Workout of the Day

The post workout realities of a demanding speed endurance session.

The post workout realities of a demanding speed endurance session.

2 x (3 x 120m) + 300m, 200m, 2 x 100m, 200m, 300m


120m Set #1: 14.56, 13.60, 14.75
120m Set #2: 13.44, 14.36, 13.38
Ladder: 42.03, 25.54, 12.27, 12.07, 24.60, 38.88

Recovery: 80m walk in 90" after 120m reps. 6' rec between sets. 2' rec. between reps in ladder

Daniel Herrera — May 18th, 2018


Context & Details 

The morning after Daniel ran a personal best of 3:39.45 at the 2018 USATF Distance Classic we returned to the Occidental College track for this speed endurance session. 

Even though the rep distances are short, the pace targets were tough, as he was asked to sprint nearly the entire session. The brief rest intervals during the sets rapidly escalates the demands place upon the athlete to sprint while in a state of severe fatigue. It is aggressive work, but to be competitive at a national or world class level, this type of work must happen, albeit in an intelligently executed manner in a closely monitored environment. It is easy for a session like this to get out of hand and create a circumstance of diminished returns rather than a productive stimulus for positive adaptation.

In recent years, it has become increasing popular to do a post-race track workout for middle distance and distance runners. And depending on the timing and context, such can be an astute training intervention. However, to attempt a speed endurance workout immediately post race is brutal, in fact, it is borderline masochistic. So we waited until after a night's rest to do this work.

These sessions have a high neurological load and sharp metabolic tax. They are expensive workouts which can drain the athlete and demand roughly 3 - 5 days of relatively easy running and restorative work after the fact. However, it is necessary work for the middle distance runner as it directly subjects them to the abrasive environment which they'll experience for the final 90 seconds of racing in the mile.

That sting of the final 600m of the mile is intense and unavoidable. The best we can do is create a certain degree of tolerance to it through consistent exposure in the training, like this speed endurance session so aptly performed and enjoyed by Daniel. 


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Thx //  jm

Jonathan Marcus