|Pages: | 1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | 5 | 6 | 7 | 8 | 9 | 10 | 11 | 12 | 13 | 14 | 15 | 16 | 17 | 18 | 19 | 20 | 21 | 22 | 23 | 24 | 25 | 26 | 27 | 28 | 29 | 30 | 31 | 32 | 33 | 34 | 35 | 36 | 37 | 38 | 39 | 40 | 41 | 42 | 43 | 44 | 45 | 46 | 47 | 48 | 49 ||
Looks good to me. It sounds like you have a great location and good opportunities to race. I have a bunch more questions coming which should hopefully help gui
1. Have you read any of the classic training manuals (e.g. Daniels), and if so, which ones resonated best with you?
2. Are you mentally better suited to 'running by feel', or do you like to time things, keep an eye on splits, run to a plan etc.
3. Are there any natural 'break points' between now and the April half marathon which will force you to take things easy for a few days? e.g. business trip, vacations, relatives coming to stay? I find that for people of our age, it's a lot better to plan your 'mesocycles' around such things than to slavishly aim for a 4 or 6 week cycle. (You should definitely have a period every few weeks when you take things very easy for a few days, whether it's a low mileage week or even 3 days off).
4. In the next 4-5 weeks, any preferences between
(a) moving into more normal base training now and hoping to slim down in the process, and
(b) going all-out for some more weight loss for another month and not worrying about the quality of training?
(I don't think there's a right or wrong here. You might slim down anyway on harder training. But if you don't, it would certainly be wrong to start dieting again a month before your half marathon. If you want to shed 10lb more, we can work with that but it would imply different training)
I'm sure I'll think of more soon!
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.[/quote]
That was my point too and I made it in a previous post.
5. When was that 5k - is it this weekend?
6. I see you're doing tons of lunges, squats etc almost daily. How hard are these while you are doing them - are you exhausting the muscles, or are you pretty much going through the motions to burn off energy?
I think that'll do for now. I have some thoughts on the next stage of training but will await your answers first.
I'm also curious about some things, and I hope this will help Euro as well. If these were already addressed earlier, I appologise.
- How quickly would you say you respond to training?
- How are your biomechanics? Are you able to handle lots of workload?
- Between muscles, connective tissue, and bones, which of these three categories are your previous injuries?
- Do you handle fast running better or worse than mega miles?
Not a lot of time to get in a good post. But I'll do my best.
First, let me share that as of this morning I'm in runner/techno geek heaven. Wife and I upgraded our phones to the Iphone4 this past weekend and I downloaded an app called RunKeeper. I LOVE IT. You can set a target pace with voice coaching at whatever interval you prefer and as you're running a woman's voice gives you all the vital stats on your current and cumulative pace. All the while, I'm also able to listen to the Ipod and my favorite tunes to run to.
Ok, some answers to Euro's questions. I'll try also to get to PM's.
1 - I've read Daniels cover to cover a few times. I used it in previous iterations of coming back. His approach makes an awful lot of sense to me, although I don't think I want to do any back to back hard sessions like he sometimes recommends.
2 - I'm probably at my best as a rhythm runner. That said, I'm a bit of a control freak and want to know the stats. Sorry for the ambiguous answer.
3 - I have no "natural" break point between now and April. Euro, I've heard this concept before but perhaps have never had it properly explained to me in terms of taking some easy time every couple of weeks. I have a notion of what you're getting at and its likely I agree with the concept, but if you have the time, please expand.
4 - I definitely need to get another 6+ pounds off, but I think I need more calories as well as I shift from doing a majority of my miles on a treadmill to doing a majority outside. I guess I'm kind of playing things by ear and trying to listen to my body re: energy needs until I've got a couple weeks under my belt with the new schedule. Then I think I'll proceed again with a more focused effort on losing the pounds. Ideally I can pull off a hybrid of starting to do some training and also losing additional weight.
5 - I am planning on running a 5k on Saturday, but training through. More specifically normal Friday and then a 3 or 4 mile warm up before the 5 k and then a couple miles cooling down. Hard for me to know what to expect, but considering I've finished up a few recent runs of up to 10 miles at 6:30 pace, I think it might be reasonable to have a target time in the low 19's or high 18's. Thoughts?
6 - In the past few weeks I've added 10 lbs dumbbells to my squats and lunges. I have a "balance ball" for the squats and I do 3 sets of 15. The lunges I go up and down the hall of our house. I'm not doing these to exhaustion in the least. The core routine I do every day also puts a fair amount of stress on my quads and hamstrings also.
I'll try and get in a post later today with a response to PM. Thanks fella's!
Right, here's my first draft of a plan for next month or so. Criticism and discussion fully expected...
Great. We can use that as a basis and common language, and just discuss differences. Specifically that 5k will give us some guidance on training paces.
I think the iPhone gizmo gives it away. I'm going to suggest tempos and long reps at Daniels' exact pace guidelines.
There are two parts, really. The first is just planning: if we want to break up the year into chunks, have a weekly pattern, and vary the training in each, it's easiest to plan in the vacations and business trips and use them for downtime, rather than being a slave to an arbitrary 24-week schedule.
The second is about rest: training gets to you after a while and I am a huge believer in trying to take an easy week before nature inflicts one on me. I tend to come back way stronger a week after an easy week. Some examples:
a. The official coach education literature when I was growing up (aimed at people doing a UK year, from October base work to August peak) was very clear and recommended
- a rest day or easy day every week
- 3 days rest every 6 weeks
- 3 weeks active rest at the end of the season
This is in Peter Coe's books, and Seb himself told me the most important session of the week was the rest day. (Although for a 5k+ runner, I'd modify that to say a day when you just have one easy session - often a 'day off' just makes you sluggish).
b. People pushing up the mileage often do best with 2 weeks up, 1 week down. You have to run through some fatigue that way, but there is an end point to aim for
c. Salazar and Canova often tell athletes to take 3 days easy running in a row when they feel below par.
I deliberately plan to take this kind of downtime to help with family and work. If there's a really busy family weekend I won't fret about getting up extra-early or running late at night, I'll just treat that as part of my rest allowance; likewise if I'm at a conference or something, I'll call that my easy week and be content with one run a day.
OK. I'd suggest to focus on the training rather than dieting, but keep one eye on the scales. We'll try to use all the tricks we can with the gym work to keep your metabolism going.
8 mile morning runs are good - done while fasting so should burn fat - but don't rush them. We'll do stuff in the evenings which is really short and sharp, as this will hopefully speed up your metabolism in the next few hours, and also leave you a bit more stimulated for family rather than wanting to just pass out. Details suggested below.
Don't trust new gadgetry for pace judgment ;-) I used my Garmin footpod to try and set the right pace in a 5k in October, it went about 8% off that day and I went off too slow. Try to pick the pace up as you go round, way more fun to finish storming than crawling.
OK, so you have healthy muscles now but aren't really progressing it. This is a good 'strength base' but we can now try to phase this to work with your running, and to burn a bit more fat off.
OK. 9-10 weeks to half marathon? I suggest we split it into two four-week blocks with an easy week where we can reassess and change the schedule. First 4 weeks are to get you used to running faster, then we'll make a plan for the next block. I think it's generally accepted that masters (and a lot of youngsters) will do better with 2 quality sessions each week than 3, plus a long run.
Personally I like to repeat a pattern 4-6 times, then change it. I really like having a well defined progression: repeat last week's session but add one more rep, or shave off a second, or whatever. So that's how I have laid this out.
Here are the elements to slot into the week...
1. Morning runs: the morning 8-milers are great, keep them up. Keep them as easy as they need to be; if you're tired the morning after a quality session or weights, by all means shorten one.
2. Tempo run: let's base the pace targets on your 5k this weekend and Daniels' tables, and err on the soft side. Thus, if you ran 19:00 but think you could have run 18:30 with better pacing, we'll go for 19:00. I'd suggest doing this when the kids are in bed on the treadmill. Hopefully with a few light lunges and stuff earlier in the evening you won't need too long a warmup. Start with just 3 miles. Aim to lengthen the run a bit each week. If it feels mentally tough, feel free to switch to 'cruise interval' mode e.g. run a mile, then have 1min easy, then another mile. Use the time on the treadmill to focus on your form and relaxation. One game I play on treadmill tempos is to try and will my heart rate down as far as possible.
3. Repetitions: we need some shorter faster running. This will be fun, develop your running skills, and make harder sessions later. I'd suggest two choices here.
- if you like to do them on a Saturday and can find a gentle hill within a mile or two, work out a section about 30-45sec long and try to run up with good form. jog back and repeat. Start with 6x45sec or 8x30sec, add a couple each week. You want to be breathing hard at the top but still under control and not screaming with lactate. Do not time them all.
- if weekday evenings suit you better, I presume your treadmill has some interval program; do reps of 30-45 sec with maybe a minute rest, and note a pace which feels good but finishable. Again, progress the extent: 6 reps, 8 reps, 10 reps, 12 reps.
This is your first interval training in a long time so we want to be careful, and finish each session feeling like you could do the whole session again if you had to. Think about it as a skill practice, not an endurance test. Make sure to cool down (mile easy?) and stretch afterwards.
4. Circuit session: we will work out a series of 10-15 exercises where you can do at least 15 reps of each as a starting point (starting AFTER the 5k). We'll do these in fairly quick succession, and include a few 'metabolic' exercises to push the heart rate up - burpees, jumps etc - and a few classic running conditioning exercises. This is strength-endurance work for your running muscles, but we might as well try to use your core, chest and back to burn off some extra fat too. There will be no real cardio benefit to your running, but this kind of stuff apparently is very good for burning calories over the next 24 hours. You could progress with extra reps (15, then 20, then 25), or with an extra circuit.
5. Strength/power session:
We'll do a bunch of core, lunges etc to get the whole body really warmed up. Then, we'll do a handful of exercises that need real strength - things where you can only do 3 to 8 reps well, or where you aim for some explosive movements. Mike Boyle's book, "Functional Strength Training", is really good on this. The key one at home, without a barbell, is the single leg box squat or pistol squat (possibly assisted with a post or strap). DON'T try it now. This can be combined with some speed work such as the short hill sprints, or with some form drills.
6. Long Sunday run: exactly as you are doing now. I see no need to go beyond 14 in the next month.
As for phasing it: we want to do Quality; Gym; Easy Run; then repeat. The running sessions matter more than the gym work so are scheduled before; but you will definitely be tired after the gym work for up to 2 days and will want to run easier the next day. I find I run a whole minute a mile slower the morning after weights.
This reflects my own bias that we masters really need to regain strength in our running and stabilising muscles, and practice the skills to run fast. Others may disagree and say the gym stuff could be minimised in favour of more miles. There are lots of other types of sessions that would fit in here too.
Let me know what you think, and if you like this I can expand on the gym stuff tomorrow.
Re-reading that I can see a couple of things I didn't point out.
This is not a normal half marathon schedule. I'm proposing to push the gym stuff initially because that worked really well for me, and because it may help burn fat, and because you have to make a transition before doing hard sustained speedwork.
After this 4 weeks, I'm presuming you'll be conditioned to run safely at speed, and to withstand some more pavement pounding; so the most likely case is that we then switch to some long reps for maximum aerobic development, and we possibly make the sunday runs a bit more serious, or have a separate marathon-pace run. I'd de-emphasize the gym work a bit for that stage and it would all start to look like normal distance running training.
ID: If you're doing 10 mile runs at a 6:30 pace and feeling good on them, I think your 5k target time is conservative. That's not a bad idea, but I'd be really surprised if you didn't knock out at least an 18:30 in a flat-out 5k that you weren't trying to make part of a training day. Probably below 18:15. That said, with the way you've planned the workout, aiming for ~19 seems like a pretty good way to run it. That's probably ever so slightly harder than your tempo run pace (#2 below)...
To clarify a bit, Euro: When you say "tempo", I have a few ways I want to read that and I'm curious which one you're aiming for:
1) McMillan "steady-state" pace (about HM race pace). If ID is comfortably running 10mi @ 6:30, seems like guesstimates for this pace would start around 6:20 or 6:15. "Hard effort but not exhausting", maintained for 4-10 miles at ID's paces.
2) McMillan "tempo runs" -- I think this is where you're aiming -- somewhere from about 6:05 -- 6:20 pace. In other words, about that 19 minute 5k, but you're assuming like I am that ID is capable of running a 5k faster than 19 minutes in reality. 15--30 minutes at this effort.
3) "Tempo intervals" - 10k -- 15k race pace, 3.g., 2x2mi.
Is that about the way to read your recommendation?
I mean the pace you can sustain for roughly an hour. That's half marathon for elites but probably nearer ten mile pace for us... Specifically I'd suggest plugging the 5k result into Daniels (ID has a copy, there's an online one here) and reading off the T pace.
For an 18:30 5k, the above Daniels calc gives 16:26, and McMillan gives 16:16 to 16:32, so close enough.
The goal is one comfortably hard run a week. Doesn't matter at all whether it's by feel, progressive or steady-pace or whatever, but that's why I asked all the other questions; with a treadmill and all the techno-gadgetry, it's easy to just set a precise pace, switch off and run the target distance, and possibly fun to keep an eye on heart rates.
Also, I am suggesting progressing the length rather than upping the pace for the first 4 weeks, as this is a tad more relevant to a HM and will guard against getting overzealous and running too fast. At that point we'd look for another way to re-measure fitness - a 5k or similar session, and with all likelihood the tempo pace would increase a fair bit.
Make up an ipod track with something nice and controlled like Chariots of Fire for the first mile, then increasingly energetic music. And with a mile to go, we need the Russell Crowe voice saying "Soldiers of Rome, on my signal, unleash hell!"
A lot to reply to and I'll find some time today, but first I wanted to share that I did a work out this morning. I had been planning on it. Obviously I skipped work outs last week nursing my injury, so this is a repeat of what I did 2 weeks ago.
Used my watch as my official timer, but had my iphone along for some tunes and to test out my gadget/app.
Jumped on the track for a progression run of 7 x 1600m's. Let me set the stage just a tad, though, to put things in perspective. Woke up to a what was a bit more than a dusting of snow. Winds were gusting up to 30 mph on the backstretch of the track I was running on and temps were 24 degrees F. I mention the wind because honestly it was taking a little out of me energy wise.
Here are the splits - 7:16, 7:07, 7:04, 6:58, 6:51, 6:47 and 6:28. Total distance with warm-up and cool down was around 8.5 miles. Overall, I feel good about the work out and I think that wind makes the work out worth at least a little faster splits.
A note about my gadget, by the time I was at the last mile it was giving me my split at least 300 meters early. So, I guess it doesn't work so well on a track :) !
My 5k plan is to try for negative splits. At the very least I know any faster than 6:10 for the first mile is faster than I want to go. Essentially, I want to get out of the gate and feel comfortable and the hopefully chase folks down the rest of the way.
Euro - #1 Thank you so much for the time and effort in putting together those posts. #2 I think you're on the right track and I'll have a more detailed reply later on with questions. #3 You're probably in agreement with this, but stating for the record, I have a strong belief that a healthy amount of mileage is something I'm going to personally respond well to. This is something I hadn't shared yet, but the best running shape I was ever in was the summer after I turned 20 and I kinda put in my own "Summer of ID (malmo)"... I put in lots of mileage, I did lots of unstructured hard runs and I ran my still current road 10k PR on just this training.
More later on.
Thanks. That's a pretty impressive workout before breakfast in freezing cold.
If I get time tonight (i.e. your afternoon) I'll try to write down some more on the circuits and strength workouts (with links), as all the rest is pretty obvious. But I'm going to turn in early tonight as I just had a pretty big training day of my own.
Excuse me if I missed this, but did you say you had a barbell or dumbells? Fixed weight or adjustable? Also, do you have in the house
- somewhere to do chins ?
- a sturdy step or box 18" high? (a kitchen chair will NOT do)
As for mileage: with what I sketched out, you could be doing anywhere from 60 to 90 mpw. A tempo session in the evening might be 2mi warmup, 3mi fast, 2 cooldown, or it might just be the 3mi if you already got hot enough from your core stuff. Similarly, on the gym nights you might do no running, or an easy 5 on the treadmill. BUT if you've averaged 70ish of slow running for the last month, we don't want to push it up much higher just yet as your body will be adapting in other ways in the next month. Maybe run the half marathon off 70-80mpw, and save the higher mileage for summertime when it's more enjoyable to fit in anyway..
I've been using 10 lbs dumbbells ( 20 lbs total) for my squats and lunges.
We do have a small home gym with weight bench, a couple of barbells, some weights (probably totally no more than 150lbs), and 3 sets of fixed weight dumbbells, 10, 15 and 25 lbs.
No box, we do have a stool I'd guesstimate at 15 inches high. I'd have to do some repairs on it if used for exercise. Its rickety.
I'd have to improvise for chin ups... Perhaps sub some appropriate lift in our home gym for lats?
I must share this milestone. 13.5 months ago, I decided I was doing a disservice to myself and to my wife and especially to my children carrying around 220 lbs. I decided I was going to lose 40 lbs and a curious thing happened, I actually stuck to my plan.
Today, officially, I have exceeded my original goal by 10lbs and have dropped more than 50 lbs since I started this journey back to a healthy life.
Thanks for those in this thread that have supported the last part of that original task and thank you for your continued support as I move on towards the goals stated in the first posts of this thread.
169 and going down. I plan to keep monitoring the weight going down for 4 or 5 more lbs and at that point, the focus will be solely on the training. Nutrition wise, I plan to continue to eat the foods best suited to fuel me and help me recover and of course try to eat them at the appropriate times.
PM - Sorry for the delay in getting to your questions:
- I honestly can't say that I have a good answer for response speed to training. I suspect I'm going to get fairly fit fairly rapidly, which I think is true for most folks doing the kind of training we do. That said, I agree with what Daniels has found through research and that there are diminishing returns. I hate to make predictions, but if I had to I would say that it is likely that within the next 3 months or so, I'll be in mid to high 16's 5k shape, but the last minute plus of time to get down to mid 15's is going to be really hard to lop off and is likely to take me the full 24 months I alluded to in my original posts.
- In the days when I was young and fit and was setting my pr's, I was hardly ever injured. The only injuries I seemed to get were as a result of some type of accident (stepping in a hole, twisting my ankle playing basketball, etc.), not from the training. In those days, I would put in 70 miles a week or so, but the paces were almost always hard and fast. I never seemed to pass up an opportunity to push myself in a training session. My easiest days were sub 7 pace. Foolish now that I think of it.
- My recent injuries seem to stem from running paces that are to fast for a guy that WAS to heavy. It seemed that they were muscular injuries, mostly in my lower to mid shin areas and occassionally in the arches of my feet.
- My point of reference for long term consistent training (more than say 9 consecutive months) is from my early 20's and I tended, as indicated before, to run a lot of hard/fast paces but not necessarily mega mileage. Its worth repeating that my best running fitness occurred after my highest mileage summer back in 1990. I also did a lot of unstructured hard runs as part of that summer, but ultimately, I think I'm going to respond the best to higher mileage and of course a much smarter approach to the hard days.
For Quack - I wanted to clarify that I have FINISHED some recent longer runs at 6:30 pace, but I did not averaged 6:30 pace for the entire run. I apologize for giving the impression that I had averaged that fast of a pace for 10 miles. I don't think I'm close to that fit yet. I think my first opportunity to find out if I can handle that kind of pace for that long will be for my HM on April 16.
Question: I wanted to get in another race about 4 weeks from this Saturday, but I'm not finding anything promising for March 12 or March 5 or even for March 19.... There looks to be a high quality 5 k (winning time 14:35 last year on a USATF certified course, top Master 15:36) on March 26. I'm thinking this is appropriately space out from my HM on April 16, but just thought I would solicit opinions.
Go for it. A 5k every couple of weeks would not be too much. Also, we can use it to adjust training paces a bit, as your fitness may well leap forwards.
In the UK we have big road relays in spring, with 5k to 10k legs, often the week before London. Many of the country's best runners did a short leg to sharpen up (back when we were good). And you'll probably notice that 10000m runners at major champs are doing 5000s frequently beforehand. If you could find a 5k ONE week before I'd go for it.
Thanks for all the background BTW. You're the most level-headed Master I've come across.