Woohoo! Woohoo! This was a good training day for me (and I hope, also for the other girls in my group).
I was beginning to worry that every week, as Tuesday drew near, I would be filled with dread and stepping onto the Ultra track I would feel clammy and scared. I am so not fond of the interval trainings, obviously. But it's an important part of the curriculum and I have no choice but to deal with it.
I finally asked for help and begged Coach Rio for one of the coaches to be our pacer, like the group 1 boys (the fastest group) had their pacer. I was thinking it would probably help us if someone would mind the pace, someone who knew each of our capacities and someone who'd be strict but also kind. Hehe.
Fortunately, Coach Rio gave in to our request and assigned Coach Willy to our group. Super great because he was the one who coached us when we were just doing 200s and 400s. He knew very well what each of us was capable of.
It felt so great to just run alongside Coach Willy. We were slow at first but at least we weren't spent and dying after each 800. And we managed to improve our times at each run.
1st 800m - 4:34
2nd 800m - 4:13
3rd 800m - 4:03
4th 800m - 3:49
These times are definitely slower than our times on our very first week with the 4x800 but I think this is the way to do it. Better we keep improving, slowly but surely and finish with a "win" (we improved, we didn't collapse, we finished the four sets) than if we run "blindly" and pressure ourselves too much and end feeling defeated and scared of our next encounter with the intervals. I remember C telling me that when you train a dog, you have to end with a win for the dog. Don't end with a command he/she didn't follow well, so that the last feeling the dog associates with the training is good, something he/she will want to come back to again. Haha. Sorry for the comparison with dog training, but we ARE in training and I think that psychology can also be applied to humans. Anyway... haha.
I think having a pacer also pushes us a group and unites us. Without a pacer, maybe the faster ones feel "lost" not knowing if their speed is just right and the slower ones feel discouraged, seeing others speeding away.
Difficult to explain these things but I'm just sharing how happy I am with our training tonight. I'm thankful for the coaches who are very patient with us and I feel a real bond with my group mates. I want us all to run better.
Also, I'm happy that I won't feel so scared of Tuesdays now. :)
Just to illustrate how terrified I am of intervals, as I was changing into my running gear, I prayed for strength to finish the sets. Haha. I don't like praying for "trivial" things so that little prayer was really a big cry for help. And God answered my prayer! :)
I am really falling in love with running. I don't think I've ever loved a sport this way. :)