Too hot, Kroc, anyone else interested in philosophical training discussions instead of changing the function of the weekly thread.
More than one person at church may have an interest in discussing football. That doesn't mean talking over the pastor is the socially polite thing to do. Take that discussion to the bar.
I'll start off the discussion:
I believe that aerobic training is the foundation of all good distance running and this is a slow process that takes time. However, if you totally neglect all other neuromuscular focus, all other energy systems, all short term racing and training goals in pursuit of 8-10 years of steadily building an aerobic house you will not be a well balanced runner and you will have to be patient to a point of monk-like discipline to get there.
I also believe that looking at a person's week to week training will not give you any indication of what they have planned for the next year or 5 years, so telling them all that they should stop focusing on their workouts for the next 4 weeks and think holistically is not really constructive without first asking them what their five year plan is.
I also believe that Canova may say it takes 8-10 years to be able to handle his elite workouts, but NONE of the people that went through that process forwent workouts or racing in those 8-10 years, so to propose that all of the discussion of training specifics is worthless is impractical.
Too hot, Kroc, anyone else interested in philosophical training discussions instead of changing the function of the weekly thread.
so telling them all that they should stop focusing on their workouts for the next 4 weeks and think holistically is not really constructive without first asking them what their five year plan is.
my experience of LetsRun is that zero folk on here have a plan that extends beyond their next race. I imagine that a lot of folks just choked on their coffee when they read the words, "five year plan."
however, I agree with what you said.
training is a goal oriented endeavour. you start with a goal; but the important point is that your goal should be further in your future than your current pair of running shoes will last.
then, each year you set yourself a target that is a stepping stone on the way to achieving your goal.
We'll see if this catches on. Was not trolling in the other thread in the least bit, just the best place to get quality responses to any kind of training questions.
I do see a lot of validity in what you are saying, GT.
Even if the end goal is building the aerobic house, you can that while doing a lot of different types of work along the way. Curious as to what too hot thinks about that.
If you look at the vast majority of non-east African MD/LD runners who are world class/high level on a consistent basis they have a large, healthy dose ignore aerobic training but also work on a variety of systems - Nick Willis, the Ingebrigtsens', Ryan Gregson to name just a few.
Willis is a great example as Warhurst has clearly had a plan for Nick to steadily improve year on year, culminating (some would argue) in running 3.28 at the age of 32. However you are right that at no point of this plan did Willis shy away from racing, every season he had short term goals which ultimately keep him focused and motivated on the long term goal of running an absolutely ridiculous time and winning medals on the world stage!
I have used this metaphor before, and I think it kind of works here. To me individual training cycles are like layers of shells that sink to the bottom of a body of water. Over time, those layers compress and solidify together to result in the formation of sedimentary rock, and over time, those layers of rock build up into something meaningful and tangible. You have to have the right materials in each layer of sediment, and the goal should be to build one layer on top of the other.
For me, this is a great way to talk through a lot of the concerns that people have about a periodized approach to training. You will often hear people express concern about whether their fitness will improve if they have stretches of time when they are not doing "meat and potatoes" style workouts, and will feel like they have regressed when they come back to those kinds of workouts but are running slower in them because of time away from them. You need to have solid layers beneath you to build up to higher heights. I also use a "waves during high tide" analogy to try to get people comfortable with this idea - each wave may recede, but the waves as a whole progress up the beach.
I think the real rub of the situation comes from the theoretical v. the practical.
In theory, if we were taking a 14 year old who is just getting started in the sport and were to design a 12-18 year plan with the sole goal being to see how fast the athlete could run during his or her peak, we might focus primarily on steadily building mileage and raw speed development for the first several years. The macrocycles would be much longer, etc.
In practice, what we are doing is taking 14 year olds who are trying to see if they have an interest and an aptitude for a sport and letting them find out by way of competing. Usually that means we have a 14 year old kid who walks on to a high school cross country team because he is skinny and gets tired less than his peers when they were playing tag or chasing each other around while playing some other sport. That kid will have a race within the first month of coming out for the team, probably sooner. The team will have district or county meets 2-3 months into the kid's running career. The kid will want to see improvement or will lose interest. The coach will be dealing with a couple of dozen or more kids at a time. You are not going to tell a 14 year old that while they may have some natural ability, we are going to focus on things that will maximize your ability when you are 30. Most would leave the sport by Thanksgiving. So coaches will instead break them in with a lot of easy distance, with better coaches starting them off slow and building up a little more each semester. They will tend often get to experiment racing shorter distances and good coaches will start them off primarily with workouts that will not be overly taxing and will be manageable for a newer athlete - shorter speed oriented stuff. But there will also inevitably be some extended threshold work and some vo2max work, and some ebb and flow of mileage as each season (xc, indoor, outdoor) comes and goes.
And that cycle will continue on even as adults. When I came back to the sport as a masters runner after a long lay off, if I had the sole goal of running under 2:30 for the marathon, in theory, perhaps my best bet would have been to work on my base for two or three years, especially since I never developed a traditional base as a younger runner. But the reality is that I came back to the sport to lose some weight, to add some structure to my life, to reconnect with some friends and to whet my competitive appetite. In fact, I really wasn't racing all that well at ages 39 and 40 - I figured I would take "one last shot at sub 16:00" and that would be that. Having a short term goal motivated me to get out 4-5 days a week and to start doing workouts after a few months. Getting into race sooner than would be ideal gave me a sense of my fitness and satisfied my competitive desires. After doing that for a few cycles, I suddenly popped a nice race at around age 42 and was back at 15:30, and it made me wonder what else was possible, which inevitably led me to the longer distance races which I had never touched before, and I went on to win masters titles at some pretty good races. So in theory, I would have been much better off building a base during those first 3-4 years of my masters career, in practice, I more likely than not would have dropped back out of the sport without getting positive feedback from races, because having short term racing goals, meeting friends for workouts, having a variety of things to do were the things that were keeping me interested and involved. Plus. when I started back at the sport, I had no inkling that I might develop into a guy who would be nationally competitive within his age group - and without those training cycles resulting in that nice 15:28 "pop", I probably would have never set my sights that high in any event.
So my conclusion is that we need to balance what we would do in theory if we were trying to build a generation of elite runners 10 years from now v. developing runners in the long term while keeping them engaged in the short term (and thus keeping them in the sport and keeping them happy and satisfied).
There is a real chance that I will never get that sub 2:30. But if you told me that I could run 2:28 at age 46, or I could end my masters career with a 2:30 PR and a masters title at Chicago to go along with masters titles at the Cherry Blossom 10 miler, the USATF 15k Road Championships and a podium finish at the Boston Marathon from ages 42 to 46, I would take the latter because of all the great experiences that I got to have along the way.
When you write half marathon training plans using your Daniels approach, do you use the marathon or 5k-15k program from the second edition?
The 15k/10 miles/half marathons are interesting distances in that they are kind of "tweeners" and each person may need something a little different to get ready for them depending on what their strengths and weaknesses are and where they are in the bigger picture.
When I ran Houston last January, I was training for it with an eye towards training for Boston, so my mileage was on the relatively high side for me, but since I was almost exactly 3 months out from Boston on race day in Houston, and I knew that I would be doing a huge block of work at threshold pace after Houston. I also had really good overall volume for the 2017 calendar year because I trained for and raced Boston and was able to bounce back from that race and get my volume back up faster than after past marathons. So between that and my local race series spanning from August through October, my approach was to emphasize 5k/10k training during the summer and fall and to use that as the second/speed phase of my Boston Marathon training cycle. It all just fit together pretty well that way.
But given my historical emphasis on vo2max work, and given that I am a pretty fast responder to vo2max workouts, if I were training a half marathon specific plan for myself, I would probably do an abbreviated vo2max block of 4 weeks at most, then would follow that with a 6-8 week block of threshold work similar to the kind of work I do for my marathons (things like 6-8 miles of cruise intervals of 1 to 3 miles per cruise interval) and tempo sessions mixed into my long runs). I work with a really talented runner who I would prepare in a way that I prepare myself (but with a bit of vo2max maintenance work mixed in since he will be in the mix at just about any race and thus needs a bit more high end work), but have another guy who I work with who has historically been a high volume guy who avoids speed. and given all of the miles he has run and all of the threshold work he has done, I would have him come at it from the opposite side and have his primary workout each week during the main phase be a vo2max workout.
Can you speak a little bit about how you would modify 5k-10k training which has 3Q sessions and sometimes a long run into more of a 2Q approach? I know a lot of adult athletes use a 2Q system despite the event, but it I am curious as to how you adapt microcycles from your perspective.
I almost exclusively run with 2 workout days and a long run, with marathon training melding the long run and one of the workouts.
One of the workout days is almost always a lactate threshold session. The only exception to that is usually during a race week, and what gets dropped that week depends on where I am in a training cycle that week and what the distance of the race is.
The other workout session will depend on where I am in the cycle. I will usually start with reps sessions for the first 4 to 6 weeks, usually more like 4 than 6. During the main phase, I will typically put in 6 weeks of vo2max work as my main workout. I don't love 800s because they are on the short side for folks who run under 16:30 or so, but sometimes they are included, particularly if I haven't touched vo2max in a while. Otherwise, I tend to go with 1000s,1200s, 1600s, 1200s, 1000s in that order, sometimes with some kind of ladder or a race mixed in as the 6th session somewhere. I like starting and ending with the same distance as it gives you some fitness feedback. The final phase will typically last 4 to 6 weeks, and will include rep workouts, race paced workouts and race modeling. For example, if my goal race is a 10k race, since I otherwise do not do much at 10k pace, during that last phase I might drop in 4-5 x 1 mile at 10k pace with 2:00 rest to try to lock into goal race pace some. For "race modeling" workouts, I typically combine some rep work and some work at race pace. So for a 5k goal race, you might see something like 200-800-200 about 2-3 weeks out, with the 200s being at rep pace, 200 jog, 800 at 5k pace, 200 jog, 200 at rep pace, full recovery, 3-4 sets. This emulates what you tend to do on race day - get out hard, settle into race pace, then finish with a strong effort.
So in other words you never use the marathon type system of one main workout and and the other workout being a long run combination with a workout for any distance shorter than the Marathon?
I haven't, but I wouldn't be reluctant to do that.
I think it is necessary to do that for the marathon as you want to have some experience going somewhat hard late in a long run and because it tends to make a long run feel longer than it would if it were a straight long run.
In the shorter distances, those reasons aren't applicable. But that doesn't mean that some of the other benefits of this approach might not be useful for the shorter distances. There are at least two other benefits from combining your tempo and long runs: (1) it means one fewer quality day per week which means more days to recover; and (2) sometimes life gets in the way and we just don't get a chance to fit everything in and long runs and workouts take the most time, so when we combine them, we can get everything in with the least amount of time invested. (1) is probably less of an issue the younger you are, the better the weather is, and the fewer miles you run. While it might be a good approach in the summer for a 46 year old living in Florida who is running high volume, recovery is probably less of an issue for someone younger who is training at relatively low mileage levels in a more hospitable environment. (2) is a bit more universally applicable, I think.
As a general rule, I would probably only combine my tempo and long runs for 5k/10k training when life kind of gets in the way or if I felt I needed more recovery in a particular week.
Smoove - what do you think about 3 quality sessions a week + a long run as written out in the 2nd edition for the 5k-15k plan? Seems like a lot.
I also saw on your other post that you do stick with the interval percentage as a function of weekly mileage rule Daniels presents. Is that something you do across the board? I know Tinman bases his volume on race performance, which I always thought was interesting, but hard to replicate w/o his actual "system"
Looking forward to Stonecutter’s half writeup here.
Sorry for the delay. Was finally able to sit down with my notes and compile a schedule I would recommend for a 12 week Half Marathon Specific Phase. This plan assumes you are running at least 55-70 miles/week and have put in an adequate base phase similar to what I have recommended in the past. Workouts can be scaled down for lesser mileage. Mileage can certainly go higher than 70 miles/week but I would suggest keeping the workout volumes what they are. I like to schedule just the two quality days per week; but if, on any given week, a durable runner wanted an extra "quality" day, I would stick to shorter duration workouts like 1:00 "on"/1:00 "off" or 100m-200m "in/outs" that primarily focus on form, economy, turnover work. Easy days can be singles, doubles or mix of mileage - I generally recommend easy paces on the slow side (about 1:30-2:30/mi slower than HMP) but that is matter of running history, durability, and preference.
Twelve Weeks (Specific Period)
A 12x400m hill (3-5% grade) at 110-111% HMP with jog down recoveries
B 10mi total including 6mi @ 95% HMP
A 6mi alternating tempo as 6x (.25mi @ HMP+5secs/mi, .75mi @ HMP+40secs/mi)
B 12mi total including 10mi @ 85% HMP
A 10x800m @ 109-110% HMP with :90 recovery jogs
B 12mi cutdown: 4mi@75-80% HMP, 4mi@80-85% HMP, 4mi@85-90% HMP
A 7mi alternating tempo as 7x (.4mi @ HMP, .6mi @ HMP+35secs/mi)
B 12mi total including 8mi @ 95% HMP
A 8x1000m @ 108-109% HMP off 1:45 recovery jogs
B 14mi total including 12mi @ 85% HMP
A 7mi alternating tempo as 7x (.5mi @ HMP-5secs/mi, .5mi @ HMP+35secs/mi)
B 15mi cutdown: 5mi@75-80% HMP, 5mi@80-85% HMP, 4mi@85-90% HMP
A 6x1mi @ 105-106% HMP off 2:00 recovery jogs
B 14mi total including 10mi @ 95% HMP
A 8mi alternating tempo as 8x (.6mi @ HMP-10secs/mi, .4mi @ HMP+30secs/mi)
B 16mi total including 14mi @ 88% HMP
A 4x2mi @ 100-101% HMP off 2:30 recovery jog
B 12-14mi including 2x4mi @ 97-98% HMP off 4:00 recovery jog
A 8mi alternating tempo as 8x (.6mi @ HMP-10secs/mi, .4mi @ HMP+20secs/mi)
B 18mi total including 16mi @ 90% HMP
A 7mi progression tempo 95%-->102% HMP
B 12mi total with last 30:00 of 15x (1:00 on/ 1:00 off)
A 3x1mi @ HMP off 1:00 recovery jogs
SC- from what you posted, can I assume that the two quality days are inclusive of the "weekly long run"? ie there isn't one other day of "easy long run"
also, can you outline a 5K training block as well?
Jeremy - That is correct. The second workout of each week is the dedicated "long run." Straight easy long runs would be a part of the base phase in my schedule. I do think that additional easy paced medium long runs (12-15 miles) could be added to this schedule, but that is mileage-dependent and preference-dependent to the individual runner. I don't think an additional easy long run is necessary, and with the volume of quality in this schedule, that would be generally tough to manage for most runners.
As far as a 5K schedule...I would need some time to whip that up for you. If you can continue to be patient, I will be happy to post that here. Thanks, and happy running.
Pfitz in his 61-84 HM plan .. his peak week was
General Aerobic 11 (easy pace)
Endurance 12 (faster than G.A.)
v02 Max (12 total)
General Aerobic 11
Those mid week endurance runs really seemed to make me strong.
Thanks for your interest and your patience.
Here is a sample 12 Week Specific Period leading to a 5K (or series of 5Ks). Like the HM plan, this plan assumes you have completed a proper base phase prior to beginning. I included two designated workout days each week; there is the option of adding an additional easy medium long run (12-15 miles at55-60% 5K pace) to each week as desired, though certainly not required. This plan also assumes you are targeting between 50-70 miles/week. Workouts could be scaled down if you are doing lesser overall mileage. You could also substitute any of the weekly "A" workouts for tune-up races (preferably in weeks 5, 7, or 9).
12 Weeks to 5K (Specific Period)
A 24 x 200m hill (3-5% grade) at 105-106% 5K pace with jog down recoveries
B 12 mile cutdown: 4mi @ 60% 5K pace, 4mi @ 70% 5K pace, 4mi @ 80% 5K pace
A 3x (2,000m @ 5K pace, 2:00 jog, 200m @ 5K-20 secs/mile), with 4:00 jog between
B 8 miles including 4mi continuous tempo at 87-88% 5K pace
A 12 x 400m hill (3-5% grade) at 104-105% 5K pace with jog down recoveries
B 10-11 miles including 6 x 1mi at 94-95% 5K pace off 2:30 recovery jogs
A 3x (2,000m @ 5K-10 secs/mile, 2:00 jog, 300m @ 5K-25 secs/mile), with 4:00 jog between
B 10 miles including 5mi continuous tempo at 88-89% 5K pace
A 10 x 600m at 103-104% 5K pace with 1:30 recovery jogs
B 11-12 miles 4 x 1.5mi at 91-92% 5K pace off 2:00 recovery jogs
A 3x (1600m @ 5K-10 secs/mile, 2:00 jog, 300m @ 5K-25 secs/mile), with 4:00 jog between sets
B 11-12 miles including 3 x 2mi at 89-90% 5K pace off 2:30 recovery jogs
A 7 x 800m at 102-103% 5K pace with 1:45 recovery jogs
B 11-12 miles including 7mi continuous progression tempo 84% → 90% 5K pace
A 3x (1200m @ 5K-15 secs/mile, 2:00 jog, 400m @ 5K-30 secs/mile), with 4:00 jog between
B 20-25 x 400m @ 94-95% 5K pace off :30 recovery jogs
A 6 x 1000m at 100-101% 5K pace with 2:00 recovery jogs
B 15 mile cutdown: 5mi @ 60% 5K pace, 5mi @ 70% 5K pace, 5mi @ 80% 5K pace
A 3x (800m @ 5K-20 secs/mile, 2:00 jog, 400m @ 5K-35 secs/mile) with 4:00 jog between
B 13-14 miles continuous long run as 10 miles @ 55-60% 5K pace into 15x (1:00 on/1:00 off)
A 3 x 1 mile @ 100-101% 5K pace with 2:30 recovery jogs
B 10-12 miles including 2 x 3mi at 88-90% 5k pace off 3:00 recovery jog
A 2x (800m @ 5K pace, 1:30 jog, 400m @ 101-102% 5K pace) with 3:00 jog in between
B Goal Race