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RE: why do Jack Daniels M pace workouts destroy me?
M runs are tricky for me too. I also do the 5k 10k plan and here is what I've learned about M paced runs:
I start doing them a bit shorter and slower than prescribed. Even if I feel good, I run them a bit easier early in the training cycle. I will end up doing them pretty much as written about 3 or 4 runs in. I will also swap them out for a typical long run if I'm feeling roughed up during the first couple of easy miles.
I agree that recovery can be hard. M runs are sneaky in that they often feel great, but they ARE fatiguing your legs after you've held the pace for a while. You may not feel it while you're running, but your form may be breaking down late into an M run. This can make the recovery difficult.
I also think that they're one of the most beneficial runs, psychologically and physically in the whole program. They're a huge confidence booster once you've gotten the hang of them.
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