Live Free or Die Hard

There has been a revelation in me. Mundane daily stuff , movies , TV i have lost interest. Pushing myself to the edge of my ability seems more fun. I need to die each moment to feel alive again.


This is one reason i train with Singapore Shufflers. Today’s Interval session was 10 minutes threshold pace run with 2 minutes break and repeat the routine 2 more times. There is warm up and cool down of 5 and 5 laps of 400m each. Before and after the main set.

What is Interval Running session, i will present two views on this. One Technical and then Personal.

Technical – VO2 max is a measure of the maximum amount of oxygen your body can use to produce energy. It’s a combination of how much oxygen-rich blood your heart can pump, and the muscles efficiency in extracting and utilizing the oxygen. VO2 max is determined by your genetic potential and your training status.

To be able to Run fast in marathons or to be able to get better in running it is essential to hone the VO2 capacity of body. Interval session is one way to do it.In these sessions a runner runs at almost 90% of heart capacity for an interval rests for a short period and repeats the same in a routine.

When muscles become stronger, fewer muscle fibers are needed to contract to hit a particular pace; thus the energy expenditure is lower, which can improve your fuel burning efficiency during a marathon or help propel you to faster times.

Personal – Interval sessions suck. Basically that is what it is. You cannot take it easy because if you are not pushing hard then the session wont help. Need to hit max capacity to get better. The starting couple of laps are okay. It is is very important to keep the average pace throughout the session, which means when you are half way through then you need to dig harder.

This is what i felt today, first 10 minutes was fine, i was averaging about 1.40 minutes per lap of 400 m with 10 minutes in total to finish. I was not flying. I knew i will hit the wall if i Did. So i confided within my means.

Next 10 minutes was surprisingly easy. Well that is because i wasn’t trying too hard. I knew i will blow up if I did. It is so much important to know your limits. I always wish i was fast. Which takes me to the spiral of over confidence and expecting too much out of myself. On various occasions i have ran too fast early and then hit the wall later.There is nothing unusual to expect more out of oneself. You gotta be realistic . The Amount of training, nutrition , cross fitness . All matters. It is not possible that i wake up one day and feel like Mo Farah and rip the track. It aint gonna work that way. Be Realistic. Patience is the key in marathon running. Specially when you are running at the edge for longer duration, it is easy to get distracted.

We Humans are not meant to push ourselves so hard, hence the body keeps reminding you to stop. To be honest it is more of warning than an error ( that joke is for Software folks) . Pain is one way for the body to tell that something is not right in the system , you need to be aware of it.

On the contrary No Pain No Gain. Higher the Pain more the Gain. Final 10 minutes. I started the first lap at a average speed which was good. I like to call myself as diesel engine.I take too long to warm up. Starting average was good. Then it felt good i kept raising the pace lap 2 and 3 i go fast some really fast runners, these are the guys who were running easily 10-15 seconds faster than me in earlier laps. Now i have overtaken them with a lead of 5-10 seconds.Lap 4 gone past white shirt and yellow shirt, suddenly all that adrenaline and good sensations starting to fade. Now i am getting into stark reality. I am unable to maintain this pace.

It feels like all the nitrous oxide is over there is no more extra oxygen to help with the combustion. The Body feels like shutting down. Unable to pump more oxygen. Breathing as heavily as you could through your mouth, yet not enough oxygen to keep you going at high pace. Piece by Piece muscles unable to generate the thrust, slowly begins to crumble.

At this point only thing that keeps you going is Will Power. Runners will know this better.It is the Will Power of not giving up.Pushing yourself as much as you can. Now it is not you vs the world. It is you vs you. A personal challenge. A Vindication. A Battle within.I knew the white and yellow shirt previously overtaken, go past me. I knew my body is shutting down, yet i was not going to give up. Just 2 more laps , Boy. Just 2 more. And your misery will be over. I dropped a bit , but not greater enough for others to catch up. I held my position and saw it through. At the end i felt like i had my lungs in my hands. I could not keep my head high for more than 30 seconds. Still catching my breath.

Final stage, Runners High  . When you run really , really hard you get into a trance state. Mild vibrations in head. Clear. Clam . Peaceful. There is nothing like that feeling . It is the serotonins,endorphins and dopamine playing the tricks. Yeah. All the so called recreations drugs self manufactured in the Body subject to extereme training.



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