Wednesday Track Workouts

Welcome to the DCRRC Wednesday Night Track Workouts. In conjunction with our year-round distance-specific training programs, and our regular Saturday Long Runs, these workouts aim to give runners of all abilities the fitness to reach their goals. For the novice or casual runner, these workouts will challenge you to a higher level of running fitness. For the competitive runner, track workouts are an essential means to reaching personal bests and to succeed at whatever level you are competing.

Where & When

Unless otherwise noted, workouts are held on the track at Washington-Liberty (formerly Washington-Lee) High School in Arlington. We meet near the concession stand (northwest corner) at 7:10pm and start the workout at 7:15pm. Warmups, drills, etc. are on your own.

Philosophy

Our workouts focus on two of the three forms of speed work used by distance runners from the 5K to the Marathon: Stamina Training (10K race pace or slower) and Interval Training (around 5K race pace). We also do a limited amount of Speed Training (faster than 5K race pace) especially during the summer.

Do not worry if this is new to you, and especially if you feel that track workouts are for "fast" runners. Our posted workouts are suggested "maximums," and can be individually tailored to your current level of fitness and specific running goals. Our coach, Ed Grant, has been leading these workouts for 20 years, and is happy to customize a workout plan to meet your needs.

Paces

To get a sense of how fast you should run during these workouts, we encourage you use the McMillan Running Calculator. You can plug in a recent race time and a goal race time, and the Calculator will churn out Training Paces (click on that term) for everything from long runs to speed paces. We recommend applying Mark Hadley's temperature + dew point adjustments in warm and humid weather. Temperature and dew point forecasts are available from the National Weather Service.

Wednesday Track - 6 to 8 Yasso 800s, 400m jogs

Wednesday Night Hawks

Tonight, will be a bit warm, with Temps in the mid 60s, higher humidity, and a very good chance of rain – not the best running weather, but doable. W&L Track is officially closed from 3 to 8 PM during the week according to the sign we reviewed yesterday, so Yorktown, McLean or even Falls Church HS for track work tonight is your best bet, although some of you will insist on jumping the gate at W&L – we can't recommend that when there are open tracks elsewhere.

April 14, 2021 – ON THE TRACK ON YOUR OWN: Yasso 800s – 6 to 8 Yasso 800s - at a pace where your expected marathon time in hours and minutes is your 800 pace in minutes and seconds, with 400m easy jogs between each 800 in the exact same time as your 800, not faster or slower

To reiterate how to calculate your 800 time take the hours and minutes of your expected (hoped for) marathon time – in my case three hours and 50 minutes (Dream on!) and convert that to an 800 time of three minutes and 50 seconds, followed by a slow 400m jog in three minutes fifty seconds. It is VERY easy to jog that 400m too fast – but don't do it! Much more critical to run ALL of the 800s at the same pace/time, even as you tire, and fully recover if possible, on that exact same time on the slow 400. Yasso 800s are a favorite of Coach Ed and Coach Big Guy, developed by the legendary Coach Bowman from Oregon who coached Steve Prefontaine – and one of the best workouts you can do for the marathon!

Coach Ed, Coach Big Guy and Coach Rich

 

Wednesday Track - Sprint Medley ladders

Wednesday Night Hawks

Tonight will again be very nice, with Temps from the low to mid 70s, with little humidity or wind – perhaps just a touch warm for those of us who have yet to acclimate to this crazy thing called "Spring." As I often observe, "we wait all winter for days such as this, so enjoy it while you can!" Again, track access is uncertain, although some hardy souls seem to be able to get into W&L no matter what – Yorktown is open and is an easier, non-climbing destination, and McLean and Falls Church High Schools are reportedly open, although I have not checked them (Mark B has checked McLean though!).

April 7, 2020 – Sprint Medley Ladders – 200m/400m/600m/800m/1200m all in 10k Pace, then down at 5k Pace 800m/600m/400m/200m, all with 400m easy jogs except 200m easy jogs after the first 200m and between the last 400 and the final 200m

There are a lot of intervals to run (nine), and a lot of jogs in between, so if you want to shorten the workout, just skip the 1200m. You do NOT want to go out fast, as the benefit to this sort of workout is increasing your speed, cadence and pushing past your lactate threshold on the back end of the workout. At these short to medium distances, correct sprint for is the key. 8 to 12 degree lean, lifting knees higher, core still, no crossover with your arms, and do not clench your fists. Make sure you are up on your toes, and increase speed by increasing cadence, which counter-intuitively may involve shortening your stride.

Coach Big Guy

 

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Directions to Track

Track workouts are held on the track at Washington-Liberty (formerly Washington-Lee) High School.

From Washington DC: take I-66 east to the Glebe Road exit, turn right on Glebe, right on 15th Street for about 0.4 miles, to Stafford Street, turn right and cross over I-66 and the school is on your left.
From Vienna and points west in Virginia: take I-66 east to the Fairfax Drive exit, follow Fairfax Drive for about 0.8 mile to Stafford Street, turn left for about 0.3 miles and the school is on your right.
From Alexandria: take Glebe Road going north until turning right on 15th Street, and proceed as from DC.
Metro: Washington-Liberty is a short walk from both the Virginia Square and Ballston Metro stations (Orange/Silver lines).

 DCRRlogotypeRRCA member

The DC Road Runners Club is a member of the Road Runners Club of America and is also affiliated with USA Track & Field. We provide a year-round schedule of running events that offer everyone a chance to participate regardless of age, gender, or athletic ability.