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I'm really glad JO was there this time and the point was both well timed and accurate. JO, believe me, there was no sarcasm in my response.
Health is in maintaining a sustainable healthy weight. Weight fluctuations in either direction could be considered eating disorders, as they are unsustainable. So as we try and have fun with this and pat ourselves on the back for handling the weight loss in an optimal way, we also have to keep in mind we are just trying to master the art of the eating disorder.
Stop sulking like a child. I have earned a national masters ranking of No. 1,2 and 3 in three different event in the same year. Do you want to be a fast runner, or just post inane obsessive stuff about your weight loss? It's up to you, but don't sulk because I'm telling you that you are going about this wrongly.
I wanted to post something in a very simple way about nutrition. Done in an optimal way (with carbs, protein, blah blah blah), in my opinion more than half the benefits to be gained from the nutrition aspect of running training can be summed up with:
After you run, you MUST eat.
I never even think of skipping this step. In fact, I ALWAYS do a check before a workout that I will have something fairly optimal to eat afterwards.
Some comments about racing. I'm sure the logistics and costs to provide all the runners with proper food might be prohibitive, but a submaximal race is only a hard workout for me if I brought my recovery food with me. And then remember to take the appropriate action by actually eating it. I hate it when I allow myself to get distracted after a race and forget to eat.
Two hours after a race, I unlock the car and see my recovery food sitting there. Too late. I try and keep a positive attitude about things, but my self talk always produces the same two words:
Against my own advice and my better judgment, let me address this post.
I have asked you to stop posting in this thread because you have no serious interest in the outcome. Your only interest, it seems, is to tout your fictitious accounting of your imaginary results. Your results, whether real or imaginary, are immaterial to the topic. Your results and how you achieved them have zero bearing on what I am doing.
Your advice is contrary to popularly accepted research and wisdom. It is also contrary to the facts which I have shared about myself. It is contrary to the kind folks who have shared their opinions politely in this thread. It is also contrary to that which I have received directly from my doctor after a recent exam. Essentially, you have zero credibility not only because you make no sense, but because you are rude, asinine and boorish.
In the real world, which I like to spend my time in, you would never speak to someone as you have posted in this thread. In the real world, if someone speaks to me as you have posted in this thread I would respond as I have to you. Namely asking you kindly to back off, stay away.
Bottom line. I came to this forum because it is a place to exchange ideas and get information about the sport I love. More specifically, I hoped to receive great advice pertinent to my specific situation. To my great appreciation that is exactly what I have received with some notable exception, in particular you.
Of course, I have followed this board for years because I'm a fan of the sport and the board. I expected that I would get some trolling and true to form, you arrived. Unlike most trolls though, your posts aren't even a little bit amusing or witty or interesting.
My goals are well established in regards to why I started this thread and the reasons for my posts. I don't know your goals or intentions in posting in this thread. Unfortunately itís likely that they have been achieved by this particular post. If this is the case, congratulations. You can now move on to cause havoc elsewhere. You've worn out your welcome here.
Sorry J.O., but your hard training is a failure if this is true. It is unsustainable. If you are at ideal weight and know how to properly nourish your athletic body, there should be no weight loss.
And if you are trying to lose weight while training hard, your comment implies you are trying to lose the weight by simply training hard. From my point of view, this is exactly the wrong way to think about it.
After 13 years of knowing and applying the principles of nutrition timing, I have come to the conclusion that weight loss should be done by slowly burning it off during the non-training hours. Even when we are out of shape, we should train like champions. For me, this means training hard and knowing there will be some caloric deficit during this time. That's ok, because I don't mess around and fiddle with calorie counting and crap like that after I workout. A workout creates an opportunity and my intention is to jump all over it. Forgetting muscles for moment, do you really think you can create mitochondria and capillaries out of thin air? Really? In fact, I purposely err on the side of too much recovery just to make sure I don't miss any of the opportunity.
"Running the weight off" is just not how I think about it.
J.O, I think I tracked you down...impressively fast in 2008
Guys, he's from Yorkshire. A quick cultural tutorial should explain a lot ;-)
A couple of items to share.
- Yesterday, I was feeling run down and borderline ill in the afternoon. Nonetheless I was not feeling terribly motivated for my pm session. Shared this with my wife. He reply, "I can't remember ever FINISHING a work out and saying to myself, I wish I wouldn't have done that." :) Sometimes, she knows just what to say and she was right.
- This morning's run was as good as I've felt on a run this year. Full of energy, alert and feeling good. Foot to toe joint still isn't perfect but I think its getting better.
- Some thoughts on strategy towards my ultimate goals as stated in the first 2 posts of this thread. I am thinking that realistically, I'm not going to get those within the next 10 months or so. Just a lot of ground to cover (literally). In fact, my notion is that the structure of this year is going to be spent building a big cardio base and then strength endurance on top of that. Then, next year I'll start really stressing the speed aspects of my training, although I won't neglect that this year. Anyway, the thought is with all this distance training, I'm thinking a late in the year marathon might not be such a bad idea and after Vegas I've kind of got the bug.
If you think I'm way off base with this and that it will compromise my ultimate goals, feel free to share that and the logic behind your opinion.
Smart wife. Mine is more likely to point out all the useful home improvements I could have carried out instead of training ;-)
You're absolutely right to start thinking now about the overall training cycles. But personally I think it's wrong to go so long away from racing. You'll just find you're a stranger to it. Among serious coaches opinions are divided about single-periodised and double-periodised years, but nobody suggests a 2-year buildup. The information you'll gain from racing at, over and under your goal pace this summer will tell you what to fine-tune for the next cycle. Lots of US runners do a 6-month cycle. Most older Brits do a single year, aiming to produce their best cross-country (7.5-9 miles) in Feb/March, road relays (5-8k) in March/April, and track times in summer. There is also a hugely enjoyable social aspect to the sport once you get out and start meeting people, and it helps to be "in phase" with others.
BTW, this is the part of the project I was looking forward to.
I think you should approach this by analyzing the opportunities available to you, and all the resources which can help or hinder along the way.
Can you share a bit more to help us plan, such as...
- whereabouts in the USA do you live?
- what terrain is available for training nearby, once the days get longer? Any hills, trails etc?
- what opportunities will there be to compete throughout the year? I know there are always marathons somewhere, but I'm thinking more if you are somewhere with regular series of 5ks, or low key track meets you can enter, or cross country meets in the fall,
- is there a running club nearby that works out on the track, or people near your target ability you could work out with for the harder stuff later? (Of course Letsrun will help you find partners if there isn't)
- if you can remember from your youth, what was your basic speed like? e.g. 200/400 times.
- what other sports or fitness activities did you do in your youth?
"BTW, this is the part of the project I was looking forward to."
Same here. Though my current focus is on a spring marathon, I very much want to run a fast 5k in the future (this fall?) so I'm anxiously watching here for ideas.
Ditto what VF and Euro said. :)
ID, I think your fall marathon plan is entirely reasonable. Let's say you sign up for Chicago (it's not full yet!). That gives you 8 months, starting from a base of, let's call it 60-70 miles per week. So... What do you do in the next 4 months before starting the "traditional" marathon ramp-up?
Answer 1: Base monster. Ramp your mileage up higher for the next 4 months. You'd previously mentioned "summer of malmo" - you could start summer early. Throw in some unimportant 5k through HM races as indicators, but don't try to peak for them, etc. DO race a good, tapered 10k or HM at the end of the summer to get an idea for where your marathon pace should be for the ~4 months of chicago training, but don't do any specific training for that race.
Answer 2: Pick an intermediate race, and make two full training cycles of it, including some speedwork targeted at the intermediate race.
Answer 3, 4, ..., N?
I suspect you'd be fine with either of those approaches given that you're still experiencing huge gains on base training and mileage ramp-up. Which one sounds more fun? :)
I suspect Phys might have some useful input here - for example, Lore of Running claims that many masters runners do better with a bit more speedwork worked into their training, but I don't know how that works in for someone getting back into the swing of things vs. someone who never stopped competing.
And please do keep the updates coming (he notes selfishly): the motivation boost is great. This thread was partly responsible for getting me over 70 miles this week (for the first time -- ahem, misspent youth in cycling and triathlon, never did more than 40-something mpw back then). And I've been trying to copy your ~8:something pace for my recovery runs, and it's working like a charm. I have to admit it was mentally challenging having a local XC team blast past me during my easy run today and to let them go, though. :)
I agree with euro, your wife is just cool.
I want to point out that I really started back with running in '98 after 15 years away. Weighed 185 then and the first 10k back was a 47:13. Then another layoff for the most part from 2000 to '07 with an over 20 minute 5k staring up again. So this is sort of my second time through the comeback part. I'm just at the part where I can do the serious workouts consistently that I want to do. That's sort of why I've left the training plans and such to others. I'm sort of looking for ideas as well. But wanted you to know that my history is far from "never stopped competing". :)
Anyway, I just ran ID's PRs through the age calculator (used at age of 20 for all):
15:35 5k 83.6
25:50 5m 83.5
32:11 10k 84.3
39:16 12k 83.7
Pretty darn consistent. Nothing there to sway a recommendation for the marathon. In Daniels Running Formula, he notes that it is remarkable how even the various times between events are among many well trained runners.
Ha. I probably should have asked Frank Shorter or Keith Brantly this morning about you running a marathon. They were handing out the awards at a 5k I ran in Melbourne. Then I see Bill Rogers running along the road an hour later near the hotel where the expo was. I almost decided not to go over there today, but I'm glad I did. Anyway, I'm just going to watch their half marathon tomorrow morning, but maybe I could ask Bill Rogers what he thinks. :D
I know several good masters' marathon runners in my club, who I have known since college, clocking around 2:30 regularly despite family, kids etc. All of them do track workouts, race XC in winter, and race 3000/5000s in summer.
Interestingly my friends often do better at Amsterdam or NY (Oct) than at London (Apr). They do a normal UK track season - lots of low-key meets from May to August - and get really aerobically fit, then maybe a 10-weeek buildup of long runs and marathon specific work. It's easy to run the miles in summer - long evenings, kids not bouncing off the walls and driving wife nuts quite so much, less risk of colds.
If ID fancies marathons, fine; over a full year they do not conflict at all, and there is a huge argument in favour of getting in great 5k shape (thus, being a well-rounded healthy athlete) first.
Will pontificate further on optimal 5k training after putting kids to bed....
OK, pretentious brain-dump time.
That 15:35 is going to be a bit of a stretch - at 41 or 42, whenever it comes, it will be an age grade 4-5 points higher than the above. It will need a professional approach - not just turning up for a 5k and hoping to pop off a PR.
Attempting to bang my drum a bit more politely than J.O. did, I was not particularly talented but I did compete in British League division 1, train in Seb Coe's group for a couple of seasons, have spent long and enjoyable evenings discussing training with Frank Horwill and Harry Wilson, and know multiple people who have been through the training groups of many of the UK' top coaches - all back in the days when Brits were actually good ;-) Coming back later on and reading Daniels, Rubio, Canova and Stevenson/Lydiard, I see that they are all pretty much saying the same things.
We have to look at what track athletes do looking for a season's peak. Working backwards that means...
6. peak race
5. a compact season of races at, over and under distance to learn to race
4. several weeks highly specific training to bring you to peak fitness
3. possibly a strength-endurance / hill phase
2. later base phase with good quality tempo/10k pace work plus running specific strength and pure speed
1. early base phase with miles and general strength
Now, we need multiple cycles to learn what works for each athlete on the way through the program. And on each cycle we need to record times at events from 200m up to 10k, to know whether the speed or the endurance is lacking. As you complete a season you look back and ask what went well, what went badly and what to adjust.
Daniels and Lydiard both suggest 24 weeks as a good length, but arguably those 70 mile weeks on a treadmill count as some of Daniels Phase 1. So I'll argue pretty hard that ID needs to get out there this spring/summer and gather enough data about his own running to be in peak shape for 2012.
Nicely symbolic time-frame BTW.
Oh, yes - unless you're lucky enough to live in a running mecca, or to travel around the country every weekend, the availability of that 'compact season of races' is a huge driver for the schedule.
Lots to cover.
First, this series of posts regarding planning is simply awesome and I'm impressed with everyone's input and flattered you all took the time.
Answers to Euro's questions:
- I live in the Rocky Mountain region of the US. I actually live at altitude (4500 to 5000 ft, with access to higher elevations fairly readily).
- As I understand it, trails around here are pretty darn good. The only problem might be easy access and my particular schedule. Lots and lots of hills available, again easy access and scheduling could pose some obstacles, but I'll cross that bridge when I come to it.
- As best I can tell, there is a robust running scene in my area. There is a local chapter of USAT&F that sponsors a distance running series of road races assigning points for places. Checking the results, there are some fast runners in my area, including masters runners who are turning low 15's for road 5k's. Not much to speak of in terms of track or XC opportunities as best I can tell, though.
- There are running clubs, but I haven't done enough research into that to honestly say if any are a particularly good fit for me.
- I wasn't exactly a speedster in my youth, but I did ok. I recall running an open 400 meter in a dual high school track meet in 54. In college, it didn't seem like I had much trouble running a 60 or 62 in an interval work out. I can't recall 200 m times. I'd guess no faster than 26 or so, though.
- I played football (American) in high school and played an awful lot of recreational basketball. I'm quite competitive by nature and I enjoyed(enjoy) all types of sports. Besides running, my other sporting passion is golf.
I definitely want to run local races recreationally and fit them into my overall training program. Perhaps fitting them in as quality sessions in the bigger picture.
After reading the various posts from Euro, Quack and PM, I'm starting to formulate the rough outlines of a plan.
I may have already mentioned I'm running a local half marathon in mid April. I do want to run this as a hard effort. My thought is that I would continue with an enhanced base phase until the April HM and then target for a peak some yet to be decided event in mid to late August, something distance wise between 8 and 12k. From mid April to this peak event in August, I would follow a phased training program much as Euro describes above. Throughout this time period, I would run in other events to test and enhance my fitness along the way.
At the completion of this cycle, I'd take a week or two running easy miles and then I think I'd like to run the Seattle Marathon which is being held on November 27 this year. A couple of reasons for this event; (1) I think the timing is good, coming off peaking in August for a shorter event, it gives me 3 months to add in longer long runs, marathon pace runs, and long tempo's. (2) I have family there and it keeps costs down for me. (3) My one and only half marathon in my youth was run at Seattle and I've got some unfinished business there ;)
Thoughts on this plan?
Meanwhile, Here's my weekly summary:
1/30 - 1 h 45 min run inthe am
1/31 - 65 min in the am
2/1 - Off to treat nagging foot to toe joint injury
2/2 - 30 min am, 30 min pm
2/3 - 65 min am, 30 min pm
2/4 - 65 min am, 33 min pm
2/5 - 65 min am, 33 min pm
Total 10 sessions, 65 miles
Supplemental: M, W, F - Push Ups and Core Work
T, TH, Sa - Squats/Lunges, Weights, Core Work
Notes - This week I switched my longer session to the am. Treadmill not avail for me (wifey), so I'm running an out and back to a local park which I loop when I get there. Mileage for this is 8.35 (give or take few hundreths). The first day I timed myself in just under 65. I haven't timed myself since as I'm trying to resist the urge to race against myself and just run easy.
Weight this morning was 171. Change in schedule and some changes in my diet aren't doing my weight loss efforts any favors, but I AM starting to feel pretty darn fit and it seems as if my energy levels are mostly really good.
Foot injury is feeling better towards the end of this week. My newer shoes are out of the rotation for now. I'll put them back in when the swelling completely goes away. I've continued to ice the foot as a precautionary measure.
Time to turn in and rest up for my long run in the morning. Looking forward to it, actually.
ID, I've been wanting to tell you about what is really the core of my training and it's something that I feel very good about and don't see it changing, even when I get closer to a comeback peak. I think you are ready to hear this now. However, this is not something I would recommend doing on a treadmill. Also, it's about as unstructured as you can get so you will have to put your own stamp on it. Also, this training needs to be done solo.
I don't know what you want to call this, but maybe "spectrums" might be a good name. In Pete Magill's video that Euro posted, Pete mentions recruiting different fibers and that's the concept and reason for doing these. In the simplest sense, these are just surges during distance runs. However, they are done by gradually increasing the pace, not accelerating to a faster pace and holding it, and could also be thought of as gradual accelerations. As the speed gradually increases, focus on the distance runner form (not a sprinter) is maintained, imagining that someday we might be able to hold the current pace through an entire race. The top end speed is up to you, and it's obviously the most stressful (so be careful).
As stated before, the reason for doing these is fiber recruitment. Others may disagree with some of this, but I really believe that every pace uses it's own spectrum of fibers to get the job done. And the training philosophy is to activate as many of these fibers across all spectrums as possible every 48 hours. I'm not saying you even need to stress them, but simply activate them every couple of days.
One thing to note here is that the exact spectrum of fibers you will actually be using at your goal pace will only be able to precisely targeted when you are at your goal fitness. It may be that the fiber spectrum you are using at, say, 6:00/mile now is the closest you can get to the fiber spectrum you will be using at a goal pace of 5:00/mile at peak fitness. This also implies that running 5:00 pace now does not use a similar fiber spectrum as 5:00 pace at goal fitness. You can break this down however you want to, but I really believe running spectrums covers the most bases.
My spectrums typically start slower, finish faster, and don't cover as much distance (they are usually between 150m to 800m) as this video, but this video shows the concept well. Notice around 3:27 in the video when the announcer almost stumbles searching for a word and uses "quicker".
Actually, after further review, I'm not sure I'm that fast, even when fresh. The great athletes have a way of making this look a lot easier than they are. But I can tell you my stride frequency is at least that fast at the end. I'm not so sure I'm that well stretched out though.