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How to improve my 3200 time? (Read 78 times)

LS0618


Leo

    My name is Leo, and I am a junior in high school. This season my goal is to hit 10:05 for the two mile, which is the qualifying standard for state. I have run a 10:18 this season, but I fluctuate from 10:30 to 10:20 very often. My PR is 10:13 which I got as a sophomore, and no matter what I do, I just can't seem to run any faster. I've tried talking to my coach, but nothing ever gets solved. I'm the only two-miler for my school, so I feel like I should be doing different workouts from the mile and 800 runners, yet my coach refuses to alter the workout for me. It seems like I should be doing more speed work at 75 sec 400 pace (for a 10 min two mile) and longer (1000m or over) intervals specifically to improve my two mile speed and stamina. Otherwise, I feel like I do everything else correctly to produce results. My nutrition is great, I get 8-9 hours of sleep every night, I run around 40 miles a week with one rest day of two easy miles. I have a ten mile long run as well, and I'm doing most of my easy runs at around 7:30 pace. Is the previously mentioned issue the reason I can't improve my two mile? What are the best actions to take in my situation? Going to state means A LOT to me, as I have been preparing all winter with that in mind.

    Future marathon runner.
    "Doubts kill more dreams than failure ever will"
    Current PR's as of May 13, 2017:
    800: 2:13
    1600: 4:49
    3200: 10:13
    5K: 16:46
    10K: 38:46
    15K: 1:00:00
    Half Marathon: 1:25:15
    Marathon: soon!

      That's frustrating to be right on the edge of your target but at a plateau.  I'm inclined to agree that longer intervals at goal pace makes sense but first, how do you run 10:20?  Is it 5:00/5:20 or 5:10/5:10?  Also, what is your mile PR so we can understand your leg speed?  I'd think you are 4:45-4:50 if you hope to run 10:05.  There are some fast people here with good experience that can offer thoughts.

      2017 Goals:

      • 2600 Miles 
      • Sub 2:50 marathon (PR 2:52:35)
      • Sub 1:18 @ Icebreaker HM (result: 1:18:19)
      • Stay healthy

        Also, give us your last month of training/races/paces? Need to see what a typical week looks like for you. Have your race times been improving or regressing?

        Those who try, fail! Those who do what it takes to succeed, succeed!!

        RunKevinRun


          My first question was going to be how many miles you are you running.  If you're only doing 40 miles per week, then I would look at bumping up your miles first.  That's the first way to see results is increasing your base easy miles.  I would look at doing one of your easy days around 7-9 miles, and then adding 2 miles to your other easy day runs.  Bump up your long run to 11 miles.  Pace seems fine, as long as you're not pushing.  Throw in 4-6 strides on one of your easy days runs, or consider doing a couple fartleks.

           

          Your track workouts are typical for mile and two mile training.  10:05 is the bare minimum to qualify for state, then I would target 10:00.  You didn't mention your splits for your race times or if you're going out too fast.  I'd look at doing 500m or 600m repeats as well, and going a little faster than race pace.  Doing 1000s is more geared towards the 5k.

           

          Also, your coach needs to support you.  I can't understand why he wouldn't.

            You didn't mention your splits for your race times or if you're going out too fast.  

             

            This...

             

            Most often it is a problem with pacing and fading -- especially in laps 6 and 7 for the 3200.

             

            In my opinion, you can get to your goal on 40 miles per week, but I am a proponent of lower mileage for high school runners.

            And you can quote me as saying I was mis-quoted. Groucho Marx

             

            Rob

              Maybe focusing on process goals rather than an outcome goal would be more satisfying? Or at least having that in mind may help you reach your 3200m goal. Doing things like keeping a training log, watching your diet, plyometrics, weights, hitting proper workout times, proper recovery, ect can be important steps along the way to a great time. Its important to celebrate these steps.

              And we run because we like it
              Through the broad bright land

              LS0618


              Leo

                Also, give us your last month of training/races/paces? Need to see what a typical week looks like for you. Have your race times been improving or regressing?

                 

                I had my first outdoor meet on April 8th and I ran 10:33. This was after two Indoor races the weeks before, where I ran 10:35 and 10:21. Last Tuesday (the 11th) I ran a 10:18. The following day was a 7.5 mile run at 7:00 pace, then a workout the day after of 8 x 400m at around 70 sec each. The next days I ran 6 miles, 10 miles, the. An easy 2. The day before my last meet (which was the 18th) I ran 4 miles at 7:25 pace. With 4 x 150m sprints after. Yesterday I ran a 10:31, which I am not happy with. It seems like I fluctuate way too much...I would expect to constantly improve and I really want to get to 10:05.

                Future marathon runner.
                "Doubts kill more dreams than failure ever will"
                Current PR's as of May 13, 2017:
                800: 2:13
                1600: 4:49
                3200: 10:13
                5K: 16:46
                10K: 38:46
                15K: 1:00:00
                Half Marathon: 1:25:15
                Marathon: soon!

                LS0618


                Leo

                  My first question was going to be how many miles you are you running.  If you're only doing 40 miles per week, then I would look at bumping up your miles first.  That's the first way to see results is increasing your base easy miles.  I would look at doing one of your easy days around 7-9 miles, and then adding 2 miles to your other easy day runs.  Bump up your long run to 11 miles.  Pace seems fine, as long as you're not pushing.  Throw in 4-6 strides on one of your easy days runs, or consider doing a couple fartleks.

                   

                  Your track workouts are typical for mile and two mile training.  10:05 is the bare minimum to qualify for state, then I would target 10:00.  You didn't mention your splits for your race times or if you're going out too fast.  I'd look at doing 500m or 600m repeats as well, and going a little faster than race pace.  Doing 1000s is more geared towards the 5k.

                   

                  Also, your coach needs to support you.  I can't understand why he wouldn't.

                  Okay so most of the time my first mile is around 5:05 to 5:10. Ironically I usually go out much slower than the runners who end up running 10:40 or slower. My second mile is often not very much slower, but when I have bad races it is as slow as 5:20 to 5:25. I don't feel like I'm going out too fast every time, but there is just fatigue when I'm running at a pace that I usually can sustain. The idea has been brought up that I am accumulating fatigue from too much running at a fast pace on easy days paired with races and workouts, but I can't understand how 7:30 pace can be so taxing.

                  Future marathon runner.
                  "Doubts kill more dreams than failure ever will"
                  Current PR's as of May 13, 2017:
                  800: 2:13
                  1600: 4:49
                  3200: 10:13
                  5K: 16:46
                  10K: 38:46
                  15K: 1:00:00
                  Half Marathon: 1:25:15
                  Marathon: soon!

                    Okay so most of the time my first mile is around 5:05 to 5:10.

                     

                    To run 10:05, you'll have to be an absolute beast in the second mile if you're going out at 5:05 - 5:10.  While I'm a big advocate of negative splits (see Des Linden's Boston performance on Monday where her splits were identical) I always faded a couple seconds, usually going high 4:50s / low 5:00s to hit 10 flat.   As you mentioned, it probably puts you a bit behind and while you probably destroy people in the second half, it probably hurts your time.  When you're passing people, you feel fast but sometimes it is just that they're slowing.

                     

                    I like comments here about repeats between 600m - 1000m though I agree 1000m is getting into 5K training territory.  I don't buy fatigue from slow days if you're running 7+ pace- for your fitness, that should be fine.  I also think that more miles could help but also believe that you can be successful between 40-50 miles a week.

                     

                    MTA that quality of workouts could be worth a look.  8 x 400 might be ok but it depends on rest.  It also sounds like you're racing exclusively 3200...I'd advocate racing some 1600s or even an occasional 800 just to work on leg speed and getting comfortable going fast.  To average 5:02 pace for 3200, you need to feel comfortable at 4:50 pace for 1600.  To Parklife's comments, running the same race over and over makes you hyper focused on comparative results when things like wind, competition, and just plain having a crappy day might matter more than yesterday's workout.  Varying up race distances helped me avoid over thinking minor differences day to day.

                     

                    Finally, it might be worth checking out a book like Pete Pfitzinger's faster road racing - 5k to half marathon.  I wouldn't necessarily follow it to a T over your coach but you can make some useful comparisons between what an expert says and what you're doing.

                     

                    Good luck!

                    2017 Goals:

                    • 2600 Miles 
                    • Sub 2:50 marathon (PR 2:52:35)
                    • Sub 1:18 @ Icebreaker HM (result: 1:18:19)
                    • Stay healthy
                    LS0618


                    Leo

                       

                        Varying up race distances helped me avoid over thinking minor differences day to day.

                       

                       

                       

                      Okay thanks! I never though about that aspect. I'm in the 1600 and the DMR 1600 on my next meet, so hopefully I can get some running in at 4:50 mile pace.

                      Future marathon runner.
                      "Doubts kill more dreams than failure ever will"
                      Current PR's as of May 13, 2017:
                      800: 2:13
                      1600: 4:49
                      3200: 10:13
                      5K: 16:46
                      10K: 38:46
                      15K: 1:00:00
                      Half Marathon: 1:25:15
                      Marathon: soon!


                      Feeling the growl again

                        You are a very talented runner.  If you have 9:30 potential, there may be some tweaking of speedwork which will get you to your goal.  But if you have 9:55 potential, there is no substitute for increasing the overall volume of your training to build your aerobic engine.

                         

                        For reference, I ran 30-odd miles in high school with the same types of speed workouts and ran around 10:30.  When I broke 10 in college in a time trial, I was doing 60-odd mpw.  By the time I could sustain that pace for 10K in my mid 20s, I was running 100-120mpw.  And yes, your training should differ significantly from the 800/milers, especially the 800ers.  It's a frustration being under a coach who won't tailor the training correctly, when I was in junior high running the 3200m my coach had me doing 100m intervals 4X per week, all practice.  You can guess how that worked out.  The best you can do is get it right in the off season by bumping up the volume.

                        "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

                         

                        I am spaniel - Crusher of Treadmills

                         

                        LS0618


                        Leo

                          You are a very talented runner.  If you have 9:30 potential, there may be some tweaking of speedwork which will get you to your goal.  But if you have 9:55 potential, there is no substitute for increasing the overall volume of your training to build your aerobic engine.

                           

                          For reference, I ran 30-odd miles in high school with the same types of speed workouts and ran around 10:30.  When I broke 10 in college in a time trial, I was doing 60-odd mpw.  By the time I could sustain that pace for 10K in my mid 20s, I was running 100-120mpw.  And yes, your training should differ significantly from the 800/milers, especially the 800ers.  It's a frustration being under a coach who won't tailor the training correctly, when I was in junior high running the 3200m my coach had me doing 100m intervals 4X per week, all practice.  You can guess how that worked out.  The best you can do is get it right in the off season by bumping up the volume.

                          Thanks for the advice. I actually ran 50-60 mpw through the majority of the winter, but now I am running about 40 mpw under my coach's program. Is that a problem for me, do I need to up the volume again?

                          Future marathon runner.
                          "Doubts kill more dreams than failure ever will"
                          Current PR's as of May 13, 2017:
                          800: 2:13
                          1600: 4:49
                          3200: 10:13
                          5K: 16:46
                          10K: 38:46
                          15K: 1:00:00
                          Half Marathon: 1:25:15
                          Marathon: soon!

                          RunKevinRun


                            I want to relay this as well, but running every run at 7:30 pace when there are days your body might not feel up to it IS going to be taxing on your body.  There are days I could run 7:20 pace all day long, but then others where my body only wants to run 8-8:15 pace.  A lot of runners don't realize that the easy days are almost as important as the hard days.  This is your body's time to recover from the workouts, and allows you to gain from running easy.  Read up on some of the elite runners, a lot of them run 8:30-9 minute pace on easy runs.  It took me 2 years of preaching this to my girlfriend before she finally listened to me, and dropped a minute off her 5k time.  YES, a FULL minute, and she's now running the fastest she's ever run at age 44.  We slowed down her easy days, started pacing her track workouts and also adding additional miles to her base.  It also took training her on the mental side too, and THAT is still ongoing.  Half of racing is mental.

                             

                            If you're going out in 5:05, and then fading to 5:25, then you're going out too fast.  However, you need to be able to run 5:02 back to back to qualify and that 5:05 won't cut it.  I'd do more 400 repeats faster than 75 (72-73), 10x400, with a jog break of a minute or 100m.  You're going to want your easy days to be easy after pushing.  You're not going to run 10:05 if you can't pace that or faster during a workout.  Whatever you do, don't kill your first 2-3 4002 and then fade.  Keep them consistent and then kill the last 2.

                             

                            I'm sure others can tack onto this and give you additional advice.  I run 5ks, but will be training for an upcoming 3000 soon.

                            RunKevinRun


                              You are a very talented runner.  If you have 9:30 potential, there may be some tweaking of speedwork which will get you to your goal.  But if you have 9:55 potential, there is no substitute for increasing the overall volume of your training to build your aerobic engine.

                               

                              For reference, I ran 30-odd miles in high school with the same types of speed workouts and ran around 10:30.  When I broke 10 in college in a time trial, I was doing 60-odd mpw.  By the time I could sustain that pace for 10K in my mid 20s, I was running 100-120mpw.  And yes, your training should differ significantly from the 800/milers, especially the 800ers.  It's a frustration being under a coach who won't tailor the training correctly, when I was in junior high running the 3200m my coach had me doing 100m intervals 4X per week, all practice.  You can guess how that worked out.  The best you can do is get it right in the off season by bumping up the volume.

                               

                              He is dead on ... you need to ramp up your base easy miles, and run as you feel.  Don't target 7:30 pace if your body feels great or if your body feels horrible.  You are hurting yourself at that point.  40 miles per week is holding you back.  I will tell you what my buddy told me when i came back to running again.  He was a sub 15 5k guy and i asked him how did he get to that point (bc he was only running mid 16s in high school).  His response "just ramp up your easy days".  It took me a long time to realize what he meant by that.