Workouts: “Slow” and steady or fly and die?

I’ve been mulling something over for the past few days, and I haven’t completely decided what my opinion is on the topic.  —-Sorry for no pictures!!—-

As you well know, I am a high school runner, so because of that, I do almost all my workouts with my team.  There’s one teammate that I consistently work out with, and there are about four other girls of varying speeds in our workout group.

Here’s the debate topic: When the two of us are assigned a certain range for our repeats, the other girls ignore their workout paces and just fall in behind us. This is going to sound snarky, but none of them can calculate splits, so when the two of us calculate our splits, the other girls just go off of ours.  For example, if we’re aiming for a 2:55 800 and the other girls are supposed to run a 3:05, they just run a 2:55 with us.

Of course, this results in nobody finishing the workout except for the two of us who actually run our paces.  If it’s a 6-8×800 workout, most of the other girls rarely make it past 4 800s before they have to stop or modify their workout.  This is what I refer to as a “fly and die” workout.  Meanwhile, the two of us almost always complete our “steady” workout, usually finishing the last few repeats faster than we started.

I don’t think there has been a single workout yet this season where five girls started and five girls finished.  I’ll readily admit, I’ve dropped out of a couple as well, one due to me being out of shape and one (the one a few days ago) due to weird abnormal fatigue/shortness of breath.


Should the other girls continue their fly and die tactics?  Is it better to run fewer, faster repeats until you can’t hang on anymore?  Maybe it doesn’t matter, but the two of us lean more towards races like the 3200, while the other girls are milers, 1000 runners, etc.  Should we take that into account?  I just wish the other girls would calculate and stay true to their own splits in order to finish their workouts; I think I support the “steady” workout more than fly and die.  Even if the other girls were faster than us two (which one of them almost definitely will be come outdoor track), I would still wish they’d finish their workouts.  It seems as though modifying or dropping out of every workout takes its toll mentally as well as physically.


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