Date: May 5, 2012

Distance: 8x400s timed runs; 8x400s walks

Times: 2:02, 1:45, 1:47, 1:52, 1:49, 1:48, 1:57, 1:43

I once saw a track kid wearing a shirt that read, “My sport is your sport’s punishment” and I couldn’t stop thinking about that the whole time I completed today’s workout. It was punishing!

One of my friends has been posting notes on our Facebook running group page about completing what she calls “mojaves,” creatively named for Bart Yasso’s cat, Mojave. You see, Bart has come up with a marathon workout/race time predictor that includes running eight timed 800 meter distances that are now named “Yassos” after him.

He has found that the time he takes to run 800s is a spot-on predictor of his marathon time. If, for example, he can run 800s in 2:40 (two minutes, forty seconds), he knows that he will be able to run a marathon in 2 hours and 40 minutes. Yassos are described in more detail in this Runner’s World article.

Mojaves, then, are a half version of Yassos. That’s one lap around a standard running track rather than two. What you do is run one full lap (400 meters) at nearly full speed and note your time. Then walk a lap for recovery (half a lap if you want more of a challenge). Repeat seven times. I seriously doubt that the Mojaves predict half marathon times, but I would say they provide great speedwork. No way in hell I could run a 1:50-ish half, like today’s mojaves might indicate.

(Thanks, Mel, for the article link and thanks, Paul, Debi, and Mel for the further explanation I needed to understand Yassos and Mojaves).

I had no idea what to expect for today’s new challenge, but I was curious to know how fast I could run these since I haven’t timed myself running around a track since the ninth grade. And, yes, it brought back horrible memories.

Today’s workout…

1. Made me realize that I still don’t know what all the buttons on my Garmin do.

2. Allowed me to run on my kids’ high school track. Go Rams!

3. Taught me that sprinting makes my nose run and makes me want to puke.

4. Reminded me that I hate speedwork (see #3).

5. Prompted me to see my weekend long runs as my easy workout for the week.

6. Made me thankful for my new Facebook running group. Thanks, guys, for all of your support and encouragement! I never would have attempted Mojaves without you.

I’m tempted to try mojaves again on some of my cross-training days. This workout provides a good way to practice speedwork and appeals to my competitive side. I will now want to continually improve my times.

Now if I could only figure out how to run fast without wanting to throw up…


One response to this post.

  1. […] wrote about Mojaves last May when I tried them for the first time. That post is found here. I wrote about them again that last time I’ve tried them–back in June […]


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