I am lucky to live on the east coast. Within a couple of miles I can have access to the beach as well as plenty of leg challenging hills. I was able to take advantage of both in my training session today to make for a nice well rounded run, encompassing intervals, sprints, and steady paced running.
I truly enjoy running on the beach as it does slow me down considerably but conversely is much less pounding and wear and tear on my legs than the track where most of my miles come from and the pavement. The sand is also unstable which helps strengthen the feet and ankles. I usually run right where the softer sand meets up with the sand that is a little firmer where the water line has retreated from in a low tide. One other bonus of using the beach to run which will be playing a factor sooner than I would like to think, is in the winter the snow seems to melt off the sand faster. When the tracks and the roads are still snow and ice covered and unsafe to run on I can hit the beach and still get in a quality training session.
Without further ado here is my training session for this official last day of summer.
2 Moderately paced miles to the beach.
4x .25, 0.06 miles and one 8 second sprint.
Resting 2:00 between each round.
Then one more 0.06 and one more 8 second sprint on the pavement to run at actual speed.
2 moderate paced miles back home this time over a course of rolling hills.
2 x Bounding 24 total bounds (12 on each leg)
2X fast feet drill (focusing on foot turnover in a fatigued state)
I really felt great after this training run despite the warm temperature and return to humidity.