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Hone a strong finish with this simple, but tough, interval workout.
This week’s workout comes from Alison Kreideweis, a 2x USAT All-American, 2x Team USA member and co-founder of the Empire Tri Club in New York City. Alison is USAT, USATF, NASM, Mad Dogg, and Schwinn Cycling-certified, with specialty certifications in pre- and post-natal training. She has been competing and coaching for 17 years.
“While it’s important to have a strong swim and bike, many races are won in the run,” Kreideweis says. “If you run at the same pace and distance all the time, your body eventually acclimates, and you stop seeing results. To help improve performance and aid with weight loss, it’s important to incorporate speed workouts into your training. While your competitions pace slows at the end of their race, workouts like this one will help you finish your race strong.”
This workout can be done on a track, treadmill, at measured intervals on the road, or with the aid of a GPS watch. Kreideweis recommends running this workout on rolling hills if your key race will have a hilly course to help prepare your body for race-day terrain. “The purpose of this run is to help you maintain/increase your speed for a fast race finish as your legs start to fatigue,” she says. The efforts can be either a percentage of maximum heart rate or perceived effort. Both the warm-up and cool-down are at a conversational pace, while the efforts should be hard enough where talking would be difficult or impossible. Plan this as a key workout for the week, and allow adequate rest before and recovery afterward for maximum effect. Also, save this workout for the middle to end of your season–not during the base phase.
10 minutes easy run, building slowly to 50 percent effort
1 mile at 70 percent effort
3/4 mile at 80 percent effort
1/2 mile at 90 percent effort
1/4 mile at best effort
1 minute active recovery (walk or light jog) between each interval
5-10 minutes easy jog/walk