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After too much reading and planning, I've finished planning out two phases of training (which will last through most of the summer). For those willing, take a look at it and please let me know if there is something that you see might need to be changed. This is my first time being a distance coach, so I will take all the advice and perspectives into thought.
I def. appreciate your input.
- It's for cross country season.
- Though I have a detailed plan, progression will be individual and dependent on what the athlete can handle.
- So look at it as an "ideal" scenario.
- There will also be core and strength exercises mixed in.
- Most of the running will be on grass/dirt
- All single numbers without a rest or anything afterwards are mileage numbers meant to be ran at an easy pace. So if it reads "6/27 4 + strides", it means that on that day, the workout is 4 miles easy plus strides.
- Everything in parenthesis is rest.
Week 1 (about 29 miles)
5/14 30 min
5/15 30 min
5/18 30 min
5/20 30 min
Week 2 (31 miles)
Week 3 (33 miles)
Week 4 (40 miles)
6/4 5 + strides
6/5 5 + strides
6/7 5 + strides
6/8 5 + strides
Week 5 (40 miles)
6/11 5 + strides
6/12 5 + strides
6/14 5 + strides
6/15 5 + strides
Week 6 (40 miles)
6/18 5 + strides
6/19 5 + strides
6/21 5 + strides
6/22 5 + strides
Week 1 (48 miles)
6/25 2 + 8x400(400 jog) + 3x200(200 jog) + 2
6/26 4 + strides
6/27 4 + strides
6/28 2 + 4xmile(1min rest) + 2
6/29 4 + strides
6/30 2 + 6x1000(3min jog) + 2
Week 2 (48 miles)
7/2 5 + strides
7/3 2 + hills + 2
7/4 5 + strides
7/5 5 + strides
7/6 2 + 25min Tempo + 2 (continuous)
7/7 5 + strides
Week 3 (48 miles)
7/9 2 + 8x400(400 jog) + 3x200(200 jog) + 2
7/10 4 + strides
7/11 4 + strides
7/12 2 + 4xmile(1min rest) + 2
7/13 4 + strides
7/14 2 + 6x1000(3min jog) + 2
Week 4 (56 miles)
7/16 6 + strides
7/17 2 + hills + 2
7/18 6 + strides
7/19 6 + strides
7/20 2 + 30min Tempo + 2
7/21 6 + strides
7/22 13 (or 90 minutes)
Week 5 (56 miles)
7/23 2 + 4x200(200 jog) + 9x400(400 jog) + 2
7/24 5 + strides
7/25 5 + strides
7/26 2 + 5xmile(1 min rest) + 2
7/27 5 + strides
7/28 2 + 7x1000 + 2
7/29 13 (or 90 minutes)
Week 6 (56 miles)
7/30 6 + strides
7/31 2 + hills + 2
8/1 6 + strides
8/2 6 + strides
8/3 2 + 30min Tempo + 2 (Continuous)
8/4 6 + strides
8/5 13 (or 90 minutes)
I'd put a hill session in each week of the first phase to build strength-150 yards, a minute rest-10 repeats, something like that. This will help with injury prevention as the summer and fall progresses. I think this will also prevent boredom from setting in with 6 weeks of 4 or 5 milers everyday.
I don't see any need to go 13 for high school kids racing 5 K. I'd top out at 9 or 10-even that could be too much for the younger kids. The trick to building a program is developing 9th graders to be beast 12th graders. Running them till they quit won't accomplish that. One trick I know of on long runs is have them on an out and back-tell the leaders to turn around after 35 minutes or whatever. When the leaders pass the slower kids on the way back, the slower kids turn around. That way the older tougher kids get their 10 in, and the younger, slower kids will not get injured.
Thanks for the response;
Light hill-work sounds like a good idea. Anyone else have insight on doing more than easy running during base?
Also forgot to mention; this is the program for my older more experienced runners. I also thought 13 milers may have been much, but I wanted to get close to that 25% Long run mark.
I'll agree with the hill workout, for some strength/injury prevention and to fight boredom. I have no problem with a long run of 13. My top guys did a few last summer without much of a problem. I also included a race towards the end of the summer. It worked perfectly that there was a race at our state course in late July/early August.
Awesome, i will work on inserting light quality once a week during base. And as far as long runs go, if they are able to do the weekly mileage, they should be fine in handling the run.
Hmm. I thought people more frequently put the long run at 20% of weekly mileage. Could be wrong there, though.
I was going to recommend that you use the Search function (or Google) for "Summer of Malmo," but somehow I think you've probably already looked at that. So just a couple more general points:
1) Remember that training is a process of stress and recovery (resulting in an adaptation to the stress) that moves an individual from where s/he *is*, to where s/he *has to be* for success in a particular event (in this case, xc races). As a result, base training should focus on what's "basic" for the athlete(s) rather than for the event.
2) Which means: if your better kids will have finished a serious season of outdoor track, by the end of that season they'll have developed considerable skill in moving fast with a limited expenditure of energy. That's "where they are."
So to give that away, by having several weeks with little or nothing that "keeps in touch" with that skill of fast and efficient movement, is not just a waste--why lose the skill, only to have to develop it again?--but actually stressful(!), because moving from (some) fast stuff to all-slow training is a major, abrupt change for the individual(s).
Anyway, that's the reasoning that some people use in advocating at least a bit of turnover-type stuff during the entire base period, and particularly early on.
3) If some of your xc kids do shorter events in the spring, esp. 400/800, then in the first part of the base period they will have a *greater* need to touch fairly high speeds (whether through accelerations or within fartlek runs or whatever), and will need to be a bit *slower* about building up their mileage than the guys who do longer-distance races in the spring.
One thing that I've found works well with these shorter-distance kids (during this early-base phase) is to get them, once or twice a week, playing games like touch football, basketball, or (especially useful) ultimate frisbee. (The games might not be the whole of the training session, which might include some warmup/cooldown running, strides, whatever.)
I've also had some success with having these guys do X minutes of follow the leader. Each man is the leader for, say, five minutes at a time; in that period, the kids just do whatever he says (provided it's not dangerous!): calisthenics, indian runs, throwing a tennis ball or football around whilst running (lots of impromptu "pass routes"), climbing, crawling, whatever. You can provide a bit of structure by saying that the session has to include, at some point, 4 x 200 or 3 x Deadman's Hill or whatever you think's appropriate. Shorter-distance track kids enjoy this and actually get a lot of running done, sort of by accident--but it's not as mentally tough for them, in early-base training, as going for a long easy run would be.
Whoa. Too long-winded. Sorry. OP, looks like your basic plan is great! Good luck--enjoy the summer and the fall!
Far too much structure. Seriously. Chill out, no coach, runner human being, can expect to know how they will feel, or what they have planned July 16th in April. Run by feel, cut the schedule.
Summer of Malmo, be free my friends.
Volume first. Speed later.
Just put in easy miles.
Take a one or two week break after
outdoor track season and maybe
do 30 or 40 miles in May.
Better yet, count hours, not miles.
If you are doing 7 hours a week in June,
that may allow you to move up to 8 hours a week in July
and so on and so forth.
A 5km fun run, no pressure test race in July or August
will fulfill your need for speed and give you the confidence
heading into September.
There are a couple reasons for the structured plan.
Mostly... it's my personality to be like that.
Also, in addition, as a new coach, it gives me peace of mind to have a plan. I am not at the point where I can plan as I go ( which I dont think is a good way of coaching anyways) . I'm still at the point where I have to go back to the books everytime just to figure out pace range, distance ranges, etc. So due to my lack of experienced knowledge, a plan is best for me.
But as I've mentioned before, I fully intend to adapt to the every-day feelings of the individual. For instance, some might start at 20 mpw, some might need 1 or 2 days off a week, setc etc. I might need to move quality days; no big deal if I do, but at least I have the plan so I can easily see where to move it.
And thanks for the malmo, I actually have never read that. It basically looks like what I have down anyways.
And thanks for the insight in regards to speed during base. I will definitely incorporate that.
Thanks, i based the mileage based on time spent running for my avg runner. It's just easier to keep track of for me.
For instance, i raised 8 miles for phase 2, which roughly equates to an hiur of eady running.
I'm going to be brutally honest with you. Your phase 2 is absolutely terrible. Terrible! This is summer base man, not competition phase. You shouldn't be doing any intervals work in the summer at all, let alone 200m-400m reps. My god. That's the kind of stuff you do the last two weeks of the season to peak for your state meet.
Here's a summer plan that is will be much more effective:
Try to run every day but take a day off here and there if you feel like you need it. Start out at only a few miles per day and progress 1-5mpw each week until you're running 50-80mpw (highly dependent on the athlete). Try to get in one long run each week, one to two moderate effort runs, and do strides a few times per week.
There. If your kids follow that they'll come into xc in the fall in the shape of their lives, FAR better than if they ran 400m-1600m intervals all summer.
Guppy is absolutely right. 2-3 intense workouts a week in the base season is a sure way for burnout, in my opinion. It'd be much safer to leave it at a long run and an optional tempo or cruise interval day, or something along those lines. Also, I dont think theres anything wrong with doing 13mile long runs. The problem is that kids need to build up to that. What I don't get is expecting a kid who normally runs 5-6miles a day to all of a sudden go 13 on the weekend. Makes no sense to me. If your long run is about 90min, I think you can/should run about 60min a day. So I would concur with Guppy again and suggest starting the kids at 30-50mpw (whatever theyre comfortable with and capable of), and simply building 1-5mpw till the real season. The weeks should be run with one 20% long run, and then roughly equal distribution of mileage on the other days. So if an athlete has a week of 50, he needs a long run of 10 followed by 6 days averaging about 6.6 miles: so he needs 4 days of 7 and 2 days of 6, or something like that.
Hope that helps. Remember that the Base season is about building mileage and building a team.
I have to disagree, at least some, with Guppy and Prometheus here--precisely because summer *is*, in large part, about team building.
I don't think that repetitions with recovery intervals of equal distance (e.g. 400m followed by 400m jog) are likely to lead to burnout, *particularly* if the OP takes a couple of simple steps:
*If the repeat work will be on the track, just don't time it!--and forbid the runners to time it, or even to wear their watches. (And coach, don't cheat by "secretly" timing it yourself--put your own watch away and just watch how the guys move, and the team dynamics.)
Instead, make the focus on running as a group: close enough that every person has a teammate within arm's length.
*Have different kids lead different repetitions. Don't allow a "pecking order" to develop, because that can carry over to the season and limit some guys' expectations. ("Oh, Jim always finishes ahead of me." No, maybe not--maybe Jim was just more fit for a few weeks in the summer, and as Joe gets in better shape, he should actually start carrying more of the load in workouts/races.)
Every kid should lead sometimes--except if you have one who's a lot better than the others, you might tell them all that he will never lead a rep in summer: that way, they don't get into the Pete-sets-the-pace mindset.
*With that equal-distance recovery between reps, and no particular time that the guys are trying to hit, it should be possible (often, anyway) for the runners to feel stronger when they finish a rep workout than when they started it. This will build their confidence in themselves and in your coaching.
OP, you should take the suggestions from everybody, *me included*, with a grain or three of salt. It sounds like you're going into this with a good deal of mental flexibility, so you can make changes in your plan as needed; but based on what you convey of where you, the runners, and the program are, I think your *having* a good basic plan is sound. It doesn't sound like your program is yet at the point where you could just tell the guys "go run this summer"--they need (and, at some level, probably want) more structure than that.
Anyway, good luck. It would be great if you'd periodically revive this thread during the summer and fall--I'd really be interested to hear how you and the team progress.
You are not a F**king coach. Just one more white boy, looking for freee s***.
A few questions that I had while reading through your "plan":
1. What exactly is "easy pace" for your runners?
2. Why so many days of strides?
3. What exactly is "tempo" pace?
4. Why are you putting interval workouts during the highest mileage weeks? Also, why not just have them do their runs with plenty of hills?
"Week 5 (56 miles)
7/23 2 + 4x200(200 jog) + 9x400(400 jog) + 2
7/24 5 + strides
7/25 5 + strides
7/26 2 + 5xmile(1 min rest) + 2
7/27 5 + strides
7/28 2 + 7x1000 + 2
7/29 13 (or 90 minutes)"
Three quality days of intervals AND a long run at faster than 7 mins per mile? Do you really think that high school runners will have adequate recovery to get through such a week?
You are overthinking it. Don't do strides every single day, that's stupid. Don't plan out every single day of running from now until August. That's stupid too. Take a little bit of a break after track and work your way up to running 60min easy to moderate every day, with strides once or twice a week, and a 90min long run every week or two weeks. Worry about tempos, workouts, and stuff later. Right now you just got to get your mileage up. You'd be better off running 60mpw with no workouts than 50 with seven workouts (which is what you are doing, putting strides every single day). Also, 400s really have no place in summer training for most high schoolers. You're going to hammer your workouts too hard and burn yourself out. JUST GET OUT AND RUN AT AN EASY TO MODERATE EFFORT FOR ABOUT AN HOUR EVERY DAY! That is ALL you really need for now!
Trust me, I went from 20:00 in the 5k as a freshman to 16:30 as a senior, and I trained with two 15:30 guys. Don't do planned workouts in the summer. Don't do strides every day. Don't overwork yourself and obsess about this. Just get out and go running. Try to enjoy it once in a while too, sheesh. 400s at mile pace in JUNE? Just shoot me now....I've run 120 miles a week and I'd absolutely hate the schedule you've sketched out. Too much work and not enough play...
No offense, lease, but if you don't know what you're talking about, don't talk. You clearly have no understanding of periodization or how to create an effective season training plan. Everything I've ever read disagrees with your advice, and no successful coach or athlete I've ever known, listened to, or read about would agree with your advice, including myself, a <14:00 college guy who was also nationally ranked in high school and who has trained with and raced against members of USA xc and track and field teams (everything from 1:45 800m runners to 2:12 marathoners). Anyone who knows anything about training would disagree with you.
OP, if you want meticulous structure, fine. Lay out a day by day plan, but don't do anything faster than threshold pace (as defined by Daniels, Martin and Coe, Pfitzinger, Kellogg, etc), focus on getting miles in, and don't have your athletes do more than two moderate effort workouts + one long run per week. You might vary the day to day mileage by 1-2 miles to break up the monotony of it all as this can be a component for high school athletes (who are usually less dedicated than college guys). A good week for a high school guy in the summer includes 1 long run (13 miles is fine if they've built up to that), one short threshold (4 miles, no faster than 5k pace + 35s/mile), and one long threshold/progression (6-10 miles at the upper end of easy; should not be a hard day at all), one recovery day, and strides 2-3 times per week. That should be the max intensity. It's okay to only do one workout a week and the rest just easy days. Let me know if you want me to elaborate on anything.
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