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9 Stages Of Speed Work—As Told By Olivia Pope

Our favorite Scandal star perfectly explains the pain of running fast.

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Most runners have heard the saying, “If you want to run faster, all you have to do is run faster!” Feel free to roll your eyes with me because anyone who has set out to become a speedier runner knows that it isn’t that simple! You have to raise your anaerobic threshold, improve strength and endurance and work on your cadence and form. Becoming a stronger, smarter and subsequently faster runner takes time, hard work and a willingness to succeed! These are the 9 stages of speed workouts as told by Scandal’s Olivia Pope­.

1. Dread.

Olivia Pope

There will be days when you’re counting down the minutes until you can exhaust yourself with a speed workout. However there will also be days where you’ll find yourself dreading that workout after a really long day at work. If you’re fighting the urge to skip a speed workout in favor of some Netflix and chill, remember how much stronger you’ll feel when it’s over.

2. Anticipation.

2 when you hear the workout

You hear the workout and immediately regret your decision not to Netflix and chill. Today is going to hurt…a lot.

3. Feeling cocky.

3 cocky

So you took off a little too fast. Who cares? That first interval felt great! Don’t stress, you DEFINITELY won’t pay for that speed later.

4. You’re on fire.

4 unstoppable

SOMEONE CALL THE FIRE DEPARTMENT BECAUSE YOU’RE QUADS ARE ON FIRE! “I can’t believe I didn’t want to run hard tonight,” you think to yourself. “I am killing this speed workout!

5. Regret.

5 pep talk

OK, so maybe taking off too fast wasn’t a good idea.

6. Resolve.

6 second guessing yourself

You’re entering into a world of pain but you resolve not to give up! Yes, your legs and lungs feel like they’re on fire but you’re almost done!

7. The bargaining.

7 Recovery

Is it just me or are these recovery periods too short?” You scream, gasping for breath.

8. Empty the tank.

8 empty the tank

And just like that, you find yourself in the final moments of your speed workout. You dig deep and push hard, fighting the urge to pull back while pumping your arms harder than you’ve ever pumped before. The result: emptying your tank and giving 120%.

9. Strength.

9 its over

It’s over! You’re now a tiny bit faster and in a hell of a lot of pain. You throw your hands above your head and wait for the world to stop spinning. A proud smile creeps across your face because you realize that you’re one workout closer to that speedy goal.

It doesn’t matter if you’re a casual runner or a sub-3 hour marathoner, everyone can benefit from speed work! All you have to do is set a goal, get a plan, and stick with it, even when the going gets tough! It may hurt but you’ll always feel incredible after! Until next time, #RunSelfieRepeat.