Earlier this week, I decided to add Yassos to my training plan. Have you ever done them?
The goal is to run up to 10 x 800 in your goal marathon time to test your fitness and help you determine if you’re on track for your goal.
Here’s how it works:
You warm up for a mile or so, and then run 800s (two laps) followed by a 400 jog (one lap). If you’re training for a 4 hour marathon, your goal would be 4:00 minute 800s. For a 3:30 marathon, you want to run 3:30 splits, and so on.
Your goal time should be slightly slower than your usual 800s, but the workout becomes challenging because you never stop to walk or catch your breath. You basically run two laps hard, one lap easy and keep repeating the cycle.
Runner’s World recommends you begin with 4-6 repeats and work your way up to 10 within the last few weeks of marathon training.
My goal for this workouts was 8 repeats, and I’ll do ten in a few weeks. My goal marathon time is 3:20, so the goal for each 800 was 3:20 (or 6:40 pace). It sounded very doable, as I run 800s closer to the 3 minute mark, but without walking breaks, I was feeling it by the end!
I ran a warm up mile (8:20) and then hit the following repeats: 3:19, 3:14, 3:12, 3:15, 3:11, 3:13, 3:15 and 3:13 with 400 jogs between each. I cooled down for two miles (7:38, 7:32) for 9 miles total.
I had no problem staying under the 3:20s, but I also know this doesn’t mean I’m ready to run a 3:15 marathon. McMillian believes it’s best to add 5 minutes on for a more accurate prediction. So after averaging 3:15 repeats, with 5 minutes added I “should” be on track for a 3:20 marathon. I’ll do ten next time to see where I’m at.
Besides helping to measure fitness, this workout felt amazing. Anytime I push myself with speedwork, I come away feeling strong and accomplished.
Have you tried the Yasso 800s? Did you get in a good workout this week that made you feel strong?