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Two weeks until race. Help! (Read 146 times)

Cowboy Bob


    I last ran a 5k in April this year in 39 minutes and 30 seconds (my first in the past 12 years). My next goal was to run the 5k I'm in two weeks from now in under 35 minutes. However, after four months of training I've hit a plateau at around 36 and a half minutes.  I'm running practice 5k's every Monday and Friday, and doing a 2 mile run every Wednesday.  How can I reduce my time by another minute and a half over the next two weeks? Any ideas? Thank you!


    an amazing likeness

      Run easy and a bit longer for the next 2 weeks. Drop the "practice" 5Ks and turn them into easy 4-5mi runs. You can't cram speed into a body that's not ready for it.

      I've done my best to live the right way. I get up every morning and go to work each day.

      CanadianMeg


      Cirque du Sore Legs 2019

        MT is right; you can't cram for speed.

         

        You are running 3.1, 2 and 3.1 for a weekly total of 8.2 miles per week? I don't think you are running enough to create the gains in speed you are looking for, esp if you are racing two of those runs.

         

        Is there a reason you are in such a hurry to drop your time so much? For most of us, running is a long time pursuit. You will improve over time.

        "Don't feel like running today...suck it up and run ...you're an athlete." (John Stanton, founder & owner of The Running Room)

         

        Half Fanatic #9292. 20 Half Marathons and Counting... :)

        Tchuck


          Yeah, you have trained yourself to run at higher a anaerobic ratio which will cause you to plateau. More miles and slower miles is your longer term solution to getting faster to build your aerobic engine. You don't have a lot of aerobic power currently as you train too fast and not enough.

           

          Your best bet is to not race your training runs over next 2 weeks and actually try to absorb some of that speed work you have been doing. Races in training beat you up. I would run easy jog 4 mile runs with a few striders at end of each. Your best bet is to go into race fresh. Do an easy 1 mile jog with striders 15 - 30 min before race. Don't start too fast and try to fnish strong. Recovering and proper pacing is your best strategy right now to run faster in 2 weeks. Purchase a book on running to learn proper trainng for future races.

          H-WAVE - Helping Athletes Reduce Pain and Recover Faster

          Cowboy Bob


            Thank you all for your suggestions. I really appreciate it. Regarding the suggestion to run longer than 3.1 and easier is a problem. Even pushing myself, my top speed is little more than a jog, and after the 3.1 I'm really worn out (although many of these practice runs have been in high heat).  With now 1 1/2 weeks left before the race, I'm thinking of cutting back on the distance to maybe a mile to a mile and a half and moving indoors to the indoor track, getting good rest at night, and eating right. This way I will be fresh. Thoughts?

            GinnyinPA


              If you run more slowly, you should be able to run farther with less effort.  Keep the pace conversational.

              runmichigan


                Honestly now that you are 1 1/2 weeks before the race nothing you can do will better prepare you for the race.  Any training will take 10 to 14 days for the training effect to occur.  However, you can derail your training by trying to do too much in the time left.  You would be best served by doing only easy runs in the range of 1 to 3 miles the same 3 to 4 times a week.  If you need to walk during these runs, then you should do a walk/run approach.  The key is keep all runs between now and the race at a conversational pace (even if it is a 15 minute per mile run).  Getting good sleep and maintaining a good diet are key also.

                 

                I would recommend against moving indoors unless the heat and/or humidity prompt a heat warning or ozone action day.  Your training runs should be on the same surface type and in similar conditions that you expect to run the race in.  By doing this you will have confidence in your race because you have trained in those conditions prior and there should be no surprises.

                Cowboy Bob


                  If you run more slowly, you should be able to run farther with less effort.  Keep the pace conversational.

                   

                  Thank you, Ginny!

                  Cowboy Bob


                    Honestly now that you are 1 1/2 weeks before the race nothing you can do will better prepare you for the race.  Any training will take 10 to 14 days for the training effect to occur.  However, you can derail your training by trying to do too much in the time left.  You would be best served by doing only easy runs in the range of 1 to 3 miles the same 3 to 4 times a week.  If you need to walk during these runs, then you should do a walk/run approach.  The key is keep all runs between now and the race at a conversational pace (even if it is a 15 minute per mile run).  Getting good sleep and maintaining a good diet are key also.

                     

                    I would recommend against moving indoors unless the heat and/or humidity prompt a heat warning or ozone action day.  Your training runs should be on the same surface type and in similar conditions that you expect to run the race in.  By doing this you will have confidence in your race because you have trained in those conditions prior and there should be no surprises.

                    Really great advice. Just what I was looking for! And I hadn't thought about staying outdoors, but that makes really good sense. I have a three hour drive to the race, which starts at 8 a.m., so I plan to get a decent night's sleep, then eat a banana and drink some Powerade on the way. Upon arrival I will lace 'em up, stretch, and go. Thank you up in Michigan from me here down in Missouri. (:

                    Tchuck


                      If used to caffeine, a 5 HOUR ENERGY, an hour before race can have benefit. However, I would do this in training first.

                      H-WAVE - Helping Athletes Reduce Pain and Recover Faster

                      Cowboy Bob


                        Thank you, tchuck!

                          Bob, if you run with a watch, take it off for your race. Run based on how you feel. See what happens.

                           

                          I have this image of you running time trials every Monday and Friday constantly trying to maintain that 12 minute pace and then sprinting the home stretch. That's how I used to do it. If that sounds anything like you, put a piece of tape over your watch or do something to free yourself from sticking to an artificial pace. You might just surprise yourself.

                           

                          In the long term, if you really want to improve then you will have to train as others have mentioned.

                          Blue Rocket


                          All systems Go!

                            Regarding tchuck's idea about caffeine before the race reminds me of something I heard while listening to a "Diz Runs" podcast. The guest he had on mentioned his secret weapon was weening himself from caffeine for 2 weeks before a big race (his were marathons) so that when he took caffeine on race day it had additional potency, because his system was someone re-sensitized to it. I plan on giving his idea a try in my upcoming race this fall...already cutting back on my coffee intake.

                             

                            Best of luck.

                            Cowboy Bob


                              Bob, if you run with a watch, take it off for your race. Run based on how you feel. See what happens.

                               

                              I have this image of you running time trials every Monday and Friday constantly trying to maintain that 12 minute pace and then sprinting the home stretch. That's how I used to do it. If that sounds anything like you, put a piece of tape over your watch or do something to free yourself from sticking to an artificial pace. You might just surprise yourself.

                               

                              In the long term, if you really want to improve then you will have to train as others have mentioned.

                               

                              Rip, you are exactly right, right down to the sprint at the end. Good advice, and thank you!

                              Cowboy Bob


                                Regarding tchuck's idea about caffeine before the race reminds me of something I heard while listening to a "Diz Runs" podcast. The guest he had on mentioned his secret weapon was weening himself from caffeine for 2 weeks before a big race (his were marathons) so that when he took caffeine on race day it had additional potency, because his system was someone re-sensitized to it. I plan on giving his idea a try in my upcoming race this fall...already cutting back on my coffee intake.

                                 

                                Best of luck.

                                 

                                Thank you, Blue Rocket!

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