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trying to get mileage to 50+ per week. Are short runs options or a waste of time. (Read 2052 times)

    Jeff,

    This is a great post.  All of it.  I happened to copy/paste just a section...

    Thanks for your input and your insight here! 

    As Awaldvogel said... this is what I like about RA.

    Have a great weekend!

     

    Now because of the attention to high mileage as a key for marathon success (which is true--it is the key) you have new runners shooting for 50-60 miles per week at 9 minutes per mile, in singles. This is essentially 81 minutes on average per run! No run in the week shorter than an hour. This sort of schedule teaches the body to run poorly because it is not strong enough to endure and run properly.

     

    Then they wonder why they are injured so often and fail to improve!

    2014 Goals:

    #1: Do what I can do. <DOING>

    #2: 365 Hours training

     

      This post is a little off topic, but it is an issue that I have been thinking about a lot.

       

      Personally, I think more people should be doing shorter runs. One "mistake" that I see new or inexperienced runners make too often in the pursuit of mileage is to do almost all of their mileage in runs of 60+ minutes. I think that the best "bang for your buck" run is the 35 or 40 minute run at an easy but steady clip. The run can be completed with minimal fatigue while also running at a decent pace. Form is good because the runner is not running tired.

       

      If you look at what experienced runners do, you will see a 35-45 minute run almost every day. Slower runners look at these logs and see that the "key" is doing runs of 5-7 miles, but perhaps they miss the fact that this might be only 3 or 4 mile for them.

       

      I have made this mistake in my own training. You look at a guy like malmo (George Malley, former AR holder in the half marathon). He has posted his training a lot on letsrun. He is mentioned as a high mileage success, and rightfully so because he ran 140+mpw on occasion. His bread and butter training was 8 miles in the am, 8 miles in the pm.

       

      But if you stop and think a bit, you see that he was doing these runs at 5:20-6:00 pace. One of the best runners in the country was running 45-50 minutes in the morning, 45-50 minutes in the evening. So if you want to train like malmo, running high mileage, you should maybe start with 30 minutes in the morning, 30 minutes at night. After a few years, maybe you will be able to handle 45-50 in the am, 45-50 in the pm--but this will still be perhaps "only" 6 miles for each run. High mileage!

       

      Now because of the attention to high mileage as a key for marathon success (which is true--it is the key) you have new runners shooting for 50-60 miles per week at 9 minutes per mile, in singles. This is essentially 81 minutes on average per run! No run in the week shorter than an hour. This sort of schedule teaches the body to run poorly because it is not strong enough to endure and run properly.

       

      Then they wonder why they are injured so often and fail to improve!

       

      Thanks for the post Jeff, it really got me thinking about my training and racing over the last two years and what has been differnen between this years and last year as far as my race times are concerned.

       

      I made some big improvements from the beginning of 2010 to the end of 2010. I ran a HM in the spring and another in the fall. The fall HM was nearly 10 minutes faster. This year, I had been dealing with some health issues, but overall I think I've lost some endurance, speed and form.

       

      The difference is that in 2010, I did alot of those 30-40 minute runs during my lunch breaks (usually every day) and would run again when I got home from work. This year I have been doing more swim workouts over my lunch break and far less running as I've been shifting my training to three sport triathlon workouts. The pace at which I ran in late 2010 do not feel the same this year. I think I need to start doing more of the 30-40 minute runs at a quicker pace.

       

      The pain that hurts the worse is the imagined pain. One of the most difficult arts of racing is learning to ignore the imagined pain and just live with the present pain (which is always bearable.) - Jeff

       

      2014 Goals:

       

      Stay healthy

      Enjoy life

       

        wow, I didn't expect so much advice.  I appreciate everything.  Ok, so I've came up with a couple of things based both on this forum and talking to several runners.

         

        1. shorter runs can be used for speedwork/tempowork if time is lacking.

        2. if I only think I have time for 3 miles push just a little faster to get the 5 miles(kind of the same as 1.)

        3. Some short runs are ok, and probably will speed recovery build a little extra leg strength but don't put too much of the bulk into these runs.

        4. as another poster said, practice strides, pacing, maybe a short hill session.

         

        Some of this is repetitive and maybe not even right but kind of a summation of what I heard from my responses, my local running group and runners from my gym.  All in all I don't think adding these runs in are going to hurt at all. 

         

        BTW another poster added something that I think I myself find myself guilty of and might hurt me at times and that is the falling into the habit of getting so much mileage in that your miles start falling into a slow pace i.e. 8:30-9:00 miles. 

         

        I'm not sure you got the total meaning of what everyone here was saying. The first thing I think of reading your summary is that you need to be sure you don't get caught up running fast too often.  I'll sometimes squeeze my speedwork into my lunchtime if I ran easy in the morning, but don't feel that all of the short runs need to be fast. If you haven't done much speed be careful as well, as you may no know quite as well what it's supposed to feel like and may not get properly warmed up or cooled down. Frequently my speedwork days are the days I'm working out the longest, as I normally run easy until I'm warmed up, stretch, run easy a bit more, a few strides, and then into my speed work, then cool down at easy pace.

         

        I actually think the bulk of your running in short runs is no problem at all, and if you only have time for 3 miles, run 3 miles. Do that a couple times in a week and you're halfway to your mileage increase goal. Increasing the pace to try to get more miles into less time isn't a great idea. You haven't shared your log, but there're other ways to increase mileage as well, but I don't want to recommend one without seeing what you're doing.

         

        Basically, of your points - 1 is true, but don't increase your number of speed sessions. Point 2 is an easy way to get into injury trouble. Point 3 - you seem scared of running short and slow. Point 4 - the strides that were mentioned where instead of speedwork, do a few short (20-60m in my practices) accelerations without going to a big effort, just to get running faster now and then. 

        2013 Goal: Make 3:00:16 go away - FAIL.

        2014 Goal: Make 3:00:16 go away.

          Im no expert here and you have gotten advice from people far smarter than I am,

           

          BUT,

           

          I think you are better off running your 40 miles within your normal training plan (what ever it might be) and if you add short runs, add them as easy runs.    Based on your summary, it seem you are eyeballing too much up tempo or speed running and setting yourself up for an injury..  GO ahead and run the extra miles during your other running times, but keep it very slow, easy and relaxed...

           

          'Least thats what I think...

          Champions are made when no one is watching


          Marquess of Utopia

            Im no expert here and you have gotten advice from people far smarter than I am,

             

            BUT,

             

            I think you are better off running your 40 miles within your normal training plan (what ever it might be) and if you add short runs, add them as easy runs.    Based on your summary, it seem you are eyeballing too much up tempo or speed running and setting yourself up for an injury..  GO ahead and run the extra miles during your other running times, but keep it very slow, easy and relaxed...

             

            'Least thats what I think...

             

            +1

             

            I usually split up my 80-90 minute runs if I need extra recovery; or I add a 30 minute easy run in the mornings to loosen up. 

             

            doubles: http://www.runningtimes.com/Article.aspx?ArticleID=24901

              This is why I love this site. 

              [...]

              Putting it into practice might be another thing Joking

               

              And yes, Mike, that was pretty funny.

               

              Hear hear.  This site is really good.  I've learned much in threads like these.  I dig the summaries provided from personal experiences and research.  If only there was a site with as much knowledge for learning a second language - then I could feel as guilty about not learning Spanish as I do about not running more often. 

               

               


              just a simple cat

                Have you been reading my log? Blush

                 

                Sometimes I feel like the very short run is almost not worth it simply because of the time involved in changing clothes, showering again, etc.  I'm wrapping up the Pfitz 70-max plan and, for that reason, just couldn't bring myself to do the few doubles he has in there (6 am / 4 pm).

                 I will sometimes do a short run in the evening, and a longer run next morning....and only shower once! (!!) when I am all done.   The stinkier morning run is not a problem as long as no one runs too close to me.  Big grin

                 

                 

                JimR


                  I used to do stuff like this last November.  Now I do things completely differently!

                  pondman


                    When going from 40 to 50 miles, I probably wouldn't consider a 3 miler, unless it was an additional 6 or 7th day, and it would be a recovery runs. I personally don't do short speed runs and rely more on 1600 m intervals for speed. I prefer to develop by running on tired legs, following a long run or interval work, with a longer recovery run sometimes as long as 8 miles.

                       I will sometimes do a short run in the evening, and a longer run next morning....and only shower once! (!!) when I am all done.   The stinkier morning run is not a problem as long as no one runs too close to me.  Big grin

                       I have to sleep on the couch if I try this. I tried it, and it was explained to me.

                      2013 Goal: Make 3:00:16 go away - FAIL.

                      2014 Goal: Make 3:00:16 go away.


                      finally Sub-3!!!

                        This post is a little off topic, but it is an issue that I have been thinking about a lot.

                         ...important stuff in the middle... 

                        Then they wonder why they are injured so often and fail to improve!

                         This is me.  I made teh mistake of ever increasing my time/session in persuit of high and higher milage.  I finally realized that my shortest run was a 60 minute recovery run, and I wasn't sure that 60 minutes and recovery were complementary goals.

                         

                        I typically alternate easy sessions with quality sessions, but I have mostly been doing 1/day runs.  As you sprinkle in 2/days can you also get n more quality?  Or do you just turn an 60 minute easy run into 2x30-45 minute easy runs?

                          I typically alternate easy sessions with quality sessions, but I have mostly been doing 1/day runs.  As you sprinkle in 2/days can you also get n more quality?  Or do you just turn an 60 minute easy run into 2x30-45 minute easy runs?

                           

                          These are the right questions. The answers are out on the road.

                            So I currently am getting in about 40 mpw which is the max I can really fit in working 3 jobs.  I do have 2 seperate times that i could squeeze in 3-4 mile runs depending on speed between jobs.  Optimally I would like to be around 50 miles per week.  Are short runs an option. Perhaps used as faster runs? What about if I'm running them at the same pace as my general medium-long distance runs?

                             

                            Are you progressing at 40 miles per week and with the stressload you are carrying?

                            Progressing= getting faster at the same aerobic/anaerobic heart rates or perceived efforts.


                            If so, then maybe 40 is just fine for now. If you add more training load, try some brief fat-burning efforts at lower heart rates or easy.  Just 30 minutes of aerobic work will have an effect.

                             

                            If you do add more, whether it be aerobic or anaerobic, keep track of your paces at your aerobic HR or  efforts, if they go south, then cut back.

                             

                            --JImmy Cool

                            log   prs      Crusted Salt comic #141

                             

                              These are the right questions. The answers are out on the road.

                               

                              Theres the Jeff we all know and love

                                Also reading this thread sort of slaps me in the face with my current circumstance.

                                 

                                I suffered a pelvic stress fracture a few weeks ago and was sort of struggling to figure out what I did wrong. I wasn't running any sort of crazy mileage that I hadn't run before.  I had been getting in workouts (including some quality long runs) more consistently than ever though. I think in hindsight splitting up those easy 1 hour runs could have helped.  

                                 

                                At the same time I felt like I was recovering great, hittling all my workouts really well. Sometimes the answer is not so obvious.

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