The 3x1 is another term for a Tempo run. When I first started running I used the C25k (couch to 5k) which is the run/walk method, it worked perfect for me. I didn't really know a whole lot about running and that there were different workouts for speed, form, distance etc. I originally thought if I just ran each distance at my race pace I would succeed, which this method DOES work for people, however not me; I tried this method for the CDA half and died.
A Tempo run trains your body to run past your anaerobic threshold, the point where your body stops burning fat and starts burning glycogen. You can run on fat for a long time, but you cant run on the other. I know this is deep stuff....One of the main reasons you throw a tempo run into the mix is to trick your body into working harder without really working harder. This pushes your muscles to get use to running distance when they are fatigued. Here is what mine looked like tonight:
My workout tonight flew by! I really liked counting down miles and changing pace throughout, it didn't hurt I watched most of So You Think You Can Dance. I chose the treadmill because it was raining and because I had to work out late. It's easier for me to get a concrete time using the treadmill so I can feel what each pace really feels like. I have asked everyone and their mom for a Garmin for my birthday so hopefully my dreams come true. Currently I use my phone and I am terrible at checking my pace on there. I've been using my treadmill runs to get a more accurate pace calculator and then I use my outside (more enjoyable) runs to run by feel. Comprende?
Here is an article that talks Tempo Runs better than I can. I also got some of my info here so consider it a source: Tempo Run
And to leave you with some vanity, my post run thumbs up, no pain, no shame - right?! Wait, it's no pain, no gain.