If you are aiming to go on to 5k training, then you need to keep pushing that LT. For the one mile, LT work is less important since you are going to be so far above it during races. Aiming for 5k, you want to be driving that LT up as high as possible in the next few weeks. (side note: you are a little bit behind here, my guys all began the work you are now doing in Sept ? mind you, they have some important races in May/June).
If you have been following what I advised, then for the last 10 days or so you should have been doing this:
1 x per week 8-10 miles continuous at 155-160 HR as part of a 90-100 min run.
1 x per week 3 x 10-15 mins at 160-165 HR with 2-3 mins jog recovery (again within a longish run).
For the next two weeks, let the HR on the second run ease up to 165-170 and this might be somewhere around 6.30m/m (for you).
Now I would make sure you get in some faster work. Introduce the 200/200s once per week. Aim to run around 38 secs (on) and 50-55 secs (off). Note here that it is the 200 float (recovery) that is the important bit. Any old fool can run 200s in 38 secs and stand around for 55 secs and go again. It is only if you can jog 200m in the 50-55 sec period can you be sure your aerobic system is starting to pull its weight. Build up to where you can run 25 laps continuous without being overly stressed. Note also here that 38 secs is around your 5k pace, so the transition to that kind of stride pattern in phase two will not feel awkward.
In the final 3 weeks of this base run:
1 x per week 2 x 30 mins (or 1 x 60 mins) at 160-165 HR
1 x per week 3 x 10-15 mins at 175-180
(in both of these, you are really looking to see that pace vs HR remains steady... that you do not have to slow down to maintain HR. If in doubt, obey HR).
1 x 200/200s
All else 145-155 HR (as your body feels)
In phase two you are going to move on to vVO2max work, and here I would refer you back to the very first post in this thread. You should schedule 1 x (or 1.5 times) per week for maintenance/improvement of LT. And 1.5 x (or 2 times) per week at 5k leading up to 3k paces. These can begin with sets of 400s at 5k pace with 100m jog recovery, and build up to 1200m repeats at 5k pace with 4 mins jog. Then move on to 3k paces... The rest of the week, easy aerobic for 45-90 mins (as required). Aim for around 6-8 weeks work in all.
The week can be 1 x LT and 2 x vVO2, or 1 x LT, 1 x vVO2 and 1 Mix)
Always be careful to protect what you have already got, and don't ever get into, or even close to, knee grabbing/sucking wind territory. I always schedule an "unloading week" every fourth week or so. Drop all intensity, even have a couple of days off, then get back into it with renewed enthusiasm the following week. Think long-term. You do this right, the results will come. Don't be a "star" like some youngsters who just twinkle for a little while and then go out. You cannot do it all in one year. Next year's base will be better, because you will come into it a higher level.
I personally would try the 500s taper for Nats. But I would monitor every session of every runner (and do them at the mile pace they are currently capable of, not some PR pace of next June). You know what effort level you are aiming for, so make sure that that is all they put in (there can be a temptation to boogie on these). If they need longer than 5 mins recovery, give them longer (although if the pace is right, they should be recovered by then... although that depends a lot on their aerobic background). If you are unsure of one mile pace, ease it up to 3k pace. You really cannot do much harm with such low volume.
I was first told of these in the early 90s by a Russian physiologist I came to know very well. I also saw them mentioned later in a book written by a guy from South Africa (Norrie Williamson??) I was lent this book by a friend who also loaned me Noakes' book. I have never read Anderson's newsletter, although I have seen some of his stuff on pponline and remember him from way back with RW.
Thanks a bunch Hadd, I'm definitely going to do this. One quick question. Would you recomend me just basically bagging indoor track and working towards a late May, early June peak for end of outdoors? Treat it as one long season? I am leaning towards this right now.
Sounds like a plan.
Training this way, I find runners are ready for races from the top down: ie for 10k before 5k before 3k... So you might want to include some 10k road races in the build-up.
Hadd-thanks for the help. First of all, I completely agree with all of your training philosophies you have been expressing on this thread. However, I feel kind of stuck because I am a triathlete who also has bike racing team obligations. So as I am building my aerobic base for running, and starting to incorporate tempo runs, hills, etc. as my mileage builds, I know that my fellow triathletes and bike racers are already incorporating short sprints and power building workouts into their program. With cycling, most athletes are able to do these workouts, albeit at different levels of intensity, throughout the year. How can I mix these workouts most effectively while still maximizing my running performances? What effect physiologically will all of this have? How counterproductive will my biking workouts be to my running? Basically I need to be able to run fast while still turing a big gear on the bike. Thanks for any insight.
If you recall, I am the runner who had a 38 min marathon PR 8 weeks ago and whose coach subscribes to a similiar training philosphy to yours. I want to ask you a question regarding shoes.
I seems that Lydiard (as well as some others) thinks the modern shoe technology does nothing but cause injuries. During the last 5 years, I have been held back in my training due to a number of lower leg injuries (plantar faciitis, shin splints). As a result, I wear an expensive, rigid, no-flex training shoe with orthotics inside.
I wanted to hear what you have to say about this. Your reply would be appreciated.
My 2 pennies worth: as a guy who frequently suffered post-tib stress fractures and who has been told he "pathologically pronates," I found with LIGHTWEIGHT foam/cork custom orthotics that I could run as much as I wanted and, even better, in whatever flexible, light shoes I wanted. The orthotics essentially customize any shoe to your particular foot. For me, the motion-control shoes were overkill if I wore my orthos. Interestingly enough, after ten-plus years of needing them, I have become more of a midfoot striker and now rarely wear the orthos.
Started the 500s yesterday (75-73) and it did feel sweet to run fast again. Also nice to not have to average 14 miles a day! Question: would the taper-blood-volume increase effect still work if I took Thurs (race Sat) off when I fly out to California? I could still do the last 500 on the course on Friday's preview. I often take a rest day two days out from comps AND I usually take one day off per week, which would come due after Wed. Top up glycogen, etc.
To Hadd (or others will input),
I am greatly interested in your training philosphy and intend to implement it for Boston '03. I have two quick questions, however.
1) How quickly can one jump into the inital aerobic/mileage phase? Should I forget about miles and focus on time for now? Or should I work up to the time allowances? For background purposes, I am coming off a 2-3 week break and have never averaged over 65-70 mpw for over 5 consecutive months.
2)I've been told to incorporate hill (up and down) training for Boston. How do hills fit into your program? Should I merely seek out hilly runs during my 90 min. and 2+ hour runs? Should I specifically run hill repeats? Etc.
Thank you for your great advice on this post. As a 4:16 miler but only a 2:56 debut marathoner I feel I am the type of runner who can improve quite a bit from your methodolgy.
Mr ? (or Ms ?)
I am not sure this advice will be of much use to you, but here it is anyway. I have only ever coached one triathlete, (and only began four months ago) a young 17 year old who came into it from the swimming end and added on bike and then running. Looking at his total training package,we put the training week together like this:
Sun am: cycle pm: 75 min run
Mon am: Swim pm: off
Tue am: cycle pm: sub-LT run
Wed am: Swim pm: off
Thu am: 75 min run pm: Off
Fri am: cycle pm: LT run or 200/200s
Sat am: Swim pm: off
Right now he is working primarily on his running (his weak suit) and we are relying on the bike doing a lot of the main general aerobic leg work for us. Within his 75 mins runs he will pick the pace up to 5k + 80 secs for 2 x 20-minute stretches. On the track he will run a bit faster... like 5k + 60 secs up to 5k + 40 secs. It is still very early in his build-up, but he is handling the workload okay and enjoying his training. I make sure the bike work is not too intense at present. We will change the focus of things once his running improves.
You are going to have to prioritize your disciplines in some way: you cannot simultaneously work hard at swim, bike and running. If you want to work on running, reduce the bike intensity and go for distance (stay away from the hills and sprints at that time). Always be aware that the bike will help you substantially aerobically, so it might only be the sub-LT and faster work you need to do as actual running. (Here I mean paces from 5k + 70 secs and upward). Once you have a high LT, you can then add in 5k pace running (note that Marco has begun introducing this with 200/200s).
If you talk to other triathletes (no coaches around?), they may advise you better how to plan your week and how to best focus your training intensities. I am sure what we have done is quite basic, but I have lactate tested Marco against HR (both in running and cycling) and he can now monitor his effort by HR at all times.
Sorry I cannot help more. Marco may be too young, and the schedule too basic to be of use to an experienced athlete. Maybe someone else on here could offer advice from their own (better) experience?
I remember you well. I have read enough on here now to recognise the "usual suspects". I also read yr thread on shoe design.
I don't really know what value you will get from my experience, because I personally never had a single biomechanical problem and could happily run in barefeet on grass (note though that your footstrike is different when you do so). I tend to advise runners to get the simplest, most basic shoe going... often the Nike Pegasus. I have had three or four runners with foot problems in the last 2 years: one had serious pains in her heel which went away when we built up her arch support. She has just run a marathon with no problems but needs to be careful when she runs faster than 10k pace in training. A second female went to the expense of buying personalised orthotics and then threw them away after one week (too rigid). Again we built up her arch and she is running pain free. A third is an MD and she has gone the orthotic route (a host of lower leg pains, but she insists on taking care of them herself). A fourth had terrible shin pains till we discovered she has very wide feet and now must wear the widest New Balance shoes we can find.
Perhaps it's just a personal philosophy, but while being aware that there are genuine biomechanical problems that might require assistance from orthotics and modern shoe technology, I really would exhaust the simplest most basic solution before getting more technical.
We have had to do exactly the same as you on occasion. So, skipping either the Thur or the Fri taper session completely will not have a detrimental effect on the Sat race. Make sure and drink tons of liquids during and after the flight. I agree with the one day off per week or every 2 weeks. Good luck in Nats.
If you go slow enough, you would be surprised how quickly you can ramp up the aerobic mileage. Having replied to Dougruns26 above, I guess a lot of this will depend on how well you can deal with the mileage increase without lower leg pains. Just run easy enough and well within what you believe you could do on any one day. If you are careful, I would not think you would need to increase slowly to get from your usual 65 mpw up to 90 mpw. You could be at the higher level comfortably within a month - six weeks. The pace is the thing to watch. It must be drop-dead easy (at least at first). Something like M-pace (marathon pace) + 1:15 -1.30 per mile. Have an unloading week every fourth/fifth week or so, cutting any or all intensity and taking 2-3 days off (rather than reducing the mileage and still running every day). Think long-ish term. Makes no sense to be flying in Jan and injured in March with a race in April.
I always recommend that people do even their long easy running over hilly routes. No need to pump them hard, just try and not shuffle up them. No need to incorporate hill repeats just yet. As a 4.16 miler, you have the potential to knock 30 mins+ off that debut marathon time. Should be fun making it happen (although I seriously do not recommend you try to do it in one jump). Good luck.
What type of plan should a senior in HS looking to run the 800-3200? In the past 3 years I have done what my team did over the winter which is intervals every day with a total mileage of 5-15mpw. But this past summer I did lots of aerobic running got up to 75mpw for several weeks (didn't do any LT and no fast 200's and probably ran too hard on easy days). I was in great shape until I started to run 4-5 hard days per week for a couple weeks in late/july (I could of ran about a 16:00 5k back then) and august and then it was downhill from there (overtrained with too much intensity). Now for this winter I want to take the right approach. I go easy in the workouts at practice although my HR still gets up to 190 or so (my Max is around 205-210 and Resting is 45-50) What should I do if I want to have a good outdoor season (we also run meets every week to every other week indoors.) My coach is very unreasonable but I might be able to convince the assistant to change the workouts if I show him a plan:
Here is what my team does:
Monday: Indian run for 15min @ 9:00 pace on track, walk a lap, 2*500 all out walk a lap in between.
Tuesday: 1*mile all out walk 2 laps 2*400 all out
Wednesday: 3*400 all out walk a lap 2*200 all out walk 200m to start
Thursday: 4*400 relay 3 times
This is my plan for the next couple months:
December/January: Build to 70+mpw
Monday: A.M. 45-60min @ 145-155 HR P.M. team workout until 5 PM then 170-180 HR (steady state) for 60min
Tuesday: A.M. 30-60min P.M. 5*200m w/ 5min recovery
Wednesday: A.M. 45-60min @ 145-155 P.M. build to 25 laps w/ 200m 5k 200m float recovery OR 15*1min ON/OFF
Thursday: A.M. or P.M. 50-70min @ 145-155 HR
Friday: A.M. 20-30min @ 145-150 HR P.M. strides
Saturday: Race OR Long Run building to 15mi
Sunday: Long run of 8-12mi if race the day before. (take sunday off every other week.)
Feb/March work on more strength such as hill reps on monday and vV02 Max cut mileage to 55-65mpw
April/Early May 50-60mpw
VO2 Max work at race pace cut back LR to 11-13mi
May-June Peak: 35-50mpw
every 4th week cut back mileage and intensity by 70%
My current PR's:
I want to run in college (good D1) and most of the coaches I'm looking at will give me some money if I Run 4:15mi and <9:20 2mi
I would also like to give breaking my school records a shot:
800: 1:54 (set in 92' I talked to him and he trained on his own a lot in addition to what he ran in practice much like I want to do he also ran a 4:18 1600 one of the few if not only to break 4:30
1600: 4:13 (set in 82')
3200: 9:12 (set in 82')
the records were set before the current coach got here 20 years ago.
under the current coach we have had about 2 break 10min 2mi and 1-2 break 4:30. This is in 20 years.
we also have only had 3-4 if that break 2:00 in the 800
My school has 800 guys in it so it's not that small either.
He is letting someone coach distance this year on the days that he shows up but he just does the same stuff as the other coach(lots of 200's 400's with tons of rest).
Thanks for the help,
I think you are making this much too complicated. As are a lot of people on this thread. If you go back through Hadd's earlier posts (especially the first one), you'll see he gave you all the information you need. Maybe it's not personalized to your exact situation, but man, have some sense and apply it to your situation yourself. Running is a very simple sport. Keep it that way.
I?ve been reading your posts and they?ve been very helpful and informative. Thank you.
I?m a 4:01 miler coming off a LONG (8 month) injury layoff, during which I was able to do some (but not much) cross training. I wanted to briefly bounce off of you what I?ve been doing to come back, to see if you had any thoughts about it. I?d like to run some mile and 3k races towards the end of the indoor season, and run fast without sacrificing the buildup of a mileage base and good lactate buffering ability.
I am injured often, unfortunately, but when I start running I am able to regain fitness quickly.
I?ve been running for 7 weeks, and have built up to 70 miles a week. After four weeks of easy runs that gradually increased in length, I began doing tempo type runs ever several days, during which I stay relaxed and within the ?comfort? range. I?ve done 5 of these now, and I go either a bit longer or a bit faster each time, always careful keep my breathing controlled. The last one was 8 miles at a 5:40 pace (always with a 3 mile warm-up that starts very slow and gradually gets faster). I was planning to continue with these every three days, building up to longer and faster efforts. Any thoughts on whether I?m on the right track, and how I should continue to approach this? I don?t think I need to step on the track for the next 4 weeks, and when I do, I?d like to continue with the extended threshold runs at least once a week.
I am also doing a long run every 7-10 days, full-body strength work every several days, and strides every several days.
Thanks for any input.
Do you have any idea how big a question you asked? There is no way I could give you a whole detailed season plan in a single post. Nor, indeed, would I want to. I am not in the business of coming between an existing coach and a runner.
I am the most approachable of coaches, but if any athlete of mine came to me with a schedule they had downloaded from the internet, I would very quickly tell him/her (politely) where to put it. And then I would tell them to find themselves another coach.
So, you cannot do what you plan. If you are working with a coach, you cannot go round second-guessing him at every turn and checking behind his back. If you are with him, you follow his advice. If you don?t want to follow his advice, tell him politely to his face and then sit down on your own and see where you are going to go and what you are going to do.
Having said that, let?s look at your numbers: you said you are a senior (which to me means you are in your last year of HS ? correct me if I?m wrong). You would really have to have some damn fine personal coaching to get from your current PR?s to your goal PR?s before next June.
From 2.11 for 800m to a 1.54
From 4.41 for 1600m to 4.13
From 10.02 for 3200m to 9.20
You have your work cut out to make it in time. But to make those kind of improvements, you need some serious one-on-one coaching, seeing the guy a minimum of three times per week... not 200 words of very general advice from me on here.
I wish you good luck. I can only suggest you find a coach (nearby) you can work with and begin as soon as possible. You have read my general advice up to now, read what I also suggest to Middle-Distance runner (below) and see if some of it might also apply to you.
Hi M-D runner,
You are obviously one talented dude, but I am sorry to hear you are often troubled by injuries. As a coach, I would be very concerned if this was happening to a runner of mine, and would leave no stone unturned until I had discovered and eradicated the cause. Perhaps it is too much intensity... let?s see if a better base of pre-season preparation can help.
I will state up front that I have never coached a 4.01 miler, so let me offer some guidelines and you can see how they best fit your situation.
When I begin with a new runner (this doesn?t really apply to you but maybe of interest to younger guys), I start him/her off with lots of easy running (at 5k + 120-130 secs) plus two (or even three) sessions per week at no faster than 5k pace + 80 secs. Experience has shown me that we need to begin with a period this slow to get the runner to run with low enough lactate.
During these sessions (which can last up to one hour of running), we are looking to see that the athlete is dealing with the distance well and that the runner?s HR does not climb (more than a few beats) between (say) the 10th minute and the end of the run.
Most often the runner?s find these sessions ?slow? at first, but I show them that if their HR is climbing it is not as easy as they think and they stick with it.
With the long easy running and the 5k + 80, the runners soon find a drop in HR at all paces (which makes them feel good). Depending on adaptation time, I next move the runner up to 5k + 60 secs pace, and again we soon move up to a total of 60 mins per session. Again, HR?s at this pace usually drop, and once again we keep at them until we get to a period when the HR does not rise during the course of the run. (Lactate testing may take place around this time for my confirmation).
By the time we can move the runner up to a steady HR at 5k + 40 secs pace, we can be very happy that the aerobic system is working well. This is not ?holiday? pace, but the athlete is not in any trouble and can handle up to a total 45 mins quite well (marathoners love such sessions and will happily go longer).
By this time we are no longer running sessions of 5k+80 pace, but might have (Tue) 1 x 5k+60 (60 mins continuous) plus (Fri) 1 x 5k + 40 (2 x 20 or 1 x 45 mins depending on the runner type) both with flat HR then we might change the third session (Sun) (which WAS 5k + 60 secs) to 25 laps of 200/200s. With all else being easy running (from drop dead easy recovery stuff up to a max pace of 5k + 80 secs if the athlete is experienced and feeling good).
The introduction of the 200/200 session is really to lead us (quickly) into 10k pace running at up to 4-5 x 2k. The 200s soon become repeat 1 ks and onto 2k repeats at 10k pace with 400-800m jog.
At all times we are careful with health, recovery, etc. We know we must protect what we already have, because one niggle that becomes an injury, one flu bug, or whatever, and we slip back. When in doubt I don?t hesitate to bag the session and come back another day.
So, when the runner can deal with these 3 sessions, I like to include running at up to 5k pace. Once again we might reintroduce the 200/200 (a little faster than 5k pace ON and anywhere from 48-55 secs OFF ? again depending on the runner. They must maintain an honest OFF pace), which segue into two repeat sets of 8 x 400m in 5k pace with 100m float in 30-35 secs and 800m jog in between sets. This we soon try and work down to near 3k pace. They later become 1000-1200s at 5k pace and then 1000s at 3k pace. (This can take some time).
By now we have a week that might contain the following:
1 session (alternate) 60 mins @ 5k + 60 secs OR total of 45 mins @ 5k + 40 secs (always with flat HR)
1 session of 2k repeats at 10k pace with 400-800m jog
1 session of 1k-1200m repeats at 5k pace (pushing down to 3k pace)
(We sometimes alternate 300m uphill repeats for the 5k session (easy jog down recovery))
All else easy up to a max of 5k + 80 secs. For now, my young guys do not run any one run longer than 75 mins.
Since we do 3-5 x 100m strides before every track workout, the runners maintain a good leg turnover. By this time they are seriously strong. This all might take us to mid-end Jan.
We include drills, bounding, core strength training and some exercises with leg weights and rubber bands on a weekly basis.
Beyond this are a second phase and a pre-competition/competition phase. But this is the one you must get right, or the rest can fall apart when you introduce more intensity than you can deal with.
In phase two, the aerobic work gets a little faster, but also a little shorter (like 30-40 mins total of 5k + 30 secs) alternating with 5k + 40 as you introduce the speed.
Hope this is of some value.
And finally: further than all of this, I think I am going to agree with ?geargrinder?. I have tried to be as clear and simple as possible in all my posts, and have even tried to offer ways you can each confirm you are doing the right work. (Either in referring the pace to your current 5k ability, or by offering heart-rate guidelines).
Please make sure that I have not already offered some advice that is applicable/of value to you before just jumping in at the end and posting new questions. I know at 130+ posts this thread has become a lengthy read, but trust me, it took even longer to write.
Thanks, and good luck to you all.
This has been a great thread, so I've copied the entire thing to a word document.
I have one question that apparently has not been addressed. After the initial buildup to where 90 minutes runs become easy, it is time to start workouts at 5K+60 seconds. If I read everything correctly, when the heartrate doesn't continue to climb during that session, you are probably ready to move to 5K+50 second pace for those sessions.
My question is this: I don't use a HRM. Is there another way of determining when you're ready to move down? In other words, after x number of sessions, is the athlete ready to run the workouts faster? I know that you mentioned that you should feel that you could "go round again." However, most of us here probably have the tenacity to do that, but it may not be the most beneficial thing for us.
Thank you for your advice. Could you please go through what % of Heart Rate Reserve the various paces you have listed should be run at.
I am going to follow the program I have made. I don't feel it's necessary for private coaching. I will follow my coach and do what I have been doing according to my schedule working towards breaking my school record(s).
Hi Hadd, great thread - thank you for all the information. I have a question that I'm pretty sure won't require more than a few sentences to answer (I've already read through all the previous stuff).
This thread is a few weeks old now, and I remember reading it when it was first started - you advocated slowing things down to make sure that all my runs are as aerobic as I'd like them to be. You even stated some guidelines - build up to a 2 hr long run, 1-2 90 minute runs, and the rest 45-60 minutes per run, making sure that my heart rate stays steady after the first 10 minutes of the run.
I didn't really have a plan for my base-building phase, so I thought I'd give it a try, and now I have one main concern.
The last two weeks I've run 6 days per week, consisting of 1 90 minute run and 5 50 minute runs, all at 150-155 (a range I chose based on a few of your posts and my max heart rate). I haven't started doing any faster LT stuff, but I imagine I'll start in the next few weeks.
My question is that I have an impossible time maintaining my pace and keeping a steady heart rate, and I'm wondering if eventually this will change by itself or if I should approach my runs differently.
On a typical 50 minute run, for example, usually for the first 20 minutes I'm able to keep my heart rate in the high 140's (147-150) and run at what feels like a decent pace. The route I usually take then has a big hill that takes about 5 minutes to climb, during which I have to shuffle to keep my heart rate under 160. Once I get to the crest of the hill, I slow down until my heart rate drops to 150, and then over the next 25 minutes my pace gradually gets slower and slower as I struggle to stay under 155. By the end of my runs I'm running quite slow and it is frustrating.
Will a few more weeks change this pattern? If so, simple encouragement that things will get better is all I need.
Or should I change how I run? (start off slower, don't worry about the HR monitor so much, etc.)
Like I said, I've already read all your posts on the physiology of running, so you can keep your answer short and simple.
If anyone else has any input, I would appreciate it too.
to anyone willing to reply:
does this look like a sound high mileage program?
sunday:22 miles easy
monday: am-4 easy pm-16 moderate
tuesday: am 4 easy pm-10hard
wednesday:am-4 easy pm-16 moderate
thursday:am 4 easy pm-10hard
friday:am-4 easy pm-16 moderate
saturday:am 4 easy pm-10hard
every fifth week i would use the theory of overcompensation by running only 4 days of the week allowing my body to recoup and soak in the gains of my previous 4 weeks of high mileage running
thank you guys very much
Hadd explain Cardiac drift if you could? One of the guys just posted about how his HR does not stay steady during his long runs & I thought it would be a good point for you to explain what we HRM users should do about that? On any run my pace will slow or my HR will rise. What are we to do about that & is there a formula that takes into account the Cardiac drift? Are the physiological parameters the same (Lactate) at 170 later on in a run, as it would be at 150 early on in a run for example? Also related to that, how do we deal with heat & humidity while wearing the HR year round? I swear that we are training our hearts not our muscles to run a certain speed. Thanks, L&SR
I know everyone is asking you questions so please let me ask one as well. What kind of schedule do you suggest for one who races year round as a master? The races are primarily 5k to 1/2 marathon. Most races will be in the 5k-10k range with only one or two 1/2's. The racing season starts in April and goes to December with about 2 races per month. Usually January and Febuary are free from races. Right now I'm running 45-50 miles per week at a comfortable to moderate level and 3 days out from a race I go and do 4x400's all out with 5 minutes rest. My pace on the daily runs range from 7:00 (slowest) to 6:30 (fastest, moderate pace). The 400's are run at 78-80. My fastest 5k is 17:30. Any help would be greatly appreciated.
Well I'm taking a final in exercise physiology tomorrow morning, so I thought I'd see if I could help you with your questions.
"Prolonged upright exercise at a constant everxise intensity places an increasing load on the heart. Although the metablolic requirement of the exercise does not change, there is a progressive decrease in venous return of blood to the heart. This leads to decreased stroke volumea nd a progressive rise in heart rate, a phenomenon called cardiovascular drift. Cardiovascular drift is probably caused by a breakdown in sympathetic blood flow control mechanisms, increased distribution of blood to the skin for cooling, or both." (Exercise Physiology, 3rd ed., George Brooks)
While I don't completely understand the decreased sympathetic control part, the redistribution of blood makes a lot of sense. As your runs increase in length and your body temperature core temp creeps up, a greater percentage of your blood will be sent to the surface of the skin to try and release heat to the environment. Since your blood vol is fixed (actually plasma levels may be decreasing during the run as dehydration occurs and blood protien levels incrase osmotic pressure, driving more water out) if a greater percentage goes to the skin, less can go to working muscles. To compensate for this, your heart pumps more frequently in order to increase cardiac output and thus sustain the pace you are running at.
Hope this helps!
you run your "easy" runs much slower than me, i've run 15:44 for 5k, you gotta be running around 8:00 pace for "easy", what's going on, you can't runn 17 for 5k and you think 6:30 is "slow"? excuse me?/