Running-Wizard

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Irrational fear of specific workouts (Read 37 times)

    My first ever marathon training plan was one of those very generic plans found on the internets. It was just distance-based - each day had mileage assigned to it and that's what I would run (or not run, since it had rest days). No pace, no specificity. Short, short, medium, rest, short, long, rest, repeat. The vagueness was comforting.

     

    My running life has changed a bit since then; I've gotten faster, I run pretty much every day, and my definition of a short run is what a medium run used to be. I've thrown in hill repeats and fartleks, but still no specificity. Basically, it's been all aerobic base-building all the time.

     

    In a couple of weeks, I'm about to move on to the hills phase and I'm panicking a bit. Stride-outs? PCR? Um... okay, that's not too bad (although I don't use a HRM, so the PCR will be a "tempo," which doesn't freak me out). Then I look ahead at the anaerobic phase and start feeling anxiety. And the coordination phase? Aaaagh! Can't I just run a bunch?

     

    There's a good chance I'll wuss out and stick with fartlek, tempo, long, and easy runs. Maybe I need an actual coach to make me do the stuff that's so foreign to me (and to make sure I do them right).

     

    All that aside, I'm running more than ever and feeling great. Just thought I'd share my absurd anxiety with the group.

    JML


      While you will continue to progress aerobically if stick with fartlek, tempo, long, easy etc., you will not be in peak form for race day.    You have prepared a solid base and the later phases are designed to develop other facets of running fitness that you will need to run your best possible time.    I recall being a little confused on my first run through a Lydiard cycle as the workouts can seem technical and complicated.  They are now second nature to me but I completely understand your perspective.

       

      FWIW - I recommend trying to stick to the plan and come here to ask questions if the write-ups seem confusing.  There are a number of us here that have been through multiple Lydiard cycles and are happy to help.

       2014 goals: run a bunch....race some.....repeat...

        If you read what each workout's goal is and try to understand that, rather than focusing on pace or RPE, you may find they fit what you're used to doing - or at least not be as strange. Still, try to hit the RPE or whatever guide for intensity is being used. Hill workouts themselves may be different, unless you've inserted bounding in prior runs. I'm doing at least some of my intervals on hills, since my races are hilly.

         

        What I'm finding hard to adjust to is the weekly schedule vs the 2 wks that I'm used to using. What - this workout again? I just did it 7 days ago. That's even with using terrain to vary the workout.

        "So many people get stuck in the routine of life that their dreams waste away. This is about living the dream." - Cave Dog
          Don't wuss out Josh! Read the descriptions and do the workouts, you will be so glad that you did. If you need reinforcement check out the goal race thread at the top and look over everyone's accomplishments....the system works!


          Hungry

            Don't wuss out Josh! Read the descriptions and do the workouts, you will be so glad that you did. If you need reinforcement check out the goal race thread at the top and look over everyone's accomplishments....the system works!

            Yeah, don't be a wuss! Seriously, I am very interested in knowing how much someone like you (i.e., already very fast) can/will improve using this system. I know that I improved my marathon time quite a bit just from last fall to this summer. I probably would've improved some with just a steady diet of the base-building phase, but I really believe the Hills, Anaerobic, and Coordination phases gave me a significant amount of additional "speed."

             

            I think I got a bit of anxiety before some of the more intense anaerobic workouts. But it was always a very rewarding feeling to finish those workouts. The challenge for you may be to keep from going too fast. (One trick I employed was to use a treadmill for some of my anaerobic workouts. Well, the Minnesota winter was a factor, too. But I liked being able to set the speed to a precise value -- the plan says xTight lippedx pace, that converts to y.y mph, and hold it for the specified distance or time.)

             

            Q: Did you run cross-country in high school?  At no point in my RW plan did I ever push myself like I was pushed in some of those high school workouts. I believe we were pushed to a counterproductive extent back in those days. Some of those workouts scared the heck out of me!  Now, without a coach screaming at you, you are certainly able to "wuss out" in the middle of a workout -- you could run 5 repeats when RW says 6-10, for example ...  Not that I ever did that!

              But If I'm at peak for the race, I'll have no excuses...

               

              It's not so much that I don't understand the plan as it is that all seems so "legit," which is at odds with the running identity I've developed over the years. That being an unfocused, care-free, run whatever kind of life. It's not a bad way to run, since there's essentially no way to have a "bad" race. Since I've been getting faster, however, that "what if..." starts to creep into the brain...

               

              Ack, we'll see. I'm just being a big baby.

               

              While you will continue to progress aerobically if stick with fartlek, tempo, long, easy etc., you will not be in peak form for race day.    You have prepared a solid base and the later phases are designed to develop other facets of running fitness that you will need to run your best possible time.    I recall being a little confused on my first run through a Lydiard cycle as the workouts can seem technical and complicated.  They are now second nature to me but I completely understand your perspective.

               

              FWIW - I recommend trying to stick to the plan and come here to ask questions if the write-ups seem confusing.  There are a number of us here that have been through multiple Lydiard cycles and are happy to help.

                I was a musical theater nerd in high school. The running bug didn't bite me until I was in my late-twenties.

                 

                If I was really going to wuss out I wouldn't have started this thread; I'm just going to need a kick in the pants every now and then. Thanks, guys!

                JML


                  But If I'm at peak for the race, I'll have no excuses...

                   

                   

                  There are PLENTY of excuses available (weather, nutrition, sunspots etc), or you could just follow the plan and do the best you can on race day.  No need to over think it.

                   2014 goals: run a bunch....race some.....repeat...

                    seriously, if you need any ideas for self sabotage, just ask me!

                     

                    And the other stuff: yeah, it's all new,different, and not always easy. It definitely has the dreaded effect of making you fitter than ever! I tend to obsess about it in an unproductive manner and have to force myself to take it one day at a time, as in only think about that day's workout, and not too hard.

                     

                     

                     

                     

                    There are PLENTY of excuses available (weather, nutrition, sunspots etc), or you could just follow the plan and do the best you can on race day.  No need to over think it.

                      Update:

                      So I've gotten over myself and am now starting the hill phase. Even though I would like to have more consecutive weeks of aerobic, I've been able to handle the high-mileage with no drama. Which is a little surprising, since I've ramped up my mileage more dramatically than recommended; I think due to my relatively long history of running I must have always been capable of more than I was allowing myself to do. Weird, I never considered myself athletic, but there it is. My last five weeks look like this:

                      57.9

                      64.3

                      91.1 (a HUGE distance week record for me, lots of easy running with the dogs and exploring the new neighborhood)

                      87.7 (figured since the week before felt good, why not try to keep it up)

                      83.5 (still feel good? Craziness. Who am I?)

                       

                      This gives me ten weeks for hills, anaerobic, coordination, and taper. Here's the breakdown written lightly in pencil:

                       

                      Hill phase, two weeks. I have a LOT of time on feet running in hills, both up and down. The bounding exercise is actually familiar to me, so I know what I'm in for. Shouldn't be too rough on the pins, but if it is, well, that's what the pencil eraser is for.

                       

                      Anaerobic phase, three weeks. While the interval distances and times are a little different than what I've done before, it's not really that complicated. Don't know what I was crying about.

                       

                      Coordination phase, three weeks. This has the most weirdness for me, with the 100/100s and cut-downs. Surely I can cope, right?

                       

                      Taper, two weeks. Okay, I got this one.

                       

                      The time I have plugged into the plan is a very ambitious 2:50. If I can manage the speed stuff in training, I might go for it. Realistically, I expect to be a little slower than the dictated paces and am cool with that. A PR for me would be 2:58:47, and this will be the easiest course I've ever run. A barefoot PR would be 3:35ish, which I could probably do right now. So I'll keep plugging away and see what happens.

                       

                      Thanks again all for your support, etc.

                       

                      If interested, I wrote a little recap of the race I ran yesterday (I ran well within myself, not pushing too hard):

                      http://www.barefootjosh.com/?p=3541

                      JML


                        Solid work Josh.  You have established the base and now have the fun workouts coming up.  My only advice as you move into the next phases, particularly anaerobic and coordination, is to be mindful of letting the pace get away from you during harder workouts and time trials.  Using the Lydiard approach,  I typically experience a huge uptick in running fitness in the later phases, and find that paces that used to be hard become laughably easy.  I have never felt such a build to peak fitness under any other training method.  I usually have to work very hard to conserve the effort level and save my best performance for race day.  This approach has always been a worthwhile effort that has resulted in huge PRs on race day.

                         

                        Good luck and keep us posted.  I suspect that you are headed to a solid PR as you round out your fitness in the later phases.

                         

                        Jon

                         2014 goals: run a bunch....race some.....repeat...


                        Hungry

                          Wow. Just, Wow!  This race report is awesome. Keep up the great work and keep updating us!

                            Hahaha, Josh, I love your blog!

                              Hahaha, Josh, I love your blog!

                               

                              Thanks! Although I think about 40% of it is mediocre.

                                Hahaha, Josh, I love your blog!

                                 

                                Me too!

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