Last Tuesday evening at the University of Michigan Indoor Track building, runners were spinning through at least two different workouts: (i) 400-300-200-meter ladder repeats with 30-second recoveries between rungs, and a 4-minute recovery between the four total set, and (ii) run at your goal 5K goal pace until you just can’t maintain it any longer.
If you were a member of the Michigan All Stars, a youth track club that competes in Amateur Athletic Union (AAU) events, you did the ladder repeats. And if you were a member of the Ann Arbor Track Club, you did the run-til-you-drop drill.
The occasion actually gave The Chronicle the chance to renew a previously-made acquaintance involving another kind of drill – the kind of giant drill that’s used to bore for soil samples.
Why The Chronicle Attended a Track Workout
Meetings of public boards, commissions, and councils don’t take place at the UM Indoor Track Building – so it’s fair to ask why The Chronicle was there in the first place. First, just to be clear, not everything at The Chronicle revolves around public meetings. What prompted us to check out the indoor track was something we heard um, er, yeah, okay … at a public meeting – the last board meeting of the Downtown Development Authority, specifically.
Race director of the Dexter-Ann Arbor Run (May 31, 2009), Hal Wolfe, spoke to the DDA board about some frustrations he was experiencing with organizing this year’s race. The Ann Arbor Track club, which organizes the race, holds its Tuesday night workouts at the UM indoor track, so we figured we’d check it out.
Incidentally, at the DDA board’s operations committee meeting on Wednesday morning, at least some of Wolfe’s frustrations were addressed. First, the DDA will communicate to the holders of premium permits at the Ann-Ashley parking structure that if they are unable to get access to their spaces on race day, the DDA will find alternate parking spaces for them.
Second, the DDA will waive the parking meter bag fees for the race (when a street is closed, as for a race, any parking meters have bags placed over them). And finally, direction would be provided about how to request a waiver of street barricading fees.
The Giant Drill Connection
Tyrone Coleman, one of the assistant coaches for the Michigan All Stars, struck up a conversation with The Chronicle because he was keen to know who the other group on the track was – the traffic on the inside lanes was not optimal for the kind of hard intervals his guys were doing. Later, after the groups had finished their workouts, he ventured, “I think we’ve met before? Out in the Pioneer field when we were drilling that hole?” Why, yes, of course! Tyrone was one of the three-man crew we met out in that snowy field back in early December of 2008.
Coach of the Michigan All Stars, Rad Greaves, said that they were getting ready for the Michigan Indoor High School Championships, to be held at Central Michigan University this Saturday (Feb. 28), as well as the Michigan AAU Indoor Youth Track and Field Championships at Eastern Michigan University’s Bowen Field House on March 15. The mid-March track meet goes from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. and costs $5 for spectators.
Track Club News: Reciprocity Agreement with Triathlon Club
While chatting before the workout with Jon Woodard, who was wearing an Ann Arbor Triathlon Club T-shirt, he tipped us to a recent reciprocity agreement between the Ann Arbor Track Club and the Ann Arbor Triathlon Club: the arrangement will allow members of one club to join the other at a discount of $10.
Stani Bohac, coach of the Track Club’s Tuesday night workouts, cautioned that the membership forms still needed to be revised to reflect the agreement, approved by the boards of both organizations, and that revision might take a couple of weeks.
Mitch Garner, president of the AATC, confirmed the agreement between the clubs by email, saying that “The AATC Board felt that the two clubs have a lot of common ground, and the AATC wants to reach out to other running-related clubs in the area to promote physical fitness and good health in our community.”
UM Indoor Track
During a snowy winter in Ann Arbor, athletes looking for a place to run hard without fear of slipping and falling on their heads can find such a place in form of the 200-meter University of Michigan indoor track. There’s a couple of different options for getting access. Drop in during open hours (mornings and evenings, but not afternoons) for $5 a visit. For Ann Arbor Track Club members to participate in their Tuesday night workout, that drop-in fee is reduced to $2. Or the general public can purchase a membership to use the track ($135 for the season).