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The Pete Plan blog

Unintentional strong interval set

Posted by thepeteplan on February 2, 2011

You will have to bare with me a little to explain the meaning of the blog title today. Why do I think it was strong, and why was it unintentional? The summary details of the workout look pretty good on paper:

1k = 3:08.2 / 1:34.1 / 36
5min rest
750m = 2:21.0 / 1:34.0 / 32
4min rest
500m = 1:33.2 / 33
3min rest
500m = 1:29.8 / 36

This is around a second faster pace on each rep than the same session 3 weeks ago. The observant reader probably realises something is a little amiss by the rate on the 1k though, what’s going on there? The splits from each rep tell a different story of the session.

The session was actually supposed to simply be a 1k TT, aiming to just break 3mins. This was a confidence thing for me, as I know from experience that if I am in shape to break 3mins for 1k then I am in shape (physically) to break 6:20 for 2k. The 1k went like this:

1k in 100m splits:
1:27.5 / 41
1:30.0 / 37
1:29.5 / 40
1:29.5 / 37
1:30.0 / 37
1:30.0 / 37
1:30.0 / 37
1:30.5 / 36
2:17.0 / 24 (!!!)
1:27.0 / 38

It felt good and strong, but out of nowhere the HD demon jumped out at 200m to go and took me by surprise. In the space of 5 strokes I watched the average drop from 1:29.5 to 1:35.0. Then I HTFU’d and pulled it home fast from there – a complete mental blip, not a physical one. But how can I prove that was the case? Paddle for 3mins then do a 750m at 1:35.0.

750m in 125m splits:
1:35.2 / 32
1:34.8 / 33
1:35.2 / 30
1:35.2 / 33
1:34.8 / 30
1:29.2 / 35

After doing all but 5 strokes of the 1k at 1:30 and under 1:35’s felt like a walk in the park, and just a little bit of pressure in the last 125m and it was back below 1:30 pace. I decided at this point, as I felt strong now, to round out the set with 2 lots of 500m.

First 500m in 250m splits:
1:34.2 / 33
1:32.2 / 33

Just a short paddle then a final 500m:

Second 500m in 250m splits:
1:31.4 / 35
1:28.0 / 38

It is bizarre to completely fail on the target you went into the session with, but to come out of it with probably the strongest interval set of the past few months, and a lot of confidence that I’m actually in really good physical shape. I do have a slight dilemma now though. For the 2min CTC a few days ago I increased the drag to 140. That 2mins at 1:27.9 gave me the confidence to go for a sub3 for 1k. I decided to stick the drag in the middle at 135, half way between the normal 130, and the 140 from the 2min piece. I left it there for the later intervals and didn’t think any more about it. The dilemma is do I do the last few 2k paced sessions at 135 drag and race there in Boston, or stick to 130 drag?

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