A stunning revelation
The slowness that stuns me is the time it takes me to run 200 metres. Last Sunday on the lovely grass at Calwell I ran 10 x 200 metres, with full recoveries between each run. Average time: 46.7 seconds. This is not nearly fast enough for someone who wants to run 48 seconds for each 200 of a 5k race. History shows that I need to run 10 x 200m in 36 to 37 seconds. When I was doing that (2001), I raced 5k in 20:06. In 2004, with 200 metre interval speed of 37 to 38 seconds, I ran a road 5k in 20:43.
I ran another session yesterday to check my basic speed — 10 x 100 metres, again with full recoveries, and running pretty much flat-out. These averaged 20.2 seconds, so quicker than the 200s, but still slow. I put this lack of basic speed down to weak fast-twitch muscle fibres. I've been lax in doing fast speedwork in recent times. I should exercise my fast-twitch muscles regularly to improve their strength. I'm wondering how fast you are in terms of basic speed? How fast can you run a session of 100s or 200s? How fast can you run a lap of the track? Do you think it's important to be fast over 200 metres in order to run a fast 5k race?