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track intervals vs tempo:choose one (Read 1271 times)

    so if you were to do 1 mid week hard effort w/o which would you choose?

     

     

    background:  (try to make this short).  experienced, very consistent non-elite type looking to lower PR's & move up in the over 50 AG.  After training for marathon last year & developing PF ran 1st "race"  in several months Sunday just off 5k pr pace.   New plan this year avging 30-35 mpw with 1 hard effort during week, 1 w/o that is 60 mns with last 5-10 mns tempo pace & LR on Sundays (slow build up to 9-10 miles now).  3 upcoming 5 k's (mostly flat & pavement/trail combo) & then begin HM (9/28) training after 1st week in July

     

    I feel confident after Sunday that a 5k PR will fall this year & soon  as ran conservative & already pretty much recovered.  I'm considering working with local club on Wed night track w/os.  have done some track interval work in past but has been quite some time & not very consistently.  I like to mix things/change things to keep running fresh & fun.  my favorite & most common mid week "hard effort" runs usually in the form of progressive or tempo type runs between 3-5 miles (5-8 total with wu/cd). 

     

    Track club has a chart to determine the pace range based on your normal or average race times. .  actual wo's are usually around 3 miles + wu/cd. I know that I could handle these sessions if I start 1-2 levels down.With a short amt of time left for my upcoming races I realize that these track wo's will not be of benefit now but possibility later on in summer if I stick with them.  another factor is that my Wed's will be 13+ hour days with work/drivetime/wo.

     

    could always alternate the track sessions & tempo runs each week.  or

     

    track intervals vs tempo runs:which would you choose??

      I'd train with the group on the track, for a variety of reasons, primary of which is the group atmosphere. The second best reason is that this will be something new in training. Third, you could always add a little tempo running (run to the barn) in a different run. Fourth, you will learn some new workouts.

       

      So, yeah, go for it.

        I think I'd alternate them because of the whole "fresh and fun" thing.  You could always add some tempoish work to your long run on the week that you do intervals if you are switching week to week. 

         

        Or, you could do the intervals for now since the 5Ks are upcoming and the HM training doesn't begin until July.  Then reduce the interval workouts and increase the tempo workouts. 

         

        If I had to choose 1, though, I'd choose the tempos because I think it's more likely to help you advance towards both the 5K and the HM goals. 

         

        Wishy washy enough of an answer? 

         

        mta: or, Jeff just responded with a better answer because I took at least 6 minutes to write a bunch of mumbo-jumbo.

         

          Track for the 5K PR.  Hard tempos for the longer distances.


          Feeling the growl again

            Focus on the tempos further away from goal races...track work won't build aerobic ability that isn't there and it will only get you gains for a couple months before it really starts tapering off.  Then for the 6-8 weeks leading into a goal 5K, focus on the track work to sharpen your speed and lactate tolerance.

            "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

             

              It's a false dichotomy because the bottom line is you don't have to choose one or the other.  But in terms of long term development, you make me choose between a weekly tempo and a weekly track interval session for the rest of my life, I choose tempo every time.  It's not even close.

               

              I also agree with Jeff that the camaraderie and changing things up can be very important.

               

              So it's good to have a group to workout with weekly, but it's also good to be wiling to do your own workout if what the group is doing that week doesn't match your goals.

              Runners run.

                Good stuff by all.

                 

                I'll just add that there are lots of good ways to get solid aerobic "tempo" stimulus on the track, too. Intervals are not always (or even often) primarily about anaerobic sharpening. So, in part the answer depends on who is designing the workouts.

                 

                Longer intervals with shorter rests can be just as good as (sometimes better than) tempo running for working on that good deep aerobic stimulus.


                Feeling the growl again

                  Good stuff by all.

                   

                  I'll just add that there are lots of good ways to get solid aerobic "tempo" stimulus on the track, too. Intervals are not always (or even often) primarily about anaerobic sharpening. So, in part the answer depends on who is designing the workouts.

                   

                  Longer intervals with shorter rests can be just as good as (sometimes better than) tempo running for working on that good deep aerobic stimulus.

                   

                  Yes.

                   

                  Partly depends how much control you have over what the group is doing too.  However IMHO, not all tempo running should be broken up into intervals and doing 4-6 miles @ tempo on the track is a challenging thing to do.  They serve somewhat different purposes and I don't think you should be choosing one at the exclusion of the other, but giving thought to how you put the pieces together in order to maximize your results.

                  "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

                   

                     

                    Wishy washy enough of an answer? 

                     

                     

                     

                     

                    not any less wishy washy than I'm being.    I am looking at this in the long term as plan to run until 100 & setting over 60, 70,80,90, 100 AG pr's.   As pointed out the intervals have a less beneficial life but if I go that route will be serious about consistency at least on a 2x/mth basis (or weekly).   One factor leaning towards the track w/o is that I know that I am capable of harder efforts than when going about this alone.  They post the planned wo's on Monday & include separate wo's as well for those in marathon training mode.  all levels or wo's are encouraged, can even jog/walk around track if wanted to.  Another thought is that I could do these wo's  on own at local ms track on Tuesday & some sort of tempo/progressive on Thurs or Friday with sunday LR.  gives some recovery break.   see how  wishy washy I am on this.

                     

                    after July, HM plan is to start ramping up the duration/distance on Sunday LR  up to 2 hrs/12-15 miles.  At that point plan on mixing in more tempo work during LR.  keeping rest of week pretty much intact (whatever it turns out to be).  Maybe throw in 2-3 more races (8k-15k) in there as well

                     

                    Been running/low level competing for awhile now & getting tired of being near but just out of the top of AG locally.  Whatever I do I know that I need to ramp up my harder efforts while keeping balance in training recovery/life stuff.

                     

                    great stuff everyone,  thanks, appreciate it, keep the responses coming!!


                    Feeling the growl again

                       

                      after July, HM plan is to start ramping up the duration/distance on Sunday LR  up to 2 hrs/12-15 miles.  At that point plan on mixing in more tempo work during LR.  keeping rest of week pretty much intact (whatever it turns out to be).   

                       

                       

                      FWIW I think 1:40-2:00 is the sweet spot for a standard non-marathoning long run...even for 5K training.  Though I'd shorten it during the last 4-6 weeks before goal race.

                      "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

                       

                        Spaniel: 

                         

                         my HM plan was to not go over 2 hrs duration, so will stay in that "sweet spot" as you suggested.  have a few weeks between July & the HM but really not a lot of time.  would it be better to continue to lengthen duration up to 1:40-2 hrs & then start adding some tempo within that or to both slowly build the duration while adding abit more tempo on my Sundays LR?  another thought was to alternate weeks such as: week 1 95-100 mns easy pace  week 2 85-90 mns with 10 mn tempo at end of run.   week 3 100-110 mns easy  week 4  85-90 mns with 15 mn tempo at end.  & so on.  For the most part have been on a schedule where have been increasing LR 5 or so mns each week for 3 weeks & then 4th week cut back to close to week 1 & then begin another cycle.

                         

                        I'm leaning towards the Wed track w/o this week but at a moderately hard effort to begin.  then alternate my "fun" tempo/progressive wo's on Friday (depending on recovery from Wed) with LR on sunday.  very slowly increase effort on all these.  To improve much from this point need to work on getting adapted to running faster to build speed & also need that extra push from the group.  Also need to build speed endurance/stamina.  May find out that my regular hard effort wo's on next 2 Fridays will suffer abit from Wed track, ???

                         

                        This sounds like quite a bit of speed work thrown in at once but not really as will be very conservative.  Do have a good base & have been doing some good effort  stuff (for me) 1-2wk for awhile.  will not be building much in the way of overall mileage staying within 35-40/wk & then after July 40-45 wk.


                        Feeling the growl again

                          skyedog,

                           

                          IMHO I would alternate the long runs, easy one week and incorporating some effort the next.

                           

                          You may be asking a lot of yourself, running solid track work on Wed then tempo on Fri and LR on Sun (half the time with quality ending), given your mileage level.  I don't know your training but there are two possibilities:

                          1)  Your current mileage level is low compared to what you could handle, so your overall fatigue level is consistently low; you can handle extra quality as a result.

                          2)  You're running to your current fitness level mileage-wise...in which case 3 workouts with 1 rest day in between will be quite a challenge.

                           

                          When I was running 70-100mpw consistently and was in my 20s I could ro Tue-Thur workouts with Sun long run, and sometimes some moderate stuff on Sat to boot.  Now in my mid-30s running 50-70mpw consistently I almost always need 2 recovery days in between workouts.

                           

                          YMMV but I think you're asking a lot of yourself.

                           

                          An alternative if you like the weekly track workout is to keep it....and do the tempo work during your long run, and more of it than what is currently in your plan (4-6 miles in there, vs 10-15min as you wrote).  The most effective HM training I ever used was a Tues track workout and Sun long run with a Thurs "med-long run workout" of 12-14 miles with really solid quality in it...3X15min tempo with 5min recovery, 8-10mile tempo effort, progression last 10 miles of it, etc.  That medium-long run was pure gold.  You'd be doing a variation on that by using it as your long run.  You may have to shorten the run a bit to integrate that much effort, but given your weekly mileage level, doing that every other week at least may not be a bad thing?  The HM requries stamina for a long, sustained effort and that's what this does for you.

                          "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

                           

                            Good answers above. With your miles I like for you to have two quality sessions mixing in that tempo work within your long run as mentioned above. It could mean last few miles or several miles at marathon pace, some miles in the middle or even the whole run at a more steady pace. On the mid week work you could alternate the following work outs below giving you a variety of speeds without tearing you up so you can race more often. On race weeks, you knock down the volume with these work outs.  These are some options for you to mix in for variety. I personally like option 1 a lot as it helps build your threshold and max v02 simultaneously http://www.championshipproductions.com/files/xc-02010/Stiles-Critical-Velocity-Article.pdf  and doesn't or shouldn't beat you up like very very fast work outs. Think long term vs short term. Good luck.

                             

                            Midweek sample work outs with a warm up and cooldown miles around them.

                             

                            5-6 X 1K at 10K effort 90 sec jog  4-5 X 200m fast (800m-1 mile pace)

                            4 X 1 mile at half marathon effort 90-120 sec jog then  8-10 X 100m fast (400-800m pace)

                            6 X 800m at 3K effort 2 min jog followed by 4-5 X 200m fast

                            12 X 1 min at mile pace 1 min jog  8 X 100m (400m pace)

                            Those who try, fail! Those who do what it takes to succeed, succeed!!


                            Consistently Slow

                              3 x 1 @ 5k pace 3:00R

                              I am old and slow

                              Run until the trail runs out.

                              2014***1500 miles

                              50 miler 13:26:18

                              Race Less Train More

                               

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                                3 x 1 @ 5k pace 3:00R

                                I am old and slow

                                 

                                old and slow...maybe, but I personally think 3x1mile at 5K pace difficult. I know how much I normally hurt at the 1 mile pt of a 5K, and I wouldn't look forward to that workout. A 3 minute rest isn't very much for that work bout duration/pace.

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