The unbearable lightness of speed work

Last night was week 1 of my training for the Greater Londons, which is in about 7 weeks time. And yes, it was speed work.

I’m not a fan of speed work. I’m just slow in general – always last to finish my dinner, last in a group of people walking, last to make it up the stairs, last in sprints during conditioning. You get the picture. So speed work is always a chore, and a disappointment – I can’t use as much weight as I’d like, and I spend the whole session getting told to go faster, FASTER, FASTERRRR. Sob.

On the board it said 10 sets of 2 speed box squats @ 60-70% and I ended up with…. 40kg, or 40%. But that was the only weight I could even approach proper speed with (and even then it wasn’t quite fast enough). I tried 50kg & 60kg but for both I was just too slow.

I found the whole squat session pretty hard, as there’s so much to think about when you’re doing light weight, speed work with good form. Knees out; feet wider; keep everything tight, but not your hip flexors – let those relax on the box; pause for a moment on the box; chest up; keep the same shape going in & out of the lift; etc etc.

Despite the light weight, today my adductors huuuuurt and my hamstrings are tight, tight, tight. I plan to go to Pilates after work and hopefully loosen things up a bit.

Other accessory stuff I did:

  • Good mornings: worked up to 3 x 3 @ 50kg (a session where you’re using more weight for good mornings than squats is truly depressing)
  • Single-arm dumbbell rows: 15kg, 3 sets of 7
  • Glute & ham raises, cable crunch, Russian twist
  • 3 gym walks (4 lengths of the gym each time), one holding 15kg dumbbells, 2 holding 17.5kg dumbbells

Oh well, I have maybe another 3 weeks of speed work to go. Fun times!

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