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speedwork question (Read 193 times)


Feeling the growl again

     

    In past training I've done this general schedule for my 4x a week:

    Long run (up to 12 miles)

    Interval run (5-7 miles with anywhere from 4-8 intervals of 400-800m)

    tempo run (5-7 miles with anywhere from 10-30 minutes tempo pace)

    medium run (8-10 miles medium pace)

     

    Might not seem like much, but every 3, 4, 5 weeks I burn out and never feel like I'm doing my best time for the race. 

     

    The reason for this is obvious.  You are doing a bunch of fast running with no foundation.  You simply don't run enough for your body to adapt to the point where you can do that much work on a sustained basis.  If you HAD been a higher mileage runner, you could cut BACK to this type of plan and get away with it for a number of months...and perhaps even improve for a couple.  But this is not the type of thing for you at all.

     

    If you are going to stick in the same mileage range and with the 4X per week schedule, you need to cut back to one real workout per week and perhaps another moderate day where you do something easier...like 2 miles of fartleks or one ~5K paced mile at the end of an otherwise easy run.  Or, add some quality at the end of your long run.  You could rotate what your one fast workout is, tempo/interval/fartlek etc.

     

    You can't just run hard every day, even if you have days off in between, and expect it to work very well.  Easy days are not just for recovery, they are building you a foundation off which everything else is based.

    "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

     

       

      The reason for this is obvious.  You are doing a bunch of fast running with no foundation.  You simply don't run enough for your body to adapt to the point where you can do that much work on a sustained basis.  If you HAD been a higher mileage runner, you could cut BACK to this type of plan and get away with it for a number of months...and perhaps even improve for a couple.  But this is not the type of thing for you at all.

       

      If you are going to stick in the same mileage range and with the 4X per week schedule, you need to cut back to one real workout per week and perhaps another moderate day where you do something easier...like 2 miles of fartleks or one ~5K paced mile at the end of an otherwise easy run.  Or, add some quality at the end of your long run.  You could rotate what your one fast workout is, tempo/interval/fartlek etc.

       

      You can't just run hard every day, even if you have days off in between, and expect it to work very well.  Easy days are not just for recovery, they are building you a foundation off which everything else is based.

       

      In my opinion, this is one of the best posts ever.  Pretty much ALL you need to know about training for distance events, if you're willing to stop and think about what he said, is in it.

       

      ーーー*ーーー*ーーー*ーーー*ーーー

       

      To OP; it is very much possible to run 1:45 half marathon (I'm actually more inclined to say 1:30) without ANY speed training.  For someone who runs 1:55 for half, that person (use whatever race time calculator you can find) is somewhere around 7:10 for ONE mile shape.  My hunch is that you can probably run somewhere around 6:45 for a mile.  1:55 half is about 8:45 per mile pace.  You can do all interval training you want till the cows come home; and you may even get your mile time down to 6:30 and, because of that, you may be able to run the first 5k of your next half marathon but you will most likely run out of gas and slow down at the end; especially if you spread out your intervals into 3-4 days span because, most likely, by doing so, your stamina will suffer (serious decrease in volume).

       

      ...go to running-wizard.com and pay for a 24 week, 4 days a week, 10K or HM goal race training plan.  Why struggle to figure out how to make training work on just 4 days a week when the answer is right there for less than the cost of a pair of shoes?

       

      Thanks for promoting Running Wizard!! ;o)  And here's the reasoning behind RW; as Spaniels had stated, you'll need some level of aerobic foundation in order to do anything else that would help you perform better later on.  So you'll spend the first several weeks building this foundation.  At this point, working on "speed" which, physiologically, you can develop to the maximum in 4-6 weeks is not necessary and, more than that, by including this "speed" training during this period, you'll be trading off the volume of running which is vital for developing this foundation.  Then interval is fine but, most likely, like I said earlier, I'll bet you can do those intervals, whatever you're doing, quite a bit faster than "necessary speed" which is 8:45 per mile.  But you can put them all together to actually do a good race.  Basically, if your goal is 8:45 per mile pace, you really don't need anything faster than 8:30 per mile speed (of course, you will want better but there's a fine balance between too fast and just right).  But what you need is to put them together.  Doing a tempo run at 10:30 pace ain't gonna cut it--no, I guess I read it wrong.  I don't know how fast you're doing your tempo run but I guess you're doing it for 10-30 minutes long of tempo run within 5-7 mile run.  Well, either way, it's too short to help your half marathon.  It might be fine for 5k but not for 21k.  Chances are, you can't do much more than that because you're too tired from other quality workout like intervals.

       

      You have to know when to do what; there's a time to go long and easy; there's a time to go fast; and there's a time to put them together and go long and fast.  Study various training half-ass hearted and slap them all together is nothing but a crap-shooting approach.  There is way too much information out there.  People love to talk about things like VO2Max interval or lactate or whatever threshold or fast twitch and slow twitch, etc.  Not too many people understand just what they are and how to put them all together in a balanced way.  Picking up all those fancy terms is quite apart from being able to apply them in YOUR own training plan.  VO2Max or lactate may not mean a thing if your foundation is so small that you're getting neuromuscular breakdown at 9-minute pace if you're trying to cover 13-miles at 8:45 pace.

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