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from what Canova says
RE: Sub 1:50 800m Training
Renato Canova has stated on past threads that to improve one's specific endurance, you have to run within 10% of the pace- from 90-110% race pace. So for a 1:52 800m, between 12.6 and 15.4 seconds per 100 is specific training. This is not the only kind of training necessary (far from it) but it increases in importance as one's main race gets closer. What is important is increasing both the speed (via hill sprints and circuits) and the endurance (via long runs, tempo, and VO2 max workouts) during the off season, then focusing on speed endurance at about 90-95% of competitive speed, and finally focusing on race pace. Note that Canova states that he never likes to have the same type of session multiple times per week. He also likes to avoid producing too much lactic acid except at critical points when the system must be trained because lactic acid production damages the aerobic and neuromuscular capabilities. There are only a few really tough race pace type workouts like 2-3X600m- maybe once per 10 days in the competitive season. Even in the competitive season much of the work is stuff like 10X500m at about 90% of 800m pace and workouts like 2X1000,2X800,2X600,2X400,2X200 with the first slower and the 2nd at 90% of the maximum for the interval's distance.
I'm no expert at Canova's training though, although it would be great if he would chime in on this thread with any helpful information, like how many quality days per week an 800 meter guy should run.
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