Note: This post may be offensive. Please do not proceed if you are easily offended.
I almost forgotten how interval training felt like until I revisited it again this evening.
“It shouldn’t be too hard lah!”
15 minutes later, I was panting like a pansy and sweating like a pig.
Interval training is a bullshit affair. And with every bullshit affairs, only when you are knee-deep in this heated pile of crap, you will understand why this affair is not for the weak:
Truth #1: It does not get easier
We have been in situations where things are terribly hard at first, but it then gets easier as we progress.
Guess what, this is not it.
Every single time you see that 200m stretch, understand that you will feel EXACTLY the same as the last time.
You will pant like a pansy.
You will sweat like a pig.
You can run more sets, but it should not get easier. If it does, you are not going hard enough.
So what do you do? Start making excuses? Give up when there is 5 more laps to go?
Because you will never be the best version of yourself if you quit.
And frankly, you don’t deserve the best in those races you joined.
Don’t expect more than what you are willing to give.
Truth #2: It will burn
Lungs will burn. Glutes will burn. Fats will burn (fun facts: interval training pushes your body into the anaerobic zone – that wonderful realm which burns fat and helps gain lean muscle mass)
Your pride will burn. Your ego will burn. The harder you push, the stronger it will burn. It is not necessarily a bad thing, really. You get to see your weaker side, limits, and tenacity.
But really, how many of us have the guts to do so.
Setting aflame to your ego is not necessarily a bad thing.
I never said it was easy.
Truth #3: It pays off at the last 32 seconds
The finishing arch is just a hundred metres away. Everybody starts getting pumped up. Other runners are quickly picking up their pace. And you can see the crowd cheering along the barricades.
Out of nowhere, the dude you smoked 27 minutes ago overtakes.
You tried sprinting, but you are totally depleted.
That dude crossed the finish line, the volunteer hands him a number, he walks off, panting but with a gleam in his eye.
When you finally crossed the line, there were no more numbers. That dude took the last one.
Interval training pays its dividends at these last moments. It allows you to pack up those reserves for these critical moments. It readies your core, activate the glutes and allows you to surge forward regardless of how crappy or how tired you are.
What’s worse than being crappy or tired? Regret.
Don’t let your words be “What bullshit!” once you crossed the finish line.
Start doing intervals.