Low HR Training

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Help Plese (Read 727 times)

GrahamHyland


    Hi

    I have just started back running after a year break, I have been running over the past 2-3 weeks and my pace is terribly slow,

    I ran a marathon 3 yr ago in 3:30 with no aerobic training - So I tried the aerobic approch this time round and my pace is 17-18Min/Mile.

    Please tell me this will get better. I am spending so much time walking to keep my HR in check

    My MAF is approx 139,  Im 36yrs old and I have no illness's and I minused off 5 beats for being out of shape, My training H/r for the past 3 weeks is AVG 129 and the odd spike to about 136-137 I am commited to staying below MAF and really don't want to be flirting with the 135+ range until I can at least finish a 5k run without walking.

    Is this a workable approach?

     

    Graham

     

    jimmyb


      Hey Graham,

       

      Congrats on getting back to running.

       

      It gets better.

       

      If you ran a 3:30 marathon, and your current pace is 17-18:00, you are supremely out of shape, AND you are very smart to be easing yourself back into running in this way. You are increasing the probability that you'll stay healthy as you build your body back up.

       

      I suggest that you hug the MAF of 139 a bit more. Also, construct a hard easy schedule based on time. Here are a few approaches:

       

      **P.S.*****always warm-up and cool-down. E.G. If your HR target is 129, then take 15-20 minutes to slowly get your HR from about 25-30 beats below that to your target. Cool-down 15-20 minutes at least after the workout.

       

      1. run everything at MAF of 139. Whether you're on an easy day or hard day.  After warm-up, your HR should be in a tiny zone around 139, e.g. 138-140. Essentially, you are doing all your runs like an MAF test, whether it is a 30 minute easy day, or a 2 hour hard day.

       

      2. Warm-up, getting to the bottom of the zone of 129-139. Then hold the same pace and feel. Eventually you will reach MAF of 139 and will struggle to keep under at the same pace. You'll have to slow down.

       

      3. Do your hard days in a small zone near MAF, e.g 135-139. And your easy days in a zone of 119-129 or lower.

       

      4. You could try the heart-time concept I've been using. Read about it here (scroll down). And here.

       

      Whatever you choose to do, there are a few things to remember:

       

      --you want to spend some time at your MAF of 139. These will not only be your fastest miles, but it will also give more of your muscle fibers a workout. The MAF is on that line where you are using mostly slow-twitch, but also a little of the fast-twitch.

       

      --if you have to walk to stay under MAF,  you need a lot of work on your aerobic system, and walking will help. Eventually you won't be able to walk fast enough to get your HR to 139, and you'll be running everything.

       

      --easy recovery days are as important as hard days. Keep your easy days an hour or less for now. Perhaps starting at 30-40 minutes. Your body needs to adapt after the harder workouts. MAF runs never feel hard, unless you run a long time. But don't be fooled by that. You still need to recover after runs longer than an hour.

       

      --add a little time every week  to make sure your training load is increasing. 5-7% increase is a rule you might consider.

       

      --do regular MAF tests every 3-4 weeks or so. A regular one is good to do, even when it comes time to do speedwork and racing.

       

      --MAF running is about stress management. Total stress= running+work+family+everything else in life. Most of us are amateurs with stressful lives. At times, stress in your life will increase over normal levels. Be very aware of your MAF tests during these times. If they start to tank, that is a sign that the total stress is producing way too much stress hormones and your aerobic system is being suppressed. You will need to cut back on your running until the stress returns to normal levels, or you learn to relax in the face of what is stressing you. Running is helpful with stress, but it might have to be adjusted during real stressful times.

       

      It gets better, Graham. If you look at my MAF tests you will see that this is true. I've knocked 4 minutes off the test in 10 months using these guidelines. I've been on my way back from over-training (life stress caused this), and have made it through 2 up and down stressful years by sticking to these guidelines, and have made some real progress back.  You can get back as well.

       

      Keep going!

       

      --Jimmy

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      GrahamHyland


        Jimmy,

        Thank you so much for this post there is lots to take in.

        I'll stick with it and increase my AVG up a bit closer to 139 ,  It looks like I'm being a bit over cautious about going over MAF 139. I read before that you should never go over the MAF and I suppose being so unfit my HR spikes quite easily so I have this fear of going over for a few seconds without noticing.

        Graham

        C-R


          Wow. I can't add much to what jimmy posted. The boilerplates are excellent for background and I refer to them on a continual basis and learn something new each time. Stick with them.

           

          As for your pace, it will improve. Lots of examples here on this board. I agree with 17-18 showing a very poor aerobic engine. However, you will find improvement will come. Slowly at first and faster as you progress. Sort of a snowball rolling downhill (per my experience). Be patient with LHR. It will test you mentally while you improve physically. See jimmy's recent efforts as a testament to pateince paying some serious dividens.

           

          Good luck and keep posting here. It is a very good group.


          "He conquers who endures" - Persius
          "Every workout should have a purpose. Every purpose should link back to achieving a training objective." - Spaniel

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          jimmyb


            Jimmy,

            Thank you so much for this post there is lots to take in.

            I'll stick with it and increase my AVG up a bit closer to 139 ,  It looks like I'm being a bit over cautious about going over MAF 139. I read before that you should never go over the MAF and I suppose being so unfit my HR spikes quite easily so I have this fear of going over for a few seconds without noticing.

            Graham

             

            You're welcome.

             

            During the aerobic base phase--which you are in--you want to stay at or below your MAF. If your at 139, and it spikes, then just slow down. It won't destroy any progress if you see blips that are higher than MAF on occasion. For example, when I do MAF tests, I use a zone of 132-134 (MAF is 133). I try to stay at 133. I'll allow 134 for a little while, but not too long. If it's staying there, I slow down. The idea is to keep it tight around MAF as best as possible and average MAF. You don't want to do large portions of the workout over the MAF.

             

            --Jimmy

             

            Log    PRs

              2. Warm-up, getting to the bottom of the zone of 129-139.  How does everyone here warm-up?  With the lower temps its too cold to walk-jog the first mile for a warm-up.  I hate to overdress. 

               

              Take your time Graham.  The better fitness will come quick.

              jimmyb


                2. Warm-up, getting to the bottom of the zone of 129-139.  How does everyone here warm-up?  With the lower temps its too cold to walk-jog the first mile for a warm-up.  I hate to overdress. 

                 

                Take your time Graham.  The better fitness will come quick.

                 

                These days I do the same thing for every run:

                 

                First 15 minutes breakdown:

                First five minutes: 100-103 bpm

                2nd 5 minutes: 104-107 bpm

                3rd five minutes 107-110 bpm

                 

                I then gradually get to my target in the next 5-10 minutes (MAF 133) :

                 

                recovery: 113-118

                MAF Tests: 133 bpm

                medium long: 123-133 bpm

                long: 118-133 bpm

                aeroboc threshold: 145-150

                LT:170-180 bpm

                 

                That makes a 20-25 minute warm-up to my target (s).

                 

                --Jimmy

                 

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                jimmyb


                  Jimmy,

                  Thank you so much for this post there is lots to take in.

                  I'll stick with it and increase my AVG up a bit closer to 139 ,  It looks like I'm being a bit over cautious about going over MAF 139. I read before that you should never go over the MAF and I suppose being so unfit my HR spikes quite easily so I have this fear of going over for a few seconds without noticing.

                  Graham

                   

                   

                  P.S>  Let your MAF tests guide you. If they are improving, you're on the right track. If not, then adjustments might need to be made in one direction or another.

                  Log    PRs


                  Consistently Slow

                    2. Warm-up, getting to the bottom of the zone of 129-139.  How does everyone here warm-up?  With the lower temps its too cold to walk-jog the first mile for a warm-up.  I hate to overdress. 

                     

                    Take your time Graham.  The better fitness will come quick.

                    I do not  like being cold . I tend to overdress. It does make you stay below maff.Smile

                    Run until the trail runs out.

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                    unsolicited chatter

                    http://bkclay.blogspot.com/

                      Hi

                      I have just started back running after a year break, I have been running over the past 2-3 weeks and my pace is terribly slow,

                      I ran a marathon 3 yr ago in 3:30 with no aerobic training - So I tried the aerobic approch this time round and my pace is 17-18Min/Mile.

                      Please tell me this will get better. I am spending so much time walking to keep my HR in check

                      My MAF is approx 139,  Im 36yrs old and I have no illness's and I minused off 5 beats for being out of shape, My training H/r for the past 3 weeks is AVG 129 and the odd spike to about 136-137 I am commited to staying below MAF and really don't want to be flirting with the 135+ range until I can at least finish a 5k run without walking.

                      Is this a workable approach?

                       

                      Graham

                       

                       

                       

                      my opinion : MAF can give you the results relatively fast for you because you used to be a good runner and you are just trying to come back from being out of shape.

                       

                      but I think 17-18/mile pace could be detrimental in terms of not allowing enough training load for your muscles. you could try these ideas:

                       

                      - MAF+10, so still a low intensity but stress will be minimized. do this for a while until your pace improves, at this point can go back to MAF HR. ...now that one is a bit less orthodox, but you can find Hadd (another low HR training approach) suggests this approach for people who have too much trouble with the very low HR. the point is just that as soon as you got improvements/get used to low intensity in general, go back to the lower HR!
                      - or just run downhill a lot. the degree of the slope should be so that your running form doesn't change, but it should be the steepest possible within this range. I found 3-4% grade is great for me but this could change individually, according to maffetone himself (I asked him about this).

                      I also heard that one is usually faster on the treadmill, so you could try that instead of running outside.

                       

                      on another note...

                      I'm sad I can't show up here as a cool example of MAF running & improving off it. but that's because I was never a runner before and never did any other aerobic activities so at MAF it would take a couple of years to get up to speed... I'm not that patient so I chose the easier way because I was able to take the risks of faster running: low level of stress in life and a capability to tolerate faster pace. I'm young and recover fast. (but one day I will be ready for a nice MAF base building. Smile )

                      for you, MAF should work within 3 months. if you were really just out of shape, you should see pretty nice gains soon, provided you go out enough times (training load!!). I mean, with your old 3:30 marathon, I would expect to see pace improve by several min/mile in a couple of months.

                      if you see no improvement in 3 months, then you have to review what you've been doing wrong. it could be training load too low or too much carbs prior to workouts, etc. etc.

                        2. Warm-up, getting to the bottom of the zone of 129-139.  How does everyone here warm-up?  With the lower temps its too cold to walk-jog the first mile for a warm-up.  I hate to overdress. 

                         

                        Take your time Graham.  The better fitness will come quick.

                         

                         

                        oh, you can just warm up at the MAF pace - but not faster (someone correct me if this is a bad idea, though!). perhaps a notch below MAF pace. no need to walk during warmup if your MAF pace is not slower than 14min/mile or so... could be individual, but for me, I changed from walk to continuous running for warmup after reaching 14 for MAF pace.

                         

                        any of the above approaches (MAF or MAF-one notch below) should have your HR increase gradually. if you are pretty used to the MAF pace and to the way it feels, you can just go ahead by what you feel in your legs while making sure the HR doesn't go higher than it should. I tried warming up strictly by HR but that didn't work so well for me. by feel was much better (while still having HRM to control the general picture). warmup by HR could work for you though. I just found it made the warmup too unnatural.

                          I would also suggest 144 MAF. You can run and improve your pace much easier. After few months you can drop your MAF to 139 and take it easy if you like. I am 36 and had one year of only hiking because of my work. Real slow-twitch every day. When I started to run again few months ago, I just could not get up to "running" with 126-136 range that I used before hiking period started. Running was slow and really heavy. So I decided to up my range to MAF 145 (I was 35 then) and I got really good progress after my legs got used to fast stride. Try to get your cadence up as soon as possible.

                           

                          So, Jimmy's advice is great and you should listen to what he says, but maybe it could be easier for you mentally to run at least few weeks in 144 and see how it goes. You can always come down a bit if you feel that 144 is causing too much stress to your body. MAF intervals and down hills are also yes yes stuff when you try to get your pace up at the beginning, especially if you cannot run mentally sufficient speed in steady MAF pace.

                          GrahamHyland


                            WOW guys thank you so much for the advice, This is such a great place to come for advice.

                             

                            I tried bringing the HR closer to 139  as jimmy suggested and admit that it is alot easier on the mental side, the pace is a bit quicker too, I have moved from 17-18 min/m to 15-16ish which feels better, I still need to walk quite alot to keep my HR down as it is very wild and unpredictable when i'm running. 

                             

                            I will find it hard to do a proper warm up because as soon as 'I start running i'm flirting with MAF within 150m. 

                            I'm sure it will come because my first walk comes a bit later in the run 600-800m 2 weeks ago I was walking at 200m. And my walks are quicker because my HR comes down quicker too. So i'm actually spending more time running thanwalking now which is less frustrating.

                             

                            Thanks again everyone this advice is really appreiated

                            Graham

                              WOW guys thank you so much for the advice, This is such a great place to come for advice.

                               

                              I tried bringing the HR closer to 139  as jimmy suggested and admit that it is alot easier on the mental side, the pace is a bit quicker too, I have moved from 17-18 min/m to 15-16ish which feels better, I still need to walk quite alot to keep my HR down as it is very wild and unpredictable when i'm running. 

                               

                              I will find it hard to do a proper warm up because as soon as 'I start running i'm flirting with MAF within 150m. 

                              I'm sure it will come because my first walk comes a bit later in the run 600-800m 2 weeks ago I was walking at 200m. And my walks are quicker because my HR comes down quicker too. So i'm actually spending more time running thanwalking now which is less frustrating.

                               

                              Thanks again everyone this advice is really appreiated

                              Graham

                               

                               

                              I checked your training log. you should train a lot more at MAF than 2 hours a week. I don't imagine it's hard on your body at this slow pace so you could probably try upping this mileage gradually for every week. 6-7 hours or more would probably be a good goal. but this depends on what your body/legs can tolerate. of course, you ran a marathon so I guess you would be ok. but you know that best.

                               

                              about the walking - if you just get blips past 140, you don't really need to walk. of course if HR constantly stays above 140 then you would have to walk.

                               

                              I'm just curious : what's your maxHR if you happen to know it from experience (forget 220-age maxHR formula)? of course the MAF HR is usually not to do with maxHR, so this is mostly curiosity.

                              jimmyb


                                WOW guys thank you so much for the advice, This is such a great place to come for advice.

                                 

                                I tried bringing the HR closer to 139  as jimmy suggested and admit that it is alot easier on the mental side, the pace is a bit quicker too, I have moved from 17-18 min/m to 15-16ish which feels better, I still need to walk quite alot to keep my HR down as it is very wild and unpredictable when i'm running. 

                                 

                                I will find it hard to do a proper warm up because as soon as 'I start running i'm flirting with MAF within 150m. 

                                I'm sure it will come because my first walk comes a bit later in the run 600-800m 2 weeks ago I was walking at 200m. And my walks are quicker because my HR comes down quicker too. So i'm actually spending more time running thanwalking now which is less frustrating.

                                 

                                Thanks again everyone this advice is really appreiated

                                Graham

                                 

                                You're welcome, Graham. Glad it works better for you.  Warm-up is super important. I suggest that you walk if you have to during the warm-up.

                                Remember to keep in touch with your MAF tests. Let them be your guide as to whether or not your training load is enough, too much, or not enough. Keep us posted on your journey--hang out! Good luck and keep going!

                                 

                                --Jimmy

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