FLRC workouts for the week of July 20th

This week’s goal is to teach the body to clear lactate at race pace, so we’ll be doing some alternation runs. Here’s some more info on this type of workout, if you haven’t done them before.

Middle Distance Workouts (5K to 15K)

These will both be tough. Make sure you’re going into them rested after at least a day or two of easy runs.

  • Workout 1: After your warmup, run for 90 seconds at I pace (roughly your 5K race pace) followed immediately by 4 minutes at M pace. With no rest in between, repeat 3–4 times.

  • Workout 2: 2 miles at T pace, followed by 2 minutes of rest, 2 miles at T pace, 2 minutes of rest, and 1 mile at T pace. If this feels like too much for your mileage (ie, you’re only doing about 25 miles per week), cut the second 2-mile rep down to 1 mile.

  • Long Run: 25-30% of your weekly mileage at E pace

Long Distance Workouts (Half Marathon to Marathon)

Long-distance runners get an alternation workout too, but with different paces and number of reps.

  • Workout 1: After your warmup, run for 90 seconds at M pace followed immediately by 4 minutes at M+40 seconds pace. With no rest in between, repeat 4–6 times. The trick here is figuring out what M+40 pace is—in essence, take your M pace and add 40 seconds per mile. It should be in between your M and E paces, and if not, adjust so that it is.

  • Long Run: 25-30% of your weekly mileage at E pace


Adam, you wrote that “The trick here is figuring out what M+40 pace is—in essence, take your M pace and add 40 seconds per mile.” I could only wish. I could easily figure my M+40 pace…but running it? I ran a loop from my house that incorporated the first part of the Skunk Cabbage runs (mostly) and then returned via the East Hill recway…so while not rolling, it wasn’t flat. I should note that, as Garmin now seems to be permanently in “down for server maintenance” mode, I was self-policing as to pace. I was running at an odd time and in what felt like 110% humidty - “light drizzle” aka air too humid to hold much water - so when running the first set and holding the M pace felt like a “I” pace effort, and holding the M+40 pace felt like a “T” pace effort, I figured it was just my body not really happy about running. So, I kept the effort level up during each of the next 5 sets, not really checking the watch other than for the :90 and 4:00 intervals. I thought I was doing okay - mentally shaping where each interval would end and more or less hitting those targets - but kinda got the sense something was wrong when during the last “M” pace rep my HRM warned me i was WAY over my max…and it wasn’t in stride counting mode this time. Sure enough, found out after getting home that I was running “I” -> “R” pace for :90, and then something like I+40 for the 4:00 pace. So - great workout! but uh, not the right workout…

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Yeah, the humidity yesterday was insane. I went for a ride after the rain went through in the late afternoon and the phrase that leapt to mind was “the sweaty armpit of a thunderstorm.”

Environmental conditions also make it hard to feel your pace based on experience, but if technology is failing you, running by feel is a good skill to have.

@gplwoo, how are you feeling? I was wondering what was up and saw on Strava that you’ve been recovering from what sounds like a stomach flu. Definitely not something to train through.

@KateB, how about you? Hope you’re staying healthy.

@RichHeffron, still trying to keep up with these workouts? @bdonato? Anyone else?

I’m checking in because I’ve been continuing to increase the difficulty slowly to match improving conditions, but if you’re sick or hurt, you want to make sure you’re not overdoing it when you return to running.

I did middle distance workout 2 on Tuesday evening. It was relatively cool at 9pm and really not that humid, nice compared to my runs the last two days. I really enjoyed the workout, it was definitely challenging but manageable. I’m hoping next week work is a little busy so I do two. @adamengst thanks for continuing to provide, I find them very helpful and motivating.

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@adamengst thanks for checking in! I’m slowly upping my mileage back to pre-sickness levels… amazing what dropping 8# unintentionally and not running for a week can do to your body! I’m about 85% back to running capacity so likely will wait one more week before attempting a workout. Keep the workouts coming, I will get to them someday!


HI Adam, thanks for checking in. I’m staying health, thankfully. I love seeing these workouts (and occasionally picking one off) but I’m doing a marathon training plan toward an Oct 4 virtual race and usually stick with that. The direct sunlight definitely affected my pace workout on Saturday! I hope everyone is staying cool out there

Sounds good—glad it’s just a case of a plethora of training plans!

So many workouts! So little time!