Tempos vs Intervals

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Two quick things to share:

First, my good friend, Kristin (who is also running the LA Marathon – yay!) is running 37 miles on a treadmill on Friday for charity. She is also hosting a virtual race in conjunction with her run (you can win some awesome prizes!). You can read all about it (and how to donate!) here.

Second, Zulily picked their 10 Favorite Health and Fitness Bloggers and I’m thrilled that I made the list along with some of my friends: Christine, Kristin, Madeline and Katie!



I’ll be the first to admit that until a couple of years ago, I wasn’t completely sure of the difference between tempo and interval workouts. I knew that intervals should be faster than tempos, but I didn’t understand the purpose of either nor did I know what distance/time/pace I should be running them at.

Today, I have a better understanding of their importance as well as how to incorporate them into my training plan (I am constantly learning and improving on this and am NOT an expert by any means!).  I typically aim for two workouts each week during marathon training – often one tempo and interval.

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    First speed workout in a LONG time!

    When I was deployed to Iraq, I began doing my speed workouts on a treadmill – we didn’t have access to a track and I found that running on a road was too dangerous for me.  There was quite a bit of vehicular traffic (and not just “regular” cars – HMMWVS, up-armored vehicles, and other large trucks were primarily what would drive by me on my runs) and I didn’t want to have to concentrate on anything except pushing myself when I was doing the speed workouts.  I got used to doing these workouts on the treadmill and had a very hard time doing them outside this summer/fall when I was training for the NYC Marathon. Truth be told, I didn’t do them religiously enough to see any sort of improvement.

    Well, as some of you know, my husband and I bought a treadmill for Christmas (our gift to each other).  Today was the second day I’ve run on it and I decided to do one of my favorite speed workouts – 3x mile, 3x 1/2 mile, and 3x 1/4 mile repeats.  (*Favorite is a relative term since I definitely don’t enjoy the workout while I am doing it).  After the mile and 1/2 mile repeats, I jog a 1/4 mile recovery and stretch/drink water for 1-2 minutes.

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