- The Start (up to 200m): go out hard to establish position (near the front of the pack in the second lane is optimal)... this helps to avoid getting boxed-in, as well as some of the jostling that goes on mid-pack (note: I don't recommend being the "leader" of whatever pack you're in as you will be doing a lot of extra work in terms of fighting the wind, etc.)
- Mid-Race (200m - 1200m): run steady and respond to surges as needed (as the race goes on, it's more important to surge to stay with the group... early on, there might be some people who try and "win it" from the start... often times, these individuals will fade as the race goes on, but that's not a hard and fast rule)
- Last Lap (1200-1450m): gradually begin to accelerate... and really begin to accelerate once you're on the back straight-away (you want to be nearly at or at your top speed with 200m to go)
- The Finish (1450-1600m): as you come off the last bend, you should be at your top speed. Gradually move to the outside of whatever lane you're in (this forces anyone who wants to pass you to run further)
So, with the legit strategy discussion out of the way, lets take a peek at the 12-step WikiHow Program. I don't think I've ever laughed so hard at a race plan discussion in my life. Who the heck writes these things?! Step #4- learn how to run properly... would have thought that would have been first. Step #6- take Sundays off except for some stretching or cross training... dang, there are a lot of runners who might be in trouble then because Sunday is a pretty popular "long run" day. Steps 7 and 9 lay out some pretty solid training plans:
- Speed Workout #1: 10min easy... 10min at race pace... 10min easy [wow, that's a long time to run at mile race pace!]
- Speed Workout #2: 20-30min easy... 4 x 2000m @ by the last rep you should feel like quitting, that's how tired you should be; are we training for a marathon or a mile (especially since the article goes on to say how 6x1000m, 10x400m, and 12x300m are "really long")?
- Speed Workout #3: ok, it totally matters what the length the interval is!