my game and follow Glenn’s training plan (for the most part)….same distances on the runs, except two rest days, instead of one- one of which I get my pilates on. And of course, my pace, not his.

While my original plan called for four mile repeats today, his called for five. So five I did.

On my way to the gym I was nervous. Glenn called when I was doing my lunge matrix right before hopping on the treadmill and I told him I was nervous. He told me to get over it. Such tough love.

As I warmed up I decided I just had to approach the workout differently to finish it successfully, both mentally and physically.

How I broke it down: (in my crazy, I like to overthink things mind) 

  • Run the first two repeats at the slowest pace I would be happy to hit all five in, feeling controlled. By now, I would say I should know a thing or two about going out too hard. Don’t do it. Ever. 
  • If one and two felt good, take it up a tiny notch for number three. Survive number three and you’ve only got two left. Two seems like a lot less when you are doing five rather than four.
  • Number four- speed up a tiny bit more. This one might be tough mentally, but as soon as you start that mile- you already have less than two mile to go. So, focus on that and just run. 
  • Number five. If you run the first four right, this should be the fastest. And it should hurt. And you should speed up in the last half of it. And you should really sprint that last 100 in. And it should hurt. Did I mention it should hurt?
So the workout ended up being a success in my books, although I’m not sure the poor people around me appreciated my loud stomping for 9 miles, but I can’t help it, I’m a loud runner.. and the faster I go on the treadmill, well it doesn’t get any quieter. Anyone who has ran more than 1 mile with me knows I run loud. One time some guy I don’t even know asked the group I was running with, “who has the flat tire”, another time, I think my first half marathon, some old guy gave me a dirty look and told me I was “noisy”. Sorry people it’s what I do. 

In all honesty, I like repeat workouts. I think I’d chose one over a tempo run any day. The go by pretty fast, you build in a high mileage day with the nice little warm up, cool down and recovery running in between the repeats. But it hurts. The mile repeat workout will always be a tough one. But when you finish, you feel strong. Who doesn’t like feeling strong?

Run Stats: 

1 Mile W/U & C/D

5 X 1 Mile w/ 800 recovery

Mile 1- 6:34
Mile 2- 6:34
Mile 3- 6:31
Mile 4- 6:25
Mile 5- 6:20

Now the really scary repeat is the 2 mile repeat workout. I want to throw up just thinking about it.

What’s your favorite repeat workout? 

When marathon training-do you do the mile repeat? If so how many?
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