Lets be realistic (Read 2346 times)


    Thanks, Jim.  I think the problem is that there are way too many "formula" out there and it probably hurt more people than not.  For a long race like Comrade, I personally feel 8k seems rather short; but chances are that he wouldn't run it fast.  The key there really is how easily he could do it in 25-minutes.  You see, the problem is, by reading that, some people might even try and push hard to run 8k in 25-minutes.  See, that's the difference.  There's this page on Lydiard Certificate Presentation Part II about fine tuning section.  Suppose you are supposed to run 3000m in 10 minutes according to the schedule.  Which workout do you think is better as a final stage of training: (1) you feel a bit sluggish so you try to keep it to the effort and finish the run in 10:45 by running throughout the 3k in the same effort, no kicking in the end...  You see, this indicates that you need a bit more sharpening so, in the following days, do some sharpening like 50/50...  So in sessense, this particular workout showed what you need to do to finish up.  (2) you realize you are close but about 10 seconds slower so you push in the last 800m, trying to make it in 10 minutes, and kick it in in the last 200m to get 10-minutes.  Naturally, (2) is no good regardless of meeting the prescribed time. 


    One of the most important lessons I've learnt in the final stage of preparation, I've shared this here a couple of times, is when Lorraine Moller was running Grandma's marathon (which is tomorrow by the way).  She was supposed to do 2 X 1 mile.  She did the first one in 4:50 and felt like she was jogging.  She stepped off the track.  Her coach rushed to her, thinking something went wrong.  She said; "I felt so good, I didn't want to leave this feeling on the training track..."  I'd say 90% of runners try to get a good time to gain confidence instead and leave all the good running behind them. 


    Here's another anecdote; I was used to doing 1km the day before the race.  Just a few years ago, it really didn't workout that much and I in fact felt a bit tired.  I noticed, when I was more competitive, I used to do 1km somewhere around 2:45~2:55 range.  Now it takes me 3:20!! :-(  But anyways, I switched to doing this mini-tempo run, instead of 1km, somewhere around 2:30~3:00.  Spot on!  Actually I found about 2:45 works best for me.  That's actually got a lot to do with "feeling" than any formula.


    Funny you mention Lorraine Moller. I just listened to a podcast interview with her.

    If you were to follow Fordyce's idea, and you are an amateur, and you try to run 25:00,

    then you don't understand what he was doing. He saw over time that, for him,

    25:00=ready= his optimum Comrades pace. I read Joan Benoit Samuelson's

    book, Running Tide, a few years back, and she wrote about a certain training run she did around

    Cape Elizabeth--I think a ten-miler--she knew when she was running that in a certain time,

    she felt she was in shape for racing. That worked for her, and was based on self-knowledge.

    If I was to arbitrarily say to myself, because I am her number one fan, and go pick a ten-miler

    to use for MY indicator, I might run into trouble. That ten-miler might take me 2 hours, when her 10 was taking her

    one hour.  The MAF test requires a HRM, and whatever pace you run at that HR is what you run. To try to run Mark Allen's pace of 5:20, and you aren't on the level he was, the HRM would immediately put you over the test HR. Whatever the test, whatever the trial, whatever the personal thing, you have to remember who and where you are, and realize these things take a few years to develop.  I see no problem with following a personal formula using a bit of this and a bit of that based on what you know about yourself--if it is working and you are progressing. But I agree, the way you are feeling is important, if not the most.



    Marathon Maniac #957


      If you're interested in more details, you can always send me a personal e-mail.  Actually, I prefer you send me to my personal e-mail, not through RA--this is simply because I don't know how to attach any document through RA address! ;o)


      It occurred to me that I don't know your personal e-mail address, so I messaged you through RA, but you are welcome to respond to me at my home e-mail address.

      Life is a headlong rush into the unknown. We can hunker down and hope nothing hits us or we can stand tall, lean into the wind and say, "Bring it on, darlin', and don't be stingy with the jalapenos."