If you feel the need-for-speed, you obviously need to train faster to race faster. Short bursts of speed (never all-out) can improve your physical performance in many areas including:
- Muscle capacity.
- Heart function.
- Oxygen delivery.
- Running mechanics.
- Coordination of body parts and muscles.
More importantly, speed workouts can improve your mental performance as you see yourself as someone who:
- Can continue when tired.
- Can handle any setback.
- Can improve.
- Can overcome physical barriers.
- Can become comfortable with being uncomfortable.
- Has confidence and a positive mental outlook on running (and life).
However, speed workouts increase the risk of physical injury (if you try to do too much, too soon, too often) and mental injury (if you let your ego or negative emotions takeover). The only way to prevent these injuries is to listen to your body and mind … adjust the workout if you feel physical pain or are experiencing negative self-talk.
Strive to find enjoyment in every speed workout … especially the tough ones! There is nothing more satisfying than “nailing” a speed workout session.