06 February 2009

Lactate Threshold Run

When I looked at my training schedule for the week, I saw that my key workout was a lactate threshold test for my run. Basically, a lactate threshold test is a test to determine how hard you can work. By knowing that, you can then work on improving your speed. I'm not a fast runner, so this was an important test for me to do. However, it also meant running at a faster pace than I prefer and was going to be tough. I was pretty much dreading it.

On Tuesday morning, I woke up to do the test and saw that the windchill was -17. Yeah, running outside was so not happening. I e-mailed Chris (my coach) and he said I needed to do the test indoors anyway, so I scheduled it for this morning. I figured if I came over to the ISU track at 5am, it would be empty and I could get the test done with no audience. Of course, I continued to dread the test.

This morning, my alarm went off at 4:30am. I hit snooze, laid there, hit snooze again, and literally had to talk myself into getting up and going to the track to run. I didn't want to at all. I was dreading it, but I finally got up, got dressed and headed out the door...still grumbling in my head.

When I arrived, I ran into Steve, a man I used to swim with so I chatted with him for a few minutes. I turned on the ipod and started running. The workout was a 10 minute warmup, followed by some intervals, and then the thirty minute test. The fieldhouse was empty so I was thinking maybe this won't be so bad. However, once I started my intervals, the football team started showing up.

Now, I run in spandex because my legs are fat and rub together and chafing sucks. I'm fairly certain that none of my students should ever see their professors in spandex because I remember seeing one of my professors in spandex and it scarred me. It could have been because he was a male professor and he was running in white spandex (BLECH), but still... So, here I am running around this blasted track with the whole football team, as well as some of my athletic training students for an audience.

I wanted to quit. I wanted to just be done and go home, but I hadn't even started my actual test. So, I turned up the ipod, continued the internal dialogue and kept running. I tried to remind myself that the audience was there doing their own thing and not watching me at all. I told myself that I was doing something good for me that will absolutely help me become a better triathlete. I enjoyed my music and remembered how much I love to run while listening to music. I watched the clock and my heart rate and reminded myself that I absolutely would not yack in front of anyone. And, I finished the test...

The results of the test weren't that great. I'm a little disappointed, but it was my first LT test and maybe it will make me a better runner. My right soleus is nice and tight with a big fat knot in it, but I did the workout. I talked myself into doing something that I was dreading and it turned out to be okay. In fact, I may have to start running on the track for the rest of the cold days...especially since I seem to be doing my runs at 5am.

So, lessons learned today. I have a much better attitude for the day when I get up and get my workouts done first thing. Doing workouts when I'm dreading them and have to talk myself into doing them makes me mentally tougher. I'm not a fast runner, but at least I have a baseline to work from. Oh, and running in spandex in front of my students is still awkward. :)

**Oh, I figured out what the deal is with the blisters...apparently, its a certain pair of socks. No blister today, but definitely a hot spot. The socks are already in the garbage, never to be worn again for running.


See You at the Finish Line said...

Well done AJ,
Great job getting past all the negative self-talk and getting down to business.

When you're worried about what your students might think, remember Steve in a Speedo. Now, his students have reason to be scared on a fairly regular basis!