At the post-Juneathon Party in the Park, Sean from Audiofuel handed out CDs of their latest interval training tracks and after last week’s interval session with celebrity trainer Nicki Waterman (blog to come later), I promised myself that I would incorporate intervals into my ‘training’. So, when I got up this morning and spotted the CD sitting on my desk, I said to myself, ok then, intervals it is.
Unfortunately, updating tunes on my ipod these days – since Windows 7 doesn’t work with the old Shuffles – is a complete flipping faff and involves me putting tracks onto my main PC (which has Windows 7), then onto a memory stick, then loading them onto my netbook (which has XP) into iTunes, then plugging my ipod into my netbook and updating from there.
I was a bit hesitant to do intervals this morning from a coaching session, as the only one I’ve done before is the Kara Goucher Endurance Boost , which involves running fast for four minutes a few times with three minutes recovery in between. Or something like that. And I can’t even run slowly, let alone quickly, for four minutes without wanting to return to my more natural environment in front of my pc where I don’t have to do anything more energetic than use my index finger to gently press the left mouse button to switch between Outlook, Facebook and Twitter.
Still, I eventually do the necessary to get the tracks from CD to ipod and get outside and press play. There’s a 48 second introduction where Sean (who has a very nice voice and does the voiceover for the Audiofuel pyramid coaching sessions) tells us this session will keep our heart fit and improve our aerobic fitness and will also burn fat and make us look good, which I like the sound of and could probably do with, especially after yesterday’s dinner which comprised of potatoes being cooked in double cream and cheese.
To start us off slowly, there’s a warm up of five minutes at 155bpm and then we’re counting down from 5 to the first sprint at 172bpm. Yes, Sean says ‘sprint’ and I’m scared. I don’t think I’ve sprinted since school and I’m in complete agreement with Miranda who says ‘As an adult you should only run if you’re near a train station and look at your watch first’. Quite.
But, wait! Sean says we’ve only got to sprint for 30 seconds! Woo hoo! I can run for a few seconds, can’t I? Of course I can. Even if it’s only as punishment for using an exclamation mark at the end of three consecutive sentences.
I sprint for 30 seconds and don’t die. Result. Then there’s a recovery of 60 seconds and Sean says to ease off and run at your own pace or walk if I want to. WALK IF I WANT TO? I love Sean. He says I can walk. Yay for Sean. But I am hardcore and don’t walk. I do my recovery ‘run’ of 60 seconds and Sean says to take lots of breath and get ready for the next sprint. ‘Breath’? Just the one? What does that mean? I can’t hold my breath for the rest of the session, I WILL DIE!
The next sprint comes up and this time I’m doing 45 seconds at 175bpm and then once again there’s a recovery of 60 seconds and then it’s a 60 second sprint at 178bpm and I get told I’m nearly at the top of the pyramid and I think oh no, I won’t be able to sprint the last bit as I’m at the bit of the route where I have to tread on fallen down fences and climb over discarded shopping trolleys and then I’ll be on the grassy bit which is hard to run over as it’s all lumpy and bumpy and so when I get told to brace myself for the top which will be 75 seconds at 180bpm I run as fast as I can over the grassy bit which isn’t really very fast at all, more of a tiptoe over the bumpy bits really, and then I get to the slopey bit that leads up to the housing estate which I usually walk up due to it being a bit slopey but because I’m on an interval session and supposed to be pushing myself, I run up the slopey bit and then I’m told ‘that’s the top of the pyramid sorted – just down the other side now’ and then Sean says ‘take lots of breath – more than you think you need’ and I still think I need more than one breath, unless it’s my dying one and then I’ll probably only need one but I’m not dying and after the 60 second recovery Sean says I’m doing 1 minute at 178bpm and I think HANG ON A MINUTE, I ONLY HAD TO RUN SECONDS BEFORE, NOT MINUTES, THAT’S NOT FAIR and then I realise that one minute is 60 seconds. Duh.
And then there’s two intervals to go; the penultimate one being 45 seconds at 175bpm and I’m told to take shorter strides if I need to and I think if I shuffled with strides any shorter, I’d trip myself up and then I’m on the final 60 second recovery and told that the final 30 seconds will be a sprint at a cruisey 172bpm. Cruisey? What kind of word is that? That’s almost as bad as ‘take lots of breath’, and I would offer my services up as the voiceover and therefore use proper words and maybe even squeeze an ‘innit’ in it but no one would buy anything with my less-than-dulcet Essex/East London tones and then I’m told to steel myself to go in 20 seconds and then I’m running the final interval and then there’s a five minute cool down and Sean says I can walk it if I want to and so I take him up on his kind offer and then he says ‘if you got through this interval session sprinting the whole way, you’ve had a great workout. If you haven’t, you’ve got something to aim for next time’.
Um, I didn’t do any walking, so that means I ran it, doesn’t it?
I get home and feel great and upload my stats and SportTracks says I did my first mile in 8.59 and I think WOO HOO, WAY TO GO ME as I usually do 11 minute miles and so of course, being the modest unattention-seeking person I am immediately tell everyone on Facebook and Twitter about my 8.59 minute mile, being careful to omit the fact that the second and third miles weren’t maybe quite as quick (the third mile not actually being part of the interval session – the session lasts for 22 minutes [which is probably how long it’s taken you to read up to here, sorry] – and so being mostly walking back to the house).
Running fast for seconds at a time. What a brilliant idea. Everyone can run for a few seconds, can’t they?
Audiofuel’s Pyramid 180 Max Interval Training is released today, costs just five of your English pounds and you can buy it from the Audiofuel shop.