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WHY do long, slow runs help improve pace? (Read 566 times)


Feeling the growl again

    Nobby, I have a question.  Are the benefits from going 2 hours lessened at all if you take any gels during the workout?  Do you need to go over that 2 hour mark for the same benefit if you're adding some extra fuel?  Or is what you're talking about just related to capillaries and mitochondria and therefore not related to energy/fueling?

     

    Fueling during the run will not reduce the cardiovascular benefits of the long run.  The only downside would be reducing the adaptive ability to better rely on fat for fuel during long races.

    "If you want to be a bad a$s, then do what a bad a$s does.  There's your pep talk for today.  Go Run." -- Slo_Hand

     


    Pura Vida

      Thanks.  That's what I was thinking, but wanted confirmation.

       

       

      Fueling during the run will not reduce the cardiovascular benefits of the long run.  The only downside would be reducing the adaptive ability to better rely on fat for fuel during long races.

      PRs: 5K: 25:35 / 10K: 53:03 / 10mi: 1:26:15 / HM: 1:55:02

      Upcoming: Beat the Blerch 10K 9/21, Portland Marathon (debut) 10/5

      Julia1971


        I'm sorry but everytime I see this thread come up, I think of this graphic:

         

        Run the mile you are in.


        I'm back!

           Fueling during the run will not reduce the cardiovascular benefits of the long run.  The only downside would be reducing the adaptive ability to better rely on fat for fuel during long races.

           

          And reducing the stimulus to muscles to store more glycogen.


          Mmmmm...beer

            Thanks.  That's what I was thinking, but wanted confirmation.

             

             

            I've been doing all of my long runs without fuel, or even water in the colder weather, and raced my 20k yesterday the same way, worked out great.  I did make sure to eat and hydrate well for a couple of days leading up to the race.  I had plenty of energy for the race and was even able to give a strong kick.

            -Dave

             

            2014 Goals | sub-19 5k done! | sub-40 10k | sub-1:25 HM | BQ done! | sub-3 M

               

              And reducing the stimulus to muscles to store more glycogen.

               

              ---I have a question:  If I am personally training towards 24-hour length races, should a bunch of my training and long runs be done WITHOUT refueling in order to improve my body's addaptive ability to burn fat and also stimulate the muscles to store more glycogen as you described?   (And Fueling will be certainly required on a 24-hour type of race of course, but wondering if the best prep for that is to do alot of running without fuel to prepare my body better?)

              ---I worry a little because I did a 30K this weekend and while I got a great time for me, I was completely sapped at the end and had trouble even walking to the car I was so out of energy!   (I did refuel during this 30K at midway point, normally I have not been)....

              The Plan (big parts)→  /// April:  Hampton, VA 24 Hour Run for Cancer (PR 80 Miles) ///  Nov:  New York Marathon  ///  Dec:  Seashore State Park 50K  ///  ∞


              Queen of 3rd Place

                  that concluded that, if you can go longer than 120-minutes NON-STOP, your development of capillaries would dramatically increase.  So there's a reason for going somewhere around 2-hours if you can.  

                 

                This NON-STOP thing has been bugging me for months! What about signal lights, stopping at water fountains etc.? I try to minimize these stops on my runs, but I can't eliminate them altogether.

                Ex runner


                Bacon Party!

                   

                  ---I have a question:  If I am personally training towards 24-hour length races, should a bunch of my training and long runs be done WITHOUT refueling in order to improve my body's addaptive ability to burn fat and also stimulate the muscles to store more glycogen as you described?   (And Fueling will be certainly required on a 24-hour type of race of course, but wondering if the best prep for that is to do alot of running without fuel to prepare my body better?)

                  ---I worry a little because I did a 30K this weekend and while I got a great time for me, I was completely sapped at the end and had trouble even walking to the car I was so out of energy!   (I did refuel during this 30K at midway point, normally I have not been)....

                  I can't answer your question about whether restricting carbs during exercise enhances the body's ability to burn fat. I suspect the biggest bang is going to be training at an intensity below the crossover point, when fuel switches from primarily fat to primarily sugar.

                   

                  That said, I am a 24-hour runner who eats a low-carb, high-fat, ketogenic diet. I typically do not fuel during training runs up to 5 hours or so - unless I'm trying out a new product or strategy.

                   

                  I use UCAN when I race - 67.5 calories / hour for flat, steady-effort, courses. (I make up an 8-hour bottle with 6 scoops of plain.)

                   

                  For races where intensity will vary (typical trail ultras), I use carbs strategically - even adding some gel to the program - in advance of big climbs / efforts.

                   

                  I find marathons and 50Ks to be the most challenging, fuel-wise ... too long and intense to race without fuel. So, 2 servings of UCAN prior, and 1 mid way.

                  Liz

                  pace sera, sera


                  Bacon Party!

                     

                    This NON-STOP thing has been bugging me for months! What about signal lights, stopping at water fountains etc.? I try to minimize these stops on my runs, but I can't eliminate them altogether.

                    LOL. I think the stress you've been feeling when stopped ("Does this stop count, or doesn't it? Argh!") keeps your heart rate high enough for the stop count as "continuous running."

                    Liz

                    pace sera, sera

                       

                      This NON-STOP thing has been bugging me for months! What about signal lights, stopping at water fountains etc.? I try to minimize these stops on my runs, but I can't eliminate them altogether.

                       

                      Optimally you would to minimize the Stops. A 10-20 sec stop for a signal should be no big deal, but anything over a minute, your heart rate drops quite a bit and takes a few more minutes to get back to where it was.  I remember Nobby saying that you need continuous High Blood pressure (high heart rate) for an extended duration for the full aerobic adaptations (specifically capillary development , but during a long run you are getting other benefits such as muscle endurance, muscle fiber recruitment etc that happen with or without the interruptions, and would not worry too much about brief water stops or  for traffic.


                      old woman w/hobby

                        I can't answer your question about whether restricting carbs during exercise enhances the body's ability to burn fat. I suspect the biggest bang is going to be training at an intensity below the crossover point, when fuel switches from primarily fat to primarily sugar.

                         

                        That said, I am a 24-hour runner who eats a low-carb, high-fat, ketogenic diet. I typically do not fuel during training runs up to 5 hours or so - unless I'm trying out a new product or strategy.

                         

                        I use UCAN when I race - 67.5 calories / hour for flat, steady-effort, courses. (I make up an 8-hour bottle with 6 scoops of plain.)

                         

                        For races where intensity will vary (typical trail ultras), I use carbs strategically - even adding some gel to the program - in advance of big climbs / efforts.

                         

                        I find marathons and 50Ks to be the most challenging, fuel-wise ... too long and intense to race without fuel. So, 2 servings of UCAN prior, and 1 mid way.

                         

                        Buzzie-  I had heard about UCAN in a pod cast (Trail Runner Nation-Sunny Blende) months ago

                        and then promptly forgot all about it.  But at Deliruium the other week, after you told me that was what you

                        were using, I looked it up once I got home and re-listened to the podcast.   I ordered a sample

                        pack a couple days ago.  Hoping that it goes down better than gels.  I've decided, after trying different

                        brands that I need to keep gels to a minimum Tight lips

                        Anyway, thanks!

                        steph  

                         

                        OCD  If you don't laugh...   


                        And in the end...

                          I'll throw this out as well, for discussion purposes Smile... I'm copying this from another message board where the topic was whether or not running higher volume is better than lower volume with more focus on tempo runs.  It applies here, as the main topic is how slower running can make you faster... This was my contribution:

                           

                          **************

                          Ah... one of more often overlooked benefits of high mileage is... wait for it... here it comes...

                           

                          High mileage running, at easy effort, improves LT.

                           

                          What?  You must be thinking I'm nuts, right?  Well, it's true.  Here's why:

                           

                          Let's agree that LT pace (or range) is the point at which the body can just clear the amount of lactate being produced, but no more.  It is a point of equilibirium.  Run harder for a period of time and you will experience OBLA (onset of blood lactate accumulation) and the pH of you blood will drop.  Agreed?

                           

                          Now, let's also agree that LT pace (or range) is in the neighborhood of 85% MaxHR (Competitive runners may push closer to 90%).  Can we agree here?

                           

                          The final point of agreement is that lactate only accumulates when their is insufficient muscle oxygenation... not enough O2 in the muscle cells.

                          So, let's take a runner who is averaging 55mpw and has an LT pace of 7:00min/mi.  Let's say that pace is 85% of the runner MaxHR, or 170bpm using a MaxHR of 200.  Let's also say that the runner's 'easy' pace is 9:00min/mi and that represents 70% of MaxHR, 140bpm.

                           

                          Guess what happens when the runner begins increasing the weekly mileage?  As a direct benefit of increased capillary and mitochondria production, the HR at all pace ranges begins to drop because there is greater oxygen availability.  Within 6-8 week of high volume running, just adding 'easy effort' miles, the runner will find that running those same runs at 9:00min/mi now only get the HR up to around 130-135bpm.  More oxygen availability results in less cardio demand and improves pace ranges across the board.  Over time, the easy pace gets faster, and so does LT!  More oxygen means less lactacte accumulation... and that means faster race times at all 'non-sprint' distances!

                           

                          So, it isn't either/or with high mileage running.  If you do it wisely, you benefit far more than endurance, you also improve your speed over distance.

                          ------------------------

                          The GITM is moot.

                            It cuts both ways.

                             

                            You need to know what fuel will work over the 24 hour period, and the only way to figure that out is by doing very long runs at 12hr or 24hr pace.  One approach that Matt Carpenter talked about during the year and half where he set the Lake City 50 and Leadville 100 course records was determining the maximum caloric load that his stomach would tolerate -- 350 kcals/hr -- how else to have the energy to run up Hope Pass inbound?  I also think that doing long to very long runs using fuel makes recovery faster/easier.

                             

                            Likewise, long-ish runs on water-only (with maybe an S! cap halfway) will trigger the adaptions of increased fat burning and glycogen holding.  The idea is to keep running, slowly, through the "wall".  What you describe of your 30K run along those lines, but it is important to go as far as possible without ingesting carbs. Greg McMillan has a great article on his preferred types of long runs with more detailed information and suggestions here:

                             

                            The Marathon Long Run

                             

                             

                            ---I have a question:  If I am personally training towards 24-hour length races, should a bunch of my training and long runs be done WITHOUT refueling in order to improve my body's addaptive ability to burn fat and also stimulate the muscles to store more glycogen as you described?   (And Fueling will be certainly required on a 24-hour type of race of course, but wondering if the best prep for that is to do alot of running without fuel to prepare my body better?)

                            ---I worry a little because I did a 30K this weekend and while I got a great time for me, I was completely sapped at the end and had trouble even walking to the car I was so out of energy!   (I did refuel during this 30K at midway point, normally I have not been)....

                            2013 H1:  7 hours/week base.  Q3: Train for goal race.  Q4:  Goal Race.


                            old woman w/hobby

                              Buzzie- Have you tried Vitargo?  If so how did it compare to UCAN?

                              steph  

                               

                              OCD  If you don't laugh...   

                                I am no expert by any means, but I was reading where some ultra runners run back to back long runs (nothing new here), wont take in any fuel during the first long run, no carbs after the run and then run the 2nd long run. This causes an intentional bonk of running on very little fuel.

                                 

                                I guess this helps to train the body to burn more fat and be able to run longer on less fuel.

                                 

                                To me this sounds crazy, but so does running 100 miles. Smile

                                ”Failing to prepare is preparing to fail.”

                                “Whether you think you can, or you think you can't--you're right.”

                                 

                                Tomas

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