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.


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.


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.

Track Workout Update -- July 2020


Apologies for not posting sooner. After Arlington County's latest announcement, in late June, that tracks would be open with lighting in the evenings, we approached the County to see if organized workouts of any kind would be permitted. Sadly, they are not. So, in order to comply with this rule and avoid difficulties for the Club or any of its members, no *organized* Wednesday Night or Thursday Morning track workouts can take place. This does not, however, prevent small groups of training partners from meeting at the track to work out. Nor does it prevent you from seeking guidance (by email or in person) from Coach Ed or Coach "Big Guy." Should you have any questions, or just want to get in touch, please reach out.

Conditions this week (Wed. July 8) continue to be pretty unbearable. And looking ahead to the next two weeks, no relief in sight. (For example, projected Temp + Dew Point for July 8 at 7 PM = 157). So, the recommended workouts below will be on the brief side, with longer than typical recoveries, to make sure your HR has time to reduce. Use your HR monitor to check on your real level of stress, and of course, hydrate.

July 8: 10-12 x 400M, 10K pace, with 200M jog recovery. 

July 15: 6 x 500M @ 5K pace, with 300M jog recovery. ALTERNATIVE: Participate in Club Virtual 1-Mile challenge.

July 22: 10 to 20 x 200M @ ~5K* pace, 200M recovery. [*Start these at a more relaxed pace, and aim to speed up as the repeats progress. Aim to reach your pace for 1 MILE by repeat 9 or 10. STOP the workout when it becomes too difficult to hold that pace.

July 29: 6 x 800M, 10K pace, 400M jog. Weather permitting, these can be done at faster (5K) pace.

Should circumstances change with regard to organized workouts, we will let you know. Just know how much I miss seeing all of you and running/coaching with you. 

Coach Ed




Back on the Track -- Sort Of


After a too-long hiatus, Arlington County has recently (June 5) reopened the tracks at W-L, Yorktown, and Wakefield for public use. However, the guidance accompanying this announcement stated that no "organized" activities are currently permitted.

Given recent events in the area, it would seem that group running should not be deemed an excessive risk. However, we are all well aware of the incocnsistencies attendant on phased reopening, which have been complicated by intervening events.Therefore, at this time, we will not resume organized Wednesday night track workouts, but hope to be able to do so in the very near future.

In the meantime, I encourage you to get "back on the track" either individually or in small groups that you form yourselves. I trust that most of you have kept in reasonasble shape -- as one of our group told me, we will come back with a stronger "base" than ever before. Here are a couple of suggested workouts that will give you an idea of your track fitness at this point, and help you build back your track confidence.

WORKOUT 1: 10 X 400M, 100M jog recovery, 10K pace. The stress here is on 10K pace. The first couple of 400s should feel downright easy. Keep close tabs on your time for each 400 and for each recovery 100. If you find yourself slowing down appreciably, stop the workout, and try again in a few days, adjusting your pace so that you can finish the 10 repeats. Those with a higher level of fitness can aim for a greater number of repeats, at your discretion.

WORKOUT 2: 6 x 800M, 400M recovery, 5K pace. Do not try this one (unless you are confident of a high level of fitness) until you have completed Workout 1. Try the first 800M at a slower pace, and aim to work down the repeats to faster pace as you progress. Again, if you find yourself slowing down appreciably, stop the workout, try again in a few days.

Most of all, I regret not seeing all of you the last three months. It has been a hole in my week. If you would like to join one of your workouts, just reach out and let me know, and if I can be there, I will. Also, please get in touch if you have any questions or would like some coaching advice.

Hope we are all together again, very soon.

Coach Ed


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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).

Upcoming Events

DCRRC Burke Lake 12K
Sun, Mar 7th, 2021, @10:00am
Annual Club Membership Meeting
Sun, Mar 7th, 2021, @7:00pm
DCRRC Fort Hunt 10K
Sun, Mar 14th, 2021, @8:00am
Book Club
Sun, Mar 14th, 2021, @4:00pm
 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.