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if you were me, what would you do? very slow, no response to training effort over 9 month period (Read 1709 times)


rhetorician

    I have been 'running' consistently since the start of this year; my goals are modest. BUT and it's a big but, I don't seem to be responding to my training at all. My aerobic capacity still seems pretty rubbish (e.g. I can feel it when I climb a flight of stairs, I struggle to put together more than about 12-15 minutes of slow running, I am unable to run for more than a couple of minutes even at about 10 m/m). I don't really know why this is - I have slowed my running down, I take walk breaks, but I can't honestly say I find this any easier than I did 6 months ago. I would have hoped to at least be able to eliminate the walk-breaks by now. I feel like I have wasted 190 hours this year for no benefit.

     

    I just did a 10k in a woeful 1h and 14 mins (with a friend who has only run about 10 miles a week for the last while who did it in under 55). I perform even worse in races than I do in training.

     

    Should I give up, or see my doctor? I am 45 and in good health generally and all I aspire to is to be able to do some continuous running at a tolerable pace.

     

    Should I go back to the very beginning and do couch to 5k or something? I know this will all seem strange, given that I am doing 40-50k a week, but I feel like I am going nowhere, and have no idea why.

     

    I have posted before and people have suggested running at faster speeds etc - the fact of the matter is that I just can't do it - whether this is psychological or not, I have no idea.

     

    i also bike about 30 miles a week and am generally very active.

    2012 goals

     

    lose 8lbs

    run injury free

    run 3000k

    run sub 60 min 10k

    run 2 hour half

     

    2013 goals

     

    run 1750 miles

    run injury free

    sub 55 10k

    sub 25 5k

    sub 2 hour half


    Maggie & Molly

      there are many many people here more experienced and knowledgeable than me but maybe try mixing it up more.  Do some other sort of cardio too with a few less runs, circuits or something  You mention a mental block - could be.  I can easily talk myself right into having to stop running if I let my mind go.  The other thing is that I have started doing intervals once a week - since I've added that workout my overall pace has increased.   Good luck to you!  (chat with your doc too - that can't hurt)

       "It does not matter how slow you go so long as you do not stop."
      Wisdom of Confucius

      HF 4363

        I don't think you wasted your time. Think of your current training as an experiment that just hasn't produced the results you were seeking. You could have a health problem like low iron, or something else that is limiting you. Get them ruled out. If you have had nothing in the department limiting you, then it has been your training. If your aerobic system and aerobic speed (speed when running aerobically at the same heart rate) isn't improving, then it is probably one of a few things:

         

        --your training load is too low or too high. Your training load is all the physical work you do + life stress.  Looking at your running log, it looks like you are getting enough time in to have seen some progress. Has your stress levels been abnormally high this year? If so, that adds to the training load, and for some people can be what throws them into a state of over-training. Have you added any extra physical stress like heavy lifting every day, or heavy yardwork? That adds to the training load.  When in a state of OT or if your training load is too much or too anaerobic, your aerobic system/speed will plateau or regress. If your stress levels have been abnormal and chronic this year, a cut in your running volume might get your progress back on track. Running in summer can have the same effect as stress. AT the same HR, there will be a normal slow down due to heat, but if your aerobic speed regresses from that point, then a reduction in volume might put you back on track.

         

        --you are training in  heart rate zone that is too close to or over your lactate threshold, and are thwarting aerobic development. Some anaerobic work is good and necessary at certain points in training, but if you are doing too much of your volume where you are more anaerobic than aerobic, it can thwart your aerobic progress.

         

        I suggest you get yourself a heart rate monitor, then make sure that you keep yourself aerobic for awhile, with no anaerobic work. Build a solid aerobic base. There is plenty of information out there, and different opinions, as to what constitutes an aerobic heart rate zone. Hadd, .... John L. Parker (70% HRR), ..... Maffetone Method (180-age)  are some sources. A HRM will often slow you down at first as you try to keep at your aerobic heart rate, but then your aerobic speed will build and you'll have to run faster and faster to get your heart rate up to the target. That's when you know that your aerobic system is building, and also your endurance. You might find that you will have to walk at first, but eventually you won't be able to walk fast enough to get your HR up to the target, and will have to run (or become a race walker).

         

        Good luck.

        log   prs      Crusted Salt comic #143

         

          If you can run 30 + miles a week, I think you should do better than a 74 min 10K.  That recent 8K suggests you can do better.  You have the speed going by that 10/5 interval session, in which you actually speeded up each interval.  Next session no need to speed up but maintain that pace through all the intervals.  You should feel like you can do a couple more after the last one if you have to.

           

           I'd leave the watch home for a few weeks, and just go run as long as you can without taking a walk break.  Pace on this run is irrelevant.  No pressure, just keep one foot in front of the other in a running motion.  Once a week after about 30 minutes or so of this easy running, pick up the pace to the next mail box/telephone pole whatever, then go right back to the easy running (no walking), repeat a few times.


          Petco Run/Walk/Wag 5k

            +1 what Jimmy said. Sometimes we need to really run slow, a lot, before seeing improvement. 

             

            BTW - don't knock your 10k time - its faster than my 10k PB, and if it was your first 10k, it was still a PB! Cool

            bob e v
            2014 goals: keep on running! Is there anything more than that?

            Complete the last 3 races in the Austin Distance Challenge, Rogue 30k, 3M Half, Austin Full

            Break the 1000 mi barrier!

            History: blessed heart attack 3/15/2008; c25k july 2008 first 5k 10/26/2008 on 62nd birthday.


            Yoda the 4-eared cat

              Hi, I'm not a fast runner or a trainer but I noticed that we are pretty similar in a lot of ways so I thought I could give you the benefit of my experience.

               

              I had a look at your profile and running log and I compared our two profiles:

              - We are about the same height and weight.

              - You run more than me but at about the same pace overall, but with walk breaks integrated, so you train faster than me

              - But I race faster than you (not a lot faster as I am also a slowpoke).

              - Your training pace is as fast, if not faster, than your recent race result (!!!!).

               

              This last one I think is the most important.

               

              I saw that you say people had advised you to run faster (I'm hoping this was a little more nuanced than that!!). It may be annoying to hear the opposite, but my first instinct is to slow down even more. I'm talking about your easy runs that should make up the bulk of your running, not intervals and stuff. If you are not comfortable holding a conversation at an 'easy' pace, it is not an easy run and you may need to rethink your assumptions about what is 'fast', 'easy' etc. Getting a heart rate monitor and reading about heartrate zones is also a good idea, as suggested.

               

              Next thought, maybe it was a bad day for the race. It happens. If it was your first race, don't put too much value on the result. How you feel in your training runs should be more important for a beginner runner. Racing is hard and sometimes is great, sometimes sucks the big one till you get the hang of it.

               

              Second to last thought: do you have an appropriate training plan or are just playing by ear? Having a plan formulated by a professional could make a huge difference to seeing noticible improvement provided you follow it properly (meaning, understanding the different speeds or training levels you are asked to run). I don't have any suggestions of plans but I'm sure other people do. There are a lot to choose from for all speeds and ability levels.

               

              Last feeling, you say you are very active (were you before starting running?) but climbing the stairs still leaves you out of breath. If after all this running, biking etc., you don't feel any or much improvement in your fitness levels (while keeping realistic about what to expect), then, yes, I would strongly advise getting a workup from your doctor. There might indeed be something underlying that is foiling your best efforts.

               

              Best of luck

                I don't know what to suggest but I disagree with those who say more slow running.  I don't think your problem is primarily fitness, although I can't say for sure.  The fact that you can't even match your training paces in races points to something else entirely to me--maybe anxiety?

                 

                At first I thought maybe you were doing too much slow jogging and not developing your stride at all, but I do see some workouts in your training log where you were able to run, for example, a third of a mile at 7:30 pace.  That indicates to me you at least have the basic speed and turnover to run faster than you are in races.

                 

                On the other hand I was able to see the elevation graph for your 10k and it appears there was a very big hill in the middle of the race that roughly coincides with a 7:51 for the 5th km--when you were running 6:45's ish before and were able to get back to that pace for the last couple of k's.  So maybe the courses you are training and the courses you are racing are apples and oranges?

                Runners run.

                heather85


                  I have been 'running' consistently since the start of this year; my goals are modest. BUT and it's a big but, I don't seem to be responding to my training at all. My aerobic capacity still seems pretty rubbish (e.g. I can feel it when I climb a flight of stairs, I struggle to put together more than about 12-15 minutes of slow running, I am unable to run for more than a couple of minutes even at about 10 m/m). I don't really know why this is - I have slowed my running down, I take walk breaks, but I can't honestly say I find this any easier than I did 6 months ago. I would have hoped to at least be able to eliminate the walk-breaks by now. I feel like I have wasted 190 hours this year for no benefit.

                   

                  I just did a 10k in a woeful 1h and 14 mins (with a friend who has only run about 10 miles a week for the last while who did it in under 55). I perform even worse in races than I do in training.

                   

                  Should I give up, or see my doctor? I am 45 and in good health generally and all I aspire to is to be able to do some continuous running at a tolerable pace.

                   

                  Should I go back to the very beginning and do couch to 5k or something? I know this will all seem strange, given that I am doing 40-50k a week, but I feel like I am going nowhere, and have no idea why.

                   

                  I have posted before and people have suggested running at faster speeds etc - the fact of the matter is that I just can't do it - whether this is psychological or not, I have no idea.

                   

                  i also bike about 30 miles a week and am generally very active.

                   

                  A few things

                   

                  I saw 17.6 km easy at 7:20/km the same week as the 10K race at 7:25/km - that tells me that both yu didn't race to your potential probably and that 7:20 is not your easy pace, certainly. It's too fast.  Even if you have mitigating race circumstances they'd have to be pretty extreme (and I think you'd mention that) to bring you to slower than yur easy pace.  - Still, I wouldn't worry about this one race.

                   

                  I saw intervals a few days before the race- I'm not sure its hte time for intervals at all (mainly strides) at this point for you.  Running more would probably help more then intervals at this point.  At least, fr me, the biggest help was slowing down and running mroe.  Less speedwrk in the beginning.  (This is only my experience, I'm not an expert but I was at higher mileage than you and saw a lot of improvement after cutting intervals and increasing mileage and slowing pace before adding back in speedwork.) 

                   

                  The walk breaks could potentially be something you've gotten kind of dependent on psychologically. Not my expertise, don't know.

                   

                  Have you been to the doctor for a physical - the winded and stairs and stuff just reminded me of when all my medical issues started popping up ( I was running a lot more than you at the time; still started happening, all the sudden for me ) Maybe you do have something going on that's preventing a normal training response, similar t what happened to me, but you aren't noticing because of the dramatic decline you're just not seeing as much improvement.  Mine revealed a bunch of things going n but the nes I tihnk caused this problem with thyroid and vitamin deficiencies.

                   

                  D you have a beginners group you can run with (even though you aren't really a beginner) - social support could help, and I think having somewhat more experience might actually help too.

                   

                  Last, don't compare yourself to friends, and especially how much they have to do for x result. That is a recipe to disaster.  It will frustrate you, cause hurt feelings, and not allow you to ever reach your potential.  Trust me on this one. 

                    Declarke...... you rock!!!

                     

                    I started this year too..... and my 10K goal was <75 minutes by October. I was surprized,,,, and dang proud of my 59:53 in my first race at that distance! That is because I am able to look at myself as a runner 99% of the time,,,,, and a "racer" only on race day!

                     

                    I look at running like golf. I will never be a pro, and that's ok! I know the rules, I practice, I pick the courses that challange my skill level, and feel great when I exceed my expectations. Sometimes I surprize myself.... It feels great just to participate!

                     

                    If I ran only with people faster than me, or compared myself with the average commentators on running forums, it could be discouraging. Your friend is FAST! You are FAST compared to MANY!!! You just inspired me to keep at it, even when I feel I'm not progressing. I am envious of your commitment.

                     

                    Thanks for your contribution..... Sláinte!!!!

                     

                    Steve


                    rhetorician

                      The walk breaks could potentially be something you've gotten kind of dependent on psychologically. Not my expertise, don't know. Definitely true - i also think that ditching the watch might be a good plan for a bit. I really think that I have the potential to be doing better, but feel like I don't know what I've doing!

                       

                      I should say that the doctor also seems a good plan, as I was running a good bit in 2008 and did a 53min 10k and a half in 2.10 and my paces are slower than simple age slow-down would suggest. I think of myself as fairly fit - and I can walk/run pretty much for ever. But I might have to swallow my pride and admit that my easy pace is even slower than the log suggests...

                       

                      I wonder if I have low iron - this has been an issue in the past and I haven't been supplementing for a while (don't like to take it all the time), so I might go back to it and see if it has any effect.

                       

                      You have all been most encouraging and very generous with your time and expertise. Many thanks

                      2012 goals

                       

                      lose 8lbs

                      run injury free

                      run 3000k

                      run sub 60 min 10k

                      run 2 hour half

                       

                      2013 goals

                       

                      run 1750 miles

                      run injury free

                      sub 55 10k

                      sub 25 5k

                      sub 2 hour half

                      JimR


                        I could only cover 45 seconds on my first run when I started, I was 40 at the time.  It took me a year to be able to cover 5k in a single run.


                        Queen of 3rd Place

                          I started running regularly when I was about your age. I started at around 10 min/mi and ended up exhausted and injured. Then I slowed way down. For months and months, I was running as slow as 13:00/mile! I didn't know it was possible to run that slow! After more than a year I was pleased to be able to run consistently under 12min/mi.

                           

                          Nearly 5 years later, when I'm feeling fine and the weather's good I can tick off miles and miles comfortably around 9:30/mi and have started winning my age group in local races. However there are still days when slower, sometimes mych slower, is what feels right.

                           

                          So my advice is slow down a lot (it should be enjoyable most days) and have patience.

                          2013 Valley Runner of the Year Series: Feb 16 5K (4 points out of 10) ... Mar 2 10K (20/30)... Mar 16 4Mi (21/30) ... Apr 6 10K (DNS) ... Apr 21 2Mi (5/10) ... May 11 5Mi (21/30)... Jun 8 1Mi (13/20) ... Jun 16 6Mi (22/30) ... Sep 28 10K (14/20) ... Oct 5 5K (7/10) ...Oct 12 5Mi (16/20) ... Oct 20 5K (0/10) = 3rd Place, Women's Senior Division

                            With the history on anemia, yes, I'd get that checked.  Good to do that, but, FWIW, my experience as another 40-something (late-30-something when I started) is very much like Arla's, except for the part where I'm slower than her.  I was gifted a heart rate monitor, by my non-runner husband, who no doubt made the salesperson's day ("oh, your wife's a runner, is she?").  I had no interest in heart rate training, and when I hooked it up I spent several weeks thinking I just had a stupendously fast heart rate, and wasn't that good? A little more reading as I decided to try to get something out of the thing, and I slowed wwwwaaaaayyyy down, and I'm still happily running, faster too, years later. I certainly could have learned all this without a gadget, of course.  But, in my case, the gadget really helped.


                            Race Less Train More

                              I don't know what to suggest but I disagree with those who say more slow running.  I

                               Your easy runs are faster than my easy runs. In Sept on a relatively fast course my 10k was 45:40.Slow down.

                              http://www.runnersworld.com/article/1,7120,s6-238-263--8938-0,00.html

                              Run until the trail runs out.

                              2013***1500 miles

                              50 miler

                               

                               

                              unsolicited chatter

                              http://bkclay.blogspot.com/


                              just a simple cat

                                I think you should fartlek around some a couple of times a week.  Jog easy, then 10 second bursts of all out sprinting, then easy jog for 5 minutes or however long you want, then 10 seconds of flat out running, repeat and repeat.    Have  fun!   Laugh out loud!  Get red in the face and breathe hard like a steam engine.   Smile

                                 

                                 

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