Even though I loathe winter, I’ve decided that the changing of the seasons is a good thing. I’ve often wished to live on the equator where I could have endless summer, but the sameness of it all would probably eventually bore me. I think it’s the same with running. If the changing seasons didn’t encourage us to change tactics, the same old, same old would be killing.
Winter is a good time to do lots of long slow stuff, building a decent aerobic base. Sunday runs don’t have to start before the crack of dawn to avoid the heat and marathons and ultras are way more pleasant in our winter time.
But once that Piet-My-Vrou starts singing in November, I suddenly crave something fast and furious. Something different. Something in keeping with the new season. I suddenly need to GET FASTER!
My version of a Tabata workout is to first warm up using Coach Jay Johnson’s Lunge Matrix. I then do squats a la Mark Sisson. One Tabata is basically 20 seconds of balls-to-the-wall activity followed by 10 seconds rest, repeated 8 times. So one Tabata only takes 4 minutes. Sounds easy but I guarantee burning of the lungs after one round if you’re doing it properly. I use skipping (jumping rope if you’re American) for my balls-to-the-wall sections, and I do it as fast as I can. The whole thing, warm up and one Tabata, will take me 15 minutes. Short, sweet and effective. Watch this space…..