On Wednesday I did speed work for the first time in months. It was...not pretty. I went to Lake Mayer for the Striders Speedwork, but only myself and Bren showed up. Bren is another ultrarunner, who has been doing speed work regularly, and it shows! He's improved in all his races, and he left me in the dust on this run. Lake Mayer is about a 1.46 mile loop, so we ran one loop to warm up, then did 3 1-mile repeats, with the extra .46 mile as an active recovery jog, then a final loop to cool down (7 miles total). I wasn't keeping careful track, but I believe my miles were about 6:40, and they felt harder than they should.
I don't think I'm completely recovered from Epic 24 hour, but in any case I've gotten slower and I really want to change that! As I've been concentrating on building up to Pinhoti 100 this past year I've been going for distance, and ended up sacrificing speed. But I think it's past time to get back to it. First of all, I would like to run at least a 3:25-3:30 at Boston marathon in April, which will require some decent speed. But I think doing speed work regularly again will help me for Delirium 24 hour as well. Getting used to running fast will help make running moderately or slow feel easier. I also think the discomfort and intensity level of speed work is good preparation for the latter stages of a long race. Even though I don't expect to be doing more than a 4-5 mph pace at the end of Delirium, the effort required at that point will feel much more intense. I think getting "comfortable with being uncomfortable" will benefit me for any race. I don't particularly enjoy doing speed work, but I do love kicking butt in my races, so I'll suck it up and do what needs to be done!